Renee McHugh- President


I have been your MAPA President since 2016. My goal has been to promote this organization to our peers in the Health Care field. MAPA seminars are a convenient way to earn CEU's, share ideas and connect with each other in the metro area.

My career path has taken some twists and turns; Public Safety Officer, Mail Carrier, Dietary, Housekeeping, Memory Care, Elder Fitness and Activity Director. The common pull for all of these is working with the elderly. My grandparents were a huge influence in my life and taught me so much about aging with dignity along with a big dose of humor! As I continue my career in Long Term Care, the residents continue to amaze me in the variety of ways each person travels the path of life. 

The MAPA Board of Directors are here to serve your needs as professionals and we encourage your input in the types of education you desire. Your input helps us select seminar speakers. Please contact Leslie Judge, Education Chair with speaker ideas. Also, we hope you will continue to post job openings, and share your favorite entertainers with us. Send any information to our Communications Chair, Julie Tomfohrde for postings to the MAPA website. Together, we make MAPA better! 

Looking forward to seeing you in 2019.

Renee McHugh

Director of Therapeutic Recreation

Catholic Eldercare on Main

Office: 612-362-2417

Jane Chagnon- Vice President

Hello Everyone!

My name is Jane Chagnon and I’ve been working with Elders for over 30 years.  I’ve served both on the MAPA board and MNSWAP board in the past and am excited for the opportunity to serve again as Vice President and also as the Region 6 Representative to MNSWAP.  I’ve worked the gamut of Long Term Care, Memory Care, Assisted Living and Independent Living.  I love being able to be a part of residents’ lives and to know that I can make a difference in their quality of life.   It has been my privilege to work in this profession and to serve residents who have already given of themselves to their families and respective communities.   Pay it forward!   As Vice President I am also the region 6 representative for Mn SWAP. Part of my responsibility for the region representative role is to help get nominations for: Activity Professional, Activity Assistant, Volunteer and Administrator of the Year awards. Please feel free to ask me how you can nominate someone for an award.   I am looking forward to meeting and getting to know all of our wonderful MAPA members.

Jane Chagnon, ADC

Johanna Shores


 Education- OPEN

Cindy Vega- Secretary

Hello Everyone! 

I am Cindy Vega, your new MAPA Secretary. I am excited to be part of this team and meet other members who share the same passion for the work we do. I am currently the LED for Iris Park Commons AL at Episcopal Homes. I have been blessed to work here for six years. I started off as a front desk aide and helped out a lot from the beginning and just worked my way up to the Enrichment Director. Previous to this field I was the Public Relations Chair for my student group at the U of M, and the Outreach Chair for our Midwest Umbrella Organization so you could say I love working with people. I also went to school at Anoka Tech for Medical Assisting and after 6 months of working in a clinic, I decided my heart was with my residents and returned to them at Iris Park. 

At home I have two wild sons, Leo (3) and Noah (1), with my husband Juan. They keep us very busy but it really is a joy to have them in our lives. In the summer we like to get our family together for a cookout at the lake. In the winters we enjoy going to Pho Hoa after Mass for a great bowl of soup. I like to think I'm the pinterest Mom and try to get my kids to craft, but they hate crafts, so I'm glad my residents enjoy our pinterest projects. I would love to exchange ideas and get connected with you, so please feel free to reach out. 

Cindy Vega

Life Enrichment Coordinator

Iris Park Commons at Episcopal Homes

1850 University Ave W. 

Saint Paul, MN. 55104

Jennifer Lachermeier- Treasurer

Greetings everyone! 

I joined MAPA in 2015 and became Treasurer in 2016 at the suggestion of our speaker that day, Julie Reginek, who later became my college instructor. I graduated December 2017 with an Activity Director degree from Ridgewater college and most recently became NCCAP certified. I have worked for LMA for 8 years, where I started in housekeeping. One day, in 2012, our campus administrator asked me if I would like to try activities and I never looked back! I worked in the Long Term Care Unit for 2 years and for the past 4 years I have been working closely with the Assisted Living and Memory Care units. Prior to LMS I worked with Adults with Developmental Disabilities for over 10 years. I live in the very small down of Winsted, MN with my husband Philip, son Benjamin and fur babies, Max and Ruby. We also have a daughter Taylor, who happens to be a Teacher in the Koala Bear Daycare at LMS so I get to see her daily. I love spending my free time reading, playing card games and riding motorcycle with family and friends. I love learning everything I can about our "greatest generation" and am so thankful for MAPA and the education it provides. I look forward to meeting you!

Jennifer Lachermeier

Life Enrichment Coordinator

Lake Minnetonka Shores

4559 Shoreline Dr.

Spring Park, MN. 55384


Laura Myren- Hospitality

Hello Everyone!

I have been on the MAPA Board since 2011, first as the communication chair and now as the hospitality chair.  I have been working with seniors for over 15 years in various settings and roles.  My current role with the independence seniors at Parkshore Senior Campus is by far my favorite.  I have been a Board Certified Music Therapist since 2002 and completed my Master’s Degree in Gerontology is 2009.  I’m a busy Mom of 4: Teddy, Freddy, Eddy and Gloriana.  I love spending my free time with my family outside.  As the hospitality chair, I am in charge of setting host sites for our various sessions.  If you are interested in hosting a session please feel free to contact me.

Laura Myren MA, MT-BC

Director of Programs

Parkshore Senior Community

3663 Park Center Blvd.

St. Louis Park, MN 55416

Office (952) 848-5806

Julie Tomfohrde- Communications

Hello Everyone! 

I have been on the MAPA Board since 2015. Previously I was living in Milwaukee, WI and on the board for the Milwaukee Area Activity Professionals while working as Activity Director at an Older Adult Day Center. I truly love working with older adults, playing piano for them and enhancing every aspect of their life. I have my Bachelor of Arts in Music and Art. I also received my Activity Director Certification from Ridgewater College in May 2014. 

Currently, I am a stay-at-home mom to Arietta(3) and Linnea(6 months). I enjoy participating in Triathlons and my husband and I love everything about the outdoors: hiking, kayaking and biking. The Communication Chair updates the website, sends out the newsletter and posts any new jobs within the job postings tab.

Julie Tomfohrde, ADC

Karren McRae- Membership

Hi Everyone!

I always wanted to be a kindergarten teacher, and that's what I went to college for. While in school, I became a stay at home mom. Going to the "gym" was part of my daily life. So, I became a Group Fitness instructor and soon found myself back in school working on a degree in Health and Exercise Science. I became a Fitness Coordinator and then a Director for the YMCA. While there, I was on the committee for Active Older Adults for the YMCA of the Twin Cities. I fell in love with older adults, they had the best stories about life! Two knee injuries sent me in a new career direction. 

I started as a Life Enrichment Coordinator for VOA- The Homestead at Maplewood. With zero experience, I was the only activity person for the building-covering both AL and MC. Many of the skills I learned while working on my Elementary Ed. Degree applied to working with seniors. Since then, I've opened two Senior Living buildings and at the end of 2015 I made a change to be a part of the Green House Model of Care at Episcopal Homes of Minnesota- The Gardens in Saint Paul. Long Term Care is very different than Senior Living! I miss my active seniors, but I love the 1:1 time that I have now! 

In my "free time", we keep a boat slipped in a marina in Red Wing, MN and we spend all summer out on the Mississippi River. In the winter, if I'm not hibernating behind my iPad or watching Netflix we are snowmobiling. I have been a member of MAPA since 2015. I always wanted to join earlier, but could never carve out the time in my schedule. Being asked to be a host site really helped me to realize what the association was all about. I'm looking forward to my new position as Membership Chair for the MAPA Board. I can't wait to meet all of you in 2019!

Karren McRae

Episcopal Homes of MN-The Gardens

1860 University Ave. W

Saint Paul, MN. 55104

Office: 651-272-4956