About Orion ISO

 

Orion ISO Coordinators

Founded in May 2001, we are a part of a unique family of organizations that has served individuals with disabilities and the elderly in Minnesota.

Orion ISO was one of the first providers of self-directed services in Minnesota. Founder Marya Hage created related company Meridian Services in St. Cloud, Minnesota to help serve those with disabilities. We understand that when an individual or family member has a disability, they should receive the best services possible no matter where they reside. The ability to keep loved ones at home, to hire family, friends and neighbors who live close by, and to “manage” the services independently make self-directed service an excellent option.

We’re earning high praise for customer services satisfaction.

More than 99% of respondents in the latest Customer Satisfaction Survey were either satisfied or very satisfied with our overall services. The findings show Orion ISO received more than a 95% satisfaction rate for reporting, payroll and expense reimbursement. This survey polled those served by Orion ISO in 13 areas of customer service including courteousness, online capabilities, timeliness of payroll and expense reimbursement, reporting, overall communication and others.

Customer satisfaction is the ultimate measure of how well we’re doing, and of our commitment to excellence. We’re using this feedback to make even more service improvements.

State of Minnesota

Orion ISO provides services to all populations regardless of language, culture, location, or ability.

Orion ISO provides services in 29 counties throughout Minnesota, including 21 greater Minnesota counties. We are dedicated to ensuring that all those served receive quality, personal services where the challenges of geography may make it difficult for traditional service providers to provide and retain good staff.

We also provide financial management services including fiscal intermediary services nationally via our related organization Morning Sun Financial Services. Our mission is to provide the highest quality of services possible. Our philosophy as an organization is based on customer satisfaction and committed to the principles of self-determination.

Our services are user friendly, straightforward and personal. Our role is to relieve families of administrative stress so they can focus on what’s important: providing the best possible care for their loved one. Our coordinators meet face-to-face with those they serve, wherever in the state they may live.

Our diverse and talented team of employees brings experience in the fields of:

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Human Resources
  • Human Services
  • Education

Our technology makes self-directed services easier to use, especially for those living in rural areas. Online capabilities expedite processes for families, including completing timesheets, submitting expenses, training employees and accessing paperwork.

We have been with Orion ISO for almost 5 years. Through those years it has always been a positive experience. I can only say great things about this company. The staff have been so wonderful to us! Very patient, understanding and easy to work with. They really put their hearts into their work to make sure that we are taken care of.

Our Leadership Team

Erin Huldeen

Erin Huldeen

Executive Program Administrator

Erin Huldeen

Erin is a Exectutive Program Administrator and is responsible for the oversight and implementation of the company’s Consumer Directed Programs, which includes Orion Intermediary Services Organization (ISO) and Morning Sun Financial Services.

Education

Erin’s education includes a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and a certificate in African Studies from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Personal

Erin has worked for Orion Associates and Meridian Services since 2002. Prior to her role as Program Administrator, she worked as a Coordinator with Orion ISO and as Program Director and Program Manager with Meridian Services. Erin is also a Certified Support Planner, a member of the MN-CCD Self Direction Work Group, and runs the Meridian Services Consumer Advocacy Group. These positions have given Erin a diverse background in social services and provide her with a consumer-centered approach to working with those she serves.

Erin resides in Maple Grove where she lives with her husband and two daughters. Her interests include running, swimming, cooking, and spending time with family and friends.

Personal Statement

Erin believes there is a strong relationship between providing quality services and putting the consumers’ needs first. She feels it is essential for all employees to know and understand each consumer on a unique and individual level and to understand each person’s individual needs and strengths. Erin believes the consumers we serve should always be the focus regardless of what position one may have in the company. She feels that all employees should be compassionate, patient and empathetic toward those we serve.

    Lara Trujillo

    Lara Trujillo

    Program Administrator

    Lara Trujillo

    Lara is the Program Administrator for ISO Coordinator with Orion Associates.

    Education

    Originally from Colorado Springs, Colorado, Lara received her Bachelor’s degree in Music Education, from Saint Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, with Classroom, Choral and Instrumental Certification.  Lara continued with her graduate work in Music Education at the University of Saint Thomas, Saint Paul.

    Experience

    Lara has had more than ten years experience in education.
    A former Minnesota public school teacher, she worked with dozens of children with a range of physical and developmental disabilities as well as behavioral issues, helping to coordinate and facilitate the implementation of Individual Education Plans into the mainstream curriculum and classroom.  With Orion ISO, Lara helps to support consumers and families in managing their waiver and grant services.

    Personal

    Away from the office, Lara sings professionally with a variety of local musical and theatrical companies including engagements with Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, Chanhassen Dinner Theater, Theater Latte Da, the History Theatre, Mu Performing Arts, Skylark Opera and Minnesota Opera.  Lara has also performed recently with The Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera Company, New Breath Productions, Teatro Del Pueblo and Bloomington Civic Theatre.  Lara and her husband, Stephen, live in Edina,
    along with their three daughters, Lyndsay, Madeleine and Maya, and their son, Liam.

    Personal Statement

    Although now working in the human services field, Lara continues to strive to be an educator for families
    and communities, as well as consumers, to ensure that they have the information and tools to be strong
    and knowledgeable advocates for themselves and their loved ones.
    To quote Schoolhouse Rock …”Knowledge is power!”

      Zach Garcia

      ISO Director

      Zach Garcia

      Zach is an ISO Director with Orion Associates.

      Education

      Zach received his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Theater and Music from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin in 2011.

      Experience

      Zach’s expertise lies in non-profit programming and administration. He has worked extensively with youth performing arts organizations across the Midwest. Zach previously worked in the Human Resources department with Orion Associates prior to moving to Orion ISO.

      Personal

      Zach is a local professional actor and vocalist in the Twin Cities in addition to working with Orion Associates. He has worked as an arts educator and artistic director of youth arts organizations across the Midwest. Zach originally hails from the Green Bay, Wisconsin area. He enjoys theatre, music, kayaking, running, and the outdoors.

      Personal Statement

      If you commit to something, do it passionately, without question, and without regrets.

        Tommy Nixon

        Personal Support Manager

        Tommy is a Personal Support Manager with Orion Associates.

        Education

        Tommy graduated from the University of Minnesota Duluth with a degree emphasizing Criminology, Sociology, and Psychology. While in school, he was a member of a community service organization, interned at the public defender’s office, and was a teaching assistant. Tommy was recognized with several academic awards and received an Undergraduate Research Opportunity Project Grant for his time in Honduras.

        Experience

        Tommy has previously worked with adolescents struggling with mental illness and chemical dependency. He has worked direct care, activity and living skills coordination, shift supervision, on-call supervision, and case management. Tommy facilitated regular educational and therapeutic processing groups, created treatment plans, and maintained contacts and licensing requirements.

        Personal

        Tommy enjoys traveling, photography, biking, running, swimming, and camping. He regularly plays tennis, racquetball, and several musical instruments. With his wife, he enjoys going to museums, concerts, the gym, yoga, Russian Kettlebell, cooking, and hanging out at home. Tommy is an avid reader and can frequently be found at coffee shops. He is a part of a very big family and enjoys spending time with them whenever he can.

        Personal Statement

        “There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self”
        Ernest Hemingway

          Missy Schraut

          Missy Schraut

          ISO Coordinator

          Missy Schraut

          Missy is an ISO Coordinator with Orion Associates. She is responsible for helping to support consumers and families in managing their Consumer Directed Community Support portion of their waiver and grant services.

          Education

          Missy’s education includes a certificate in accounting from Rasmussen Business School and obtaining a Bachelors of Arts in History, with an emphasis in American Studies, and a minor in Anthropology.

          Experience

          Joining Orion Associates in 1999, Missy was initially hired to work in the company’s Accounting Department, processing payroll. During Consumer Directed Community Support’s significant growth in 2001, she added expense reimbursement and tracking waiver dollars to her job description. As the program continued to grow, so has Missy’s involvement with Orion ISO, leading to her current position as an ISO Coordinator.

          Personal

          Missy and her husband Jeff, reside in Sartell, along with their two young daughters, Bailey and Gracie, and their dog Nanook. She loves spending time working in her garden, scrapbooking, cooking, baking, and spending time with her family and friends.

          Personal Statement

          Missy is very grateful for the opportunities that she has be given while working with Orion Associates.
          She believes that one of the best benefits of working at Orion has been the people that she has worked with. Although Missy’s role has changed many times since she began, she has remained dedicated to her job and to Orion’s mission and vision. It has been wonderful to see the impact that we can have on others, when often times we feel we are only “just doing our job.” Missy believes that it is her diverse background, including both her work and educational training, that makes her an asset to both the organization and to those she serves.
          It is her goal to help those who utilize our services to live their life to the fullest.

            Amara Penske

            Amara Penske

            ISO Coordinator

            Amara Penske

            Amara is a Coordinator with Orion ISO.

            Education

            Amara attended Redwood Valley High School in Redwood Falls, MN. She has her CNA and TMA certifications from Ridgewater College in Willmar, MN.

            Experience

            Amara has worked in the medical field since she was sixteen, in nursing homes and as a home health aide. Amara was hired as a Direct Care staff for Meridian Services in August of 2010. She was offered an Administrative Assistant position for Orion Associates at the Golden Valley office in November of 2011, later being promoted to the position of HR Specialist.

            Personal

            Amara resides in Brooklyn Park with her fiancé, Matt, and their son, Ivan. She enjoys spending time with her family, reading, gardening, and traveling to southwest Minnesota to spend time with family and friends!

            Personal Statement

            Amara is very enthusiastic about her work in the Human Resources Department. She strives to improve processes to get employees hired quickly and working for our families. Amara enjoys building strong working relationships with the families we serve and with her coworkers. She looks forward to learning and growing professionally in the social services field.

              kelli mcnevin

              Kelli McNevin

              ISO Coordinator

              kelli mcnevinKelli is an ISO Coordinator for Orion ISO with Orion Associates.

              Education

              Kelli’s education includes a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from University of Minnesota, Mankato and a Master’s of Arts degree in Counseling and Psychological Services from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.  In addition, Kelli obtained licensure as a Licensed Psychological Practitioner in March 2002.

              Experience

              Kelli began working as a Vocational Coordinator with Access to Employment while preparing for her licensure examinations.  As a Licensed Psychological Practitioner, she then worked as a Primary Counselor for Omegon, Incorporated, providing therapy services for adolescents aged twelve to eighteen who have major mental health issues along with chemical abuse problems in a dually-licensured facility.  In addition to role as a Primary Counselor, Kelli added the role of an On-Call Supervisor and became member of the Management Accountability Team (M.A.T.).

              She became one of three valuable members of the M.A.T. assisting in the overall management of the Omegon Program.  As a M.A.T. member, she was involved in every aspect of a client’s treatment from first interview all the way to the completion of aftercare.  In March of 2007, Kelli began working at Meridian Services as a Program Manager for In-Home Services and Supervised Visitations.

              In October of 2007, Kelli moved into the role as a Program Manager for Guardianship Services, as well as Conservatorship, on behalf of Meridian Services. Upon the dissolution of that program, Kelli is now transferring her vast skillset to work as an ISO Coordinator!

              Personal

              Kelli and her husband, Todd, reside in Montrose, along with their Dachshund, Ginger and two cats, Oscar and Felix.  Kelli and her husband enjoy spending time being outdoors, working on home projects and landscaping their backyard.

              Personal Statement

              Kelli believes in providing a non-judgmental compassionate approach that is centered on the individual understanding their feelings while discovering what barriers may exist that limit their full potential.

                Amy Richter

                Amy Richter

                ISO Coordinator

                Amy RichterAmy is a Coordinator for Orion ISO with Orion Associates.

                Education 

                Amy graduated from Rasmussen College with an Associates’ Degree in Health Information Management. She graduated from Hopkins High School.

                Experience

                Amy has been working in accounting for almost ten years, and in billing for eleven!  She is self-motivated, always willing to learn, and loves challenges. The positions that excite her are those that carry the wearing of many hats.  Amy lived and taught over-seas in Asia from 2000-2004.

                Personal

                In her free time, Amy enjoys spending time with her family and pets. She currently has Jaxon, the cat, Bruiser and Roxi, the dogs, Mila, the fish, and Chip and Kristine, her chickens.  She would love nothing more than to have a hobby farm.  Amy loves the outdoors, working out, camping, and hiking.  She is very into studying heritage and theology.

                  Tyler Stahl

                  ISO Coordinator

                  Tyler is an ISO Coordinator for Orion ISO with Orion Associates.

                  Education

                  Tyler graduated from Hamline University with his Bachelors’ Degree in Musical Arts and Spanish, and a minor focus in Business. He studied piano as his primary instrument, but also played percussion in various university ensembles.

                  Experience

                  Tyler started in Human Services during his early college years as a
                  Program Counselor for Fraser, which was his first experience of direct care in a group home setting. After less than a year there, he applied at Meridian Services and was Program Counselor at Aspen Park. In addition to those positions, Tyler was working for a music company traveling around the metro area teaching piano lessons. In college, he spent two years as an RA, and a summer as a Residential Counselor for the Boston Ballet (No, he doesn’t dance!). After graduation, Tyler worked for a non-profit organization as a student loan counselor before being offered the ISO Coordinator position.

                  Personal

                  Outside of work, Tyler loves to travel, experience different cultures, and meet new people. He spends a lot of time exploring the city, especially new restaurants. As a foodie, Tyler loves to cook and try out different recipes online or create his own. He frequently visits his hometown of Eau Claire, WI, to visit family and friends. Tyler’s younger sister is his best friend, even though they are six years apart. He enjoys writing his own original songs/instrumentals on the piano and someday hopes to learn how to play the guitar. Tyler also loves to sing and is a member of a large Twin Cities men’s chorus.

                  Personal Statement
                  “Do all the good you can. By all the means you can. In all the ways you can. In all the places you can. At all the time you can. To all the people you can. As long as ever you can.”

                  - John Wesley

                    Isabella De La Cruz

                    ISO Coordinator

                     Bella is an ISO Coordinator with Orion Associates.

                    Education

                    Bella graduated from Hamline University with her Bachelors’ Degree in English and a concentration in Professional Writing and Global Studies.

                    Experience

                    Bella brings with her a unique blend of experience including direct care, PCA work, as well as a writing and marketing background with small businesses. In addition to working full-time for Orion, Bella is a Barista at a local coffee shop, and freelances helping small businesses build websites, improve their copy, and better reach their audiences.

                    Personal

                    Bella enjoys reading, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends. When she isn’t enjoying the snow in Minnesota, she visits her family in Florida or road-trips to a National Park she hasn’t yet visited.

                    Personal Statement

                    Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.

                      Katie Zastrow

                      ISO Coordinator

                      Katie is a Coordinator for Orion ISO with Orion Associates.

                      Education

                      Katie graduated from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse with a Bachelor’s Degree in Therapeutic Recreation and a Minor in Psychology. Katie is a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist.

                      Experience

                      During college, Katie worked in many different setting with children with special needs such as residential facilities, swim lessons, after school and summer programs for kids and camps for special needs kids. Most recently, Katie has worked as a Therapeutic Recreation Coordinator for almost seven years providing community based recreational opportunities to teens and young adults with a variety of special needs.

                      Personal

                      In her free time, Katie enjoys running and spending time with friends and family. She was born and raised in Green Bay, WI and is a dedicated Packer fan.

                      Personal Statement

                      Be somebody who makes everyone feel like a somebody.

                        Dustin Harris

                        ISO Coordinator

                        Dustin is a Coordinator for Orion ISO with Orion Associates.

                        Education

                        Dustin graduated from Ashford University in 2015 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Criminal Justice.  Since living in Minnesota, he has obtained his P.O.S.T certification which is required to become Law Enforcement.

                        Experience

                        While never actually working in the human service field, he strives to do the best that he can in every aspect of the job. He is excited to continue to learn more about the human services field and helping people with disabilities.

                        Personal

                        Dustin is originally from Newnan, GA but moved to Sacramento, CA at age 16. After graduating high school, he joined the Marine Corps, where he served for 8 years and 9 months, and got out in July 2012. During his time in the Marine he took on many rolls, one of which was Licensing NCO/ Clerk.  In July of 2015 he moved from San Diego, CA to Maple Grove, MN with his family.

                        Dustin enjoys watching his two sons, Joshua and Bryson play their respective sports and coaching both during football season. Dustin have coached football on the youth level for 5 years which includes Flag and Tackle football levels. He also enjoys getting out on the lake and fishing.

                        Personal Statement

                        “The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather in a lack of will.”

                        -Vince Lombardi

                          Our Philosophy and Mission

                          hands with flowerOrion ISO is deeply committed to the principles of self-determination. We provide outstanding financial and technical support for the individuals and families we serve without influencing their choices. We maintain strong partnerships by consistently providing responsive, flexible and accurate fiscal intermediary services.

                          Orion ISO provides the highest quality, personal service. We measure the quality of our services not only by the satisfaction of those we serve but also by the increase in meaningful supports in people’s lives.

                          Principles of Self Determination

                          • Orion ISO is one the largest and oldest providers of Self-Directed Services in state of Minnesota. We are deeply committed to the principals of Self Determination and to the implementation of Self-Directed Services.Freedom to live a meaningful life
                          • Authority over money needed for support
                          • Support to organize resources in ways that are life-enhancing and meaningful
                          • Responsibility for the wise use of public dollars
                          • Confirmation of leadership by self advocates

                          About Self-Directed Services

                          famly with kids and dogUnder self-directed services, those we serve receive an individualized budget and each client decides how to use those funds. Orion ISO individuals select, schedule and supervise their own employees and often employ those they know best including family and trusted friends. They also may purchase other goods and services such as adaptive equipment, training and modifications.

                          Orion ISO works with many programs and service options and our role as a Minnesota fiscal agent may vary. Some of our responsibilities as a fiscal intermediary may include:

                          • Employer setup
                          • Budgets
                          • Payroll
                          • Expense reimbursement
                          • Human resources support
                          • Billing and Reporting
                          • Service usage monitoring
                          • Private pay for services

                          Please visit our other websites for a full listing of our services:

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