The Senior CommUnity Care of North Carolina team includes health care professionals who know how to manage the care of the elderly.

Our staff creates a personal health care plan for every participant in order to help monitor changes in health care needs. It also helps manage all health care services and provide support for clients in the home and our Center. In addition to our directors, doctors and nurses, our extended team includes: personal care providers, home health providers, occupational and physical therapists, social workers, activity staff, dietitians, drivers, and spiritual counselors.

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Toni Hively

Executive Director

Toni Hively is the Executive Director of VOA’s Senior CommUnity of NC PACE Program. Toni has over 25 years of experience in community services’ leadership and operations. She has over 9 years of PACE executive leadership experience. Toni has been with SCCNC for almost 3 years.
Prior to coming to NC, Toni was the Executive Director of a large PACE program outside of Pittsburgh, PA. Prior to that, she worked with the Jewish Association on Aging Agency as the Director of Outpatient and Clinical services where she provided oversight for the skilled nursing facility rehab services, hospice, homecare, adult day services, comprehensive outpatient rehab facility, and the meals on wheels program. Before her administrative leadership experiences, she practiced as a speech-language pathologist in variety of settings including hospitals, home health care and skilled nursing facilities. She earned a Master’s degree in Speech Pathology as well as a Master’s Degree in Public Administration (Healthcare Track).

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Jane Venick

Center Director, Wake County

Jane has worked at VOANS: Senior CommUnity Care of NC in Durham, NC for the past 8 years. Previously, she worked in a home and community based services program for 5 years. Jane received her MSW from UNC-Charlotte and has a BS in Business Administration from UNC-Chapel Hill. She is married with two daughters, ages 3 and 4. During her time at SCCNC, she has seen the program grow from approval of our three way agreement to opening our doors to our first 18 participants to serving approximately 200 participants today. Jane was hired a social worker and promoted to Social Services Manager in 2016. She accepted the role of Center Director, Wake County in 2020. She facilitated our transition from contracting end of life services to bringing palliative care and end of life care (PC/EOL) services in-house and continues to provide training to the team.

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Chuck DeGroat

Center Director, Durham County

Prior to becoming the Durham County Center Director, Rev. Chuck DeGroat served as the first Chaplain for Senior CommUnity Care of NC. During his 3 ½ years in that position, Chuck assisted in developing the PACE program’s End-Of-Life Care program to provide the services & support so participants could choose to die with dignity at home in familiar surroundings with family & friends gathered around. Rev. DeGroat developed & lead the spiritual program for PACE, providing pastoral care, counsel & Biblical instruction. Chuck received a BA at Lebanon Valley College & his MDiv from Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Before moving to NC, he pastored in upstate NY & PA, serving as a denominational leader for NY State, & now brings his leadership experience to the Durham PACE team. Chuck enjoys kayaking, puzzles, chess & Sudoku. Chuck & his wife, Cindy, enjoy biking, a trip to the beach, a good movie, eating out with friends, fall & the North Carolina blue skies, but above all, they love spending time with their 4 children & 4 grandchildren. Chuck’s passion for family fits well within the PACE framework to help people remain in their homes with their family around for support.

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Dr. Gregory Bugaj

Medical Director

Dr. Bugaj’s passion is primary care for older adults with complex health problems. He loves working with people and their families toward better health, function, and quality of life. Healing is definitely a team sport and Dr. Bugaj feels privileged to be a part of the care team here at PACE.


Undergraduate Education: B.A. in Biology, University of Rochester


Medical Education:  State University of New York at Buffalo, School of Medicine


Residency:  Internal Medicine, University of California at San Francisco


Fellowship:  Geriatric Medicine, University of California at San Francisco


Medical Certifications:  Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Geriatric Medicine, Certified Medicine Director


Memberships: Society for Post-Acute and Long Term Care Medicine

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Dr. Kristin Hlebowitsh

Medical Provider

Dr. Kristin Hlebowitsh attended college at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and obtained her M.D. from the University of Texas Southwestern medical school. She completed her Internal Medicine residency at Boston University where she was awarded the R. Knight Steel Award for Excellence in Geriatric Medicine. She fell in love with North Carolina during her Geriatrics fellowship training at Duke University. She now lives in Cary with her husband and two children, and is an active parishioner at St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church.


Undergraduate Education: B.S. in Biological Engineering, MIT


Medical Education: M.D., University of Texas Southwestern Medical School


Residency: Internal Medicine, Boston University


Fellowship: Geriatric Medicine, Duke University


Medical Certifications: Board Certified in Internal Medicine


Heather Johnson

Nurse Practitioner

Heather Johnson, DNP, AGNP-C is a PACE nurse practitioner. She received her BSN from UNC in Gerontology and an Inter-professional Geriatric Fellowship from the UNC Dept. of Geriatric Medicine. She received her doctorate from UNC Adult-Gerontology. Heather has over nine years of nursing experience working with older adults in both long-term care and acute care settings. She is a graduate of UNC’s Adult-Gerontology Doctor of Nursing Practice program and is excited to join PACE as a nurse practitioner. She looks forward to getting to know the participants and their families as they partner to reach their healthcare goals.

Lucinda Smith

Lucinda Smith

Nurse Practitioner

Lucinda Smith, MSN, AGPCNP-C, is a PACE Nurse Practitioner.  She received an undergraduate degree in Health Occupations Education from the University of Southern Indiana, and a nursing (RN) diploma from the Deaconess Hospital School of Nursing in Evansville, Indiana.  Cindy graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2013 and has worked as a nurse practitioner in both inpatient and outpatient settings primarily in Neurology and Primary Care.  Prior to becoming a nurse practitioner, Cindy worked as a registered nurse for 29 years in a variety of practice settings.  She lives in Raleigh with her husband of 34 years and has two grown sons.

Last Updated on July 11, 2022 by admin