Gateways To Better Living Leadership

Meet The Gateways to Better Living Team

At Gateways to Better Living, Inc., we provide a dignified, fun and safe environment for individuals with developmental disabilities.  We began as a private non-profit in 1972, and have now expanded to a number of facilities with personalized care unique to each individual. By helping your loved one to believe in themselves, they are empowered to lead happy, productive lives.

Karl L. Ware, M.Ed, Executive Director/Director of Operations

Karl Ware joined Gateways in 2015.  Karl earned a Bachelor of Arts in print journalism from Southern University and A & M College, and a Master of Education in rehabilitation counseling from Kent State University.  Karl came to Gateways with a solid background of eighteen years in the field of developmental disabilities with the Trumbull County Board of Developmental Disabilities.  After six years as Program Director, Karl assumed the helm of Gateways as Executive Director/Director of Operations on July 1, 2021.

Jim Linert, Chief Financial Officer

Jim Linert, Chief Financial Officer, joined Gateways in 2013.  Jim earned a Bachelor of Science in accounting from Youngstown State University.  Jim’s background includes seven years in public accounting and twenty years in executive management positions in the health care industry, garnering extensive experience in optimizing revenues related to various medical reimbursement programs.

Kristie Murphy, Community Engagement Director

Kristie began her career at Gateways in 2002 as a Home Manager.  Kristie earned a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Youngstown State University.  Over the years, Kristie has held a number of progressive management positions, and was the Day Program Director from 2016 to 2021.   Kristie served as Chief Operating Officer from 2021 to 2023, and became the Community Engagement Director in 2023.

 Elaine Hamilton, Program Director

Elaine joined Gateways in 2009 as a Home Manager. In 2016, Elaine made the jump into Waiver Services as a Manager, and became the Director of Waiver Services in 2018.  Elaine assumed the role of Program Director in January, 2024.

Theresa Malvestuto, RN, BSN, Director of Nursing

Theresa joined Gateways in 2014 as our Nurse Educator.  In 2018, Theresa was promoted to Assistant Director of Nursing, and to Director of Nursing in 2023.

Mary O’Brien, MPA, Human Resources Director

Mary began her career at Gateways in 1998 as Personnel Assistant and advanced to Human Resources Director in 2001.  Mary earned a Bachelor of Science in public relations from Kent State University, and a Master of Public Administration from Capella University.  Mary also holds a Senior Professional in Human Resources certification from the HR Certification Institute and the Certified Senior Professional designation from the Society for Human Resource Management . 

Kaonta Lawrence, ICF Director

Kaonta started at Gateways in 1997 as a direct support professional.  After earning her Bachelor of Social Work from Youngstown State University, Kaonta began advancing through the ranks of management from Home Manager to Program Manager, and finally, to ICF Director in 2020.

Roslyn Greene, Day Program Director

Roslyn started at Gateways in 1992 as a direct support professional.  In 2004, she joined the management team as a Home Manager and then transitioned to the day program at Gateways Industries main campus in 2008 as Vocational Supervisor.  In 2021, Roslyn was promoted to Day Program Director.

Sharlena Crenshaw, Waiver Services Director

Sharlena’s tenure with Gateways to Better Living dates back to 2009 in a variety of roles.  Sharlena has worked in both the ICF and waiver programs, most recently as an Operations Coordinator, until taking on her role as Waiver Services Director in 2024.

Gateways’ Board of Directors

Steven Snyder, Chairperson

Barbara Kostelic, Vice Chairperson

Darlene Eddinger, Secretary

Michael Leone, Treasurer

Ken Bielecki

Bruce Brocker

Kathy Costa

Atty. James Dietz

Karrington Griffin

Christine Klika

Joseph Lyons

Angelo Perruzzi

Francine Spisak

Tanisha Wheeler

Ralph Zerbonia