Parkinson's Resources of Oregon
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Parkinson's Resources of Oregon Names New Executive Director (Photo) - 06/13/24

[Beaverton, Ore.] – Parkinson’s Resources of Oregon (PRO), a non-profit organization that delivers support to people living with Parkinson’s disease in the Pacific Northwest, is proud to announce Melissa Greer as its new executive director. A long-time employee instrumental to the nonprofit’s growth, Greer assumes the leadership role on August 16.

PRO’s board of directors in May approved Greer’s selection by a unanimous vote. Greer will oversee an organization serving 15,000 households in Oregon and Southwest Washington affected by Parkinson’s disease through counseling, workshops, exercise classes, and more than 50 support groups held across the region. All services are aimed at improving the quality of life for people living with a Parkinson’s diagnosis and the lives of their families and caregivers. PRO has grown steadily in the last decade, employing 11 people and supporting over 200 volunteers in offices located in Beaverton, Eugene, and Bend. Through an ambitious rural outreach initiative, PRO has extended support for people with a Parkinson's diagnosis in communities such as Roseburg, Pendleton, Klamath Falls and Coos Bay.

The board of directors is thrilled to partner with Melissa Greer, one of our own, to shape the next chapter at PRO,” Board of Directors Chair Justin N. Smith said. “Her care of our clients and development and stewardship of the programs they depend on is impressive. The Parkinson’s disease community can rest assured that the excellence they have come to expect from PRO will continue."

Greer will replace Holly Chaimov, PRO’s outgoing executive director and the organization’s first full-time employee. Chaimov is retiring after leading the organization for 25 years, building its team, services, and geographic reach. Board members credit Chaimov for the nonprofit’s growth, which has, for years, added about 100 new households a month to its service roster. Chaimov was a chief architect of PRO’s service offerings, including a toll-free helpline – 1-800-426-6806 – as well as case management and counseling, support groups, workshops, and a comprehensive collection of fitness classes that have included yoga, tai chi, dance, and no-contact boxing. Each fall, PRO hosts four fundraising walks, known as Sole Support for Parkinson’s, that draw thousands of people of all ages and abilities to Portland, Eugene, Bend, and Vancouver, WA.

Chaimov served as a mentor for Greer, PRO’s program director. Greer has a background in public health and nutrition, and at the start of her tenure at PRO traveled across Oregon to work with clients. Greer, who has served PRO and its clients for a decade, became a major champion of the organization’s rural outreach initiative and helped make it a success. 

Board members selected Greer because of her knowledge of the organization, her commitment to its mission, and her passion for the community it serves. Smith said Greer inherits a cohesive staff, effective programs, and a growing reach, and the board wanted to maintain that momentum with a leader who shared the nonprofit’s client-centered values and supported its culture of care and excellence. 

About Parkinson’s Disease:

Parkinson’s disease is a brain disorder that causes unintended movements, including shaking, stiffness, and difficulty with balance and coordination. Symptoms get worse over time, and can also include mental and behavioral changes, fatigue, depression, sleep difficulties, and memory loss. Research shows that Parkinson's disease should be actively managed not only with medication but also with exercise and social connections. At least 1 million Americans live with the disease. Doctors diagnose about 90,000 cases of Parkinson's disease a year, mostly in people over age 60. 
 

About Parkinson’s Resources of Oregon:

Parkinson’s Resources of Oregon (PRO) is a donor-supported non-profit with the sole mission of improving the quality of life for people with Parkinson’s, their families, and caregivers. With three locations, hundreds of volunteers, and dedicated leadership, PRO provides direct care and support to thousands of families. Working to address issues faced by Parkinson’s patients and their families, PRO can significantly improve the quality of life for everyone touched by this disease. To learn more, visit www.parkinsonsresources.org

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