What Happens There?
How to Make a Donation
Dismas House DVD
Mission, History, Vision
Rutland Dismas*
Hartford Dismas*Burlington Dismas*

Dismas Of Vermont



Jan Tarjan is the Executive Director of Dismas of Vermont, newly arrived in September, 2011.  Jan came to the work at DOV after many years as associate Dean, and as a Senior Program Officer, at the Tucker Foundation for Service, Spirituality and Social Justice at Dartmouth College. At the Tucker Foundation, she guided student community service outreach programs locally, nationally and internationally.  Her work with college student volunteers, interns, fellows and community partner agencies included attention to the needs and development of the incarcerated in Vermont. Jan brings with her a personal and professional familiarity with issues of poverty, educational disadvantage, abuse and disability, as well as an optimistic attitude toward individual and social change. In her spare time she enjoys alpine skiing, hiking, reading, time with her family and visiting her neighbors.



Burlington Dismas House, Two Homes


Buell Street Dismas, Est. 1986

East Allen Dismas, Est. 2008



Richard Gagné was on the Planning Committee and has been on staff since the first Vermont Dismas House opened in Burlington, in 1986. He is the Director of East Allen Dismas in Winooski.   His previous work experience included working in a soup kitchen in Manchester, NH and as a high school teacher.  He is a graduate of the US Air Force Academy.  Richard is an artist and creates  hand-carved furniture  for the annual  Dismas Auctions as well as for many other occasions.  Each summer, Richard heads up the Burlington Dismas House softball team, Dismas As Usual and is an avid Red Sox fan.  He has played a significant role in laying a strong foundation for Dismas of Vermont Inc, through his dedicated Dismas work since 1986.  He has three grown children and makes his home at Dismas House.  He is currently in the process of building his own home and barn in Northern Vermont.

Kimberly Parsons, a graduate of the University of Vermont, has been on staff since 1991. She is the Director of Buell Street Dismas in Burlington.    Her previous work included working for the United Nations as a photo journalist in Central America.  Kim came to Buell Street Dismas in 1991 bringing with her, excellent organizational skills and fundraising ability.  Along with Richard, Kimberly has devoted herself to the growth of Dismas House, especially with her work to establish the two Burlington Satellite apartments.  She has overseen the Fundraising and Grant Writing for many years. Kimberly is a craftsperson, spinning wool and knitting lovely garments from the wool she has spun, which she  also donates to the annual Dismas benefits.  She is an avid horse back rider.  She is the mother of two and a grandmother living with her husband Wilson and family in Waterbury Ctr.


Jay Ladd comes to Dismas House with a career dedication to social justice. He has lived and worked in Burlington since 1982. Before joining Dismas House, he was the Community Development Director for the City of Winooski for a decade. Prior to that, he was the  Housing Development Director for Lake Champlain Housing Development Corporation, increasing the affordable housing in Chittenden County. Jay currently serves on the Board of the Intervale Community Farm.

Jay is married, with a twenty five year old son. As a family, occasionally as a solo couple, and sometimes with companions, they have undertaken numerous canoe trips in Maine, northern Quebec and Labrador, for  as long as a month, where ‘nature’ and ‘family’ and ‘team’ are particularly meaningful.

Jay’s responsibilities with Dismas House will include enhancing the Planned Giving and expanding the donor base. He is delighted to be part of the Dismas Community.

Sue Drollette is the Assistant House Director at East Allen Dismas.  Sue came to Dismas in September 2009 with a 25 year background as an Account Executive with Eastman Kodak Company.  Sue also co-managed a Marina in New York State with her husband and son for 12 years.  Sue brings excellent organizational and communication skills to her position at Dismas.  The mother of two grown sons and grandmother of two, Sue lives in Richmond with her husband Earl and their two Bernese Mountain Dogs.

Michelle Paquette is the Assistant House Director for the Buell Street Dismas House and the Office Manager for Burlington Dismas House. While she is not a native Vermonter, she has lived in Burlington for the better part of the last six years. She graduated from Champlain College in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science in Communications. A year or so after graduation, she realized she was ready to be back in the classroom as a Postgraduate student. Michelle was fortunate to have the opportunity to broaden her global horizons and combined a desire to travel with that of further education, and earned a Master of Social Development from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. From there, she ventured further to New Zealand, Thailand, and throughout Central America. Michelle has now settled back in to Burlington, which she considers home, and is very excited about her position with Dismas House.


Rutland Dismas House


103 Park Avenue

Rutland, VT  05701

Established in 1990



Terese Veverka Black joined Rutland Dismas House in 2003, after serving as a middle school and high school teacher for many years.  She hails from Minnesota and is a graduate of Clarke College in Dubuque, Iowa with a background in art.  Her ability with words and her sense of humor are a great combination in keeping things light at Rutland Dismas House!  Ms Black has been involved with peace and justice activities throughout her life.  During her many years of teaching, she brought students to volunteer cook at Dismas House regularly and served on the Board of Directors for many years.  She is a musician, with a background in leading church folk choirs. She is also an enthusiastic volleyball player.  Terese is the mother of three children and one grandchild.  She and her husband Rob, a Dismas volunteer, make their home in Rutland. 

Valerie Page joined the Rutland staff in 2003 after spending 17 years as a paralegal in Boston. Previously, she worked in Personnel at Honeywell Corp in Massachusetts.  She is a graduate of Stonehill College and also studied at Northeastern University.  She came to Dismas House after participating in a training with Thresholds/Decisions, a program of Rutland Dismas House. Valerie’s  interests include: reading, gardening, and she loves cooking.  She and Terese enjoy playing  Scrabble together when at staff and board retreats in Weston. Val has three grown children and four cats.  She lives in Rutland with her husband, Steve, a Dismas volunteer and their good friend “Papa John.”