Jill Cihlar, President and Chief Executive Officer, has been involved in the social services field for over 20 years. She has worn many hats, as a personal care attendant, direct care employee, program manager of Independence Programs serving three counties, facilitator of PATH and Essential Lifestyle person-centered planning processes, case manager in out-state Minnesota, program coordinator for participants of self-directed services, program director of Independence Programs and Residential Services, and program administrator of Home and Community Based Services in central and northern counties of Minnesota.
Pinnacle Services founder Nicolas Thomley hired Jill in 2007 to be the agency’s chief operating officer, and she took over responsibility for the day-to-day operations of Pinnacle Services and affiliated companies. She works closely with the members of the shared leadership team of Pinnacle Services and Summit Fiscal Agency to assure that services meet and exceed standards defined by the Minnesota Department of Human Services and Minnesota Department of Health; state, county and Managed Care Organization contract requirements, as well as voluntary compliance with the standards set forth by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). In 2011, Jill took over as president and chief executive officer and remains committed to quality assurance and program integrity.
Jill enjoys working with the Pinnacle staff, which is always looking for ways to make things better. Even good systems are evaluated to make sure that experiences are improved. She is interested in the psychology of happiness, creating a satisfying workplace, and understanding the needs of intergenerational workforces and people with different communication styles. When away from work, Jill enjoys being outside with her family and friends, far, far away from anything with a screen. She loves appetizers, a great cocktail, downhill skiing, watching football, sitting by winter bonfires, and reading.
Shannan joined Pinnacle Services in 2007, bringing to the company a wealth of IT, analyst and realtor skills, with little formal accounting experience but a knack for numbers. She started as a temp worker in the accounting department, but now processes payroll for 750+ employees, maintains receivables for 1000+ clients and supervises employees in the Accounting Department.
After being hired as a billing clerk, Shannan spent the next two years learning more about the roles of each department member, and took on additional responsibilities. In 2008 she was promoted to payroll coordinator, and then to accounting manager in 2009. She is an active member of Pinnacle’s culture of innovation. Where members of the accounting department used to do one job, Shannan instituted a team approach, cross-training each department member to bring “fresh eyes” to everyday tasks, effectively assuring that any member of the team could address issues despite absences. She works with this dynamic team to assure smooth financial operations for Pinnacle Services, Panache Properties, Apex Management Group, and First Avenue Commercial Building.
Shannan enjoys volunteering with her colleagues to benefit Special Olympics, and works with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) project sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Revenue to help low-income people and those with disabilities to get their taxes done on time. She recently joined the Clearwater Lions, and is excited about volunteering to help with fundraisers that help to stock food shelves and provide services for community members needing assistance. When not working or volunteering, Shannan loves to read, repurpose furniture and pursue other craft projects, go to hear live bands and dance a little, boat, hunt and spend time with friends and family.
Natasha Privratsky is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) and has been with Pinnacle Services since 2008. In her time with Pinnacle Services, Natasha has been a direct care employee, program manager of two foster care sites, program director over Residential Programs and Independence Programs and most recently, a case management administrator. Natasha had the opportunity to work with consumers with developmental disabilities, serious and persistent mental illness, brain injuries, and a variety of medical conditions.
Natasha works with Pinnacle Services’ case management contracts with Hennepin, Dakota, Anoka, Chisago and Rice counties, as well as Medica, serving those with Developmental Disability (DD) waivers, Community Access for Disability Inclusion (CADI) waivers, Brain Injury (BI) waivers, Elderly waivers (EW). She also provides care coordination for the Special Needs Basic Care (SNBC), Minnesota Senior Care Plus (MSC+) and the Minnesota Senior Health Options (MSHO) programs offered through Medical Assistance. Before she came to Pinnacle Services, Natasha worked with special education students at a Title I elementary school and people with serious and persistent mental illness in an inpatient hospital setting. These experiences have given her an extensive perspective on consumer experiences, as well as the challenge of program development.
When she is not working, Natasha enjoys golf, sharpening her culinary skills, as well as attempting, and often failing at, Pinterest projects.
Chris Smith, Technology Specialist, has been working to improve the lives of others for 15 years. He spent much of that time working with people with brain injuries and/or mental illness. Chris joined Pinnacle Services as a family coordinator in 2012, then became a program director in 2013 and was responsible for compliance with state and federal regulation, developing self-directed programs as legislation and regulation changed and managing stakeholder and employee relationships. In 2016, Chris moved to his current role as our Technology Specialist. In this position, Chris implements efficiency and technology improvements and generally makes sure technology is working for us, not against us. He also maintains our Customer Relations Management Database.
Interest and experience in finance, technology and mental health have guided Chris’ search for ways to improve the accuracy, flexibility and responsiveness of the services that Pinnacle provides. When he is not at work, he enjoys rock climbing, sailing in Minnesota’s beautiful lakes and science fiction.
Lynn Morris, Program Administrator, has been working with people in this field for over 20 years. She began as a Certified Nurse’s Aide, working with the elderly in many different settings. After several years and varied roles in management and administration, Lynn joined Pinnacle Services in 2010 as a part time DSP. Later that year, Lynn took on a management role and began to supervise residential sites. During 2017 and 2018, Lynn spent time learning new roles and participating in many new and exciting changes throughout the agency. As Administrator, Lynn oversees the Program Department, working closely with its members and consumers.
Lynn is committed to the health and happiness of the individuals she works with, as well as helping everyone reach their fullest potential. When not at work, Lynn enjoys camping, kayaking (or most anything involving a lake or river), spending time with friends and family, reading, and being generally bossed around by her two pups, Maggie and Indigo.
Anna Newberry, Human Resources Recruiting Manager, began her work in the field of Human Services in the year 2010 after graduating from Luther College with a degree in Psychology. During her career, Anna has enjoyed wearing many hats. She began her work as a Direct Support Professional and immediately knew that Human Services was the field for her. While remaining a Direct Support Professional, Anna has enjoyed the opportunity to learn and grow in an ever-changing field by taking on roles such as, Program Manager, Intake Specialist, Hiring Manager, and Human Resources. Anna’s knowledge and deep understanding of the many roles needed in the field of Human Services has equipped her in her recruitment efforts at Pinnacle Services. Advocating and improving the lives of consumers, patients, and employees has been the driving force behind Anna’s career.
Anna lives her life with integrity, believing that hard work, honest communication and a humble attitude is the foundation to building a successful life. Outside of work, Anna enjoys camping, concerts, football and spending time with her family, friends, and overwhelmingly affectionate pets!