Project Search

Project SEARCH International Leadership Team

The administrative team coordinates and oversees the international network of Project SEARCH sites. Their technical assistance is focused on program replication, professional education and training, continuous improvement, and model fidelity. The core team is based at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, with a team of Project SEARCH consultants located throughout the US and the UK.

Project SEARCH Leadership

Erin Riehle, RN, MSN

Erin is a recognized authority and national leader in promoting employment opportunities for people with disabilities and other barriers to employment. She is a founder and Senior Director of Project SEARCH, an employment and transition program that has received national recognition for innovative practices pioneered under Ms. Riehle's guidance. She is regularly invited to present at national and regional conferences, and has co-authored numerous publications and book chapters. She has served on many national committees, such as the Virginia Commonwealth University Business Leadership Roundtable and the Youth to Work Coalition. She is a past board member for the Association for Persons in Supported Employment (APSE). She is also a past member of the Ohio Governor's Council on People with Disabilities. She has gained over $3 million dollars in foundation and agency support for Project SEARCH programs, and has won numerous awards for her work. Notably, Project SEARCH received the U.S. Department of Labor's 2004 New Freedom Initiative Award and was the Inaugural recipient of Dartmouth-Hitchcock’s 2010 James W. Varnum National Quality Award.

Erin Riehle, RN, MSN, Project SEARCH Founder and Director, Director of Disabilities Services at Cincinnati Childrens Hospital Medical Center

Erin Riehle, RN, MSN

Project SEARCH Founder & Director, Director of Disabilities Services at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

Susie Rutkowski, BS, MEd

Susie is the Co-Director and Educational Specialist for Project SEARCH. Susie is a nationally recognized transition expert with specific experience in program development in career technical education and job development for young adults with disabilities. She served as the Manager for Disability Education at Great Oaks Career Campuses for over twelve years. During that tenure she, with Erin Riehle, co-founded Project SEARCH, a program for young adults transitioning from school to work. Susie has been instrumental in designing the Project SEARCH Training Institute modules and leading replication efforts for new Project SEARCH sites. She speaks and writes on transition-related topics.

Susie’s degree in Special Education was received from Bowling Green State University. Her Masters in Educational Administration was received from the University of Dayton and she did post-graduate work at Wright State University and Xavier University. . In addition to her other positions, she taught young students with multi-handicaps for eight years and worked for 10 years as a Job Placement Coordinator for students and graduates with disabilities from Great Oaks.

Susie Rutkowski, BS, MEd, Co-Director, Education Specialist

Susie Rutkowski, BS, MEd

Project SEARCH Co-Founder, Co-Director, and Education Specialist

Christina Armstrong, BA

Christina Armstrong is the Business Manager of Disability Services at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (Project SEARCH, Follow-Along Services, and Vocational Education Services). She has 13 years of experience in business administration (6 in the non-profit sector), with a background in finance, research, project management, and human resources. Christina is responsible for management of the business operations including grants, contracts, partnerships/collaborations, and oversight of departmental budgets and ledgers.


Christina Armstrong, BA

Business Manager

Greg Lynch, BA

Greg has over 17 years of experience working in business, with a specialty in supply chain management. In 2005 the group of employees that he managed at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC) expanded to include people with disabilities, and through this experience became increasingly interested in Project SEARCH. In March of 2009 he became the Program Coordinator for Project SEARCH. In this role, he acts as the Project SEARCH business liaison for CCHMC, facilitates all of the program tours, and is responsible for all of the accounting for Project SEARCH.  In his free time Greg is very active volunteering in the community. In 2009 he received a National Jefferson Champion Award for his service in the community. He has a degree in Business Administration from Thomas More College.   


Greg Lynch, BA

Program Coordinator

Charee Partee

Charee has 24 years’ of experience in the field of health care administration. She has been employed at Cincinnati Children Hospital Medical Center for over 10 years. Her role with Project SEARCH includes providing administrative support for the staff, coordinating tours, and managing logistics for the International Conference. Before coming to Project SEARCH she worked in the Division of Developmental Behavior Pediatrics, which includes The Kelly O'Leary Center—a facility for children with autism.


Charee Partee

Administrative Assistant

 

Project SEARCH Program Specialists

Lyn Andrews, BA

Lyn has 30 years of experience planning, implementing and evaluating community employment programs for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. She had the privilege of serving as a program consultant for Project SEARCH for over six years prior to her employment with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center in July 2014. She currently provides Model Fidelity Reviews for Project SEARCH programs with the goal of supporting continuous improvement and increasing employment outcomes. Lyn also contributes by supporting new program development and responding to inquiries from the web site. She is based in the Seattle area.

Lyn Andrews, BA

Program Specialist

Maryellen Daston, BS, MS, PhD

Maryellen has a background in biomedical research and technical writing. As a Project SEARCH program specialist for data and communications, she is responsible for identifying state and federal funding opportunities, preparing grant applications, and managing the database and website content. Maryellen also contributes to the Project SEARCH website and other communications. In addition, she co-authored, with Erin Riehle and Susie Rutkowski, a book on the history, philosophy, and practices of Project SEARCH.


Maryellen Daston, BS, MS, PhD

Project SEARCH Program Specialist-Data and Communications

Linda Emery, BA, MEd

 

Linda, based in Hillsboro, Ohio, has 30 years' of experience in disabilities service. She has worked with both young children and transition-age youth. Linda was a teacher in a Project SEARCH High School Transition program for eleven years. Currently, she assists with program replication in many states and is an instructor for the Project SEARCH Training Institute.  

 


Linda Emery, BA, MEd

Program Consultant

Paula Johnson, BS, MS

Paula has more than 30 years of experience in employment for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities that includes job development, job analysis, career planning, staff training, marketing, and management.  She has been actively involved with Project SEARCH since 2003 and is currently a program specialist assisting schools, community rehabilitation agencies, funding agencies and employers with the development of new programs in 15 states and Canada.  Paula is based in Lake Oswego, Oregon.  


Paula Johnson, BS, MS

Program Specialist

Anne O’Bryan, BA

Anne has promoted full-time paid employment for all people with learning disabilities and autistic spectrum conditions since 1979. She trained at the University of Oregon in techniques for working with people with profound learning disability and initiated two electronics assembly businesses providing paid employment. In the 1980s she was at the forefront of the development of individual supported employment. When she moved to the UK in 1990 she joined the NDT developing and improving supported employment services in the UK and Europe.

She has assisted individuals, families, employers and service providers in program design and continuous improvement. Inspired by her brother, Larry – one of the first people to be diagnosed with autism, she has focused on quality of life improvement. To Anne, having a worthwhile job is one aspect of a life worth living. She has written and presented extensively on this subject.

Since 2013 Anne has led European Project SEARCH program development. She is also a founding member of the South West Employment Institute.


Anne O’Bryan, BA

Program Specialist & UK Lead