MEET THE TEAM
Senior Advocate was established in Hampton Roads, Virginia in 2000 by Stephanie Smith. Her experience in caring for her grandmother, who developed Alzheimer's disease, sparked Stephanie’s interest in issues involving the needs of older adults.
Stephanie’s hands-on experience providing care management for seniors and their families made her aware that these families were often ill-informed about resources available to help them. She also became aware that even the professionals who were providing services to seniors were frequently in need of additional information and options. Stephanie is committed to meeting those needs through Senior Advocate educational and social events, SeniorAdvocate.Live, Senior Advocate Social Media Sites and the Senior Advocate Magazine.
Stephanie holds a BA in Speech Communications, with a concentration in Public Relations, from Old Dominion University. She currently lives in Chesapeake and Williamsburg with her ‘In-Training Therapy’ puppy and two cats.
Vice President of Concierge Care
Sharon Smith has been a part of the Senior Advocate team since its inception 22 years ago. After managing care for her mother with dementia, she then worked with Senior Advocate helping with client home assessments. Sharon went on to work with the Richmond Alzheimer’s Association providing education to professionals and support and assistance to patients and their families with Alzheimer’s disease. Sharon currently helps moderate professional meetings, general public seminars and social events and will be in charge of the Concierge Care Division which will begin offering services in November, 2022.
Sharon holds a BS Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with concentrations in Education and Psychology. She lives in Chesapeake with her rescue cat, and enjoys cooking, reading historical novels and hiking the local nature trails.
Vice President of Marketing & Sales
Cristy Hansen has had a wide variety of experience in the senior service arena, including working as a Community Liaison with a hospice company, an Admissions Director with a CCRC, and an Admissions Coordinator with a long-term care facility. She has completed the A.I.T. program and holds a BA in Healthcare Administration. She is also currently working on her master’s degree in Healthcare Administration.
Cristy is married to Donald, who retired from the Navy and now is in the Civil Service. She has a blended family of three children and two dogs.
Joanne "Jojo" Tanner
Vice President of Hype
Jojo Tanner is a Hampton Roads native and started working with Senior Advocate in 2007 as Director of Community Relations. In 2015, Jojo graduated from Saint Leo University with dual BA degrees in Sociology and Psychology. She is also a certified Life Coach, primarily focusing on guiding clients toward making decisions that foster healthier, more fulfilling lives. In her current role with Senior Advocate, Jojo is the IT Specialist, Moderator, Idea Person and Interviewer.
Jojo lives in Chesapeake and Richmond and loves to travel and spend time with family. She has four adult children and six grandchildren and spends as much time as possible outdoors, communing with nature.