We address the two major problems for caregivers:  limited time and chronic exhaustion.

The Caregiver Relief Fund provides vouchers for at-home care and for recharge mini-getaways.

We fundamentally believe a balanced caregiver is the foundation of a healthy, happy family and a respected care receiver.

Vouchers for professional at-home care services are donated or purchased on behalf of the Caregiver Relief Fund.  We award these vouchers to caregivers, giving them time to address their personal needs and financial resources to invest in their own well-being.

We select individuals who have been in a caregiving role for a chronically ill individual, elder or disabled person for 12 months or longer. Caregiver applicants also must have an individual income of $80,000 or less per year.

Caregivers fill out an application form, share their caregiving story and go through an interview. We then select and match the available relief funds with the needs of the caregiver.

The Caregiver Relief Fund was established in 2009.

The Caregiver Relief Fund was born out of the direct caregiving roles from each of the founders. America is facing a massive crisis of the family. Caregivers are being crushed. We witnessed hundreds of caregivers enduring similar challenges. And the number one challenge we found was severe pressures on their time, health and financial resources. The consequences are massive. We are here to address this challenge.

We want caregivers to have the time needed to get a long-term plan in place. This starts with getting them some relief and time. We created the Caregiver Relief Fund to respect caregivers, build strong families and ultimately help America face one of its single largest challenges: the aging of America and its impact on caregivers.

The Caregiver Relief Fund is a 501(c)3 registered non-for-profit corporation. It is a social venture committed to being a voice for caregivers and a resource for them. For more information please go to


Michael TS Lindenmayer
Founding Partner + Chairman

Michael is the founder of the Caregiver Relief Fund. Michael has a long history of building social ventures. He was an early adopter of the award winning leading micro-credit institution, the Grameen Bank ( and of the leading literacy organization, Room to Read (

He is a founding member in the Rio Leadership Institute ( and of the South Leadership Institute ( Michael is a member of the brain trust of World Blu (, the thought leader on democratically run organizations.

Michael commenced his career in investment banking. He worked at Morgan Stanley in their New York and London offices. He did post-graduate research for James P Womack during his tenure at MIT. He is a frequent speaker on caregiving issues, frequent radio guest and committed champion of caregivers. He graduated cum laude from Kalamazoo College. Michael is a partner in a consulting firm and speaks 5 languages.

Sydel Howell
Co-Founder, Chief Alliance Builder

Sydel Howell is a partner and managing director of San Diego Homecare Supplies, a family owned home medical product and supply company. Sydel is also an instructor of the Lebed Method, a therapeutic exercise and movement program designed for the chronically ill to improve range of motion, balance and emotional well-being. She is a member of the San Diego Caregiver Coalition.

Prior to joining the family business, Sydel worked in the London office of McKinsey & Company. Ms. Howell graduated Magna Cum Laude from The George Washington University with a degree in International Affairs and Economics. She holds an MBA in Finance from The Wharton School and an MA in International Studies and Portuguese from The School of Arts and Sciences of The University of Pennsylvania, where she received the Dean’s Award of Excellence in Innovation.

Sydel and her family live in San Diego. She is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese.

Ryan Whitmore
Co-Founder + Chief Operating Officer

Ryan is the Editor-in-Chief of the Elder Brief (, a publication dedicated to educate and inform elders and caregivers of the products and services available to assist them in their journeys. Prior to his role at Elder Brief, Ryan was a financial analyst based in Chicago. Ryan has served as the co-head of the Chicago Chapter of Room to Read and is an advocate and volunteer for Ladder Up, a Chicago-based non for profit which assists low income families gain access to education funding.

Ryan and his wife live in Chicago. He speaks English and Portuguese.


Program Director for the Rosalynn Carter Institute/Johnson & Johnson Caregivers Program and is Director of National Initiatives for the RCI

In her 12 years at the RCI, Laura has co-authored two of the RCI’s signature training programs, Caring for You, Caring for Me – Education and Support for Family and Professional Caregivers, 2nd Edition and Caring and Competent Caregivers: Professionals Helping Families. She has co-authored journal articles in Health & Social Work (2006) and Educational Gerontology (2004), and contributed chapters to Voices of Caregiving (LaChance Publishing, 2009) and Recreating Neighborhoods for Successful Aging (Health Professions Press, 2009).

Prior to joining the RCI, Laura worked as a case manager in child protective services and counselor for delinquent youth at an outdoor therapeutic program run by the State of Georgia. Laura holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master of Public Administration from Columbus State University in Columbus, Georgia. She also holds a certificate in Gerontology from Georgia Southwestern State University. Laura is a certified master trainer in the evidence-based programs “Savvy Caregiver” and “The Future is Now”.

President and CEO for the National Alliance for Caregiving

Gail Hunt is President and CEO of the National Alliance for Caregiving, a non-profit coalition dedicated to conducting research and developing national programs for family caregivers and the professionals who serve them.  Prior to heading NAC, Ms. Hunt was President of her own aging services consulting firm for 14 years.

She conducted corporate eldercare research for the National Institute on Aging and the Social Security Administration, developed training for caregivers with AARP and the American Occupational Therapy Association, and designed a corporate eldercare program for EAPs with the Employee Assistance Professional Association.  Prior to having her own firm, she was Senior Manager in charge of human services for the Washington, DC, office of KPMG Peat Marwick.

Ms. Hunt attended Vassar College and graduated from Columbia University in New York.  In May of 2004, she was appointed by the White House to serve on the Policy Committee for the 2005 White House Conference on Aging. Ms. Hunt is on the Advisory Panel on Medicare Education. She is the incoming chair for the National Center on Senior Transportation. Ms. Hunt is also on the Board of Commissioners for the Center for Aging Service Technology and she is also on the steering committee for Long-Term Care Quality Assurance.


Managing Director, Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management
Philanthropic Services

Melanie Schnoll Begun is a Managing Director and Head of Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management’s Philanthropic Services. Melanie has served as a philanthropic counselor to families, foundations and family offices for over 17 years. She works with the firm’s ultra-high-net-worth clients to develop areas of focus for their philanthropy; engage multiple generations in their foundation’s governance, programming and evaluation; help clients to design customized domestic and international grant-making portfolios and gift agreements; facilitate giving circles and retreats; and coordinate with clients’ tax and legal professionals on the formation of tax-exempt nonprofit organizations as well as their dissolution or merger.

Melanie joined Smith Barney in 1997 as Associate Estate Planning Counsel in the Estate & Trust Services group. Prior to Smith Barney, Melanie was an estate planning attorney in a New York City law firm.

Melanie is the Vice President of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney’s Global Impact Funding Trust, Inc., the nonprofit organization sponsoring the firm’s donor-advised fund, and is a Board Officer and Board Member of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and the Partnership for Philanthropic Planning (formerly the National Committee for Planned Giving). She is also on the advisory boards of Girls, Inc., and Grameen America, a non-profit microfinance organization whose mission is to help entrepreneurial individuals, especially women, build credit and defeat poverty. She has published articles on various tax, estate and charitable planning strategies in Trusts & Estates magazine, Tax Notes Today, Exempt Organization Report and various other trade journals, as well as appeared in publications such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and The Chronicle of Philanthropy.

Co-Founder and COO of B.O.T.H.

A.D. Frazier is an entrepreneur and a well respected corporate leader. Prior to co-founding Back of the House, a leading provider of start-up services for Boomers, he was the CEO of the Chicago Stock Exchange. Prior to that role he was the COO of Caremark, President of Invesco and was the COO of the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games. He is a thought leader, leading voice in corporate governance and is now engaged as a thought leader in the space of boomers third chapter professional life and the caregiving space.


Bill founded Sierra Tucson, one the nation´s leading recovery and rehabilitation facilities. He is also the founder of Miraval Resorts, the nation´s leading destination wellness center. Bill is a recognized and award winning visionary and has served in a leadership position within the wellness, recovery and mental health space for the past two decades. Prior to founding these enterprises, Bill held leadership roles within his family´s group of businesses.

He is a graduate of Brown University.

Senior Client Partner at Korn/Ferry International

With over three decades of experience in the healthcare industry, Mr. Mullen has served as the National Practice Leader for the North American Healthcare Services Practice for Korn/Ferry. He is also very active in the Firm’s National Nonprofit Practice and Global Financial Market. Prior to joining Korn/Ferry in 1996, Mr. Mullen served as president and CEO of, the managed care division of UniHealth, a large health system in California. In this capacity, Mr. Mullen served on the senior leadership team of the $2 billion parent company and directed managed care strategy for ten acute care hospitals and medical groups. Mr. Mullen has held CEO roles at hospitals with companies such as Hospital Corporation of America and senior positions with leading management consulting firms such as Ernst & Young. He has been active on many national and community boards, including the National Association of Private Psychiatric Hospitals, California Hospital Medical Center, CliniShare, the Alliance for Children’s Rights (past president) and Health Insights (past chairman).

Mr. Mullen has a master’s degree in public health from Yale University and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from St. Louis University.


Jack Murrin served as a Partner and the Director of Finance (CFO) for McKinsey & Company, the global management consulting firm, from 2002 through 2010. As the Firm’s principal financial officer, he was responsible for its financial planning, MIS, treasury, control, tax, benefits and financial shared services operations globally.

Before rejoining McKinsey in 2002, he served as a Senior Managing Director at Bankers Trust.  At BT he led the Corporate Development and Strategy function and was closely involved in strategic transactions including the purchase of M&A firm Wolfensohn & Co and the investment bank Alex. Brown — as well as BTs ultimate merger with Deutsche Bank.  Prior to joining BT in 1995, Jack had been SVP Planning & Analysis at Travelers Inc. and EVP Planning & Development for Carlson Companies.

From 1981 to 1992, Jack was a management consultant with McKinsey & Company.  He served in its Washington D.C., London, and New York offices and was elected a Partner of the Firm in 1987.  Jack played a lead role in developing McKinsey’s global Corporate Finance practice, which advises leading corporations on the strategic and financial aspects of corporate management, transactions (e.g., M&A) and restructurings.

Jack is co-author of the first three editions of Valuation: Measuring and Managing the Value of Companies (Wiley, 1990) a leading book on valuation and value-based management.  Valuation has been translated into numerous languages for use around the world and has become a core reference/course text at business schools.

Jack earned an MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, where he was an Arjay Miller Scholar. Jack is a CPA and won the Sells Award for placing first on the nationwide CPA examination in November 1977.  Prior to attending Stanford, he worked in the audit department for two years with Arthur Andersen & Co. in Washington D.C.  He holds a B.S. Economics, summa cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School.

Jack has been actively involved in environmental conservation for over twenty years and has served on the board of the Nature Conservancy’s New York chapter and is Vice-Chair of its Mashomack Preserve on Shelter Island, NY.


Leeza Gibbons’ career in entertainment and new media is diverse and impressive. Leeza’s on-camera hosting experience ranges from Entertainment Tonight to TV news magazine Extra. For six years she was producer and host of Leeza – the Emmy award winning daytime show. Currently she hosts the PBS TV show My Generation and her radio show, Hollywood Confidential.

Personal experience inspired Leeza to create The Leeza Gibbons Memory Foundation (a 501c3 non-profit) and its signature program, Leeza’s Place, which offers free services for family caregivers. A thought leader in the field, she wrote a book called Take Your Oxygen First: Caring for Yourself while Caring for Someone with Memory Loss.

Leeza’s talents and experiences found a natural outlet on the Lifetime Series, Health Corner, a weekly TV magazine show focusing on health and wellness, and What Should You Do?, in which Leeza provided viewers with help and advice for dealing with life-threatening emergencies. Leeza also founded Sheer Inspiration Life Coaching, a web based business offering visitors one-on-one access to experts who can help them improve their lives.

Her guest appearances include: Larry King Live, Good Morning America, Oprah, The Today Show, Donny Duestch and The View. She was recently named one of the “Ten who Make a Difference” by AARP and has just been named the AARP Ambassador of Care. Leeza is a long-time board member of the Alzheimer’s Association and has a two decade commitment to the celebrity panel of the American Red Cross.  Leeza is also one of California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s appointees to the Independent Citizen’s Oversight Committee.



Registered Office
Caregiver Relief Fund
900 S. Wabash Ave
Suite 603
Chicago, IL 60605

Caregiver Relief Fund is registered in the State of Illinois