Our people are our greatest asset. From the full spectrum of adult homecare and elder care to childcare and more, the quality services we provide day in and day out would not be possible without the hard work and passion of our dedicated staff. Each member of our team embodies the core values of our business – compassion, integrity, family, excellence, trustworthiness, accountability, and diversity – and strives to make more possible for those in our care.
Compassion, integrity, family, excellence, trustworthiness, accountability, and diversity
Rampi Hijazin | Owner/Agency Director
As the owner and agency director, Rampi knows and understands the importance of provide top notch customer service and compassionate care to clients, families and business professionals in the community. She recognizes the need for leadership and support for her team and is responsible for the overall operations of the business. Rampi also works closely with individuals in the community and families to help find solutions for their needs.
Rampi has over 13+ years of experience in the senior living industry primarily with Independent Living, Licensed Assisted Living and Dementia Care residences. Starting her career providing caregiving services at the age of 18 while attending college. She has worked her through the organization, learning operations from the ground up. Rampi has a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences from Wayne State University, a Masters of Business Administration from Wayne State University as well as a Masters of Science in Business Information Technology from Walsh College. Rampi has also attended the Erickson School on Aging Studies’ Executive Education Program with a concentration on Business & Strategy in Senior Housing and Care, Sales & Marketing, Management & Operations and Finance in Senior Housing and Care. She also has her Assisted Living Administrators License for the State of North Carolina. Rampi has also been actively involved with the Alzheimer’s Association‘s Michigan and Western Carolina Chapters, the Michigan Assisted Living Association and the North Carolina Assisted Living Associations, and the Nation Private Duty Association for the last few years. Rampi has enjoyed helping provide quality home care services in the Charlotte area to families and healthcare professionals.
Lou Hijazin | Director of Operations
Witnessing Rampi’s efforts in the senior living industry for years and also hearing the many stories his mom shared about her caregiving experiences over the years, gave Lou a new respect for individuals working in the healthcare field. With 15+ years as small business owner, he knows what it takes to run a good business and the importance of providing good and timely customer service to clients. When the opportunity arose to become a part of BrightStar as the Director of Operations, Lou knew this was an opportunity he couldn’t pass up and eagerly looked forward to the challenges that would come with working in this new industry. He enjoys most being able to help families find a solution to their problems and knowing that the BrightStar team all gave 120% and have the same mission/goals for those that we serve.
Holly Simmers, RN, BSN | Nurse Consultant/Director of Nursing and Clinical Services
As the Registered Nurse Consultant for the office, Holly got to do what she loves most, “provide and maintain great nursing services to clients and families”. Holly is most noted in the community for her involvement as the Director of Nursing for our agency but also was the Assistant Director of Nursing at a long term care facility in the area for 4 years as well as her involvement as a staff nurse providing quality care on the Spinal/Neuroscience floor at Presbyterian Hospital for 5 years. Holly also has extensive experience working as a Home Health nurse for a local Home Health agency. When the opportunity arose, for Holly to take her part time role at BrightStar to the next level, to enhance her experience working with the aged populations as a Director of Nursing, she eagerly accepted the opportunity before her. The team realized quickly that with Holly’s senior care experience matched with Rampi’s experiences, the two were a unique duet that could provide clients in the area with an unmatched resource. Holly has a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Radford University. Holly is a devoted mother to Carrington and Chamberlyn and is married to Clark.
Kori Utter, RN | Nurse Care Coordinator
Nurse Kori started her career with BrightStar three years ago as a CNA, while she was in school for nursing. Kori was well respected by all of our clients and colleagues so it was an easy decision to bring her on once she got her nursing degree. Kori worked as a field nurse for about a year and was promoted to the role of the Nurse Care Coordinator and assists Nurse Holly with the day to day nursing activities of the agency. Kori is new engaged to her fiancé Matt and looks forward to a wedding this year!
Lynn Howard, RN | Lead Infusion Nurse
Lynn has been a Registered Nurse for 22 years and a Legal Nurse Consultant for 7 years. She received her nursing degree from Centennial College in Toronto and her Operating Room Certification from George Brown College, also in Toronto, Canada. She started her career in home care providing primary nursing to a wide variety of in-home skilled nursing clients, including hospice clients. Then she took her medical interest further by becoming an assistant in the operating room in a large teaching hospital in Toronto. She has assisted in orthopedic, spine, brain, eye, urological and general surgeries, with a special interest in limb re-attachment and reconstructive surgery. Lynn then moved to New England, where she served as a Home Care Supervisor, with a well-known agency. Following the birth of her daughter Nadia (12), she began working as the nursing administrator for a Coumadin clinic, working hand-in-hand with the physicians, gaining an increase in experience with the primary care outpatient community. Following the arrival of her second child Pearce (9), her career developed in the arena of Legal Nurse Consulting. Working as an independent contractor with multiple area attorneys, Lynn assisted clients in identifying optimal health care and pursuing excellence on their behalf. To the BrightStar team as the Director of Nursing, Lynn brings her passion for excellence, paired with a solid, balanced clinical expertise. She is looking forward to helping BrightStar continue to deliver the highest level of client-focused health support and care.
Vanessa Villegas | Client Care/Staffing Coordinator
Vanessa’s role as the Client Care and Staffing Coordinator is very important for our team. She is responsible for general oversight of our clients and team members to help make sure everyone is happy with BrightStar. Vanessa comes to us with 5+ years of previous experience in similar roles of customer service that she did when she resided in Brooklyn, New York. Vanessa has a passion for providing quality care and service to all involved with BrightStar and works hard to make sure everyone has a great, positive experience with our agency! In her free time, Vanessa enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter and son – Julio, Jazlyn and Jeremy.
Tom Elek | Community Healthcare Liaison
Tom is our Community Healthcare Liaison. His responsibilities include marketing/educating others on BrightStar and the services we are able to provide others in the community. Tom comes to us with 17+ years of marketing/clinical services experience in the senior industry. He has worked in Independent Living, Assisted Living and Home Health Care agencies in Florida. He has also been an Alzheimer’s Association Committee Member and Chair of the Walk to End Alzheimer’s. Tom moved to North Carolina from Florida to spend more time with his family and enjoys reading in his spare time.