Team Members

Mary Anne Ehlert
President & Founder


Mary Anne Ehlert is a financial professional and sister to an individual with disabilities. She is a highly regarded specialist working with families of individuals with disabilities and serves on the boards of several organizations, including the Special Olympics of Illinois. She speaks at conferences nationally and locally on planning for families with special needs. She recently completed her book entitled The Gift I Was Given.


Erin Sharkey
Senior Financial Planning Associate


Erin’s unique background combines her interest in analytical reasoning with her desire to help improve her clients’ lives. Her ten years’ finance experiences includes public accounting in England and Chicago at Ernst & Young, and as Business Controller in finance at UBS Global Asset Management. Erin also has six years’ experience working with students with special needs and their families as a school psychologist in the suburbs of Chicago.


Judy Faczek
Training & Social Media Team Leader


Judy is the Training & Social Media Team Leader for Protected Tomorrows. She brings a strong, professional background in process organization, marketing, and website management. Over the past 15 years, she has worked within the special needs field. This work has allowed Judy to realize a greater understanding of the needs of families who have family members with disabilities.


Irene Coleman
Benefits Coordinator


Irene has been our Benefits Coordinator since 2012. Irene’s formal education background is in Early Childhood and Sociology from Indiana University, South Bend. Irene’s life was given an endless gift the day her daughter came into her world. Her daughter’s 2008 diagnosis with autism propels her mission to educate families for a lifetime. Through her efforts, Irene has secured grants, scholarships, and funding for AAC devices, therapies, evaluations, and recreational activities for families.


Roberta Costion
Marketing Coordinator


Roberta worked for 22 years in the radio and TV industry as a specialist in marketing, sales, and operations. She is also the proud mother of two sons, Jase and Jack. Her son Jack was born with Down syndrome and began involvement with GiGi’s Playhouse, a Down syndrome achievement center. Roberta served on their Executive Board and as the President at their local Hoffman Estates location. She has successfully worked with special needs families to help them navigate the educational system and community resources. She has become a strong advocate for families through inspiration and the experience of her own son.


Barbara Gier
Operations Support


Barbara Gier, joined Protected Tomorrows, in 2014 as an Accountability Coach. Barbara’s work experience has been 30 years in the Customer Service arena in the insurance industry. Additionally, her main focus for much of that time has been as a fierce advocate for her son John who has Cerebral Palsy. John now lives independently in the community. Barbara enjoys giving back and would like to use her experiences to help others secure the services they need.


Ramesh Gulatee


Ramesh, a licensed architect in the U.S. and Canada, is the owner and principal of the LifeCare Design Studio, a sister company to Protected Tomorrows. The LifeCare Design Studio emphasizes barrier-free and universal access strategies by offering ADA consulting, planning, design and building services. These are offered for existing and new businesses, specialized homes, assisted-living and community settings. Ramesh has more than 25 years of experience on numerous projects around the world. Since 1997, Ramesh has focused on building projects in the Chicagoland area.