Richard R. Vouga, Esquire and Dana L. Vouga, C.S.A.
Rick Vouga grew up in Frontenac, Missouri and obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in 1972 and his Juris Doctor Degree in 1975 from Washington University.
He has been in private practice for over 37 years and is a lifelong resident of St. Louis Count with a current practice of Asset Protection, Veterans Benefits, Special Needs Trusts, Medicaid Planning, Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Administration, and Supplemental Security Income.
He resides in Ellisville, Missouri, with his wife Dana, of 33 years, where they have raised their four daughters.
Dana is a lifelong resident of St. Louis County, growing up in St. Ann and attending Meramec Community College. Dana worked at two different law firms before they began their family. After their daughter with special needs was born, Dana became involved with the Williams Syndrome Association, and became the President of the National Board of Directors. After also serving as Executive Director for LETS (Lets End Teenage Suicide) and raising their daughters, she returned to being a paralegal.
Dana is a Certified Senior Advisor (CSA) and is the firm’s Long Term Care Paralegal. As a CSA, Dana has knowledge about aging, social and financial issues, and health information that affects the majority of seniors. Dana also assists clients and their loved ones by educating them on how they can protect assets, avoid Medicaid “spend down,” and obtain Veterans Administration Pension Benefits.
“We are passionate about the work we do because of our personal experiences. Our second daughter was diagnosed with Williams Syndrome at the age of three months and when she was eighteen, she was diagnosed with Bi-Polar Disorder. She graduated from Lafayette High School with a modified diploma. She is currently 28 years old and she receives Medicaid, SSI, and food stamps. We have been through the emotional and psychological issues of diagnosis, the challenges of parenting a child with a disability and school issues. Then came the transition to life after schooling. We chose not to go through Guardianship, completed the maze of government forms for health insurance and financial assistance, and finally, ‘let go’ and allowed our ‘child’ to become, as independent as possible.” Rick and Dana are here to tell you that “We would be honored to be your guide through these trials and tribulations. “
They are also very familiar with what it is like to “lose” a loved one to Alzheimer’s disease. After keeping her at home for as long as possible, Dana’s beloved grandmother, “Nan,” died of Alzheimer’s in 1995 in a skilled nursing facility. Rick’s step-mother died from Alzheimer’s after spending 5 years in a memory care unit in a skilled nursing facility, after she was no longer to be cared for at home. We are well aware of the difficult, and often times painful decisions and planning that accompany Alzheimer’s disease.
Rick’s father, Jim, is a 96 year old World War II Navy Veteran, who served as a machinist mate aboard a destroyer, the USS Philip, from 1942 to 1945. Rick’s Dad was one of the lucky ones who came home. Jim’s brother, Roger, his only sibling, wasn’t as lucky; he was killed fighting in France. We believe that those who served their country in the military should receive all the benefits the government has provided for them and that they have earned through their service.
We look forward to getting to know each of our clients and their families as they become part of our family. We want you to know there is help out there, and we are committed to being your trustworthy guide through your Elder Care Journey!
Best Personal Regards,
Rick and Dana Vouga
Abigail (Abby) Wilde, Esquire
Abby Wilde has been an Associate Attorney with Vouga Elder Law since 2011. Her role at Vouga Elder Law involves the drafting and preparation of Durable Powers of Attorney, Wills, HIPAA Releases and Authorizations, and various types of Trusts. She also assists with clients to design their documents and guide them through the signing process.
Prior to working for Vouga Elder Law, Abby worked in immigration law and as a contract attorney for a number of St. Louis law firms. Abby received her law degree from Washington University School of Law in 2008 and her Bachelor of Arts in English from Webster University in 2004.
Abby lives in St. Louis City with her husband, and enjoys hiking, bird-watching, and cooking.
Erin (Vouga) Lamoureaux
Erin Lamoureaux is in charge of Vouga Elder Law’s Education Outreach, Social Media and Publications. Erin continuously researches and gathers educational information to provide to our clients, professionals and our community through our workshops, articles, newsletter, blog and website.
Erin is Rick and Dana’s oldest daughter and has worked full time with them since 2003, but before then she worked with her dad on and off since she was 16. Before working for her mom and dad she was a photographer at Prestige Portraits.
Erin was born in St. Louis, Missouri, and she currently lives in Wildwood, Missouri, with her husband Michael, and there three cats, Montana, Toby and Zoey. Erin, and her husband Michael, enjoy their summers with their Godson Austin. Erin enjoys reading, photography and making hand crafted jewelry.
Lauren Vouga, Rick & Dana’s third daughter, and is our Client Services Coordinator and Benefits Specialist. Lauren is the point of contact for all clients and potential clients. She will listen to your needs, questions and concerns while guiding you through you or your loved one’s Elder Care Journey.
Lauren joined the firm full time in May 2010 after receiving her Bachelor of Science degree from The Florida State University. Since then, Lauren has pursued considerable research and training in the area of Veterans and MO HealthNet (Medicaid) Benefits.
Lauren is an avid distance runner and participates in numerous running events throughout the St. Louis area.
Lori Allen is the Office Manager and Rick’s legal assistant. Her role at Vouga Elder Law includes Human Resources and Accounts Payable/Accounts Receivable, as well as overseeing the day to day operations of the firm. Her duties also include training and managing the team of Vouga Elder Law.
Lori has been a legal assistant in both Illinois and Missouri since 1990 and had worked previously for Rick from 1993 – 1996. After taking some time off to raise a family, Lori joined Vouga Elder Law in 2007.
Lori was born and raised in Illinois, but currently resides in West County with her husband, their two sons, and their dog, Sammy. She enjoys gardening, decorating, traveling and spending time with her family.
Kelly J. LaMear
Kelly J. LaMear joined Vouga Elder Law in 2012 as a Paralegal. Her work with Vouga Elder Law consists mainly of preparing estate planning documents for clients.
Kelly received a certification in Paralegal Studies in 2001 from the School of Paralegal Studies in Norcross, GA. Prior to working for Vouga Elder Law, Kelly worked for the Phelps County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. Her legal background includes work in a variety of settings including corporate, workers’ compensation, and intellectual property law.
Kelly lives in St. Louis Hills and has two sons with families of their own. Her oldest son, Jon resides in Texas County, Missouri with his wife, Brianna and their son, Jonny. Her youngest son, Lowell, resides in Jefferson County with his fiancé Lindsay and their son, Bryce.
Kelly enjoys reading and spending time with family and friends. Kelly loves shoes and has quite a collection! Kelly also spends a great deal of time in volunteer efforts to encourage Bible reading among people in the St. Louis area. She has recently begun to pursue learning the Arabic language to further her volunteer efforts to include the Arabic community in St. Louis.
Christie M. Hess
Christie Hess has been an Administrative Assistant with Vouga Elder Law since 2012. She is the first voice clients hear when calling, as well as the first face seen when visiting the firm. Christie helps prepare for all client meetings, workshops and firm events and handles various administrative duties throughout the office.
Christie has over 25 years experience in a professional business environment and approximately 5 years in law. Her background includes working in a family law, corporate & Intellectual Property, personal injury, civil law and as a clerk at the St. Louis County Courthouse. She is currently working on her degree in Legal Studies.
Christie resides in West County and has 3 children. Her eldest son, Christopher, is a senior at Lindenwood University where he is finishing his work on two Bachelor degrees. Her youngest son Kelvin, is a High School senior with hopes of attending either Mizzou or Lindenwood University. Her daughter and youngest child Kayla, is a sophomore in high school. All of her children have participated in almost every sport and academic club and have volunteered in several leadership, community outreach and mentor programs that their schedules would allow.
Aside from enjoying her family, Christie also has a great appreciation for music, movies, theater, and literature. Whenever weather permits, she often enjoys power walks and being outdoors.
Kimberly (Kim) Hunt
Kim is our Professional Services Coordinator for Rick Vouga. Her role is to assist Rick in maintaining the highest level of service in client representation and with professionals we work with in the St. Louis Community. Kim also coordinates all of our educational and informational workshops for professionals
Kim is a St. Louis native who has recently returned home to be near her widowed Mother. The two of them experienced the difficult journey of the “long good-bye,” finally losing her Dad to Alzheimer’s in 2012. She is determined to make a difference in the lives of others having experienced first hand how important a committed care giver to a loved one can be.
Kim joined our firm in 2012 after having worked as a legal assistant with an estate planning/probate attorney in Texas following 7 years as the client services/office manager of an elder law firm with offices in Missouri and Illinois. In addition to her legal background, Kim has 8 years of Human Resources experience and studied law and business at St. Louis Community College.
Her favorite hobbies are traveling in the Southwest, Indy Car racing, boxing and reading. Kim is also the proud Mom of a Chinchilla Silver Persian cat named Angel.
Karen is our Probate and Trust Administration Paralegal. Her role is to assist Vouga Elder Law’s Probate clients who are the Personal Representative of an Estate, or a Trustee for a Trust. She helps our clients with obtaining and completing change of beneficiary forms, assisting financial advisors with transfers of assets, and she helps with the entire Trust or Probate administration process, including gathering assets, paying debts, preparing accountings, assisting accountants with filing appropriate taxes returns, and the distribution of assets.
Karen joined our firm in 2012. Prior to working for Vouga Elder Law, Karen worked in both large and small firms handling all aspects of Estate Planning and Probate and Trust Administration. She received her Bachelor’s in Arts from Syracuse University and her Paralegal Certificate from Meramec Community College.
Karen Lives in Manchester with her husband and dog. She is active in The Christ, Prince of Peace Parish, and volunteers at the Fox Theatre and The Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired.