Movers & Shakers — People and Positions for December, Part III

Washington CCRC’s Health Services Admin Appointed to State Board  

Emerald Heights, a Type-A continuing care retirement community (CCRC) in Redmond, Wash., has announced that Annie Zell, the community’s health services administrator, was recently appointed by the governor of washington to serve on the state’s Board of Nursing Home Administrators.

Zell has been a part of the Emerald Heights community for two years. Cumulatively she has more than 12 years of experience in the health services field. In 2011, she was nominated for Administrator of the Year by the Washington Healthcare Association.


As a member of the board, Zell will work with the Department of Health and other appointed members to develop rules, policies and procedures that promote the delivery of quality health care, serve on disciplinary hearing panels and establish qualifications for minimal competency to grant or deny licensure of Nursing Home Administrators, among other duties.

The Board of Nursing Home Administrators consists of four administrators who have been in active practice in Washington for at least four years prior to appointment. Board membership also includes four representatives who provide medical or nursing services in a nursing home. 

Jillian Lucero Promoted to Director of Community Relations


Juniper Village at Louisville (Colorado) has announced the promotion of Jillian Lucero to director of community relations. 

Lucero began working for Juniper in February 2007 as a caregiver. After training and other positions, she moved on to become director of the First Impressions program, and now to director of community relations. 

In her new role, Lucero will be in charge of community relations, all outgoing communications, strategic partnerships, represent Juniper at community and business gatherings, be the liaison to family members and be in charge of bringing in new residents. 

Avanti Senior Living Names Directors at Towne Lake Community

Avanti Senior Living, a development, operations and ownership company, has announced two new hires to join its community, Avanti at Towne Lake in The Woodlands, Texas. 

With more than 25 years of experience in health care, 22 of which were spent serving senior living residents, Jan Kaiser has been named executive director of Avanti at Towne Lake.

In this position, Kaiser will be responsible for daily operations, overseeing the care of each resident, making sure needs are met on an individualized basis, maintaining health codes and regulations, making managerial decisions and providing leadership for fellow team members.

During the early years of her career, Kaiser worked with top-rated geriatric physicians and received Alzheimer’s training from JoAnne Koenig Coste, a renowned Alzheimer’s specialist in New England.

During this time, she had a weekly spot on a radio show to discuss Alzheimer’s and other issues faced by seniors and also participated in a medical round table on a television show with fellow geriatric physicians. She returned to Houston in 1998 and has served in the Cy-Fair/Cypress area since then.

With more than 10 years of experience in professional senior living sales, Shawna Dodd has been named community relations director of Avanti at Towne Lake, where she will serve as the community’s Relationship Builder.

Dodd has a competitive background in sales and marketing, having established a proven track record of success and award-winning closing percentages in demanding, fast-paced sales markets.

Prior to Avanti, Dodd served in sales and marketing positions with Brookdale Plaza Kingwood, The Village at The Woodlands Waterway, Brookdale Place Cypress Station and The Abbey at Westminster Plaza.

Kaiser and Dodd will provide leadership, fulfill administration and operational duties and help manage community outreach. Avanti at Towne Lake is currently under construction and due to open in the summer of 2015.

Foundation Serving Seniors Names Director of Grants 

Presbyterian Villages of Michigan Foundation — a nonprofit, faith-based, multi-site system that serves seniors — has named Avni Thomas as director of grants management.

She previously served as development project manager for the School of Education and Human Services at Oakland University.

Thomas holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Missouri and a master’s degree in public administration from Oakland University.

Research, Consulting Organization Welcomes Andrea Abbott

Holleran, an organization that delivers insight through community engagement research and consulting to senior living providers, welcomes Andrea Abbott to the team.

Abbott will lead the new ventures team in bringing Holleran’s new product lines — engagement and satisfaction research, leadership engagement, organizational engagement and community engagement and needs assessments — to senior living organizations throughout the country.

Abbott is well-established in the senior living field, having specialized in national sales, startups and serving as an executive director for independent living, assisted living and memory care communities. 

She earned her master’s degree from Cornell University’s Sloan Program in Health Administration.

Springpoint Senior Living Appoints Executive Vice President 

New Jersey-based Springpoint Senior Living has announced that Anthony A. Argondizza has been appointed executive vice president. 

Effective immediately, Argondizza oversees the day-to-day operations of Springpoint Senior Living and its affiliated communities statewide. He works to establish and attain the company’s policies, goals and objectives. Together with the CEO and other senior executives, he helps set strategy and direction for the company.

Anthony’s commitment and dedication to Springpoint began more than 20 years ago as the administrator and assistant executive director at Crestwood Manor, before he was quickly promoted to executive director.

He was named vice president of CCRC operations in 2001, and vice president of operations in 2006, senior vice president in 2010 and chief operating officer in 2012.

Wellmore Retirement Community Names Executive Director 

Wellmore retirement community announced that Heather Rusnak, vice president for Wellmore’s full portfolio, will serve as the initial executive director for Wellmore at Tega Cay, which is slated to open in summer 2015.

As the executive director for Wellmore at Tega Cay (South Carolina), Rusnak will oversee the daily operations for the community as it begins the process of on-boarding employees and welcoming members. 

Wellmore will span nearly 150,000 square feet once complete and will offer assisted living, Alzheimer’s care, skilled nursing services and short term rehab. The community will also feature a community clubhouse, gourmet dining and a wellness center, including an indoor-heated therapy pool, for residents.

Rusnak is a seasoned senior living professional and joins Wellmore with more than 10 years of experience in the industry. Rusnak is professionally licensed in assisted living and nursing home administration in both North and South Carolina and is also a licensed CNA.

Prior to joining Wellmore, Rusnak served as the CEO for Galloway Ridge at Fearrington, a CCRC, where she was responsible for daily operations and was awarded a Triangle Women in Business Award in 2013.

In addition to her role as CEO, Rusnak has experience in the sales and marketing industry and held other executive leadership positions at several senior living communities, including Atria Senior Living Group, Wildewood Downs Retirement Community, and The Hollinger Group.

Wellmore of Tega Cay will serve as the flagship for what company executives describe as a hybrid wellness and health care model centered on nationally recognized initiatives which extend and improve the lives of older adults.

Elder Care Advocate Promoted at Citymeals-on-Wheels

New York-based Citymeals-on-Wheels has announced the promotion of Rachel Sherrow, LCSW, to associate executive director and chief of programs and community affairs.

Sherrow, whose professional career has been devoted to elderly New Yorkers, has served Citymeals since 2005. Citymeals-on-Wheels provides food and human company to the city’s homebound elderly.

In her new role, Sherrow will continue to supervise the Programming and Volunteer Department while adding oversight of the Marketing & Communications and Database departments to her portfolio.

In her almost decade-long tenure at Citymeals-on-Wheels, Sherrow’s accomplishments include spearheading the development of two new meal delivery programs (Mobile Food Pantry and Fresh Produce) as well as the growth of Citymeals’ volunteer initiatives resulting in a 52% increase in volunteers last fiscal year, forging and expanding Citymeals’ partnership with the Columbia University College of Dental Medicine on the oral health study currently in progress, and establishing a mentoring program with Citymeals junior staff.

Prior to her work at Citymeals, Sherrow served as director of Good Companions Senior Center and Meals on Wheels program at Henry Street Settlement in New York City.

Texas Senior Living Community Names 2 to Board of Directors

Querencia at Barton Creek senior living community in Austin, Texas, has named Joe Anderson and Stan Waterhouse to the board of directors.

Anderson serves as president of the American Baptist Homes of the West Foundation (ABHOW). He also serves as chairman of the Board for Senior Quality Lifestyles Corporation, parent company of Querencia.

Prior to working for the ABHOW Foundation, Anderson served as the president of Seniority, Inc., a for-profit consulting and management services subsidiary owned by American Baptist Homes of the West.

Anderson serves as a member of the Management Committee of the foundation’s parent company, American Baptist Homes of the West. He is a board member (and former chair) of Senior Helpline Services, a Lafayette, California-based nonprofit that provides assurance phone calls and transportation for seniors in Contra Costa and Alameda counties. He also serves as chair of the Endowment Committee at San Ramon Valley United Methodist Church.

Waterhouse serves as chief operating officer for the Housing Authority of the City of El Paso (HACEP), where he leads 500 employees and manages an $85 million annual budget in the pursuit of positioning the organization as the industry’s leader in customer service and innovative development.

Prior to joining HACEP, Waterhouse served as senior vice president of operations for Ginn Clubs and Resorts, where he oversaw more than $1 billion in hospitality assets – nine five-star properties with 2,500 employees serving more than 4,600 members.

His previous experience also includes serving as vice president for The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, spearheading the company’s expansion to include resorts, private residence clubs, lifestyle communities and golf assets throughout Asia, the U.S. and the Caribbean.

He also served as regional vice president for Club Corporation of America, the world’s largest private club operator, rising to regional vice president. He was responsible for 25 properties, producing $65 million annually throughout the eastern U.S. and Canada.

The Residence at Pearl Street Welcomes New Executive Director

LCB Senior Living, LLC, owner and operator of The Residence at Pearl Street in Reading, Mass., has announced the selection of Toby Watterson as the community’s executive director. 

Watterson spent the past six years as the executive director of two assisted living communities in Somerville while employed by the Visiting Nurses Association. Prior to the VNA, he opened a new senior living community in Keene, N.H.

Throughout his career, Watterson has specialized in new property development and rebranding. He previously held executive positions with Marriott, Walt Disney and Westgate Resorts.

MedPro Group Appoints President of Senior Care Division

MedPro Group, Berkshire Hathaway’s (NYSE:BRK) dedicated health care liability insurance solution, recently announced the appointment of Charles “Chuck” Colburn as president of its newly formed Senior Care Division. 

Based in Chicago, Colburn will lead the division, which offers a full range of health care liability insurance, claims and risk management solutions to senior care providers throughout the country.

Before assuming his new leadership role at MedPro, Colburn led the Aging Services Department of CNA HealthPro since 1996, growing that business into the country’s largest insurance writer for senior care providers.

Before joining CNA, Colburn spent nine years at Henry Ward Johnson in Chicago and Johnson & Higgins in New York, focusing on group programs and association accounts. 

North Carolina CCRC Adds Staff, Makes Promotion

SearStone, a CCRC in Cary, N.C., has hired Nancy Broadwell as a social worker; Mark Freeman as director of security and transportation; and Fatima Smith as clinic manager. In addition, Aurora Oliveros has been promoted to director of nursing. 

Broadwell graduated from Meredith College with a degree in social work, and is a member of the National Association of Social Workers. She volunteers with the Wake County Sheriff’s Office’s Senior Wellcheck program, Alzheimers North Carolina, the Fuquay-Varina Chamber of Commerce, and the Fuquay-Varina Parks, Recreation & Cultural Resources Advisory Board.

Freeman has worked many jobs throughout his career, including master presentation art and commercial framer (responsible for framing and presenting the works of famous photographers and artists throughout New York City), restaurant and bar owner, and regional account manager for U.S. Security and Associates. 

Smith has experience in home health, pediatric, emergency, gerontology, long-term, hospice and acute care settings. She received her nursing degree from Hampton University in 2008. 

Oliveros trained as an ER and OR nurse in the Philippines. In 2006, she “discovered her passion” while working in geriatrics as a floor nurse at Abbington Rehab in Chicago. From then on, she has worked with seniors in varying roles:  health care coordinator at Sunrise Senior Living, triage nurse at American Healthways, nursing supervisor at Springmoor, and most recently, clinic RN manager at SearStone.

“SearStone has experienced tremendous growth since welcoming our first residents in November of 2013,” said Chris Romick, executive director of SearStone. “We continue to seek out, hire and promote exceptional individuals committed to giving our residents the best service possible.”

Written by Emily Study

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