Acts Names New President, CFO in Executive Team Shuffle

Acts Retirement-Life Communities has shuffled its executive team. The Fort Washington, Pennsylvania-based nonprofit senior living provider appointed Karen Christiansen president. Christiansen, who has been with Acts since 1996 and was most recently the operator’s CFO, succeeds Gerald Grant, who will remain as CEO.

Succeeding Christiansen as CFO is Richard Winter, who has been with Acts since 2002.

Christiansen has been with Acts as the company has grown into the third-largest nonprofit senior housing operator in the U.S. with 23 communities in nine states, totaling 8,626 units, according to the 16th annual LZ 200 list of top nonprofit providers from industry association LeadingAge and investment bank Ziegler.

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2019 was a busy year for Acts. The company announced an affiliation with fellow nonprofit provider Integrace last January. The deal, which was completed in April, expanded Acts’ reach regionally and gained the provider access to the Integrace Institute at Copper Ridge, in Sykesville, Maryland. The institute conducts research, education and consulting related to Alzheimer’s and other cognitive-related conditions, with a focus on improving quality of life.

The provider launched a two-year study conducted by the Acts Center for Applied Research (ACAR) tracking the changes in residents’ brain health habits as a result of participating in Total Brain Health classes offered across the portfolio. The results of the study may serve as a blueprint for maintaining brain health as seniors age.

The Integrace affiliation was one of several high-profile nonprofit senior living affiliations in recent years — a trend that is becoming more popular for providers looking to gain scale and compete amidst market headwinds such as oversupply, labor and wage pressures, and competition from for-profit operators.

In September, Acts began a $70 million expansion at Country House, a CCRC in Greenville, Delaware.

Acts also moved its corporate headquarters from West Point, Pennsylvania — which it called home since 1989 — to Fort Washington with the acquisition of an 80,000 square-foot office building, which will allow it to accommodate future growth.

“The senior services industry is rapidly changing, and I am certain we have the resources to continue as a leader in providing outstanding housing and services for those we currently serve and future generations of seniors,” Christiansen said in a statement.

As of the time of publication, Christiansen and Grant were unavailable to comment to Senior Housing News.

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