Lois Bowers headshot

Tis the season to be thankful, and even in these challenging times — perhaps especially in these challenging times — senior living providers have much about which to be thankful.

The pandemic recovery is ongoing, and resiliency has been tested, but thanks to the hard work, ingenuity, commitment and talents of employees and leaders, industry metrics are encouraging.

McKnight’s Senior Living has a way for you to show the appreciation you have for your colleagues and ensure that their efforts and accomplishments are more widely known: the McKnight’s Women of Distinction awards, now in their fifth year.

Women honored this year will join the 185 women previously recognized as Rising Stars, Veteran VIPs and Hall of Honor inductees. The contest also includes sister media brands McKnight’s Long-Term Care News and McKnight’s Home Care, so women working in skilled nursing and home care also are eligible for recognition across three categories:

  • Hall of Honor candidates should be senior-level professionals in the C-suite or at a level equivalent to vice president or higher and should have made a significant impact on their organization or the industry.
  • Veteran VIP candidates should have more than 15 years of experience making an impact in long-term care and should be at a level lower than vice president or its equivalent.
  • Rising Stars candidates must be aged 40 or fewer years or have fewer than 15 years of experience in the profession. Also, they must have demonstrated an exceptional commitment to the senior living and care industry.

If you’re nominating someone else —or yourself, be prepared to share detailed qualitative and quantitative information about the nominee’s work history, exceptional achievements and contributions or service, and anything else the judging panel should consider.

You do have some time to perfect your submission. The standard deadline is Jan. 5, although there is an extended deadline of Jan. 10. (Psst: Nominations submitted by Jan. 5 will have a $79 entry fee, and nominations submitted between Jan. 6 and 10 will carry a $109 entry fee.)

There’s also the McKnight’s Spirit Award, which will recognize inspiring caregiving and service provision efforts. Eligibility is open to women who have demonstrated acts of bravery, courage, perseverance, dedication, determination — or other noble gestures. The awardees will be celebrated in conjunction with the McKnight’s Women of Distinction program. Nominations for this award may be submitted at no charge.

All aforementioned honorees, as well as a Lifetime Achievement Award winner, will be celebrated at an in-person event in the spring in Chicago, the details of which will be announced at a later date.

In the meantime, if you’d like additional information about the awards, or to submit a nomination, visit mcknightswomenofdistinction.com. You can direct any questions you have to Anna Naumoski, senior event manager for Haymarket Media, the parent company of McKnight’s, at [email protected].

Looking for inspiration? Read about previous winners here, and see lists of previous classes of honorees here.

And thank you for everything you do.

Lois A. Bowers is the editor of McKnight’s Senior Living. Read her other columns here.