Editor’s Note: We are profiling the McKnight’s 2020 Women of Distinction honorees daily through the program’s July 28 online awards ceremony. To learn more about this digital celebration, the Forum the next day (which offers three free continuing education credits July 29) or the program in general, visit mcknightswomenofdistinction.com.

Erika Gennari headshot
Erika Gennari

Through her powerful and compelling marketing campaigns, Erika Gennari already has begun to leave her mark on the senior living industry, despite joining Charlottesville, VA-based Commonwealth Senior Living just five years ago. 

Gennari guides the company’s rebranding efforts, campaigns and content generation in her role as the director of marketing and communications. 

Under her leadership, the company, which serves more than 2,000 residents, has produced several memorable efforts, including “Love Stories” and the “Legacies Project.” The former featured residents’ stories about their personal relationships, romances and love. The latter allowed residents to offer wisdom and advice to others whom they’ve learned from during their lifetimes.

Gennari’s experience in marketing is extensive. Before  joining Commonwealth, she was the marketing coordinator for the Charlottesville Free Clinic, business development manager for consulting firm Storyware, and a marketer and account executive for a local newspaper. 

She also uses industry conferences to learn more about campaign effectiveness and in turn uses those lessons to drive census growth for the Commonwealth and its communities. 

Outside of work, Gennari and her children are actively involved with The Haven, a Charlottesville, VA-based organization that works to end homelessness throughout the community. She also contributes to Commonwealth Cares, which supports fellow employees who are experiencing financial hardships. 

But it’s her fresh perspective and new ideas that helps her stand out in the industry — and why colleagues believe she’ll continue to shine in the future.

The McKnight’s Women of Distinction program is jointly administered by McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Long-Term Care News. The program’s Diamond sponsor is PointClickCare. Silver sponsors are OnShift and PharMerica, and the Signature sponsor is Acadia Pharmaceuticals.