Editor’s Note: McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Long-Term Care News are profiling the McKnight’s 2021 Women of Distinction honorees daily July 6 through Aug. 6. To see the 2021 McKnight’s 2021 Women of Distinction awards ceremony, register for free here. For additional profiles of McKnight’s Women of Distinction, visit this page.

Gail Sheridan headshot
Gail Sheridan

Gail Sheridan knows what it means to serve. From training as a registered nurse while in the U.S. Navy to dedicating the following phases of her career to the lives of older adults, she has been serving others for as long as her peers can remember.

Early in her professional life, Sheridan worked in various nursing positions at a few different centers, such as the Good Samaritan Society – Albert Lea and the Faribault Care Center, both in Minnesota. In 1989, she helped form Tealwood Senior Living in Bloomington, MN, and led its clinical practices and regulatory compliance efforts.

Now the chief clinical operations officer at Tealwood, Sheridan is described as a “hands-on” executive by company President Howard Groff. He says he looks to her for some of the company’s most complex initiatives and that she always is the first to volunteer her expertise.

Sheridan is chairwoman of the survey/regulatory committee of the American Health Care Association and also is a member of the National Center for Assisted Living’s Board of Directors and its quality committee. Additionally, she is a member of the board of directors and regulatory forum committee, and she chairs the quality committee, of Care Providers of Minnesota, the AHCA/NCAL state affiliate. 

With more than 3,000 employees at Tealwood, Sheridan is acknowledged for knowing the names of leaders at each location, the staff members, their children, the residents and their families. 

Recently, she has been developing and implementing a program called “Living Well, Dying Well,” which focuses on making the final stretch of a resident’s life as good as it can be. Another recent project has been developing tools for providers to more effectively respond to adverse events. Sheridan also led a workgroup to establish recommendations for how operator compliance information is communicated to providers and the public.

Outside of work and related endeavors, she also serves on the board of Ruth’s House in Faribault, MN. This entity strives to provide a safe place for families transitioning out of situations of domestic violence, addiction, poverty and other health or safety issues. 

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, and the Roundtable Sponsor is Paycor.