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. 9. 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.

Juliet Holt Klinger headshot
Juliet Holt Klinger

Juliet Holt Klinger knew early on that she wanted to work in the memory care field. As a volunteer in nursing homes during high school, she saw the inadequate care faced by those living with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. That experience led her to choose a career working with people with dementia. 

Klinger graduated from the University of Iowa with a BA in social work and an aging studies certificate in 1992. She later went on to earn her master’s degree in gerontology at the University of Northern Colorado in 2001. 

Since earning her degrees, Klinger has made it her mission to be a force for change in the memory care field. Having joined Brookdale Senior Living in 2004 as a divisional memory care specialist, she has worked to identify and solve problems for at-risk residents.

In 2006, Klinger became senior director of dementia care at Brookdale and continues to push for improvements for residents. She has initiated new programs and systems for people living with dementia that according to colleagues have dramatically improved residents’ lives. The Clare Bridge program, a person-centered memory care program, for instance, has been successful in hundreds of other memory care communities.

Klinger is motivated to improve not only the lives of those in the Brookdale memory care community; she hopes to make an impact on people living with dementia as a whole. Since 2015, she has delivered presentations at multiple conferences. Most recently, those included a 2020 Alzheimer’s Association conference and the 2019 American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living Convention & Expo. 

Klinger has served on multiple advisory groups and events, including for the National Institutes of Health’s Dementia Care in Assisted Living Advisory Board, the National Institutes of Health’s Service Provider Stakeholder Group for the Research Summit on Dementia Care, the Alzheimer’s Association’s Dementia Care Provider Roundtable and the Argentum Executive Roundtable on Memory Care.

With more than 35 years of experience in the memory care field, Klinger is regarded as an expert and a pioneer in the memory care field. Her passion for the industry and her career path demonstrate a blazing commitment to not only improving care for residents with dementia but also making lasting changes in their lives.

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.