Brookdale Senior Living taps former CEO Bill Sheriff as consultant

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Former Brookdale CEO Bill Sheriff “will help support our strategic pivot” as a consultant, Brookdale President and CEO Cindy Baier said.
Former Brookdale CEO Bill Sheriff “will help support our strategic pivot” as a consultant, Brookdale President and CEO Cindy Baier said.

Brookdale Senior Living has brought back former CEO and board member Bill Sheriff as a consultant, the Brentwood, TN-based company announced Wednesday.

President and CEO Lucinda “Cindy” Baier said in a statement that the move came at her invitation and that she is “delighted” that Sheriff accepted.

“His familiar presence and knowledge of what has worked at Brookdale and in senior living historically will help support our strategic pivot of returning to what made Brookdale successful,” she said.

Key to future success, and to differentiating the country's largest senior living community operator from others, Baier added, will be a “caring associates who create passionate advocates and generate referrals.”

Baier became president and CEO effective Feb. 28 as predecessor Andy Smith left following the completion of a year-long strategic review by the company's board. At the time, Brookdale revealed that it had rejected a bid to be acquired for $9 per share and determined that “the company can ultimately create more value for shareholders by executing a turnaround strategy as a public company under new leadership.”

Also leaving the company, Brookdale announced in February, were Bryan Richardson, executive vice president and chief administrative officer, and board member William G. Petty Jr. Daniel Decker retired from his position as executive chairman of the board effective on March 1 and was succeeded by Lee S. Wielansky as non-executive chairman of the board.

Brookdale had additional layoffs. Last week, the company announced that Teresa F. Sparks would serve as interim chief financial officer, succeeding Baier, until a permanent replacement is hired.

Sheriff led Brookdale as CEO from 2006 until 2013, when he retired. He previously had been chairman and CEO of American Retirement Corp. and its predecessor companies since 1984. ARC merged with Brookdale in 2006. Sheriff also previously was a member of the Brookdale Board of Directors.

“I am pleased to again work with the talented and committed people of Brookdale — from the front-line associates to senior management — who are selflessly dedicated to enriching lives every day,” Sheriff said in a statement. “I look forward to working with Cindy to return to our strong foundations and win locally while leveraging our industry-leading scale and experience. I am impressed by Cindy's commitment to the future of this company and its people.”

Earlier this year, Sheriff was inducted into the inaugural class of the American Seniors Housing Association's Senior Living Hall of Fame. He has also received ASHA's Lifetime Achievement Award. Last year, Sheriff received a Distinguished Service Award for lifetime achievement from Argentum.

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