Michael Bardelmeier headshot
Michael Bardelmeier

MBK Senior Living names new senior vice president of operations

Michael Bardelmeier headshot
Michael Bardelmeier

Michael Bardelmeier has been named senior vice president of operations at MBK Senior Living, Irvine, CA. He will oversee the company’s 32 independent living, assisted living and memory care communities throughout the Western United States.

Bardelmeier joins MBK Senior Living from Meridian Senior Living, where he was the West Coast divisional vice president of operations and managed almost 30 senior living communities.

Bardelmeier began his career in the senior living industry in 2009 with Holiday Retirement, where he held a regional director of operations and vice president of operations, West Division positions. Before gaining senior living operations experience, he worked in the development and management of multi-family properties throughout the United States.

Bardelmeier is a member of the Workforce Development Committee of the California Assisted Living Association, which aims to develop pathways for young professionals in the senior living industry and attract new employees to the workforce.

Watermark hires Aras Erekul, M.D., MMH, as first national director of integrative well-being

Aras Erekul headshot
Aras Erekul, M.D., MMH

Aras Erekul, M.D., MMH, has been named to the new position of national director of integrative well-being at Watermark Retirement Communities, Tucson, AZ.

Erekul will be responsible for bringing together a wide range of practices and programs for Watermark residents and associates, first focusing on Watermark’s Élan Collection of upscale communities, which offer high-end resort-style amenities such as spa treatment rooms, lap pools, fully equipped fitness centers, movement studios and sessions of yoga, tai chi and similar offerings. He also will ensure that across the entire portfolio of Watermark communities, residents and associates will have opportunities for enhanced well-being.

He most recently was the corporate director of experience development at the wellness lifestyle and luxury spa resort organization Canyon Ranch, a post he began in 2017 after having joined Canyon Ranch as a wellness programming director in its development department in 2012.

Erekul has an medical degree from Turkey’s Hacettepe University and completed a fellowship in integrative medicine from the University of Arizona. He also has Master of Management in Hospitality degree from Cornell University. Before switching into wellness resort and business development roles, he practiced briefly as a cardiovascular surgery resident and was a physician-in-charge with Istanbul Emergency Ambulance Services.

Erekul’s appointment at Watermark is a milestone for the company, President and CEO David Barnes said. “Providing environments that help people thrive has been our focus from the beginning,” he said. “With Aras coming aboard to innovate and integrate leading-edge well-being programs, our mission is making an exciting advance into 2020.”

Cadence Living promotes Rhonda Thiel to regional director of operations, hires Anna Sarres to succeed her as executive director at Inspira Arrowhead

Rhonda Thiel has been promoted to regional director of operations for the Mountain Region at Cadence Living, Scottsdale, AZ.

She joined Cadence as executive director of Inspira Arrowhead, an independent living, assisted living and memory care community in Glendale, AZ. Before joining Cadence, Thiel had senior living roles with Koelsch Communities, JEA Senior Living and Emeritus Senior Living.

Anna Sarres will replace Thiel as executive director at Inspira Arrowhead. Sarres spent six years with Silverado in multiple roles and before that worked as life enrichment director at the Sierra Pointe community in Scottsdale, AZ.

Cadence Living adds Tom Stenger as regional sales director in the Southeast United States

Tom Stenger

Tom Stenger has been hired as regional sales director for the Southeast Region at Cadence Living, Scottsdale, AZ.

He will support vice president of operations (Southeast) Mike Dollander and Vice President of Operations (North Carolina) Heather Thomas and the 10 Southeast communities in Cadence’s portfolio.

Before joining Cadence, Stenger served in regional and community positions in sales and marketing for Erickson Living and Liberty Senior Living. He also was the head of new business development for four different advertising agencies, most notably as a founding partner of Elberson Senger Shuler in Charlotte, NC.

Stenger is a graduate of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

Belmont Village taps Rene Buck as executive director of its first senior living community in Florida

Rene Buck headshot
Rene Buck

Rene Buck is the new executive director at Belmont Village Fort Lauderdale, a 204-unit independent living, assisted living and memory care community scheduled to open first quarter of 2020. The community is the first in Florida for Belmont Village Senior Living, which currently operates 30 communities in major urban markets around the country and in Mexico City.

Buck will oversee all aspects of property operations and resident care for the upscale high-rise community. He has more than 20 years of experience in senior living and hospitality, working in both Europe and the United States.

Buck has been a member of the board of directors for the Florida Assisted Living Association since 2009. His career before joining Belmont Village included positions as the executive director of Grand Villa Delray West and regional supervisor for Allegro Management Co., where he oversaw operations of five communities and 689 total apartments. During his 11-year tenure with Allegro, he also was community director and dining services director.

Before moving to the United States, Buck managed two restaurants and was an external consultant for several culinary enterprises in Switzerland. He holds a degree in hotel and restaurant management from the Swiss Hotel & Restaurant Management School of Lucerne.

Oakmont Senior Living names Melon Rivera executive director for Oakmont of Novato

Melon Rivera headshot
Melon Rivera

Melon Rivera has been named executive director of Oakmont of Novato, an Oakmont Senior Living community set to open north of San Francisco in the spring.

Rivera has worked in the senior living industry for approximately a decade. Before joining Oakmont Senior Living, he was executive director at Atria Tamalpais Creek. He also spent about five years in various roles at Brookdale Senior Living in various roles.

Rivera attended Santa Rosa Junior College and is also a licensed pharmacy technician.

The Pointe at Lifespring names Rebecca Mills executive director

Rebecca Mills headshot
Rebecca Mills

Rebecca Mills has been named executive director at The Pointe at Lifespring, an Integral Senior Living assisted living and memory care community in Knoxville, TN.

Her main responsibilities will include directing the community’s day-to-day operations and team management, as well as working with the management company, Integral Senior Living. In addition, she will supervise and oversee hiring all department leads and staff members.

Before joining The Pointe at Lifespring, Mills was executive director of a skilled nursing facility for 14 years and before that was an activity and social service director. She earned a degree in healthcare administration at East Tennessee State University. 

Watermark at Vistawilla names community life director, sales associate

Karen Donnelly headshot
Karen Donnelly

Karen Donnelly has joined The Watermark at Vistawilla, a Watermark Retirement Communities assisted living and memory care community in Winter Springs, FL, as community life director, and Jennifer King has joined as sales associate.

Donnelly has more than 10 years of experience in the senior living profession. She is a certified activity director and a certified dementia practitioner and holds a certificate in gerontology.

Jennifer King headshot
Jennifer King

As community life director, Donnelly plans and executes programs and events that seek to help residents thrive. The community is committed to providing residents with comprehensive programming that provides life enhancement on multiple levels through Watermark University classes, the “Extraordinary Outings” program and more.

King, as sales associate, will work closely with the sales director to connect with prospective residents. Before joining the organization, she was special events coordinator for Diamond Resorts. She earned her undergraduate degree in hospitality management with a minor in business from Grand Valley State University.

OnShift adds two executives, Addison Grimes and Jim Alland

Addison Grimes has been named senior vice president of Engineering, and Jim Alland has been named chief sales officer, at Cleveland-based human capital management software company OnShift.

Addison Grimes headshot
Addison Grimes

Grimes has almost 30 years of experience in technology leadership roles cover the breadth of human capital management, including applicant tracking, onboarding, performance management, employee engagement, team and individual assessments, succession planning, learning management systems and human resources systems. He has held senior leadership positions at Monster, Kenexa (an IBM company) and Assure Software. Most recently, he was chief technology officer at ScheduleSoft Corp., where he led the development of their WorkLoud product for workforce management while overseeing teams across the globe.

Jim Alland

Alland joins OnShift with more than 35 years of leadership experience. Previously, he was senior vice president and general manager at Allscripts. He has worked with enterprise health systems such as North Shore Long Island Jewish, Baylor, Scott & White, Orlando Health and University of Kentucky, as well as physician practices and accountable care organizations.

Most recently, Alland was chief adviser for Healthcare Solution Market Strategies, where he assisted healthcare providers and vendor partners with emerging market solutions enabling value-based care strategies. Additionally, he has held business executive positions at Eye Care Leaders and Hill-Rom.

Hireology appoints Ves Atanasov as vice president of product

Ves Atanasov has joined Chicago-based customer relationship management company Hireology as vice president of product. He will lead the teams responsible for applicant sourcing, product architecture and automation, user experience improvements, partner integrations, internal tools and data intelligence.

Atanasov brings more than 10 years of experience in product strategy, agile development, analytics and innovation, as well as significant experience in automotive retail. He previously was CEO and co-founder of Breez, a carpool platform located in Southern California, and led product teams at car shopping marketplace Edmunds.

Atanasov has an MBA from Harvard Business School and an undergraduate degree from Macalester College, where he studied economics and mathematics.

Remedi SeniorCare hires Michael Hovis, PharmD, as general manager of Huntsville Pharmacy

Michael Hovis, PharmD, has joined Baltimore-based Remedi SeniorCare as general manager of the company’s 13th location in Huntsville, AL, slated to open in the first quarter of 2020.

As general manager, Hovis will oversee all pharmacy operations to ensure compliance with all aspects of medication administration preparation and delivery to Remedi’s customers. Various departments include order entry, medical records, fulfillment operations, R.Phs, delivery and customer service. The 36,000-square-foot pharmacy will use Remedi’s proprietary dispensing system, PAXIT, and will eventually employ more than 200 people.

Hovis brings more than a decade of pharmacy experience to the role. His career has spanned retail, hospital and, most recently, long-term care settings where he was responsible for more than 24,000 beds.

He is a PharmD graduate of Purdue University and is licensed in multiple states.

Hammes expands Southeast project management team with addition of Travis Pigott

Milwaukee-based Hammes Company has expanded its project management team in the Southeast with the recent hire of Travis Pigott as a senior project executive in the firm’s Atlanta office.

Pigott brings more than 25 years of experience in healthcare facility planning, design and construction to the role. Before joining Hammes, Pigott was a senior project executive for Adams Management Services Corp. Earlier in his career, he spent more than 13 years with Nashville-based architecture firm Gresham Smith and Partners.


AHCA / NCAL’s Mark Parkinson, LeadingAge’s Joe Franco named ‘Top Lobbyists’

American Health Care Association / National Center for Assisted Living President and CEO Mark Parkinson and LeadingAge Vice President of Grassroots Joe Franco were honored for their lobbying efforts when The Hill released its annual “Top Lobbyists” list for 2019 on Dec. 12.

Mark Parkinson

“I end up getting credited with the award, but I only received it because of the broad and deep political activity of our members,” Parkinson told McKnight’s. “That activity, combined with the quality results they are achieving in their buildings, has allowed me access to the political leaders who will decide our future. I’m honored to be our spokesperson, but it’s our members who do the work.”

Ruth Katz, LeadingAge’s senior vice president of policy and advocacy, told McKnight’s that the organization is proud of Franco’s “efforts on a variety of important issues, from ensuring a quality nursing home workforce and discussion of solutions for long-term care financing, to securing funding of affordable housing for older adults, is recognized.”

Joe Franco headshot
Joe Franco

Franco’s responsibilities include strengthening the organization’s grassroots efforts and recruiting and training members to support its advocacy agenda. 

“Advocacy on behalf of our members and those they serve is crucial to our mission,” Katz added.

Also notable among the list of more than 200 recognized lobbyists in the “Associations” category is Greg Crist, who now represents AdvaMed, a medical device trade association. Crist was senior vice president of public affairs for AHCA / NCAL before leaving for AdvaMed in late 2016.

Reporting in the above item by Danielle Brown.

Brightview Senior Living CEO Marilynn Duker named 2019 Business Leader of the Year by Loyola

Marilynn Duker

Marilynn Duker, CEO at Brightview Senior Living, has been named 2019 Business Leader of the Year by Loyola University Maryland’s Sellinger School of Business and Management. The award honors business executives who embody Loyola’s Jesuit commitment to community and service in the leadership of their organizations.

In her role as CEO, Duker directs strategies for operations and long-term growth of the business. Duker joined Brightview Senior Living in 1982, which was then known as the Shelter Group. She began her career as a developer and has been involved in every phase of the company’s operations and growth.

Duker serves on the Mercy Health Systems Board of Trustees, the University of Maryland at Baltimore BioPark Corp. Board of Directors, the College of Wooster’s Board of Trustees and the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care Operator Advisory Board.

Before Brightview Senior Living, Duker was a presidential intern at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. She earned her undergraduate degree at the College of Wooster and her master’s degree at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Ventas CEO Debra A. Cafaro named to list of Top 100 Best Performing CEOs by Harvard Business Review

Debra Cafaro headshot
Debra Cafaro

Chicago-based real estate investment trust Ventas Chairman and CEO Debra A. Cafaro has been named as one of Harvard Business Review’s Top 100 Best Performing CEOs in the World for the sixth consecutive year. She is ranked at No. 29, the highest achieved placement she has achieved on the list.

Cafaro is one of only 14 global CEOs who have been named to HBR’s list consistently since 2014 and is the highest ranked female for the financial performance metric. In addition, the REIT’s nonfinancial performance metrics significantly improved in 2019 to their highest-ever rating for the two environmental, social and governance (ESG) measures which make up 30% of the final result.

Cafaro has led Ventas for more than 20 years. She joined the company in 1999 and expanded the REIT’s market capitalization to $28 billion in 2019 from $200 million at the beginning of her tenure. A compound annual total shareholder return of 23% has been delivered since 2000.

Some other leaders on the list: Capital One’s Richard Fairbank (No. 34), Ecolab’s Douglas Baker Jr. (No. 38)

Juniper Communities CFO Chuck Hastings named one of NJ’s top financial executives

Chuck Hastings headshot
Chuck Hastings

Bloomfield, NJ-based Juniper Communities Chief Financial Officer Chuck Hastings has been named by NJBIZ as one of the top CFOs in the state in the category of Private Company with revenues over $50 million.

Hastings is a financial executive with more than 25 years of experience in healthcare finance. At Juniper, he oversees the operations of 23 assisted living and skilled nursing facilities located throughout the United States. His contributions and implementation of best practices in finance and business development have been instrumental in driving the growth of Juniper’s portfolio, with revenues of more than $83 million, up from $49 million in 2011.

Hastings earned an undergraduate degree from Princeton University and an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, with a dual major in healthcare management and entrepreneurial management.

Ecumen Vice President Brett Anderson receives alumni award

Brett Anderson

Brett Anderson, vice president of health and clinical services with Shoreview, MN-based Ecumen, recently received the Young Alumni Award from Minnesota State University, Mankato.

Anderson graduated from Minnesota State Mankato in 2011 with a degree in nursing. He later earned a master’s degree in nursing from Metropolitan State University. He is a registered nurse, a certified public health nurse and board-certified nurse executive.

At Ecumen, Anderson leads Ecumen-wide health care services, with responsibility for ensuring quality of care, clinical outcomes, customer satisfaction, cost of care efficiency and regulatory compliance.

Anderson began his career at Ecumen in 2014 as the clinical director at Ecumen Centennial House in Apple Valley (after serving as an Ecumen graduate student intern). In 2016, he was promoted to the role of regional nurse consultant, supporting new business development and national management contracts.

Before joining Ecumen, Anderson was an adjunct instructor at Minnesota State Mankato and an instructor at Saint Paul College. He also previously owned and operated CareLogix Nursing Solutions and provided clinical and operational consulting and support to area health care organizations.

Former Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton appointed Anderson to serve on the Board of Trustees for the Minnesota State system from 2011 to 2013.