Vice President of Dining Services
Why did you get into senior living?
I very much enjoyed my guest services background in hotels, resorts, and restaurants, but that sector of the hospitality industry didn’t provide the opportunity to receive instant feedback about my work from customers. So, I was looking for a place in the culinary world that would offer a challenge, and provide an opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives. Then, a great chef friend of mine offered me a job in Senior Living, and he explained the reward that came along with the daily interaction with the residents. He told me about how he had a front-row seat to the amazing life stories of the wisest people on Earth, and how culinary plays an important role in helping them continue to lead extraordinary lives every day. I was sold at that moment.
Who truly inspires you?
There are a number of teachers and other mentors who have had a profound impact on my life. They influence me even when they are not present, even if I have not seen or spoken with them in years. Just thinking about the type of person they are, inspires me to learn more, dream more, do more, and become more. I have a profound respect for Martin Luther King Jr, from his quote: “If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do, you have to keep moving forward.” This quote motivates me, because it tells me to focus on the present and the future and leave everything from the past.
Thing people would be surprised to know about you?
I’m a cinema addict. I watch at least two movies every day if possible. When I was in college, I worked part-time in a mom & pop video store in the 80’s and the owner allowed employees to take up to three rentals home a day for free. So, I watched three a day for four years and it became my routine. I went to the movies every Friday, Saturday and Sunday for 10 years and watched all the features in the cycle, and would get frustrated when I had to wait for the new movies to come out. Even now I’m up to date with all the movies playing at the movie theater! (I can also recite portions of the Godfather movies.)
Beatles or Elvis?
How did you wind up at Inspired Living?
While I was a Regional Dining Services Director for a Texas-based operator, I visited several communities in Florida. The company owned a property in Sarasota that was close to Inspired Living at Sarasota, and I drove by the building, I noticed how calm, bright and clean the building was. So, I decided to look at the website and noticed on the careers page that Inspired Living was looking for leadership in the culinary department; and the rest is history.
What do you want your legacy to be?
I want to make a difference in my children’s lives by teaching them that the most valuable thing is how they treat people, all of them. People come first. I want my children to be the kind of people who are always learning, who lift others up, and who treat others with kindness, care, and consideration.