LeadingAge Florida recognized outstanding senior living communities, employees, and residents during its 58th Annual Convention and Exposition, held at the Hyatt Regency Orlando, Aug. 31 through Sept. 2.
“The LeadingAge Florida Awards showcase the best in the aging services field and recognizes outstanding members who have gone above and beyond to serve their communities, employees, and residents,” said LeadingAge Florida President & CEO Steve Bahmer. “We received a record number of nominations this year, which is a testament to the incredible work our members have done to keep seniors safe throughout the pandemic.”
“The passion, dedication and commitment of our award winners are second to none, and they are an affirmation of the values of LeadingAge Florida member communities. We are honored to recognize each of them.”
LeadingAge Florida recognized:
- Advocate of the Year – Hank Keith, Chief Financial Officer, Westminster Communities of Florida, for his outstanding advocacy efforts with local, state and national policy makers about public policy issues that affect the field of aging services.
- Caregiver of the Year – Ernestina Rodriguez, Bay Village of Sarasota, for her extraordinary dedication and commitment to enhancing the quality of life for residents within her community.
- Excellence in Collaboration – Cypress Cove, for their exceptional response and support of staff and their families during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Executive of the Year – Carmen Shell, MorseLife Health System, for exceptional leadership, her commitment to mentoring others, and her significant contributions to the work of LeadingAge Florida.
- Innovation Award – Troy Churchill and Joe Velderman, Cypress Living, for their deployment of robotics and other technologies to enhance the overall resident experience, and to keep residents safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Volunteer of the Year – Barbara Hartwell, Westminster Palms, for her ceaseless commitment to the residents in her community and ensuring their continued well-being and independence.
- Service Coordinator of the Year – Manuel Del Valle, George Humphrey Towers, for his outstanding commitment and concern for each resident’s well-being and creative problem solving.
- Employee of the Year – Diane Hetrick, Waterman Village, for her extraordinary dedication, consistently excellent customer service, and commitment to the enhancement of the quality of life for residents.
- Emerging Leader – Robert Sorenson, Moorings Park, as a leader at the early or mid-stage of his career who has demonstrated commitment to professional growth as a leader and whose responsibilities within his organization continue to expand.
Video presentations featuring our award recipients can be found on the LeadingAge Florida YouTube™ Channel.
For more than 58 years, LeadingAge Florida has been the state’s leading advocate for high-quality senior living, aging services and care. We are the only statewide association representing the full continuum of care for seniors. The Association provides up-to-date regulatory information, a wide variety of educational opportunities, representation before the Legislature and government agencies, group purchasing services, and opportunities for networking with peers to help member communities best serve the needs of Florida’s senior population.