The Kendal Innovation, Growth and Impact Team

In 2022, The Kendal Corporation renamed and restructured the department known as “Development” to “Innovation, Growth and Impact,” now known as the “IGI” group. The department team consists of Steve Bailey, Chief Strategy Officer; Frank Mandy, Vice President of Development & Planning; Ben Butler, Vice President of Development & Special Projects; and Diane Massey, Director of Outreach & Special Engagement with assistance from Pam Moriarty, Executive Assistant, Affiliate Services. “This is a great team that cares deeply about the right things in service of Kendal,” Steve Bailey expresses.

Why did the Name Change to IGI?

“The new name reflects the work the team focuses on and directly corresponds to the principles established in Kendal’s Values and Practices,” states Steve. “Our team has the honor and responsibility of looking forward to opportunities for new development, programs and areas where Kendal can be impactful.” When discussions were renewed regarding core services to be provided by The Kendal Corporation to affiliates, the team was reminded of the importance of supporting “non-brick and mortar” opportunities. Affiliates were engaging in new expansions and programs, and the team was ready to help. Senior Living is also a growing business, and potential business partners describe Kendal as the “best of the best,” with its history of quality development, its work with universities since the early days of Kendal, and of course, the success and reputation of the operating Kendal affiliates. Many opportunities continue to emerge in areas where new communities could be a good fit, particularly through partnerships with institutions of higher learning. The IGI team investigates these opportunities and helps bring them to fruition where a positive connection can be made.

Rooted in Values and Practices

The forward-looking momentum with which the IGI team operates is in lockstep with Kendal’s Values and Practices. Since the early days of Kendal, Values and Practices have described innovation, growth and impact as an essential responsibility of the organization. Under the Looking Forward section, the Kendal Values and Practices booklet reads, “Kendal strives to look and move toward the future. Kendal seeks to attract a broad spectrum of future community members, takes strategic planning seriously, and explores the leading edge of technological improvements.” New Opportunities for Service further underscores our duty to continuously evolve and innovate, “We actively seek opportunities to explore the development of new services and communities, possible affiliations with existing organizations as additions to the Kendal System, and other collaborative work with similarly motivated people and organizations with durable relationships in mind.” The IGI team takes seriously its obligation to upholding these Quaker Values and Practices and keeps these roots center to their work and mission.

Affiliate Innovation and Change

While announcements of new communities often receive significant attention, The Kendal Corporation’s focus continues to be supporting affiliates in their quests to foster high-quality aging experiences for residents. Growth and evolution are important to all organizations, and this open-mindedness and leadership in innovation highlight our commitment to the practice of “continuing revelation,” a key part of Kendal’s Quaker roots. As communities and programs change and grow by adding residences, growing program reach or expansions in dining or other amenities, The Kendal Corporation team has been able to provide valuable assistance. Another area for growth and increased activity across the Kendal System is in sustainability and the effort to reduce the impacts of climate change. Kendal has embraced endeavors that include recycling, composting, eliminating invasive plant species and utilizing new operational approaches to energy efficiency. Kendal affiliates have been leading the way with solar energy, installing geothermal heating systems, conducting campus-wide energy audits, installing electric car charging stations and replacing incandescent lights with LED bulbs. The IGI team supports these innovations through shared learning and the dissemination of information about best practices across the Kendal System.

Strategic Approach to Growth Opportunities

Enso Village, the first Kendal community on the west coast and an innovative partnership with the San Francisco Zen Center, is set to open in Healdsburg, California, in the fall of 2023. A new and unique community called Enso Verde is in the planning stages of development in southern California. Additional new markets are also being explored with other potential partners where research and investigation have begun. The Kendal Corporation and IGI team are strategic in the approach to pursuing development opportunities, the team actively focuses only on endeavors that are in line with Kendal’s values, add strength to the established brand and fit with our business plans and vision for a transformative aging experience.

Impactful Partnerships

Establishing partnerships will be key to continued success — especially in the areas of innovation and impact — and the IGI team is working to ensure these crucial partnerships are built and maintained. The Kendal Corporation is working with the Vision Centre to help develop future leaders in the senior living field. The Vision Centre aims to grow programs that nurture these future leaders through strategic partnerships that expand educational opportunities and create awareness of workforce development. With the new Kendal Corporate office now located at the FinTech building on the STAR Campus at the University of Delaware, exciting projects are emerging. Projects include plans to partner affiliate communities and programs with students in engineering, hospitality, IT, health care and more. The Kendal Corporation will also be directly sponsoring and supporting important university and student-led programs and projects to advance the field of aging and offer innovative and new ways of thinking to Kendal affiliates. The immediate benefits of university relationships will be evident through internships, employment and mentoring opportunities, and even new products and programs for aging services. The long-term benefits will include new university programs and coursework focused on aging services, increased awareness for senior living as a career choice for young people and a higher quality workforce. Along with continued support of the Alzheimer’s Association walks across the Kendal System, the IGI team also works to coordinate initiatives with SSAFE, a new system-wide resident organization working to reduce the impact of climate change.

Transforming Aging

“It is imperative that we stay at the forefront of innovation in our field so we can continue to provide meaningful aging experiences to modern older adults,” reflects Steve. “The world needs more of what Kendal can offer in a person’s later years – inclusive environments that continuously evolve to meet residents’ needs.” By keeping an open mind and being open to change that matters, Kendal will continue to make an impact in “Together, transforming the experience of aging.®”

This article was originally published in “Reflection- Innovation, Growth and Impact. Kendal’s 2023 Annual Report”. This version may not be identical to original.

To read the full report click HERE