Kendal Celebrates Women Leading the Way

Kendal has set a new standard in leadership in senior living. Women leaders throughout Kendal are nothing new, but women CEOs currently lead the way at eleven Kendal affiliates. Additionally, CFO, and Interim CEO, Amy Harrison stands at the forefront of The Kendal Corporation, while working in concert with Kendal Corporation Board Chair, Annetha Hall. Recognizing that 92% (eleven out of twelve) of Kendal affiliate CEOs are women, this Women’s Equality Day, Kendal is celebrating their outstanding contributions. Kendal is proud to be at the forefront of change. These women make a difference in their communities and the lives of the residents they serve. They are committed to building a legacy for future generations.

92% Women CEOs is Much Higher Than the Norm

  • According to Argentum’s “Path Forward” white paper in 2019, Senior Housing News reported that women hold 70% of management positions in senior living; however, female CEOs make up only 17.5% of the 115 largest senior housing provider companies.
  • In the healthcare industry, only 15.3% of health system CEOs are women, according to a study by JAMA Network Open in 2021.
  • In the US, only 10.4% of CEO positions across Fortune 500 companies were held by women at the beginning of  2023, as reported in the 69th annual Fortune 500 rating.

Kendal Leaders Strive for Excellence

At Kendal, diversity and inclusion are not just buzzwords; they are the driving force behind the organization’s vision and mission. For many years, Kendal has been a trailblazer in empowering women to take on key leadership roles. This commitment to diversity and inclusion has resulted in a workforce that reflects the affiliates it serves and a culture that values, respects, and celebrates everyone’s unique perspectives and experiences.

Kendal leaders must recognize and value the resident-driven model, Quaker principles, and support a fast-paced, diverse environment where employees are valued. This leader must remain financially astute in management and be responsible for multiple job duties. Each woman’s success story is an inspiration to others.

Women Leaders are Successful

The eleven women CEOs at Kendal affiliate organizations and The Kendal Corporation Interim CEO are at different career stages. Still, they all share a passion for making a difference.

For example, Barbara Thomas, CEO of Kendal at Oberlin in Ohio, has been with Kendal for more than 30 years. A pioneer as one of the first women leaders in senior living, she has been with Kendal at Oberlin since before its construction. The residents’ website at Kendal at Oberlin states, “Barbara is known for her boundless energy, hard work (often into the wee hours), and great enthusiasm. She makes herself available for everyone – residents, staff, and community members alike”. Most of the members of the current leadership team have been with her between 10-20 years, three of whom have been with Barbara for over 30 years, which gives Kendal great stability in operations.

Another example is Lynne Giacobbe, who has led Kendal at Home for twenty years. Through her visionary approach and commitment, she has created a model program that provides a “Lifecare at Home” option that helps older adults live independently and comfortably in their own homes. A 2022 article on featured Lynne as a “Female Disrupter” as part of their coverage on “women who are shaking things up in their industry.”  In the article, Lynne states, “I’m grateful that at Kendal at Home and other nonprofits, many women are successfully leading organizations and disrupting them in very positive ways. We’ve done that for a long time and are respected leaders across this industry”. The future is bright for Kendal at Home with the organization’s expansion and the focus on improving member benefits, personalization through technology and wellness promotion.

These women have not only achieved success in their careers, but they also bring a unique perspective to the work they do. Kendal affiliates have exceptional reputations, outstanding occupancy and membership, and are known as special places to work and live. Kendal has a strong reputation for delivering high-quality services, a vibrant lifestyle, and exceptional support to older adults.

Kendal Recognizes Women as Leaders

Amy Harrison, CFO, and currently Interim CEO of The Kendal Corporation, is admired for her dedication, intelligence, vision, and kindness. She expresses, “I’m proud to work with such high-performing leaders, and how, without question, Kendal recognizes women as qualified to deliver on the high expectations and optimal management skills needed to lead today.”

Kendal women leaders have significantly impacted the lives of residents, members and the employees they support. Kendal celebrates their success and thanks them for everything they do!

Kendal Affiliate Chief Executive Officers

  • BARCLAY FRIENDS: Linda Sterthous
  • COLLINGTON Ann Gillespie
  • KENDAL AT HANOVER: Beth Vettori
  • KENDAL AT HOME: Lynne Giacobbe
  • KENDAL AT ITHACA: Laurie Mante
  • KENDAL AT OBERLIN: Barbara Thomas
  • KENDAL~CROSSLANDS: Lisa Marsilio
  • KENDAL ON HUDSON: Jean Eccleston, Interim
  • ENSO VILLAGE: Rosemary Jordan