Florida Senior Living Association Recognizes Best in the Industry

August 3, 2022

ORLANDO, FL—The Florida Senior Living Association (FSLA) has announced the recipients of the 2022 Best of Senior Living awards at its annual conference. The association recognizes the top individuals each year in the following categories:

  • Employee of the Year
  • Caregiver of the Year
  • Volunteer of the Year
  • Sales & Marketing Director of the Year
  • Executive Director of the Year
  • Industry Partner of the Year

“The past few years have been especially challenging for senior living communities and providers, as well as their residents and staff members,” said FSLA President and CEO Gail Matillo. “It’s critical for us to recognize people who went above and beyond the call of duty to represent this industry in such a positive manner.”

Nominations for each award were solicited on a statewide basis, and the FSLA board of directors selected the final winners in each category. This year, the following individuals were recognized:

The 2022 Employee of the Year award was presented to Lynn Huber of Cypress Cove, an SLM community in Fort Myers. Huber’s nomination noted her patience, compassion and love, and highlighted how hard she worked over the past two years to keep families involved and informed in every aspect of their loved one’s care.

The 2022 Caregiver of the Year award recognized Theresa Ortiz with Forest Oaks of Spring Hill, a Senior Lifestyle community. Ortiz has been with her company for 23 years, starting in the kitchen as a server and then transferring to nursing. She has been on the same wing for 21 years, and she remembers every resident.

The 2022 Volunteer of the Year award was presented to Fred Brummet, a volunteer at Inspiritas of Pensacola, a Retirement Unlimited community. Brummet volunteers every day at the community where his wife is a resident. According to his nomination, his biggest joy is helping the management team with IT projects, such as installing wireless display ports, setting up new computers or fixing broken printers. Brummet also leads weekly spiritual gatherings and daily devotions.

The 2022 Sales & Marketing Director of the Year award honored Vincent Ippolito, Grand Villa of Melbourne’s leasing coordinator. Ippolito’s management team said he has an uncanny ability to connect quickly with prospective family members and residents. He also averaged nine move-ins per month in 2021, and his community has experienced a 95–100% occupancy status for the past 18 months, which is a significant accomplishment during the pandemic.

The 2022 Executive Director of the Year award was presented to Dave Shymkiw of Coral Oaks, a Five Star Senior Living community in Palm Harbor. Shymkiw’s nomination praised his dedication of a three decade-career to improving the lives of his senior residents and his staff members.

The 2022 Industry Partner of the Year award honored Shawn McGregor, area executive chef for Healthcare Services Group. Over the past several years, McGregor has overseen the FSLA annual chefs competition and has been a steadfast friend and partner to the association.

Additionally, FSLA awarded founding board member Marian Nease its Distinguished Service award, an honor reserved for those most deserving of recognition for their support of the association, its members and its mission. As an attorney, Nease has worked with senior living providers for her entire career. She is an expert in the development and operation of continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) and was instrumental in drafting the legislation regulating these senior living communities. The association credits Nease with helping double its membership and becoming a statewide leader representing senior living communities.

The FSLA represents more than 450 professionally managed senior living communities, offering independent, assisted living and memory care services for more than 17 residents in one location.

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