Association for
Professionals in Aging

APA News

  • Thursday, April 14, 2022 7:37 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Earlene Dula is Co-owner of Transitions Care Concierge. Her business specializes in assisting the aging and disabled population with downsizing, decluttering and transitioning to senior care living.

    Tell us a little about your work and career:
    My background is in social services, organizational leadership. My love for those categorized as our most vulnerable population has always been the driving force behind my career choices. I was compelled to start Transitions Care Concierge along with business partner after losing my mom to Alzheimer’s. My family and I were left to manage her property, personal items and much more with little to no help. Transitions Care Concierge is a business you call before the loss and after. We cater our services to the needs of our clients.   

    What do you love most about your job? 
    What I enjoy the most and what keeps me pushing to become more and more involved with aging community and their families is the joy we receive from helping those in need during a challenging and often overwhelming time. We love easing the burden of families and loved ones through support and hands on services.

    If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go if money was no object?
    Australia – I want to visit the Outback!

    What is your biggest inspiration in life or in your job? 
    My biggest inspiration in life is my desire to do something meaningful to impact the lives of others in a positive way. Transitions Care Concierge allows me to do both of those things and that feeds my joy.

    Tell us about yourself and family (kids, pets, other involvement in the community):  
    I have a son whom I am very proud of and who makes me laugh almost daily, I have a business partner who shares my passion for our business and pushes me to think beyond the now. I have a cat, who followed me home one day and never left, and a dog who is wonderful.

    I am member of the Alzheimer’s Diversity Council, and a CPR Instructor for the American Heart Association. These committees allow me to interact with various people on different levels in our community.

    What is your "go-to" restaurant in Cincinnati?
    I don’t really have one, I prefer to cook at home. I cook with love and I’ve found that my food is a reflection of me and what I want to put out in the world (something good that entices all the senses) and brings people together.

    What do you enjoy most about being involved with the APA?
    I enjoy being a part of an organization whose sole purpose is to bring together like minded people for the betterment and enrichment of others. I can feel the sincerity with this organization and that fuels me to continue being involved and seeking to help as much as I can and wherever I can. I appreciate their passion for educating others in the community. What I know is those with a desire to educate others must first educate themselves and this is an organization that I want to be a part of.  

    What do you enjoy doing when not working?
    I enjoy binge watching TV series; especially those that allow me for a short time to shut my brain down and decompress. I enjoy reading for the same reason.

    What is the last book you read?  
    It’s Not All Downhill from Here: A Novel by Terry McMillan

  • Wednesday, January 26, 2022 9:48 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Purposeful Planning Program
    Kristin Cooley, LISW-S, LCSW
    Clinical Social Worker

     As the visionary behind the Purposeful Planning Program, Kristin Cooley leaned into serving those in need. Kristin forged partnerships and opportunities that enabled her to launch her private practice in 2020. 

    The Purposeful Planning Program provides a much-needed free service to our community through their support from the Giving Voice Foundation and Alois Foundation. It not only helps to connect people with helpful resources and provides a written action plan, but also provides support service and continues on in a therapy role if needed.  Dozens of patients recount the positive experience and how lost they had felt before connecting with this program and how lost they had felt before connecting with the program. 

    Kristin's ability to understand the issues, communicate effectively and compassionately, and provide valuable education to the families and loved ones, is the driving force of the program's success.  Thanks to The Giving Voice and its financial support of the program, Kristin is able to offer services free of charge to the families. This program fills a major void in the care of those with cognitive impairment and can serve as a template for wider application into our community.  The need for it, unfortunately, will continue to grow for years to come.

  • Wednesday, January 26, 2022 1:34 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Lisa Titus
    Elder Care Coordinator
    The Law Practice of Dennison Keller, LLC

    Lisa has spent her 40 year career in the field of aging.  Her varied and wide-reaching career began as a candy-striper.  After obtaining her Master of Education in Counseling from the University of Louisville, her roles included Director of Social Services at various long-term care facilities, Executive Director for dementia-specific assisted living facilities, and the Education Coordinator for the Greater Cincinnati Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association.

    For the past several years, Lisa has been an Elder Care Coordinator with The Law Practice of Dennison Keller.  Lisa's expertise in dementia care has been a tremendous asset when dealing with family members of those suffering from Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia.  

    Lisa was also a mentor for co-workers and a trusted source for quality information. Her kind, caring approach has helped numerous residents, clients and fellow colleagues throughout her career.

    Effective December 31, 2021, Lisa retired.  Her knowledge and expertise will be missed, and we wish her nothing but a most fulfilling retirement!

  • Wednesday, January 26, 2022 10:09 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Diane LinnDiane Linn
    Wellness Director
    StoryPoint Senior Living

    Diane represents the best ideals of the nursing institution and had has dedicated her life to serve the senior population and has a special place in heart for caring for residents with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

    Diane started her career in 1975 as a Certified Nurses Aid, and completed her degree in Licensed Practical Nursing at Miami University The over achiever that she is, she completed her degree in 12 months instead of 18 months in 1984. 

    Diane is now at StoryPoint and again surrounds herself with quality nurses that have followed her because of her servant leadership style and overall advocacy for the residents. She asked if she could have the office in the Memory Care Unit because they are her light, happiness, and they are the most vulnerable population.

    Diane has seen many changes in the nursing industry and has never wavered from her core values of placing the residents needs first.  She exemplifies every attribute for the outstanding Leader in the field of aging. Diane has dedicated her life to helping others rather it be the residents, staff or her family friends. She has touched the lives of so many and I am proud to nominate her for this recognition award. 

  • Thursday, October 07, 2021 10:27 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    David FlauttDavid Flautt is the owner of Assisted Living Locators of Greater Cincinnati, a senior living placement business serving SW Ohio and Northern Kentucky.

    Assisted Living Locators is a national network of advisors that serves communities with local advisors. David focuses on Southwestern Ohio and Northern Kentucky, and he currently has one other advisor on his team.  

    Tell us a little about your work and your career. 
    It’s funny. I graduated with a BS in Health Services Administration, but ended up going to work for a bank in Cincinnati as a Credit Analyst. Let’s say the corporate stiffness where you could not leave your suit coat to go to the bathroom did not suit me well at the time. But I soon found my way into retirement plan administration and institutional investments and advisory with Macy’s, Fidelity, and several large banks spanning 25 years – still wearing suits. Several years ago, I found my way into what is now my current second career - a senior living advisor focusing on Southwestern Ohio and Northern Kentucky.  

    If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go money no object?
    Greece...a boat on the coast with a chef sounds like a good start.

    What is your biggest inspiration in life or in your job? What do you enjoy most about your work?
    What I do now is much different work in many ways than the corporate world. I enjoy meeting new families, learning a new industry, and I like the flexibility this affords me personally in terms of work/life balance.  

    Do you have a funny story about your work? How do you make your work day meaningful or inspirational?
    One time I met with Linda Shaw when she was in sales at a local community. She grilled me and I thought to myself, "breaking into this business is going to be harder than I thought."  Now Linda and I are cool, but I remember that day.  

    Tell us about yourself and family.
    I am married to Amanda Orlando Flautt, a local radio host on WARM 98 mornings. We have a 19-year-old daughter Athena, who is transitioning into college, and a 13-year-old son Parker, who is  enrolled at SCPA. He is a fierce baseball pitcher and my partner in crime.

    Do you have a special message to share with your neighbors or community?
    A special message might be to take chances especially when you're young. But it’s never too late to try something new and take a chance and go in a different direction.

  • Friday, August 20, 2021 3:15 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We would like you to meet Kristy Matheson, hailing from Germantown, OH. She is a 1998 graduate from Wright State University with a degree in Social Work. Her dad is a pastor, and her mom is an English teacher and social worker, which are similar to the footsteps Kristy followed.  

    Kristy has worked in the field of hospice for 12 years, most recently, helping to build Affinity Care of Ohioa compassionate and caring hospice. She and a group of other hospice passionate people built the organization from the ground up. She has done many things in the field, but can honestly say that hospice work, completely changed her heart and gave her a newly instilled passion for life that she felt was lacking.

    Additionally, Kristy has a training company called Professional Education Connection where she and her training partner have written more than 20 programs, and trained hundreds of people in the human services field. 

    Her work in hospice taught her that life is short, and it is meant to be lived fully and completely. She was so inspired by the stories of the ones whom she met along the way, that it inspired Kristy to start a group called Adventure Chicks. This group is meant to encourage women of all ages and experience levels to step out of their comfort zone and live life not on the sidelines, but fully engage in all that life has to offer.

    If Kristy could travel anywhere, it would be Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland. It’s a town in the Swiss Alps that is surrounded by waterfalls, and the pictures alone can take your breath away. She plans to make it there one day.

    She has one piece of advice to share and that would be to not wait until your kids are grown to do things, until there is more money in retirement, or until everything falls into place to really pursue those things that bring you joy. Tomorrow is not promised, so be intentional with today. Great advice!

    Kristy’s greatest blessing is her family. She is married to a great guy, Rick, for 20 years, and they have three children. Two are in college, and one starts the third grade this fall, so her life is busy. She also enjoys hiking, yoga, eating out and doing absolutely nothing by a pool. 

    Kristy is also the Education Chair for APA, and we are so grateful and blessed to have her on our team. She has been responsible for the CEs offered by APA in 2020-21, as well as other educational events, which have all been very well attended. She would love to have you work with her on her committee so reach out to her and get to know this fun loving person! The APA has awesome members!!

  • Monday, May 03, 2021 7:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Maria Deneau works for The Alois Alzheimer Center as Director of Admissions & Marketing. The Center provides assisted living through certified nursing (total care) for all dementia residents in a long-term care setting. Specializing in dementia and behaviors, The Center was the first all dementia community in the United States when it opened in 1987.

    Tell us a little about your work and your career. I have been in senior healthcare since 2007, when my Mom was showing signs of Alzheimer’s. I have experience in skilled/rehab nursing, home health & hospice, mobile physician group marketing and clinical nutrition. I am a Certified Dementia Practitioner (some may say I’m certifiable, but I’m okay with that ;). I love when I make a difference in a family’s life and when I can go stomp on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C.!

    If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go money no object? Italy and South Korea
    What is your biggest inspiration in life or in your job? What do you enjoy most about your work? My work is a calling. I am a public policy advocate (nationally & locally) for Alzheimer’s legislation and I do very much enjoy helping families navigate this “industry,” for lack of a better word. It has become a big industry and not all of it is great. It’s a huge bandwidth for people to learn about when placing a loved one or just needing resources. This is why I am excited to serve as advocacy chair for the APA! So much to consider with such a strong and diverse group! Advocacy means different things for different people and groups, so I want to narrow that down for APA members and help us cultivate our place in the Cincinnati area for senior advocacy and for our members. As far as inspiration, I am always inspired by my nurses and by families and other professionals who work for our seniors.
    Do you have a special message to share with your neighbors or community? The Alois Alzheimer Center is very unique in what we offer for care. We are the best at what we do and there is really not another community like it. We are the only all dementia community with assisted living and nursing and we specialize in outward behaviors. Transfer trauma is the biggest thing that I see when admitting a loved one. Even from just their home environment, there is a lot of adjustments to consider because of the disease process. So add on top of that a failed move in at another community with possible hospital stays, etc. It is really very important to consider placing your loved one into a community with a lot of experience and training.
    Do you have a funny story about your work? How do you make your work day meaningful or inspirational? Just taking a walk around the community is meaningful to remind myself why I do this. There are so many funny stories…I remember a resident who found comfort in a baby doll (she was a mom and grandma of many). She was very sweet and took good care of her “baby”, even dressing her up in baby bonnets. One day I found her singing to her baby and it was just so sweet. I asked her “How is your baby today?” She looked up at me without missing a beat and said “It’s just a doll, you idiot!” Hahahahaha- we both laughed pretty hard and she wasn’t sure what she was laughing at after a while ;)
    Tell us about yourself and family: I am from Cincinnati’s west side originally, but now live with my hubby Al in Eden Park- we love it. I have one son, 2 bonus daughters and 1 bonus grandson! They are all good lookin kids and they keep us hopping. I am pretty adventurous and go cage diving with Great White Sharks every fall 260 miles off the coast of Mexico. I love music of all genres, hiking and water just about everywhere. I also love to cook and go out to eat! As far as other involvement, I am also in The Giving Voice Collaborative and serve on THEIR advocacy team!
    Any additional information you would like to share? I am a published author of curated articles in The Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement and The Sunday Paper, both run by Maria Shriver’s media company where I serve as one of her ambassadors. I have met her and have been to her offices in LA and was on The Today Show in October 2019 as her special guest. She is my celebrity inspiration!
  • Wednesday, March 10, 2021 5:52 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Annie works for Episcopal Retirement Services, Inc., as the Director of Case Management, servicing the needs for the Marjorie P. Lee and Dupree communities. Her job involves managing all skilled and custodial admissions, goals of care, insurance certifications, discharge planning and care transitions once patients discharge from the community to their home. It is a multi-faceted role, never a dull moment and very diverse each and every day which is what she loves.

    Annie grew up in a large Irish Catholic family in the Chicagoland area and it was the expectation that you get a part-time job at the age of 15. Her mom's friend was an administrator of a nursing home and offered her a job as a nurses' aide and the rest is history. She graduated from Rush University in Chicago and has been a nurse for 36 years. She has worked in Med Surgery, in Acute Rehab for head and spine patients, a consultant to the industry for workers comp reemployment, an executive recruiter for healthcare execs, and for the past nine years as the Director of Case Management at Episcopal Retirement Services, Inc.

    COVID had an impact on a scheduled trip she and her husband had planned to Ireland this past fall with her siblings and their spouses, but plans are to reschedule to 2022. As a lover of Italian red wines, Annie also dreams of a vacation traveling through the Italian countryside from the Italian Alps down through Tuscany sampling the wine, food and culture of this beautiful country. 

    Many people that Annie knows inspire her in life every single day and there are too many to even try to pick one or a few. But, in her job, she is blessed to have a vocation that inspires her and allows her to feel a sense of purpose and true meaning. She loves helping people and making a difference. She empowers elders to know that they have a powerful voice and the ability to make choices about their treatment goals and future. She values working for an organization that promotes person centered choices and enables the staff to be creative in assisting seniors to achieve their goals.  

    Annie and her husband, Bill, live in West Chester. They have 8 adult kids (1 in LA, 3 in Chicago, 1 in DC and 3 in Cincinnati). Two of her daughters are married, but no grandbabies yet (hint, hint) BUT, she has 4 grand dogs! Bill and Annie love to travel locally and in nearby states camping in their Teardrop Trailer. They plan to expand their travels in the US and Canada in their future retirement. She loves to make new friends so reach out to her any time!  And, if you want to join her on the APA Membership/ Sponsorship Committee, drop her a line. We know she would appreciate your participation. We are very lucky to have Annie Novak as a member of APA and a member of the APA board.

  • Tuesday, February 16, 2021 5:32 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Meet Mary Mendel, Community Liaison for Family Bridges Home Care. Mary came to Family Bridges in August of 2019 after a long career in banking and transportation. She loves serving families and partnering with others in healthcare to provide care and resources for families. Mary also enjoys educating families about the options for care for seniors, their families and those living with disabilities. 

    Plus, there is always so much more to learn and share to expand her horizons to keep her informed and on her toes in healthcare, and, the challenges of COVID in 2020 were no exception. Each day, Mary tries to do something to help someone else.  It might be as simple as making an introduction, giving referrals to trusted partners or just sharing valuable information.  

    When asked if she had a special message to share with her neighbors or community, she shared her favorite Google review:

    "What I liked hearing the most, when initially talking with Mary Mendel from Family Bridges, is that their caregivers are their biggest asset. And that they go to lengths (interviews, background checks, etc.) when hiring caregivers. We needed assistance right away, and the Family Bridges Team made it happen. We had a number of caregivers at the start, and all were very friendly, professional, and focused on care for the patient. Their organization and communication was top notch. But most importantly their interaction with the family and care for my Mom was genuine and caring. I would definitely recommend Family Bridges to those in need."

    Mary celebrates her 25th wedding anniversary this year with her husband, Chris. They love living on the west side of Cincinnati with their 2 cats. Both are very active in their church as praise leaders, and both have a love of music. Mary is also very crafty and has shared her hand sewn masks and handmade chocolates at APA events in support of our scholarship fund raisers.

  • Friday, November 13, 2020 8:41 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    One of the current APA board members is Judy Singleton. Judy is a lifelong resident of Cincinnati and resides in Blue Ash.

    Prior to working in higher education, Judy was a social worker in a nursing home, a hospital, and home health care. She continued her education while she was in the field and has been teaching social work in higher education over the past 20 years. She currently is at the University of Cincinnati Blue Ash College.

    Helping students connect to the careers to which they aspire is always rewarding. And, it is especially gratifying when students are interested in working with older adults. Better yet, it is wonderful to connect students to agencies and workers in the field of aging. Many students have not considered a career in the field of aging. Being exposed to the opportunities and the incredible work that can be done is sometimes a game changer for students to then pursue a career in aging.

    Q: What do you like most about being a member of the APA?
    APA provides such a wonderful learning opportunity and means to connect with kindred souls. Members from such a variety of settings share their time and talents to ultimately help older adults in our community.

    Q.  What do you do when you’re not working?
    Gardening…and then more gardening. I love it!

    Q.  What is the last book you read?
    I read a lot of books for work, but the last book I read for pleasure was “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking” by Susan Cain.

    Q. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?
    The Scandinavian countries, particularly Sweden.  It is amazing to read about their work/family benefit structure.  I would love to learn more and see it in action.

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