Courtyard at Mt Tabor’s Retirement Community – Executive Director and Administrators
When the owners of the Courtyard at Mt Tabor retirement community set out to establish a team they felt best embodied their ethics and values, their search quickly led to JJ, who had 20+ years of experience in senior living. JJ knew from a young age that he wanted to dedicate his life to assisting seniors. Grandson to an amazing man who lived with Alzheimer’s, JJ knew he wanted to create the type of community that didn’t exist when his family was in need. One visit and you will know, he definitely made it happen.
- What is your secret goal? I would love to own and operate my own memory care community that is a working farm type scenario.
- What do you appreciate about Courtyard? I really enjoy laughing and joking with the residents. The experiences they share are priceless.
- Where would we find you during your personal time? I would likely be riding my motorcycle, spending time with my beautiful daughters and granddaughter, or rooting for Oregon State University sporting events. Go Beavers!
After receiving her Bachelor of Science in Nursing in the Philippines in 2007, Leona worked as a specialty nurse for two years. Soon after moving to the United States, she accepted a position as a MedAide/Caregiver at Courtyard’s retirement community. She was promoted, after just a few years, to Assisted Living Director. Leona’s extensive clinical knowledge is a great asset to the care team.
- What would we be surprised to learn about you? I have a great love for old school rock n roll and an obsession for classic TV sitcoms. Three’s Company is my favorite.
- What do you enjoy most about your position? I enjoy every family I meet with and take a lot for each opportunity to serve them. Each interaction affirms what is really important in life and enables me to set priorities in my own life.
- What do you want people to know about you? Whatever I achieve in life, I owe to my parents.
Ask anyone at Courtyard and you will hear that Geris is a big part of the reason our Generations community is so well respected. Her dedication to our memory care residents and their families is felt at every level. Having worked her way to Administrator over the years, she couples vast on the job experience with the creativity essential to her other passion, photography. Understanding we all have different wants and needs, Geris always finds a unique balance when managing day-to-day operations.
- What lead you to this career path? My mother was a caregiver throughout my childhood. It was my first job as well. I liked it so much I have been doing it for over a decade.
- How do you enjoy spending your off-work hours? I enjoy riding my motorcycle, glass blowing, hula hooping and photography.
- What do you appreciate about Courtyard? Every day at the Courtyard retirement community, in Portland, Oregon, is a new adventure. I love caring for the residents and knowing that I make a difference in their lives each day I come to work.
Portland’s Best Retirement Community – Sales and Marketing
Kevin joined the team after leaving a career in high-tech sales. Whether Kevin’s taking a moment to tickle the ivories for a group of passersby, or laughing with a resident, he approaches each interaction with zeal. However, it’s periodically watching Kevin exercise his acting chops on the national television series ‘Leverage’ that can be a kick for each of our residents.
- What would we be surprised to learn about you? Marie Osmond once ran over my foot with a stroller.
- What led you to your position? I have a very close relationship with my grandparents. One of my best friends is a Marketing Director for a community in Denver. She kept telling me that I needed to get into this field. She was correct.
- How do you enjoy spending your free time?I have a deep love of music. I play piano and guitar and enjoy composing with software. I also enjoy live music, concerts, video production, my pets, fitness and nutrition.
Following a 15 year marketing and public relations career spent raising money for local children’s charities, advocating for worker’s rights and bringing nonprofit services to neighboring senior citizens, Brandi was drawn to Courtyard’s dedication to our residents and employees. She frequently explains that three minutes into her first interview, she knew she had found a home.
- What is your most proud professional moment? An event I created raised over 120k for local children in need. Over the years, we were able to raise over three quarters of a million dollars to aid with their necessary care and services.
- How do you spend your free time? My top priority and fantastic source of entertainment will always be my family and friends, including a very rambunctious little boy. I also love to dance, workout, golf, camp and whitewater raft.
- What do you appreciate about your position? I walked the same path as many of the families I work with. Having a very close loved one who has major medical concerns and memory loss; I enjoy being able to make the experience a bit easier for others. My grandfather used to quote the old adage “if you love what you do, it isn’t work.” I have to say, I wholeheartedly agree.
Kevin left his career in banking in search of a position that would utilize his skills to benefit others. Following a stint in government work, advocating for children’s needs, he walked in the door of the Courtyard at Mt Tabor retirement community . Today, he works with our residents and their families, to ensure their move-in process is as seamless and comfortable as possible.
- What is your goal? I would love to build a home along the river. I also strive daily to be a positive role model and leader to my children.
- How do you enjoy spending your off-work hours? I enjoy playing basketball, baseball and racket ball. I also love the outdoors and spending time with my family.
- What led you to your position with Courtyard at Mt Tabor? Luck and faith.
Portland’s Premier Senior Living Community – Culinary Services, Maintenance Department and Business Office
Marc took a leap when he excepted his first executive chef position within senior living in 2005. Having worked in food service at OHSU, then following it up with the creation of a local catering company, Marc parlayed his vast culinary skills into an executive chef position. That quickly led to his position as Culinary Services Director at Courtyard at Mt Tabor’s retirement community .
- What do you enjoy about your position?I enjoy interacting with the residents, and providing them with great food, each and every day.
- What would we be surprised to learn about you? I dislike Ketchup.
- What is your most sincere goal? To be the best father, husband and chef that I can be.
Having worked in senior living early in her career, Regina has always been drawn to senior living. After her several year hiatus, where she honed her maintenance skills, Courtyard was fortunate to lure her back from employment at OHSU. Regina brings vast experience and is a great asset to a position where professionalism and customer service are always a top priority.
- What would we be surprised to learn about you? I don’t like roller coasters.
- What do you enjoy most about your position? I can’t walk by without acknowledging anyone I pass. I see all seniors as someone that has a story. I am eager to hear it and learn how how it can help me improve my walk in life.
- What do you want people to know about you? I am the biggest New England Patriots fan.
Having been an office manager for over 20 years, Gretchen’s passion for organization and attention to detail is a great commodity to the Courtyard at Mt Tabor retirement community. Gretchen works to ensure the day to day operations keep on ticking for both the Courtyard staff and the hundreds of residents who grace our campus. It is with great commitment that Gretchen has welcomed each day at Courtyard for over a decade.
- What was your proudest professional moment? It may not be a traditional answer, but for me it was a day spent working at the Park building. I received a kiss on the cheek by a one hundred year old resident who was celebrating his birthday. It was a very special moment I will always hold in my heart.
- What would we be surprised to learn about you? I love deep sea fishing.
- What do you appreciate about working at Courtyard? Every day is a gift working at the Courtyard at Mt Tabor retirement community. I get to have some rare insights into other people’s lives. Those experiences have influenced me greatly and have made me a better person. Each day is so different. It is like opening up hundreds of fantastic surprises.
Courtyard’s Retirement Community Offers Unparalleled Socialization – Vibrant Life
Laurie has been the hub of Plaza’s massive recreation program for half a dozen years. Her educational background, which was dedicated to nursing, prepared her to understand the priorities of today’s seniors. When you witness Laurie interacting with anyone here on campus, it is easy to see the valuable skills she learned in her years spent in social service and non-profit work.
- What would we be surprised to learn about you? I organized a senior social group for my mother on “meetup.com” and our group was featured on the AMNW television show.
- When you are not at Courtyard, where can we find you? I spend as much time as possible with my husband, children and grandchildren. I also love to travel and do things I’ve never done before. I’m very adventurous and enjoy being spontaneous.
- What made you choose this career path? I wanted a job that had purpose and meaning, where I could make a difference in the lives of others. You might say I reached my goal and am fulfilling my sincere desire every day. Besides, who wouldn’t enjoy having “grandparents” around all the time who make us feel loved and appreciated?
Courtyard at Mt Tabor was incredibly fortunate to find Rachael, a prior Gala Coordinator, world traveler and private nanny. Rachael, who studied abroad while obtaining her degree, speaks multiple languages and and has a passion for the Arts. Starting as concierge, Rachael earned her promotion to Vibrant Life Director in record time. She has a sincere love for the residents and it shows every day.
- What would we be surprised to learn about you? I lived with a family in Costa Rica and studied Spanish when I was 17. Then I studied Art History in Rome when I was 20.
- What do you enjoy most about your position? I love all the places I get to take residents our Courtyard’s retirement community. From outings to restaurants and musicals, to rose gardens and the beach, most days at work bring new and amazing memories.
- What would your “Living the Dream” goal be? I have always wanted to set foot on every continent, including Antarctica. I will get there someday.
Diana wrote her first fitness program at age 14. Her parents/clients followed the program because, even then, she understood that the best programs are doable, enjoyable and easy to follow. In 2008, a year before receiving the first of her two degrees, Diana developed a medical clinic’s diabetic health program. Couple her vast professional knowledge and many years of fitness training, and Diana is a strong force in each residents day.
- What do you enjoy most about your position? The part of the job I enjoy the most is teaching classes and presenting wellness talks. I love it when people tell me how they have benefited from the exercise and what they can do now (due to my exercise program) compared to what they they could not do in the past.
- How do you enjoy spending your off-work hours? I like reading literature on learning, our brain and health psychology. I also read philosophy, history, archaeology, and enjoy watching science fiction/fantasy television and movies. I spend many days off taking unique sporting photos, listening to music, writing music reviews and health articles, traveling and hiking, playing sports and watching sports – Go Steelers!
- What is your most sincere goal? To hike Mt. St. Helens.
Annette has been a consistent beacon of support for Courtyard’s residents for a decade. Starting as a caregiver in 2007, Annette developed extensive knowledge of the needs of each individual who lives here. She was promoted to Vibrant Life Assistant in 2012 and has been a great addition to the team ever since.
- What led you to join to Courtyard at Mt Tabor team? I was working at Wells Fargo. Someone suggested I look into caregiving due to my connection with our senior customers.
- What do you enjoy most about your position? I love being able to experience new things with our residents and see how they react to each adventure.
- What are you interested in when you are not on campus? I love supporting the Blazers and 49ers. I also enjoy bowling, reading, gardening, fishing and cooking.
Following many visits to see her 103 year old grandmother at another retirement community, Drew found she had a deep passion for connecting with seniors and began working with memory care residents. She was quickly promoted from server to the activities department. When a spot opened at Courtyard at Mt. Tabor’s Vibrant Life Department, we were lucky to have her join our team. Drew brings an energy to her position that brings great life to any room she is in.
- What is your most sincere goal? My desired goal in life is to continue and build my dream career and carry a happiness everywhere I go, and with everyone I meet.
- What would we be surprised to learn about you? I carry on a family name, “Andrew”. Because I am a female, my parents figured “Drew” would work just fine.
- What do you appreciate most about your position? I enjoy having the opportunity to provide joy and happiness into the resident’s everyday life. I also am appreciative that my job is genuinely fun and exciting everyday.