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Assisted Living Caregivers Honored for Significant Contributions  
Assisted Living Caregivers Honored for Significant Contributions
NCAL Awards Program recipients announced
Rachel Reeves
(202) 898-2803


Washington, DC – The National Center for Assisted Living (NCAL) today announced the 2014 honorees of its NCAL Awards Program. The program recognizes assisted living employees from around the country who demonstrate exemplary work within the profession.

“These four individuals represent the best of assisted living and the inspiring work that goes on in our communities every day,” said NCAL Executive Director Dave Kyllo. “NCAL is honored to award such dedicated professionals who exemplify what it means to provide person-centered care.”

The four award recipients are:

  • NCAL Noble Caregiver in Assisted Living: Connie Leinberger from Riverview Village in Menomonee Falls, Wis.;
  • NCAL Administrator of the Year: Jean Cannon at Aspen House Memory Care Assisted Living in Loveland, Colo.;
  • NCAL Assisted Living Nurse of the Year: Laura Cardillo, RN, CDP, CVW at The Avalon at Hillsborough in Hillsborough, N.J.; and
  • NCAL National Assisted Living Week® Programming Award: Cathy Roark of Riverside Lodge Retirement Community in Grand Island, Neb.

Leinberger is the Activity Coordinator at Riverview Village and created a number of engaging opportunities for residents, including a community outreach program, hand bell choir and cooking class. Cannon was named the 2013 Administrator of the Year by the Colorado Health Care Association and is a champion for providing person-centered care to individuals living with dementia.

Cardillo has been the Director of Wellness at The Avalon at Hillsborough since the community opened in 2006, and as the dementia educator, helped the community earn first place in a dementia education week contest by the National Council of Certified Dementia Care Practitioners. Roark created invigorating activities around last year’s National Assisted Living Week held in September, with a theme of “Homemade Happiness.” She kicked off the week with a Family Day, held a holiday food drive, honored veterans and connected residents with members of the local community.

The award winners will be recognized at a special awards ceremony on October 5, 2014, in Washington, D.C. during the Eighth Annual NCAL Day held as part of the 65th Annual AHCA/NCAL Annual Convention & Expo.

The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) represent more than 12,000 non-profit and proprietary skilled nursing centers, assisted living communities, sub-acute centers and homes for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. By delivering solutions for quality care, AHCA/NCAL aims to improve the lives of the millions of frail, elderly and individuals with disabilities who receive long term or post-acute care in our member facilities each day. For more information, please visit or