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VCU Department of Gerontology Webinars 


Virginia Department of Social Services, the Longevity Project for a greater Richmond and Senior Connections

The National Association of Long-Term Care Administrator Boards developed the four Domains of Practice for long-term care providers that summarize the areas of skills and knowledge required to practice. While the Domains of Practice were developed for Long Term Care Administrators, they are applicable across much of the aging network. These domains include: Care Services and Supports, Operations, Environment, and Leadership & Strategy. Each domain encompasses crucial knowledge and skills necessary to uphold the safety, care, and holistic well-being of residents in long-term care.


This domain covers the knowledge and skills involved in providing high quality direct care that meets the needs and expectations of individuals who live in long-term care settings, including assisted living communities, memory care communities, and nursing homes. It has three areas :

Quality of Care: The measurable aspects of care, including clinical care outcomes and resident satisfaction with care. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • Medical and nursing practices
  • Medication management and administration
  • Disease management
  • Emergency medical services
  • Nutrition and hydration
  • Rehabilitation and restorative programs
  • Interdisciplinary assessment and care planning
  • Clinical records and documentation
  • Transitions of care (move in/out, transfer, involuntary discharge)

Quality of Life: The more intangible aspects of care that impact how fulfilled a person feels about their day to day life in a long-term care setting. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • Person-centered needs assessment and care planning
  • Care recipient rights
  • Fall prevention
  • Elopement prevention
  • Resident grievances
  • Conflict and dispute resolution
  • Advocacy (ombudsman, resident and family councils)
  • Capacity and decision making
  • Resident satisfaction
  • Elder mistreatment (abuse, neglect, exploitation)
  • Mental and behavioral health
  • Trauma informed care
  • Pain management
  • Death, dying, and grief
  • Food service
  • Social services
  • Therapeutic recreation and activities
  • Community resources and agencies

Ancillary Services: The services that are often provided by third parties but for which long-term care providers still remain responsible. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • Healthcare partners and clinical providers
  • Hospice and palliative care
  • Dental and oral care
  • Specialized equipment (oxygen, durable medical equipment)
  • Diagnostic services
  • Telemedicine services
  • Transportation
  • Volunteer programs

This domain covers the knowledge and skills involved in the day-to-day running of a long-term care community.   It has three areas:

Financial Management: The entire range of activities that are needed to manage the finances of a long-term care community. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • Budgeting and forecasting
  • Financial (ratio) analysis
  • Revenue cycle management
  • Financial statements (balance sheet, income statement, cash flow statement)
  • Revenue and reimbursement
  • Financial reporting requirements
  • Integration of financial and clinical systems
  • Internal controls
  • Supply chain management
  • Resident trust accounts


Risk Management: The policies and practices that safeguard against risks that might damage a long-term care provider financially or reputationally. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • OSHA rules and regulations
  • Workers compensation
  • Ethical conduct
  • Risk management programs
  • Quality improvement processes
  • Scope of practice and legal liability
  • Internal investigations
  • Mandatory reporting requirements
  • Insurance coverage
  • Healthcare records requirements (HIPAA, HITECH)
  • Security
  • Managing contracted services

Human Resources: The entire range of policies and practices involved in recruiting, onboarding, retaining, compensating, managing, motivating, disciplining, and separating employees within the long-term care workforce. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • Federal human resources laws, rules, and regulations
  • Selection and hiring
  • Compensation and benefits
  • Staffing requirements
  • Licensure and certification
  • Professional development and training
  • Performance evaluation
  • Human resources policies
  • Employee record keeping requirements
  • Employee grievance
  • Conflict and dispute resolution
  • Employee satisfaction, engagement, and retention
  • Cultural competence and diversity awareness
  • Labor relations

This domain covers the knowledge and skills involved in ensuring the care setting is safe and secure and that long-term care providers are aware of and follow all applicable laws and regulations. It has two areas:

Care Setting: The policies and practices for ensuring that the buildings, equipment, and grounds provide a home-like, accessible, safe, person-centered environment. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • Federal codes and regulations for building, equipment, maintenance, and grounds
  • Home-like environment
  • Safety and accessibility (ADA, safety data sheets)
  • Facility management and environmental services
  • Information systems infrastructure
  • Preventive and routine maintenance
  • Infection control and sanitation
  • Disaster and emergency planning

Regulatory Compliance: Compliance with all federal healthcare laws, rules, and regulations, government programs, and certification and licensure requirements. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • Federal healthcare laws, rules, and regulations
  • Government programs and entities (Medicare, Medicaid, waivers)
  • Certification and licensure requirements for the organization

This domain covers the knowledge and skills involved in leading and managing teams that operate a long-term care community. It includes two areas:

Leadership: Strategies and practices for effective leadership. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • Organizational structures
  • Organizational change management
  • Organizational behavior (culture, team dynamics)
  • Leadership styles and communication, coaching, mentoring, and professional development
  • Governance
  • Professional advocacy and governmental relations

Organizational Strategy: The strategic planning aspects of leadership. Key areas of knowledge and skill include:

  • Mission, vision, and values
  • Strategic business planning
  • Business analytics
  • Business development, including sales, marketing, partnerships, accountable care organizations, contracts, agreements, and negotiations
  • Public relations and and external stakeholders, including hospitals, referral sources, local community, and donors






Cultural Competency

Culturally Competent Care for Diverse Populations in an Adult Day Setting (2018):

I – Person-centered Care and Social Connectivity
II – LGBT Individuals
III – Individuals with a Dementia-related Disorder

Stereotypes, Ageism, and Biological Aging (2017 Gerontology Bootcamp series Part I)

Dementia: It’s Not Just Alzheimer’s Disease (Parts I – IV, 2020)

Disrupt Ageism! (Foundation in Longevity and Aging Series, Part IX, 2020)

Issues in Public Housing in Richmond (2020 Longevity Project)

The Cultural, Spiritual and Psychosocial Aspects of End of Life (Death and Dying Series, Part 3, 2021)

Intersectionality, Inclusivity and Aging (Trends in Gerontology Series Part I, 2021)

Models of Care and Advance Care Planning (Death and Dying Series, Part 4, 2021)

Overcoming Cultural Barriers to Provide Person-Centered Care (2021)

Models of Care and Advance Care Planning (2021)


Foundations in Longevity and Aging (2020):

This nine-part series is an incursion in anchoring concepts of gerontology relating to longevity and aging, all set within the context of the 2019-2023 pandemic and with hands-on strategies, tools, and case studies.

I – Five Things Gerontologists Want You to Know
II – Trauma and Resilience
III – Ethical Decision Making
IV – Purple Zones
V – Social Connectedness
VI – Dementia
VII – Infection
VIII – Medication Safety
IX – Disrupt Ageism!

Infection Prevention/Control

Infection (Foundation in Longevity and Aging Series (Foundation in Longevity and Aging Series, Part VII, 2020)

Infection Control and Mental Health and Well-being in Aging (DSS Provider Training Event, 2021)

Mental Health and Infection Control Covid19 Impact (DSS Provider Training Event, 2021)

Fundamentals of Building a Sustainable IPC Team (DSS Provider Training Event held online 2022)

A New Comprehensive Statewide Infection Prevention and Control Training Program (DSS – VCU Gerontology CCE Training, 2022)

The New Normal: Building a Strong Infection Control Team (Winter Conference, 2022)


Emergency Preparedness and Safety (Parts I-III, 2018)

Guidance Meeting: Local Government (Live virtual event, 2020) 

Leadership Masterclass Webinar Series (2020):

I – Discovering Your Authentic Leadership Personality
II – Leading Others to Better Performance
III – Making Continuous Quality Improvement Work for You

Top 10 Violations in VA’s Assisted Living Communities (DSS/VCU Instructor’s Guide, 2020)

Empowering the Direct Care Workforce (Trends in Gerontology Series, Part II, 2021)

Narrative Care for Our Eldercare Workforce (DSS – VCU Conference, Spring 2022)

The New Normal: Building a Strong Infection Control Team (Winter Conference, 2022)

Profiles in Elder Advocacy (Trends in Gerontology Series, Part I, 2022)

Recruiting, Engaging and Retaining Long Term Care Staff (DSS – VCU Gerontology CCE Conference, Fall 2022)

Transforming Conditions for the Direct Care Workforce (Trends in Gerontology Series, Part II, 2022)

The Power of Narrative Leadership (DSS – VCU Gerontology CCE Virtual Conference Event 2023)

Time Management is Burnout Management: Co-Creating Community (VDSS – VCU Gerontology CCE Conferences Event, 2023)


Emergency Preparedness and Safety (Parts I-III, 2018)

Ethical Decision Making (Foundation in Longevity and Aging Series, Part III, 2020)

Longevity Project Webinar Series (2020):

I – Guardianship in Virginia with an Emphasis on Public Guardianship

II – Current Issues in Public Housing in Richmond

III – Virginia Medicaid

Top 10 Violations in VA’s Assisted Living Communities (DSS Instructor’s Guide, 2020)

Elder Endangerment and Financial Exploitation (Trends in Gerontology Series, Part V, 2021)


Medication Best Practices in ALFs (2018):

I – Medication Safety for Older Americans
II – Psychotropic Medications
III – Responding to residents’ needs: Non-pharma approaches
IV – The HEAR response to meeting residents’ needs

Medication Management (2020)

Medication Safety (Foundation in Longevity and Aging Series, Part VIII, 2020)

Mental Health

Mental Health and Well-being in Aging (2019):

I – Part One
II – Part Two
III – Part Three
IV – Part Four

Infection Control and Mental Health and Well-being in Aging (2021)

Loss and Grief (Death and Dying, Part IV, 2021)

Mental Health and Infection Control Covid19 Impact (2021)

Mental Health and Well-being in Aging: Covid Impact Isolation, Loneliness and Connectivity (2021)

Strategies for Mental Wellness Across the Continuum (DSS – VCU Gerontology CCE May 2023 Conference Event 2023)

Time Management is Burnout Management: Co-Creating Community (VDSS – VCU Gerontology Conference, Fall 2023)

Person-Centered Care

Dementia; It’s not just Alzheimer’s Disease (Impact for ADHC) (Parts I-IV, 2017)

Activities for Persons Living with Cognitive Impairment (Training Series for Professional Caregivers Working in Adult Day Care or Long Term Care Settings, Parts I-IV, 2019)

Current Issues in Richmond Public Housing (2020)

Ethical Decision Making (Foundation in Longevity and Aging Series) Part III, 2020)

Guardianship in Virginia with an Emphasis on Public Guardianship (Live Webinar Recorded March 31, 2020)

Person-Centered Care 2.1 (Virtual Conference, 2020)

Social Connectedness  (Foundation in Longevity and Aging Series, Part V, 2020)

Trauma and Resilience (Foundation in Longevity and Aging Series, Part II, 2020)

A Caring Response: Person-Centered Care for a Diverse Population (2021)

Cognition, Resilience and Thriving: Profiles in Family Care (Trends in Gerontology Series, Part IV, 2021)

Elder Endangerment and Financial Exploitation (Trends in Gerontology Series, Part V, 2021)

Infection Control and Mental Health and Well-being in Aging (2021)

Mental Health and Well-being in Aging – Covid Impact Isolation, Loneliness and Connectivity (2021)

Models of Care and Advance Care Planning (Death and Dying Series, Part IV, 2021)

Overcoming Cultural Barriers to Provide Person-Centered Care (2021)

Creating a Safe and Caring Environment Through Person-Centered Dementia Practices (2023) (DSS – VCU Gerontology CCE Winter Conference, 2022)

Profiles in Elder Advocacy (Trends in Gerontology Series, Part I, 2022)


Gigi Amateau, PhD

Gigi Amateau has worked in health and human services for thirty-years in program administration, information and referral, and philanthropy with the Commonwealth of Virginia, Homeward, SeniorNavigator, and United Way.

She is currently the Director of Grants and Research for the Greater Richmond Age Wave Coalition.

Annette Clark, MSG

Annette Clark received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Sociology from Mary Baldwin College and earned her Master’s degree in Gerontology from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2012. Annette is a Family Services Director with the Alzheimer’s Association Central and Western Virginia Chapter, an adjunct faculty member and Roanoke Higher Education Center Liaison with Virginia Commonwealth University.

Annette’s responsibilities include assisting students with successful transition into Department of Gerontology programs in the hybrid program located at the Roanoke Higher Education Center, coordination of local GeroStat events and development and instruction of select training programs for Virginia Commonwealth University’s partnership with Virginia Department of Social Services, Division of Licensing Programs.

Annette’s interest include working with individuals and care partners dealing with a dementia diagnosis, educational opportunities for adult learners, advocacy and providing support by serving on various committees, councils and boards.

Tyler Corson, PhD

Tyler Corson, PhD, is a gerontologist.  She earned a Master of Science in Gerontology from the University of Massachusetts, Boston and a doctorate in Health Related Sciences from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). She currently teaches in the College of Health Professions at Virginia Commonwealth University, and at Rush University in Chicago with expertise in aging issues, mental health, and research methodology.

She has experience working with older adults both in the community and residential care settings. Dr. Corson serves on the Board of the National Alliance on Mental Illness in Virginia Beach and teaches NAMI community education classes.

Dr. Corson has a consulting business focused on developing and implementing educational and training opportunities in the areas of aging and research.

Brandy Day

Brandy Day, Chief Talent Officer, joined Williamsburg Landing in April 2014. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Government & International Politics from George Mason University and a Master of Education in Policy, Planning & Leadership from William & Mary. She is certified as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) through the Human Resources Certification Institute, Senior Certified Professional through the Society of Human Resources Management, and a Senior Certified Professional through the International Public Management Association for Human Resources.

Prior to joining Williamsburg Landing, Brandy served as the Director of Human Resources for Isle of Wight County and as the Human Resources Supervisor for Williamsburg-James City County Public Schools. She is a past chairwoman of the Cohen Career Center’s Employer Advisory Board at William & Mary and the 21st Century Career Ready Citizen Advisory Committee for Williamsburg-James City County Public Schools. She has also served as a Board Member of Literacy for Life and is a graduate of the Mid-Atlantic LeadingAge Leadership Academy and a 2017 graduate of LEAD Greater Williamsburg. In 2023, she was recognized as a “15 Under 50” Award Winner by the Greater Williamsburg Chamber of Commerce.

Emily Foreman, MSG

Emily Foreman has been working in the Aging Services field for 14 years, advocating for older adults and sustaining funding for critical community-based services. She has extensive experience in developing, implementing, and integrating supportive services and community programming for older adults. Currently, Emily is the Manager of VCU Gerontology Community and Continuing Education, where she oversees the development and delivery of conferences and webinars for Virginia’s eldercare workforce. She also co-hosts trainings for front line staff and administrators across the state of Virginia. Emily has received several awards, including the Emerging Gerontologist Award from Greater Richmond Age Wave in 2019. Additionally, she has completed training and certification in Design Thinking from the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. Emily obtained a Masters in Gerontology from Virginia Commonwealth University in May 2020

Regina Foster

Regina Foster is a gerontologist that also practices as a Physician Assistant. She completed her first Master’s degree at Eastern Virginia Medical School in 2003. Becoming a healthcare provider enabled her to work with a diverse population; however, seniors have always held a special place in her heart.

Hence, she went back to school to gain more knowledge about the aging process and completed a second Master’s in Gerontology at Virginia Commonwealth University in 2018. Upon finishing the program, she became a Licensed Assisted Living Administrator, Certified Dementia Practitioner, Certified Alzheimer’s Disease & Dementia Care Trainer through NCCDP, Certified Consultant using Teepa Snow’s Positive Approach to Care, and a Professional Facilitator/Trainer with VCU’s Department of Gerontology. More recently she enrolled in a Health Related Sciences Ph.D. program at VCU with research interests in person-centered care and ageism in the health and beauty industries.

On a personal level, her family also cared for her grandmother, who lived with dementia for about 10 years. Regina understands the challenges faced in caring for her. These personal experiences have developed a passion to train other healthcare professionals in person-centered care.

Both her background and passion has birthed two companies. Foster Senior Services is a platform that provides seminars and consultation services for both healthcare professionals and caregivers that are providing care for older adults living with dementia. Her newest venture is called QueenAged which is a product-based business that will launch this spring. The essence of QueenAged is to embrace the beauty of aging by creating a skincare and beauty brand that uplifts older women. While the products focus on ways to keep us feeling our absolute best, as we age, we do not equate beauty with looking younger. QueenAged empowers older women to embrace the skin they’re in.

Regina’s motto is: Queenagers are never “anti” about a life process that we’ve been so blessed to experience.

Katie Gilstrap, MBA

Katie Gilstrap is the founder of The Barre Boutique, a studio fitness center (recently sold to the Richmond Ballet), is a faculty member at Virginia Commonwealth University and serves as an adjunct instructor at the University of Richmond at the undergraduate, graduate and executive levels as well as at The College of William and Mary in the Online MBA program. Her teaching areas include management principles, marketing principles, organizational behavior, organizational strategy, marketing research and organizational communications; and she regularly advises MBA thesis projects aimed at solving strategic dilemmas for locally headquartered companies. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she has developed and led new programs for VCU. More specifically, she designed the new Business Foundations course for the Office of Undergraduate Studies and has designed, led and secured grant funding for study abroad programs focused on international business in Greece, Spain, Prague and Scotland. She also represents VCU as a part of the Henry Ford Foundation’s Leadership Academy in the Middle East and Africa

Prior to her academic and entrepreneurial career, Katie served as the Chief Marketing Officer and Director of Marketing at First Market Bank, overseeing marketing strategy, product development, advertising, community outreach and business analysis.  During her time at First Market Bank, her work was recognized by Financial Brand magazine, and she became the youngest person in the company’s history to be appointed to Executive Committee, with responsibility for developing and steering the corporate strategy of the organization.

In addition to her academic and professional responsibilities, Katie actively consults in the areas of corporate and consumer communications and communication strategy development and has served as a regular columnist for the Richmond Times Dispatch, the Health Journal, GRID Magazine and Caring Voice Coalition’s Community Magazine.  Recently, she was recognized by AACSB as one of the recipients of their international 100 Influential Leaders Award.

Jennifer Inker, PhD

Jenny Inker, PhD, is an assistant professor of gerontology and the co-program director for the Assisted Living Administration Specialty Area in the M.S. in gerontology program at VCU.

Dr Inker teaches Sociology of Aging, and Aging and Human Values (ethics). She also supervises masters students completing their Assisted Living Administrator-in-Training practicum and doctoral students in the Health Related Sciences PhD program. Dr Inker co-leads a number of popular workforce trainings throughout the year, including a leadership master class series, ethics workshops, and an exam preparation class for the Residential Care Assisted Living (RCAL) national exam.

Dr Inker’s personal and professional goals are to raise conscious awareness of the potential for elderhood as a time of life which enriches individuals and society and to disrupt ageism and other barriers to developing elderhood.

Annette Kelley

Annette S. Kelley joined the Virginia Department of Social Services Division of Licensing Programs as the Provider Training Consultant in November 2005. In this position she is responsible for training related activities for assisted living facilities and adult day care centers, providing technical assistance to adult program providers, and developing regulations for adult programs. Annette earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and her Master’s Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling with a specialization in Alcohol and Drug Abuse Education.

Ms. Kelley has over twenty years of experience working in program development, program management, and training development in both the private and public sector.

Mary Locklin

Mary Locklin has a master’s degree in Nursing with a specialization in infection prevention, and is board certified in infection prevention. She currently works as a senior quality advisor for Health Quality Innovators and is co-chair of the Virginia HAI Advisory Group Education Team while also serving on the Virginia Association of Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology board.

Toy Newcomb, LPC, CCTP

Toy Newcomb is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) licensed in the state of Virginia and a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional (CCTP) certified by the International Association of Trauma Professionals. Prior to becoming a counselor, she spent over 10 years working in geriatric care communities. In addition to being a Department of Social Services Instructor with VCU, she provides clinical mental health counseling by integrating evidenced based clinical interventions with Biblical principles at her private practice, Renewal Christian Counseling, PLLC.

Her counseling experience includes working with individuals who have experienced a variety of reasons for seeking help to include but not limited to trauma, grief/loss, substance abuse, self-worth/self-esteem issues, stress management, relationship challenges, symptom management, spiritual conflicts, effective/assertive communication, depression and anxiety. Additionally, Toy has facilitated support and counseling groups for the geriatric population and their adult caregivers.

Paula Otto

As a journalist, PR professional, college professor and agency head, Paula Otto has held senior leadership roles for more than 30 years. Paula was part of the leadership team that created the Virginia Lottery and served as its executive director from 2008-2018. During her tenure, the Lottery had record growth and surpassed $500 million in annual profits for the first time. The Lottery was also recognized as a “Best Places to Work” by the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

In addition to her nearly 20 years at the Lottery, Otto was a tenured professor and associate director at VCU’s Robertson School of Media and Culture for ten years and most recently served as the VCU Wilder School’s senior director of special projects, overseeing the annual Excellence in Virginia Government awards.

Otto’s current consulting work includes strategic planning, leadership coaching, business ethics, issues management, media relations, and public speaking. Her clients include the Virginia Department of Aviation, Virginia Housing, JLARC, AmeriCorps Virginia, and Leading Age Virginia. She is a regular presenter at the VCU Performance Management Group’s Commonwealth Management Institute and Virginia Executive Institute.

Otto is active in the RVA community, serving as a reader for Virginia Voice, co-chair of the Women’s Advisory Board for the Girl Scouts of the Commonwealth, and holds several leadership positions at her church in Mechanicsville.

Otto has an undergraduate degree in Journalism from West Virginia University and an M.A. in Public Communication from American University. She also holds the Accredited Public Relations (APR) credential from the Public Relations Society of America.

Courtney Petley, LCSW

Ms. Courtney Petley is a Virginia Licensed Clinical Social Worker and is certified as an Advanced Social Work Case Manager.  She is a co-owner of GeroPartners, a provider of care management and behavioral health services for older adults and their care partners in the Richmond Metro area. Ms. Petley has more than 20 years of experience as a clinical social worker and an administrator in the public mental health system and long-term care settings, as well as working in private practice with older adults and family caregivers.

Ellen Phipps, CTRS

Ellen Phipps, CTRS, MS, Gerontologist, is the Executive Director of Aging Together – connecting older adults to resources to improve quality of life as we age. Ellen is the Author of Connections: Engagement in Life for Persons with Dementia, A Complete Activities Guide. Before joining Aging Together, Ellen served as Vice President, and later, CEO of the Alzheimer’s Association, Central & Western Virginia Chapter for a total of 18 years.

Ellen has served as Director of adult day centers both in England and in Virginia and, in 1997, introduced the first Montessori-intergenerational adult day center in the state at the JABA Adult Day Center in Charlottesville.

Ellen holds a Masters of Gerontology Degree from Virginia Commonwealth University where she also has served as adjunct faculty, and a Bachelors’ s degree in Therapeutic Recreation from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Jennifer Pryor, PhD

Jennifer Pryor, PhD, received her Bachelor of Science and Master’s degrees in Psychology from Hollins University and the College of William & Mary, respectively. She earned her Master’s degree in Gerontology and a post-graduate certificate in Non-Profit Management from Virginia Commonwealth University. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Health Services Organization and Research at Virginia Commonwealth University. Jennifer is a licensed Assisted Living Administrator and a certified Lean Six Sigma Green Belt.

Jennifer’s responsibilities include coordinating student advising and registrations, maintaining student records, and monitoring student progress. Jennifer also advises and instructs students who are interested in administration and who plan to pursue their license as an Assisted Living Administrator. In addition, she manages several continuing education and training initiatives including the state-wide, co-sponsored training program between the Virginia Department of Social Services, Division of Licensing Programs and the VCU Department of Gerontology. This program is available to professional caregivers working in Virginia’s Licensed Assisted Living Facilities and Adult Day Centers.

Jennifer’s research interests are focused on long-term care organizations, administration, and outcomes. Her personal and professional goal is to challenge the paradigm of the long-term care continuum and promote innovation and development in the industry to foster inclusiveness, community, and awareness of ageism.

Carey Raleigh

Carey Raleigh graduated from the University of Vermont with a Bachelors Degree in Social Work in 1994.  In 1998, she obtained her Master’s Degree in Social Work from Norfolk State University.

Early in her 28 year career, Carey worked in a variety of Nursing Facilities in the Virginia Beach area and was involved in the Social Worker Association of Tidewater for Long-Term Care and the VB Task Force on Aging.  During this time, she also worked with Virginia Beach Psychiatric Hospital and a local Home Health company for as needed services/social work.

In 2005 Carey went to work for the City of Virginia Beach Adult Services/Adult Protective Services Unit.  She became heavily involved in the VB Task Force on Aging, was President of the Social Worker Association of Tidewater, developed a training video for first responders in VB on Hoarding and was involved in many other interagency groups.

For a brief period, Carey joined a local Elder Law Firm to help develop and implement a program called Life Care Planning, which is when she also became a Certified Geriatric Care Manager and still maintains her certification to this day.

She worked as the Eastern Regional Consultant for Adult Services/Adult Protective Services since the fall of 2010 until recently, she was promoted to the Adult Services/Adult Protective Services Program Manager for the APS Division of DARS.  She remains heavily involved with the Virginia Beach Task Force on Aging and is in her 14th year with the Virginia Beach Mayor’s Commission on Aging, the past 5 years as an Advisor at the request of the Mayor.

Working with the elderly has always been her passion.  She grew up with 5 great-grandparents, and all of her grandparents.  Her last great grandparent survived until she was 30 years old.  Her last surviving grandparent just turned 90 in December of 2022

Annie Rhodes, PhD

Annie Rhodes, PhD, graduated from the VCU Gerontology masters degree program in 2017. She currently serves as the Director for Special Projects for the Longevity Project/Greater Richmond Age Wave, and is the Research Associate within the Department of Gerontology.

Annie is the brain health triage coordinator for the Richmond Brain Health Institute. She also is an instructor in the Master’s program and research analyst for The Virginia Center on Aging. She has been awarded for her work in inclusive gerontology, is a 2018 age wave scholar, and a 2021 “VCU ten under ten” honoree. She currently serves as the chairperson for the public policy and advocacy committee for Southern Gerontological Society. Annie specializes in health systems organization and has extensive experience in health and wellness policy.

Alexa van Aartrijk

Alexa van Aartrijk is a gerontologist serving as the VCU Department of Gerontology’s Community Education Coordinator. Her position entails the planning, coordination and implementation of the co-sponsored state-wide continuing education and training program, available for those working in Licensed Assisted Living and Adult Day Center settings. As Community Education Coordinator, Alexa aims to connect community stakeholders and organizations to strong curriculum and training to ensure optimal person-centered care for individuals residing in long-term care facilities.

In addition to the Community Education Coordinator position, Alexa has worked with the Greater Richmond Age Wave Coalition, including serving as Director of Engagement and Education.

E. Ayn Welleford, PhD

Dr. Welleford has taught extensively in the areas of Lifespan Development, and Developmental Gerontology, Geropsychology, Trends in Gerontology, as well as Ethical Decision Making and Human Values. As Associate Professor and Gerontologist for Community Voice she currently works to make our community a great place for all people to GROW older by bridging classroom and community, affirming and equipping our workforce through appreciative education, and supporting us all in learning to love our longevity. Dr. Welleford is the Director of VCU Gerontology Community and Continuing Education. Our mission statement is to equip and affirm Virginia’s eldercare workforce community to bring forth meaningful change.

She has been known to say, “Let’s do something that does something.”

Areas of Interest

  • Appreciative Gerontology: Loving our Longevity
  • Adult Development & Aging
  • Compassion Satisfaction & Compassion Fatigue
  • Ethical Decision Making and Human Values
  • Bridging Classroom and Community through Community-University Collaboration


  • PhD in Developmental Psychology, from Virginia Commonwealth University
  • MS in Gerontology, from Virginia Commonwealth University
  • BA in Management / Psychology from Averett University

Research Interests

  • Building Compassion Satisfaction
  • Innovations in Community-University Partnerships
  • Appreciative Education


  • 2018 Phoebe and Frank Hall Humanitarian Award, from Senior Connections, for her significant advocacy, Contributions, and Leadership.
  • 2017 Humanitarian Award, Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities
  • 2015 Richmond History Makers for work on the Greater Richmond Age Wave,  encouraging regional collaboration
  • 2012 Mary C. Payne Leadership in Aging Award for her visionary leadership as a trailblazer in the field of aging
  • 2011 AGHE Distinguished Teacher Award
  • 2011 Alzheimer’s Association Advocacy for person centered dementia care and work on Virginia’s Statewide Dementia Plan
  • 2007-2011, Chair of the Governor’s Commonwealth of Virginia Alzheimer’s and Related Disorders Commission

Selected Publications & Projects

  • 2022 CHP Mentoring
  • VCU Gero CCE
  • Aging for Life Training, Greater Richmond Age Wave Coalition
  • Person Centered Personal Care Aide School, 2019
  • Welleford, E. A. (2023). Souvenirs from the Journey: Building Compassion Satisfaction through Confidence, Competence, Connectedness, and a Climate of Compassion. Reflections: Narratives of Professional Helping, 29(1), 35–46. Retrieved from
  • Welleford, E. A., Watson, T. B., Amateau, G., & Johnson, M. (2023). Insights and Innovation: How a Local Public-Private Partnership is Building Home Care. Journal of Applied Gerontology, 0(0).
  • Welleford, E. A., Amateau, G., White, J. T., Stanculescu, N., (2021). Combating Compassion Fatigue: An Appreciative Pivot to the Virtual Classroom in a New Educational World. Journal of Appreciative Education. Special Issue: Innovations in Appreciative Education (8), 3-21.
  • Welleford, E.A. (2021) Building Compassion Satisfaction through Self Honoring Practices, Honoring the Work, and Creating Compassionate Communities. CSA Journal, 85(4). 32-37.
  • Van Aartrijk, A., White, J., Amateau, G., Welleford, E.A., (12 July 2021). Community EngAGEment: University, nonprofit and municipal partnerships emerging from the pandemic. American City and County. Retrieved from:
  • Taylor, Suzänne F, Coogle, Constance L, Cotter, James J, Welleford, E. Ayn, and Copolillo, Al. “Community-Dwelling Older Adults’ Adherence to Environmental Fall Prevention Recommendations.” Journal of Applied Gerontology 38.6 (2019): 755-74.
  • Gendron, Tracey L, Inker, Jennifer, and Welleford, Ayn. ““How Old Do You Feel?” The Difficulties and Ethics of Operationalizing Subjective Age.” The Gerontologist 58.4 (2018): 618-24.
  • Arbogast, Charlotte E, Welleford, E. Ayn, and Netting, F. Ellen. “State Dementia Plans and the Alzheimer’s Disease Movement: Framing Diagnosis, Prognosis, and Motivation.” Journal of Applied Gerontology 36.7 (2017): 840-63.
  • Gendron, T., Inker, J., & Welleford, E.A. (2018). “How Old Do You Feel?” The Difficulties and Ethics of Operationalizing Subjective Age. The Gerontologist.
  • Gendron, T., Inker, J., & Welleford, E.A. (2017). A Theory of Relational Ageism: A Discourse Analysis of the 2015 White House Conference on Aging. The Gerontologist.
  • Arbogast. C., Welleford, E. A., & Netting, E., (2015). State Dementia Plans and the Alzheimer’s Disease Movement: Framing Diagnosis, Prognosis, and Motivation. Journal of Applied Gerontology.
  • Welleford, E. A. & Netting, F. E. (2013). Taking a broader look at preparing for boomer volunteers: Beyond tips and tricks. The International Journal of Volunteer Administrators, XXIX, (3), 23-30.
  • Ligon, M. B.,Ehlman, MC., Moriello, G. & Welleford, E. A. (2009). Oral History in the Classroom: Fostering Positive Attitudes toward Older Adults and the Aging Process. Journal of Aging, Humanities and the Arts. 3(1), 59-72.
  • Welleford, E. A., Parham, I. A., Coogle, C. L., Netting, F. E., Burke, A. L., & Boling, P. (2005). The Emergence of a Geriatric Interdisciplinary Team Training Certificate: A University-Community Partnership. Journal of Applied Gerontology, 24(3), 248-261.
  • Cotter, J. J., Welleford, E. A., Vesley-Massey, K. (2003) Town and Gown Collaborative Research: Challenges And Opportunities. Family and Community Health: Community Based Innovations in Older Populations 26(4), 329-337.

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Jay White, EdD

John “Jay” White, EdD, MS, is a gerontologist with an extensive background in topics related to person-centered care, culture change and diversity throughout the long-term care continuum.  He is also a Principal at CommonHealth Partners.

Dr. White earned his Master of Science in Gerontology and doctorate in educational leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University where he also served as the Director of Professional and Community Development for VCU’s Department of Gerontology.

Dr. White serves on the Board of Directors of the Virginia culture change coalition and the senior center of Greater Richmond.  In 2016, Dr. White was appointed by governor Terry McAuliffe to the Virginia health workforce development authority. He has authored and co-authored textbook chapters, articles and presented widely on a variety of aging-related topics.

Caroline Williams, PT, DPT

Caroline Williams, PT, DPT, is a physical therapist currently working in the skilled nursing and medical fitness settings in Richmond, VA. Caroline received her Bachelors of Science in Education with a major in Kinesiology from the University of Virginia in 2017, followed by her Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2020. Caroline is currently pursuing a Masters of Science in Gerontology from Virginia Commonwealth University, with special interests in Compassion Fatigue resiliency training for healthcare professionals, as well as bridging the gap between gerontological theory and geriatric physical therapy practice.