2019 Keynote Speakers

Teepa Snow, MS, OTR/L, RAOTA, Dementia Expert, Positive Approach to Brain Change,
is one of the leading educators on dementia and the care that accompanies it, in the US and Canada. As an occupational therapist with forty years of clinical practice, she has founded a company and an approach to support and engage people experiencing changes in brain function. This Positive Approach® to Care emphasizes making use of the skills retained while providing support, and substituting our skill, for what is no longer available. This belief led to Teepa creating the GEMS® States model for brain change. The GEMS model compares people to gemstones and focuses on retained abilities in order for us to see what is beautiful, and still available, for the person with whom we share time and offer support and care.



Mark Parkinson is the President and CEO of the American Health Care Association (AHCA),
which represents over 13,600 skilled nursing facilities and assisted living centers. Parkinson served as the 45th Governor of the State of Kansas. Prior to that, he was the owner and operator of long term care facilities in Kansas and Missouri. Under Parkinson’s leadership, AHCA focuses on delivering policy solutions to the Hill and CMS, with a special emphasis on quality care. AHCA is now the largest association in long term care and is at record membership. His vision has brought Parkinson recognition. He has been named a Top Association CEO by CEO Update and a top lobbyist for 2013, 2014, 2015,2016 and 2017 by The Hill, a leading Capitol Hill newspaper. Parkinson also has the distinction of being selected as one of the “100 Most Influential People in Healthcare” by Modern Healthcare in 2015.



2019 Additional Speakers

Elizabeth Barlow, BSN, RN, CRRN, RAC-CT, DNS-CT, RehabCare, currently serves as Senior Director of Quality at RehabCare, and is a Certified Rehab Nurse with over 25 years in long-term care. She started her nursing career in cardiac care and acute care rehab and soon found out that post-acute care was her passion. She has worked in a variety of long-term care roles, including director of case management and national director of quality; from a therapy perspective, she has worked as a rehab director and vice president of clinical services. Her current role involves leading a team of therapists who educate and train on quality outcomes and care throughout the country in SNF therapy departments. Elizabeth is an active member of AANAC’s Expert Advisory Panel She currently serves on the Kentucky Board for Multiple Sclerosis and just completed a term with the Western Kentucky University Health and Human Services Board of Stakeholders. 

Barbara A. Bates, MSN, RN, RAC-CT, DNS-MT, QCP-MT, MDS Solutions and MedNet Concepts, has 42 years’ experience in gero-psychiatry and LTC nursing, holding management, and administration positions at the Rochester Psychiatric Center as well as the Director of Nursing position at a NYS Veterans Home. Mrs. Bates has a MSN, specializing in Nursing Education, is certified in MDS 3.0, and is a master teacher for DNS-CT and QCP through AADNS. Barbara currently provides educational programming in MDS, CAAs Behavior Management person centered care planning on a nationwide. Mrs. Bates provides training in PRI, and MDS for SUNY Albany School for Public Health statewide as is currently the Training Executive for MDS Consultants. She has spoken nationally for Health Information Network, AANAC. AADNS, and Pioneer Network. Barbara is also currently employed by MedNet Concepts and provides onsite clinical reviews in various nursing homes related to compliance and survey readiness. Previously was a facilitator for several NYS grant program, one for the Gold STAMP program to reduce pressure ulcers in NYS and the implementation of Medical Director/Attending Physician Guidelines. And Customer Satisfaction. She previously was the senior educator for the Foundation of LTC, providing instruction in Exceptional Care Planning, which focused on streamlining care plans and enhancing resident-centered care. She is currently a member of the DNS-EAP committee for AADNS and volunteers for the NYS Surrogate Decision Making Committee, a Governor-appointed position.

Jane Belt, MS, RN, RAC-MT, RAC-MTA, QCP, AAPACN, is a curriculum development specialist for AANAC. Having been involved in long-term care for more than 40 years, she has served as a gerontological clinical specialist, director of nursing, and nurse consultant. She has a Master’s in Nursing and is a master teacher for AANAC. Prior to joining AANAC, she was a principal at Plante Moran specializing in senior care operational consulting, certification compliance, reimbursement, corporate compliance, education and quality assurance/performance improvement.

Janet Feldkamp, JD, BSN, RN, LNHA, CHC, Benesch Attorneys at Law, AAPACN Board of Directors, focuses her law practice in the area of healthcare law, including long-term care survey and certification, state and federal regulation, physician and nurse practice, and fraud and abuse involving hospitals, suppliers, insurers, and physicians. She retains active licenses as a registered nurse and nursing home administrator. Janet is a member of the editorial board of Caring for the Ages, a monthly newspaper for long-term care practitioners, and is a frequent writer and speaker on health law and related topics, particularly in the area of long-term care. She is a coauthor of Post-Acute Care Handbook: Regulatory, Risk and Compliance Issues, 2015, published by the American Health Lawyers Association. Janet was awarded her Juris Doctorate from Saint Louis University School of Law and her BSN from the University of Missouri. She is a member of the American Bar Association, Columbia Bar Association, and Ohio State Bar Association. She is the past president of the American Association of Nurse Attorneys.

Elizabeth Florczak, RN, BSN, MS, WCC, RAC-CT, Executive Nurse, AAPACN Board of Directors,
 has over 30 years of experience spanning the health care continuum. She started as a nurse technician and has worked in a number of settings including critical care, medical surgical, home care, hospice and post-acute care. She has held roles including staff nurse, nurse educator, and director of nursing. In her current role as Chief Clinical Officer of Presence Life Connections, Beth is responsible for clinical oversight over 19 skilled nursing facilities, five home care agencies, as well as one community and supportive living facility for adults with intellectual disabilities. She oversees clinical regulatory compliance, Joint Commission accreditation, development and implementation of evidence-based best practices in nursing and rehabilitation centers, senior housing communities, adult and child care centers, and pharmacy. She also oversees patient, resident, client, and family satisfaction.Beth received her RN degree from Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana and MSN from St. Xavier University, Chicago, Illinois. She is a member of the Professional and Technical Advisory Panel for Joint Commission. She is a contributor to several professional publications and conducts presentations across the U.S. on pressure ulcer and wound management. Beth has served on the board of directors of Telligen and the Illinois Catholic Health Care Association.

Judy Freyermuth, PT, RehabCare, a graduate of Marquette University, has 38 years of clinical and operational experience, working with all ages in a variety of settings. Judy was the therapist for the Muscular Dystrophy Clinical in Southeastern Massachusetts for eleven years, where she gained extensive experience in wheelchair seating, positioning, manual and powered mobility. She gained additional experience in the area of seating and mobility through work with brain injured children and at a day habilitation program for cognitively impaired adults. She is employed by RehabCare where she has worked for the past 26 years, primarily in skilled nursing facilities with geriatrics. For the past 16 years Judy worked within clinical services, during which time she has provided extensive education in the areas of Falls Management, Seating/Positioning, Cognition and various other clinical topics, across the country. Judy was lead in the development of RehabCare’s Steady Steps Fall Management Program. As part of this program, she as provided extensive IDT, nursing, nursing assistant, and rehabilitation staff training in fall management. She has also presented/co-presented at the National Seating Symposium, APTA Combined Sections Conference twice and National AOTA Conference. She is former Secretary for the Assistive Technology/Seating and Wheeled Mobility SIG under the Neuro Section of the APTA. 

Carol Hill, MSN, RN, RAC-MT, RAC-MTA, QCP-MT, DNS-MT, CPC, Hill Educational Services, is president and primary consultant for Hill Educational Services Inc., a long-term care consulting and training company. Carol is a graduate of the University of North Alabama, where she received her Master’s Degree in Nursing in the teaching learning track. For more than 25 years, she has been involved in the long-term care industry, having worked as an MDS coordinator, DON, ADON, case review expert, quality resource specialist, and consultant/trainer. She is a Resident Assessment Coordinator-Master Teacher, Director of Nursing Services-Certified, QAPI Certified Professional-Master Teacher, AHIMA Approved ICD-10-CM Trainer, and Certified Professional Coder. She has conducted MDS 3.0 training throughout the United States and has been a contributor to articles on the Minimum Data Set and Prospective Payment System. 

Stacey Johnson, MSN, RN, HFA, Trinity Health Senior Communities, is an experienced nurse leader. She serves at Trinity Health Senior Communities as Vice President of Quality Services. A Registered Nurse and Licensed Nursing Home Administrator, Stacey has over 20 years of experience in Long Term Care. She has a BSN from Indiana University and MSN from Bethel College. She has extensive experience working as a Director of Nursing, regional nurse consultant, and nurse executive. 

Margaret Koenig, RN, BSN, MAS, RAC-CT, Genesis Healthcare, is the Sr. Manager for Genesis Healthcare. Margaret has been a valuable member of the leadership team within Genesis for the past 29 years. She has held various positions with increasing responsibility within the clinical, financial, reimbursement, and regulatory organizations throughout her tenure with Genesis. Margaret is a graduate of the University of Maryland and has a Masters of Administrative Science through Johns Hopkins University. Margaret is a Certified AANAC Resident Assessment Coordinator and has her RN license through the State of Maryland. 

Judi Kulus, MSN, MAT, RN, NHA, RAC-MT, RAC-MTA, DNS-MT, QCP-MT, AAPACN, has been a certified AANAC RAC-CT master teacher since 2004 and currently serves as the vice president of curriculum development for AANAC and AADNS, where she oversees and coordinates the associations’ certification and educational content. Judi’s career began as a nursing home administrator in 1987. She holds a Master’s degree in Nursing with a focus on informatics and a Master’s degree in Education. She has been a registered nurse since 2000. For the past 30 years, Judi has focused much of her work on supporting facilities in managing the RAI process, MDS coding, and nursing system quality improvement. She has served as an operations manager, case mix & quality assurance consultant, as well as crisis control administrator, for a variety of organizations including facilities in multiple states. 

Susan LaGrange, BSN, RN, NHA, Pathway Health, Susan's 25+ years of experience includes a diverse range of positions such as Director of Nursing, Administrator, and Consultant. Her successful career includes extensive leadership roles in which her knowledge and expertise have assisted organizations in regulatory, clinical and operational turn-a-rounds. In her past 15+ years as a Consultant with Pathway Health Services, she has assisted quality improvements in a multitude of organizations and has become a nationally renowned trainer in Restorative Nursing and Infection Prevention and Control. Ms. LaGrange is also a Certified INTERACT Champion Master Trainer. 

Carol Maher, RN-BC, RAC-MT, CPC, Hansen Hunter & Co, is a board-certified gerontological registered nurse with over 30 years’ long-term care experience. She has worked in long-term care in many roles, beginning as a nursing assistant and later becoming a charge nurse, nurse manager, and then RNAC. Most recently, she was the senior vice president of utilization services and director of reimbursement for large multi-facility organizations. She has worked as one of the Gold Standard Nurses for MDS 3.0, serving on the RAP workgroup to pave the way for the CAAs for MDS 3.0, and participating on a number of Technical Expert Panels related to MDS, Quality Measures, and care planning. Carol served as a member of the AANAC Board of Directors for nine years, stepping down in 2016. She is currently the director of education for Hansen Hunter. 

Maureen McCarthy, RN, BS, RAC-MT, RAC-MTA, QCP-MT, DNS-MT, Celtic Consulting, AAPACN Board of Directors, is the president of Celtic Consulting, LLC, and the CEO and founder of Care Transitions, LLP. She has been a registered nurse for 30 years with experience as an MDS coordinator, director of nursing, rehab director, and a Medicare biller. She is a recognized leader and expert in clinical reimbursement in the skilled nursing facility environment. McCarthy is dually certified in both the resident assessment process and QAPI by the nationally recognized organizations, AANAC and AADNS, holds master teacher status in both, and serves on the AANAC Expert Advisory Panel. Maureen and her associates at Celtic Consulting regularly provide education and training on reimbursement, regulatory compliance, quality improvement, preferred provider networks and ICD-10 coding for SNFs, state affiliates and provider organizations.  

Mark McDavid, OTR/L, RAC-CT, Seagrove Rehab Partners, has built a strong reputation as an experienced leader in skilled rehabilitation therapy services. Through his years of work, Mark developed a dynamic approach to therapy operations for both in-house and contract service companies. Prior to launching his own business, Mark was hired to manage all clinical staff and programs for a 25-year-old contract therapy provider; during Mark’s tenure as vice president, this company experienced its most profitable and successful years to date. Now as the owner of Seagrove Rehab Partners, Mark works to enhance therapy-related operations and Medicare compliance in a wide variety of settings, including long-term care and rehab agencies. Mark is an occupational therapy graduate from the University of South Alabama who went on to complete the Resident Assessment Coordinator--Certified (RAC-CT) certification from the American Association of Nurse Assessment Coordination (AANAC). His knowledge and its application to business strategies has earned national recognition within professional organizations, including appointment to AANAC’s Expert Advisory Panel and election as a board member-at-large for the National Association of Rehabilitation Providers and Agencies (NARA). He also speaks nationally as a sought-after source in regards to regulatory compliance, MDS, MPPR, manual medical review, functional status coding, and documentation.  

Jessie McGill, RN, RAC-MT, RAC-MTA, AAPACN, is a curriculum development specialist for AANAC. Previously, she worked as the director of clinical reimbursement for a large long-term care organization overseeing 17 clinical reimbursement consultants across 21 states, including nearly 300 living centers. She has more than 17 years of long-term care experience, including as restorative nurse, MDS coordinator, regional clinical reimbursement specialist, clinical reimbursement trainer, and director of clinical reimbursement. Jessie is passionate about developing the skills of nurse assessment coordinators, working in restorative nursing, and improving residents’ quality of life and care.  

Amy Miller, RN, BSN, RAC-CT, Genesis Healthcare, Amy is a Registered Nurse with over 20+ years' experience largely in the field of LTC and skilled nursing. Amy has worked in the field of Clinical Reimbursement for over 10 years, initially learning MDS 2.0 at the beginning of her career. Her career in SNF/LTC is spread over various types of providers and included roles from staff nurse to corporate consultant. In her Current role, she develops and provides education to NACs for over 450 facilities and recently initiated a comprehensive National Orientation Program. 

Jennifer Pettis, MS, RN, WCC, Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elders, NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing, is the associate director of programs for the Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elders (NICHE) program at the New York University Rory Meyers School of Nursing. Established in 1992, NICHE is the leading nurse-driven program designed to help hospitals and healthcare organizations improve the care of older adults. In her role, Pettis oversees the success of the long-term care (LTC) program. Her LTC responsibilities include expanding academic offerings, engaging current facilities and organizations, and seeking new relationships to expand the overall program. She also ensures the clinical education content and materials are consistent with national standards and enhance current strategy and goals.Previously a nurse researcher at Abt Associates, Pettis participated in data collection, analysis, and reporting of healthcare payment, quality improvement, and quality reporting initiatives and provided technical assistance and training through a variety of post-acute care projects. Pettis has extensive clinical, managerial, consulting, and training experience, including as a consultant to the Division of Nursing Homes (DNH) at CMS. While with the CMS, she provided the DNH with subject matter expertise regarding the Resident Assessment Instrument (RAI) and a variety of clinical and quality issues. Pettis participated in the revision of the regulations for unnecessary medications and dementia as well as the development of training regarding these regulations. She also developed and deployed a Minimum Data Set (MDS) focused survey pilot in five states.Pettis currently serves as an adjunct faculty member for SUNY Empire State College School of Nursing. She is a board member of the National Alliance of Wound Care and Ostomy (NAWCO) and the Alzheimer’s Association of Northeastern New York as well as a member of the American Nurses Association (ANA), ANA-NY, and the New York State Auxiliary Board for Nursing. She is also the current president of the Tau Kappa At-Large Chapter of Sigma, the Honor Society of Nursing. Pettis has provided educational sessions around the country related to nursing home resident assessment and a multitude of clinical and leadership issues and has authored or contributed to multiple publications. Ms. Pettis received her AAS in Nursing from State University of New York (SUNY) Adirondack and both her BS in Healthcare Management and MS in Nursing Education from SUNY Empire State College. 

Melanie Tribe Scott, BSN, RN, RAC-MT, RAC-MTA, QCP, Health Concepts, has 25 years of experience in Long Term Care and has held a variety of positions including CNA, Charge Nurse, Assistant Director of Nursing, MDS Coordinator, and Clinical Reimbursement Specialist. She currently holds the position of Director of Clinical Reimbursement and Corporate Consultant. Melanie has been a member of AANAC since 2010 and has been a RAC-CT since 2011, and is now a RAC Master Teacher. She is also a member of AADNS and a Certified QAPI Professional. Melanie has consulted for several long-term care facilities and has excellent results with improving RAI systems. She has provided educational programs with the Rhode Island Health Care Association on topics such as nursing documentation, MDS coding, and Quality Measures. She is regarded as an inspiring team leader with exceptional analytical and communication abilities. Melanie is passionate about person-centered care and resident advocacy. 

Evan Shulman currently serves as the Deputy Director for the Division of Nursing Homes in the Quality, Safety, and Oversight Group within the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The Division of Nursing Homes is responsible for the long term care survey process used by state agencies to assess compliance with the Medicare and Medicaid Requirements for Participation, and the policies to impose enforcement when noncompliance exists. The division is also responsible many other programs related to long term care facilities, such as payroll-based journal (PBJ) staffing reporting, the Nursing Home Compare website and Five Star Quality Reporting Program, the minimum data set (MDS) resident assessment instrument, and the partnership to improve dementia care. Evan began working at CMS in 2012 where he joined the Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office to manage a program focused on reducing avoidable hospitalizations among Medicare-Medicaid enrollees in nursing homes. Prior to Joining CMS, Evan worked for United Healthcare where he served as the Vice President of Product Development for their nursing home product. Evan graduated from the University of Delaware and is a guest lecturer at the University of Baltimore and Johns Hopkins University. 

Jillene Snow, MBA, BSN, RN-BC, CHC, Community Health Services of Georgia, AAPACN Board Vice Chair, is a leader with extensive experience in long-term care. She has more than 20 years of experience in leadership roles and has demonstrated success in conceptualizing and implementing clinical operations platforms and quality improvement programs. She is a subject matter expert in state and federal regulations. In her current role as vice president at Ethica Health and Retirement Communities, she works with key stakeholders to develop system-wide internal and external strategies to ensure the organization’s success. She ensures a comprehensive and effective compliance program and provides strategic direction for clinical practice program development. Jill received her MBA with a concentration in Health Services from Keller Graduate School of Management and her BSN from Georgia College. She is board certified in Gerontology Nursing. 

Deb Speck, RN, GRN, Trinity Health Senior Communities,  has thirty years' experience in nursing. She has worked as a director of nursing, surveyor for the State of Michigan, and as director of quality and regulatory process. She has extensive knowledge of the long-term care regulatory environment and quality improvement. 

Amy Stewart, MSN, RN, DNS-MT, QCP-MT, RAC-MT, RAC-MTA, AAPACN, is a curriculum development specialist for AADNS. Formerly, she was a legal nurse consultant for the law firm Hall, Prangle, Schoonveld (HPS), in Chicago. She has 20 years of experience in the post-acute healthcare industry, with expertise in the areas of the Resident Assessment Instrument (RAI), clinical reimbursement, quality, and regulatory change. Prior to joining HPS, Amy was the division director of reimbursement for 18 skilled nursing facilities in the Chicagoland area, part of a larger hospital system that participated in CMS innovative payment models. Previous roles include director of nursing, pharmacy quality consultant, wound care consultant, and MDS coordinator. Amy is a master teacher for the AADNS curriculum as well as AANAC curriculum, and was a presenter at the 2014, 2016, and 2017 AANAC national conferences.

Judy Wilhide Brandt, RN, RAC-MT, RAC-MTA, Judy Wilhide MDS Consulting, brings over 30 years of experience to the long-term care industry, with over 20 years in positions of increasing responsibility in nursing facilities as a nurse manager, executive, and consultant. She is very active in AANAC as past Chair of the Expert Advisory Panel, primary original author and master teacher of Medicare University, and master teacher for the RAC-CT program. She is the LeadingAge MDS expert, writing monthly articles and answering questions for LeadingAge members. She is the principal for Wilhide Consulting, Inc. and serves as an advisor, auditor, and trainer for multiple providers, from standalone communities to multistate chains across the country. Her services are in high demand as she can be counted on for accurate, current information in the ever-changing SNF regulatory landscape. She is a trusted advisor to government officials, LTC operators, MDS coordinators, regulatory bodies, and industry associations.

Linda J. Winston, RN, MSN, BS, RAC-CT, DNS-MT, QCP-MT, MDS Solutions and MedNet Concepts, has been a nurse for over 30 years. Linda has a diverse background in the long-term care setting, including staff nurse, supervising nurse, nurse educator, nursing administrator, and, for 16 years, director of nursing. Her areas of expertise are current survey and certification process; quality assurance and performance improvement; resident assessment; clinical approaches, including the improvement and prevention of skin alterations and prevention of falls and root cause analysis; and implementation of systems. Linda has a Master’s degree in Nursing with a focus on Education and works as a nurse consultant/educator with a focus on skilled nursing. She holds certifications from AADNS and AANAC. She is a master trainer for the American Association of Directors of Nursing Services certification programs, the Director of Nursing Services--Certified (DNS-CT) and QAPI Certified Professional (QCP). Previously, as coach in the School of Public Health University of Albany’s GoldSTAMP Program, she has worked to improve the prevention and care of pressure ulcers across healthcare settings and has also worked as a per diem second nurse planner. She has experience with conducting mock surveys, mentoring and coaching, and building systems. As an outstanding leader in implementing new systems as well as leading teams through change, Linda has been recognized with several awards, including Duquesne University’s Alumni Award; New York State’s Commissioner’s Award (as a team member); and, she received recognition from the National Guard and Reserve as a Patriotic Employer, from the Office of the Secretary of Defense.

Amy Miller, RN, BSN, RAC-CT, Genesis Healthcare, Amy is a Registered Nurse with over 20+ years' experience largely in the field of LTC and skilled nursing. Amy has worked in the field of Clinical Reimbursement for over 10 years, initially learning MDS 2.0 at the beginning of her career. Her career in SNF/LTC is spread over various types of providers and included roles from staff nurse to corporate consultant. In her Current role, she develops and provides education to NACs for over 450 facilities and recently initiated a comprehensive National Orientation Program. 
Margaret Koenig, RN, BSN, MAS, RAC-CT, Genesis Healthcare, is the Sr. Manager for Genesis Healthcare. Margaret has been a valuable member of the leadership team within Genesis for the past 29 years. She has held various positions with increasing responsibility within the clinical, financial, reimbursement, and regulatory organizations throughout her tenure with Genesis. Margaret is a graduate of the University of Maryland and has a Masters of Administrative Science through Johns Hopkins University. Margaret is a Certified AANAC Resident Assessment Coordinator and has her RN license through the State of Maryland.