Saturday Sessions

We know that asking you to give up a Saturday is a big ask, and so we have planned something special, for someone special, YOU— with options so that you can end your conference experience in a way that renews, refreshes, and revitalizes you, YOUR way.

Perhaps it is participating in one more session with fellow attendees, exploring your role in Cultural Transformation. Maybe you would like to renew your spirit on a guided walk through Downtown Denver, exploring nature and the sites of the city. Or it could be that you are a bit more adventurous, and you’d like to see a little more of Colorado before you head home, in which case you can join fellow attendees for an excursion to Red Rocks. Whichever you choose, you’re sure to end the day renewed, refreshed and revitalized!


Saturday, July 30 • 8:00 AM – 9:30 AM

All Hands, All Hearts, All In!
The Praise and Purpose Party

General Session with Christopher Ridenhour, Founder/Chief Encouragement Officer, ChristopherMotivates

This session is one you won’t want to miss. The “Praise and Purpose Party” is designed to honor YOU! It’s a special recognition for your dedication, commitment, and the sanity you’ve managed to maintain during these “unprecedented” times. The yard signs and billboards that expressed appreciation since March of 2020, failed to recognize that you were “heroes”, “champions”, and “warriors” long before the world went sideways. Attendees will leave this “party” filled up, celebrated, and even more prepared to face the challenges of your day or night. If there was ever a time when you deserved a respite or momentary oasis, this is it!

Along with music, tributes, and games, attendees will also receive tools, tips, and techniques to move from crisis to confidence, and from struggle to strength. This is a unique gift unlike anything you’ve professionally experienced! And what party is complete without favors? Attendees will leave with a “Resiliency Swag Bag” filled to the top with:

  • Methods to stay inspired despite challenges, conflicts, and changes.
  • Skills to exercise more courage while influencing others with positivity.
  • Approaches for how to keep your peace and poise amidst turmoil and avoid burnout


Christopher Ridenhour

During the last two decades, Christopher Ridenhour has led wholesale culture change as the Chief Learning Officer for two multi-site healthcare companies. His primary responsibilities involve building Corporate Universities and “actionizing” the Mission, Vision, and Values into daily commitments. Additionally, he directs system-wide Onboarding, Retention, and Engagement strategies resulting in above- industry increases in the tenure of new and seasoned team members. Christopher’s passion and effectiveness has earned scores of opportunities to travel nationally as a Conference Keynote, and Performance Improvement Trainer. He is a perennial presenter at Pioneer Network, LeadingAge, Argentum, AHCA/NCAL, NADONA, AHE, among other organizations. His deepest passion lies in supporting organizations seeking to level-up and skill-build the courage, compassion, and communication necessary to create cultures of belonging and inclusion. Christopher asks us to imagine the positive outcomes for our elders resulting from every team member, at every level and walk-of-life, feeling cherished and fired up to serve!


SATURDAY, JULY 30 • 9:45 AM – 12:00 PM

Renew, Refresh, Revitalize Your Way — We All Have a Role in Transformation!

Carmen Bowman, Owner, Edu-Catering: Catering Education for Compliance and Culture Change
Penny Cook, President & CEO, Pioneer Network

Angie McAllister, Administrator, Signature HealthCARE at Summit Manor
Jo Tansey, Acute Care and Nursing Facilities Branch Chief, Health Facilities & Emergency Medical Services Division, Colorado

Cathy Lieblich, Director of Network Relations, Pioneer Network
Kim McRae, FCTA (Family Care Giver Turned Advocate), Founder, Have a Good Life, Co-Founder, Culture Change Network of Georgia
Susan Ryan, RN, Senior Director, The Green House Project
Juliet Holt Klinger, Senior Director Dementia Care, Brookdale Senior Living
Rose Marie Fagan, Co-Founder and Founding/Former Executive Director, Pioneer Network,  Steering Committee, Culture Change Network of Georgia and Live Oak Project
Anne Montgomery, Independent Analyst

For 25 years, Pioneer Network has been the leader of the Culture Change Movement offering a place for people to come together, no matter their role or position, to create environments where people can grow, thrive, and live their best lives. In these challenging times when it sometimes feels like we are divided instead of united, let’s all come together for this last session to explore how we reimagine, transform, and create the future for residents of today and tomorrow (including ourselves). Join Carmen Bowman and our esteemed guests as they lead us in a lively exploration of what we can each contribute to ‘move the movement.’

  • What if the Artifacts of Culture Change became a common tool used by assisted living communities and nursing homes?
  • What if every state had a coalition that brought residents, families, surveyors, providers, and advocates together?
  • What if we created partnerships to work with instead of against each other to address the issues important to people who live and work in care communities?
  • What if we supported new models for communal living?
  • What if we all committed to an individual Call to Action?

We’ll explore these questions and more, and discuss how the new report from The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine can provide the framework for cultural transformation no matter the setting where people live and work.

We all have a role in being part of the solution and this session will leave you energized, inspired and hopeful!


Carmen Bowman

Carmen Bowman is a consultant, trainer, author, and owner of Edu-Catering: Catering Education for Compliance and Culture Change turning her former role of regulator into educator. Carmen was a Colorado state surveyor for nine years, a policy analyst with CMS Division of Nursing Homes where she taught the national Basic Surveyor Course. As a contractor to CMS, Carmen co-developed the original Artifacts of Culture Change and facilitated the Pioneer Network and CMS sponsored Creating Home national symposiums regarding culture change and the environment, and food and dining. Carmen led the PN Task Force that created the New Dining Practice Standards and Toolkit. Carmen holds a Master’s in Healthcare Systems, is a Certified Eden Alternative Associate and Mentor and Certified Validation Presenter. She co-founded the Colorado Culture Change Coalition, and with Action Pact has authored eight culture change workbooks plus hosts the twelve-year monthly culture change talk show Conversations in Culture Change with Carmen. Carmen is co-editor of the Activities, Adaptations and Aging: Purposeful and Dignified Living for Older Adults international journal and under contract with PN, co-developed the Artifacts 2.0 and first-ever Artifacts of Culture Change for Assisted Living.

Angie McAllister

Angie McAllister has over 25 years’ experience in healthcare, proudly having started her career in healthcare as a Certified Nursing Assistant. Angie’s passion is leading organizational transformation that challenges the status quo and inspires individuals to innovate. She has had the opportunity to launch several innovative approaches that facilitate meaning and purpose in the lives of Elders including intergenerational camps and community building projects such as Wendy’s Neverland. Most recently, she published a 5-year study demonstrating the positive impact of person-centered care on the lives of Elders living in skilled nursing communities. Her career has spanned supporting communities to lead organizational change efforts and programming to currently working as a long-term care administrator. Angie also is on the Eden Alternative International Board of Directors and has been an Eden Alternative Educator since 2011. At the heart of her work, Angie is an inclusive leader who understands that relationships are the key to building sustainable culture and communities.

Cathy Lieblich

Cathy Lieblich, Director of Network Relations: Cathy’s responsibilities include liaison between Pioneer Network and state culture change coalitions; managing special projects; and helping to plan and conduct educational programs. She has over 40 years of experience in the field of aging and long-term care including working on the national level for the National Council on the Aging, on the state level for a long-term care provider association, and on the local level for an area agency on aging, a university center on aging and a private foundation. Cathy was the founding director of the Florida culture change coalition, one of the first in the country, and currently serves on the coalition’s Steering Committee. She earned a Master of Arts degree in Social Service Administration from The University of Chicago and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology from The Johns Hopkins University.

Susan Ryan

Susan Ryan serves as senior director of The Green House Project, leading the non-profit on its; mission to fundamentally transform eldercare in America and around the world. As a member of the Green House team since 2008, Ryan has become an internationally recognized leader long-term care reform – with a particular focus on the organization’s vision for small-home & eldercare communities that provide person-directed alternatives to traditional nursing homes. Throughout her 35-year career in eldercare, Susan has sought to champion the quality of life for elders in a variety of settings across the continuum of care, including the expansion of home and community based services. At The Green House Project, she works to create a future where every elder is able to access high-quality, person-directed living in the setting of their choice.

Kim McRae

Kim McRae, FCTA (Family Caregiver Turned Advocate), is a consultant, speaker, educator and advocate. She is also an Educator and Mentor for The Eden Alternative®. Kim works with organizations as a thought leader, change agent and subject matter expert on caregiving, culture change, person-directed living, and person-centered dementia care. Kim has been involved with the national culture change movement since 2006 and co-founded the Culture Change Network of Georgia in 2008.

Penny Cook’s commitment to changing the culture of aging and long-term care began early in her professional career as a social worker in Rochester, New York and continued as she moved to Colorado. She strongly believes that the care we provide to elders is directly related to the way we, as a society, view aging. She is passionate about spreading the message that we are in the midst of a revolution about how we age and where we do it. Penny comments that, “no matter whether people live, in nursing homes, assisted living communities or in their family home, we all deserve and should expect respectful and dignified care and support that is centered, directed and tailored to us as individuals.”

Penny Cook

Penny previously served as the Manager of the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program in the Denver metropolitan region and as the Executive Director of the Colorado Culture Change Coalition. There she expanded the Coalition’s reach to look beyond nursing homes and brought the message of culture change to assisted living communities and home care organizations. Most recently she was the Director of Long Term Services and Supports for Colorado Access where she managed a state Medicaid contract to connect individuals to long-term services and supports. Penny received her Master of Social Work degree from the State University of New York at Albany and her Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology from Binghamton University.

Juliet Holt-Klinger

Juliet Holt Klinger, the Senior Director of Dementia Care for Brookdale Senior Living is a gerontologist specializing in person-centered programs for people living with dementia. As an educator and program designer for more than 35 years, she has developed and operated programs for national companies representing both skilled nursing and assisted living levels of dementia care. In her role for Brookdale, she is responsible for dementia care program development, implementation and quality assurance for Brookdale’s nearly 400 dementia care communities and provides strategy development and innovation for Brookdale’s dementia care product line. Juliet is a longtime advocate for person centered care and also currently serves as a board member of the Pioneer Network—an organization devoted to promotion of person centered care and changing the perception of aging. Juliet is a frequent presenter on issues related to dementia care at national conferences.

Rose Marie Fagan

Rose Marie Fagan is a co-founder and the founding Executive Director of Pioneer Network. She coordinated the seminal meeting of Pioneers in 1997 in Rochester, NY and co-authored a widely disseminated final report of that historic occasion. In 2016, Rose Marie moved to Georgia where she is an active member of the Culture Change Network of Georgia. She is currently contracted by Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA to be a consultant for a three-year CMS funded grant to bring culture change to GA nursing homes: Building Resources for Person-Centered Care in Georgia Nursing Homes.

Anne Montgomery

Anne Montgomery is an independent analyst based in Washington, D.C., Montgomery has excellent experience in developing, implementing and evaluating research initiatives, and in designing intersectional projects focused on aging, community issues and long-term care, Medicaid, Medicare and family caregiver supports. Ms. Montgomery worked at Altarum from February 2013-mid-June 2022; prior to that, she served for a decade in Congress, working for the House Ways & Means Committee and the Senate Special Committee on Aging, focusing primarily on Medicare and Medicaid policy. She has also served as a senior associate with the Alliance for Health Reform in Washington, D.C., and as a senior analyst at the U.S. Government Accountability Office. In 2001-2002, Ms. Montgomery was a research fellow based in London, where she analyzed the role of family caregivers in the development of long-term care policy and programs in the United Kingdom and the U.S. During the 1990’s, Ms. Montgomery worked as a health and science journalist covering the National Institutes of Health and Congress, and gained advocacy skills working for Center for Science in the Public Interest.

With regard to awards and civic activities, Ms. Montgomery is a member of the National Academy of Social Insurance, Academy Health, and the American Society on Aging. She has long been active with the Health and Aging Policy Fellows program, is a founding member of the +Nature Coalition and has been a board member of local community arts and parks-focused organizations created to improve the quality of life in the District of Columbia.

Ms. Montgomery was awarded a research fellowship by the British Council as an Atlantic International Public Policy Fellow in 2001-2002, and has received awards for outstanding public policy service from the National Adult Protective Services Association, National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care Public Policy Award, and the National Association of State Long-Term Care Ombudsman Programs.

Jo Tansey has been working in long term care for 22 years. She began her career as an administrator for assisted living programs and moved to the state of Colorado as a compliance inspector for nursing homes. Jo has been with the state of Colorado working in long term care for 15 years and currently holds the role of Branch Chief for Acute Care and Nursing Facilities. Jo has been instrumental in leading the nursing home surveyor program to look at and enforce CMS and state regulations through the lens of culture change. The CMS and state regulations are written such that the principles of person centered care can be applied through enforcement.



SATURDAY, JULY 30 • 9:45 AM – 12:00 PM

Renew, Refresh and Revitalize in Downtown Denver

Guide: Hope Carwile

You’ve come all the way to Denver, but you find you don’t have an opportunity to get into the forest or take a trip to the mountains. Perhaps you are thinking that before you go back home, you would like to find one last chance to renew, refresh and revitalize and see a little of Denver on a beautiful Saturday morning. If this is you, then this city walk is for you!

In these chaotic times, it is sometimes hard to be present and enjoy the natural and man-made environment that’s around you. And yet we know there are mental, physical and spiritual health benefits to being outdoors and connected to the world around us.

You are invited to join Hope in slowing down, connecting with, and discovering the wild and tamed world of downtown Denver, including a visit to the Capitol where you are officially a Mile High at 5280 feet above sea level.

The walk will be 2 – 4 miles, depending on the group and the stops along the way. (You’ll be passing some great little coffee shops!) Be sure to wear comfortable shoes, layers of clothing, and sunscreen. Water will be provided.


Hope Carwile

Hope Carwile has approximately 20 years experience in healthcare, primarily in long term care senior living settings. She is committed to person-directed strength-based approaches, improving the quality of life for individuals living with dis-ease and for the care partners supporting them. Presently Hope sits on the Skilled Nursing Innovations Grant Board, is 1st Vice President of the Colorado Culture Change Coalition, Co-Chair of the Value Added Action Group for the Direct Care Workforce Collaborative and Chair of the Colorado Long Term Care Community Ethics Committee.

Hope is an educator in Eden Alternative Associate Training, Green House CORE, Integrative Wellness including Complementary and Alternative Medicines, and Trauma Informed Care. She is also a facilitator of Chair Yoga and the Virtual Dementia Tour. Hope also practices Therapeutic Touch and Emotional Freedom Techniques with residents and care partners in Skilled Nursing Homes. Building trusting relationships, creating safe comfortable moments where healthy risk can take place, and exploring better ways to navigate modern day health care challenges are at the core of Hope Carwile’s work.


SATURDAY, JULY 30 • 9:45 AM – 1:00 PM

Renew, Refresh and Revitalize at Red Rocks

You’ve come all the way to Colorado, and you are determined to experience the mountains before you head back home…or at least the foothills!

Then what better way to cap off your stay in Denver than a visit to one of the most stunning parks in the state, and located just 10 miles west of downtown Denver, Red Rocks Park & Amphitheater. Considered as one of the most beautiful venues for live music, Red Rocks is the only “naturally occurring, acoustically perfect amphitheater in the world.” Escape from the city into the foothills of Colorado and if it’s a clear day you can see the eastern plains and beyond.

So for those seeking some adventure or just a chance to be outdoors and soak up some sun, this trip is for you.

Transportation will be provided to Red Rocks, back to the hotel and for those needing a ride to the airport after your mini adventure, that’s included as well.

Be sure to wear comfortable shoes, layers of clothing, and sunscreen. Water will be provided.