For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Lynda Crandall
January 4, 2018
The Board of Directors of Pioneer Network is pleased to announce that it has unanimously chosen Penny Cook as the organization’s new President and CEO. She will assume her new role on January 8, 2018.
Following an in-depth search and selection process the Pioneer Network Board is pleased to have named a highly-qualified professional to assume leadership of this dynamic organization. Penny has been a champion of culture change and a long-time supporter of Pioneer Network. She has a track record of strong leadership and expertise in the field of aging and long-term services and supports which positions her to translate vision and strategy into world-class execution and lead Pioneer Network successfully into the future.
“Penny Cook is a proven leader within the aging community,” said KaraLe Causey, Pioneer Network Board Chair. “She joins the organization as a highly-regarded professional known for achievement as well as passion. Her experience and skill sets are a direct match for Pioneer Network’s mission and strategic plan working towards a culture of aging that supports the care of elders in settings where individual voices are heard and respected.”
Penny’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 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.
Penny remarks, “I am excited and grateful for the opportunity to continue the work of the many individuals who have been leaders in this movement, including the ‘Pioneers’ who had the vision and wisdom to create Pioneer Network. I am eager to work with those who I have known throughout the years and all who I will meet for the first time. There has been great progress in this crusade we have embarked on and yet, there is still much to be done. I look forward to working with all of you that share the vision and passion of changing the world of aging and the culture of care for ourselves, our friends, our family and generations to come.”
About Pioneer Network
Now in its 21st year, Pioneer Network is at the forefront of changing the culture of aging and long-term care and support of elders in America. A growing network of organizations and individuals across the nation and beyond, Pioneer Network is dedicated to making fundamental changes in values and practices to create a culture of aging and long-term care that is life-affirming, satisfying, humane and meaningful. Toward that end, Pioneer Network creates communication, networking and learning opportunities; builds and supports relationships and community; identifies and promotes transformation in practice, services, public policy and research; develops and provides access to tools, resources and expertise; and hosts a national conference to bring together interested parties with a desire to propel this important work.