Ann began working with AgeBetter, Inc., as a consultant in early 2004, when Sharing Active Independent Lives (SAIL) was being launched as a Naturally Occurring Retirement Community demonstration project. Several years prior, she was an assisted living administrator at Oakwood Village. This experience, along with a master’s degree in rehabilitation psychology from UW-Madison, helped immensely in the formation and success of SAIL. She has helped shape the program into a unique and sustainable community resource for older adults that also takes a leadership role in the national “village movement.” In addition to oversight of SAIL, Ann is spearheading AgeBetter initiatives related to senior affordable housing and individualized support for residents living in independent living and assisted living at Attic Angel Community and Oakwood Village. Contact Ann at email@example.com.
Working closely with Executive Director Ann Albert, the AgeBetter, board of directors includes: Barbara Gessner (AgeBetter Board President), Michelle Godfrey (Attic Angel Community President and CEO), Reginald Hislop (Oakwood Village CEO), Linda Johnson, CPA (AgeBetter Treasurer), Ruth Marion, and Kristen Peterson. Click the names below to read about each member.
Michelle Godfrey joined Attic Angel Community in February 2022 as the President and CEO. Michelle has worked in senior living since 2005—primarily in leadership roles at Oakwood Village and Marquardt Management Services (MMS). Her most recent roles at MMS included developing a new campus in Fitchburg and also serving as a Campus Administrator at St. Elizabeth Nursing Home in Janesville and Sinsinawa Mound in Hazel Green.
Michelle serves on the LeadingAge WI Board and enjoys being able to advocate for and with many great non-profit organizations in Wisconsin.
Michelle holds an undergraduate degree in Fitness Management from Carroll College and a graduate degree in Healthcare Administration from the University of Phoenix.
Barbara Gessner, a retired nurse, has served on the AgeBetter, Inc., board of directors since 2008 representing Oakwood Village. Barbara has been an active SAIL member since inception of the program in 2005. She participated in focus groups prior to the formation of SAIL and decided to join since the idea of people helping one another interests her. In addition to board and committee work for AgeBetter, Barbara volunteers as a driver for fellow SAIL members and has served on the SAIL Council as its president.
Following graduation from Milwaukee Hospital School of Nursing, she moved to Madison and worked at University Hospitals while completing a BS in nursing. Then she taught refresher courses to inactive RN’s throughout Wisconsin. After a Master’s degree in Nursing, she worked as a clinical nurse specialist in Connecticut. She returned to Madison to join the faculty of Nursing Extension while pursuing a PhD in Adult Education. In 1985 she joined the faculty of the School of Nursing at UW- Madison, retiring in 2001.
Barbara’s other volunteer activities include serving on the Oakwood Village Board of Directors, volunteering at Oakwood, and helping with many events at her church as well as serving on its board of directors, and is a longtime member of the West Side Optimist Club.
Reginald M. Hislop III, PhD joined Oakwood in early November 2019. Formerly managing partner and CEO of H2 Healthcare, LLC, with locations in Kansas, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Nevada, Reg has more than 30 years of executive experience in the development, operations, and financing of all aspects of healthcare, with particular experience in postacute care.
In addition to his work at Oakwood, he serves as a consultant on health policy and reimbursement for the New York investment banking firm of DeMatteo Monness, provides policy and reimbursement guidance to the Transitional Healthcare Consortium and for clients of the Gerson Lehrman Group, and is a consulting member of the 10eqs knowledge network.
Reg holds a bachelor of science in business administration with a major in finance, a master of arts in applied mathematics and quantitative sciences, and a doctor of philosophy in macro‐economics.
Linda joined Oakwood in November 2019 as the Chief Financial Officer. She has over 25 years of health care experience including Director of Finance for Quartz Health, Chief Financial Officer for Community Living Alliance, and most recently Controller for Agrace HospiceCare.
Linda also worked with the State of Wisconsin as a consultant to implement and oversee the Family Care long-term care program. In that role, she provided training, technical assistance, and financial and operational guidance to the executive management teams of the managed care organizations. Additionally, Linda re-wrote the State Audit Guide on Family Care and worked with various audit firms providing audit guidance. Linda is a Certified Public Accountant and is also LEAN (LEAN/Six Sigma) certified which focuses on cost savings and efficiencies.
In Linda’s spare time she enjoys spending time with family which includes 6 adult children (3 of her own and 3 step) and 5 grandkids.
Ruth Marion grew up in Ithaca, New York, and graduated from Cornell University. She majored in Home Economics and Teaching. She and her husband, Bruce (also a Cornelian), lived in the Boston area while he served in the Army. From there they moved to Ohio and then to Madison, where Bruce joined the UW faculty and Ruth completed her master’s degree. She also taught school in Madison and Middleton.
After teaching, she entered the field of elderly housing, serving as Administrator of a Section 8 WHEDA Housing Facility in Middleton for 12 years until her retirement. She is dedicated to affordable housing and the need to address this issue in our community. She and Bruce have been SAIL members since 2015. She represents Attic Angel Association on the AgeBetter Board.
Besides her volunteering at Attic Angel Community since 1996, she has been active in her church. Side interests involve extensive travel to all parts of the world. Closer to home, Ruth and Bruce enjoy prairie restoration and nurturing wildlife on their farm property near Spring Green. Gardening at their Madison home continues a life-long interest in healthy eating and a beautiful environment.
With three children and seven wonderful grandchildren within 2 hours of Madison, the Marion Family enjoys many happy times together at “the farm” doing prairie burns, swimming in their pond, and lots of work projects.
Kristen Peterson grew up in Jacksonville, Florida, where she met her husband. His position on a Navy Carrier took them all over the country before they landed in Madison in 1994. They have two children and four grandchildren. Kristen has spent many hours volunteering for Attic Angels and is a member of PEO. She is excited to be part of this exciting venture!