Register Now

Mark Abernathy, Director of Safety & Transportation, Western Home Communities, Cedar Falls

Mark Abernathy retired from the Cedar Falls Police Department in 2016. During his law enforcement career, he did serve on patrol, investigations, school resource officer and was a hostage negotiator for the department. As an investigator he did investigate crimes against people and was a member of the Iowa Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC). In 2007 Abernathy was awarded Cedar Falls police officer of the year for his efforts. As the director of safety and transportation for the Western Home Communities, Abernathy has assisted in the implementation of emergency preparedness policies (Final Rule) and conducts annual training across multiple campuses. In addition to his emergency preparedness duties, he oversees campus security and conducts workplace safety training.


Dr. Kim Bergen-Jackson, RN, BSN, PhD, Administrator, Oaknoll, Iowa City

Dr. Bergen-Jackson has more than 30 years’ experience in gerontological nursing and long term care. She started her career as a certified nursing assistant after high school and became an LPN in 1987. Bergen-Jackson spent the next 18 years working as a charge nurse in a number of nursing homes in Iowa, Washington, and Georgia. While working full time at Oaknoll, she returned to school in 2005 to get her RN degree. She received her BSN in 2006, her MSN in 2008, and went on to graduate from the University of Iowa with her PhD in 2012. In addition to her degrees, Bergen-Jackson is board certified in gerontological nursing by the American Nurse Credentialing Center (ANCC) and was recognized as a Distinguished Educator by the National Hartford Center of Gerontological Nursing Excellence in 2018. Over the years, she has developed a broad knowledge base of aging, long term care services and supports, and leadership. Dr. Bergen-Jackson is currently the Administrator at Oaknoll Retirement Residence in Iowa City. She is also an adjunct assistant professor in the school of social work and the college of nursing at the University of Iowa. She is an independent consultant for aging and long term care services and an expert litigative consultant for the United States Department of Justice. Bergen-Jackson serves on the board of directors for LeadingAge Iowa and Iowa Nurses Association. She also participates in the Nursing Home Advisory Group and Public Policy committees for LeadingAge Iowa. She is a member of the American Nurses Association, the Iowa Nurses Association, LeadingAge, the Iowa Aging Services Network, and the Pioneer Network. Dr. Bergen-Jackson is involved in various nursing research projects at the state and national level. She is a fellow of the Geriatric Nursing Leadership Academy through Sigma Theta Tau and a John A. Hartford Foundation Scholar. She has been a preceptor at Oaknoll for countless nursing students from the University of Iowa, Mt. Mercy College, Upper Iowa University, and Walden University. She has been affiliated with Oaknoll for more than 18 years.


Dawn Carter, RN Consultant, LeadingAgeNY, Latham, NY

Dawn Carter is a registered nurse with 29 years’ experience in healthcare, 26 years of which have been in long term care. Dawn has held the positions of ADON, Nurse Manger, Nursing Supervisor, MDS Coordinator, Staff Education and Development, Employee Health, and Infection Control including Antibiotic Stewardship. She has been actively involved with policy and procedure development, quality assurance and regulatory compliance.


Andy Crestodina, Co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer, Orbit Media, Chicago, IL

Andy Crestodina is a co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer of Orbit Media, an award-winning 38-person digital agency in Chicago. Over the past 18 years, Crestodina has provided digital marketing advice to 1000+ businesses. He speaks at national marketing conferences, writes for big marketing blogs and hosts a little marketing podcast. He has written hundreds of articles on content strategy, search engine optimization, influencer marketing, conversion and Analytics.

  • Top 10 Online Marketing Experts to Watch, Forbes
  • Top 50 Marketing Influencer, Entrepreneur Magazine
  • Top 25 Content Marketers, Express Writers/Buzzsumo
  • Top 100 Digital Marketers, Brand 24
  • Top 10 Social Media Influencers to Watch, Social Media Explorer
  • Top 50 Content Marketing Influencers to Follow, Outbrain

He is also the author of Content Chemistry: The Illustrated Handbook for Content Marketing.


Shannon Draayer, Director of Health and Well-Being, WesleyLife, Johnston

Shannon Draayer serves as the director of health and well-being for WesleyLife. She has a background in community health transformations, having worked for a policy consulting firm and for Blue Zones Project, a community health initiative. She earned a bachelor's degree from Iowa State University in journalism and political science and a masters of communications leadership from Drake University. She serves as vice chair of the Unity Point Young Advisory Council and is a member of the Des Moines Bicycle Collective board and the Des Moines Emerging Leaders Collaborative.


Patrice Fagan, RN, BSN, Assistant Division Administrator & Bureau Chief, Health Facilities Division, Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals, Des Moines

Patrice Fagen has been the assistant administrator of the Health Facilities Division since January 2016. Fagen has been with the division since 2000, when she began working as a health facilities surveyor. She has also been the program coordinator for multiple programs in the Medicare and Medicare/Medicaid Services Bureaus.


Sean Fahey, Attorney, Hall Render Killian Heath & Lyman, Indianapolis, IN

Sean Fahey represents the needs of skilled nursing and assisted living facilities in all areas of health care compliance, transactions, accounts receivable and reimbursement recovery. Fahey counsels clients on admission agreement language relevant to collection matters and provides advice on discharge planning issues. Fahey is a member of the Elder Law section of the Indiana State Bar Association and has been a speaker at long term care conferences as well as at continuing legal education seminars focusing on assisted living and nursing home issues.


Michael Foss, Reverend Doctor, Ahnemann Associates, Norwalk

Born and raised in Richland, Washington, Reverend Foss has served in congregations with weekly worship attendance of 100 to 6500. An international speaker/teacher, he has more than 30 years’ experience in equipping people for effective leadership. In the 21st century, leaders at every level understand that they are culture creators to make work places and services directed by purpose and values, as well as clarity of vision and mission. Foss has recently retired from St. Mark Lutheran Church in West Des Moines, which tripled its attendance, over-all giving and benevolence in just nine years. He is married with two daughters and four grandchildren. He is passionate about equipping leaders for effective and sustainable organizations, having served on numerous boards: both for profit as well as not for profit organizations.


Sandra Frahm, RD, LD, Health Facilities Surveyor, Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals, Des Moines

Sandra Frahm graduated from Iowa State University with a bachelor’s degree in food and nutrition/dietetics and practiced as a registered/licensed dietitian for 18 years prior to joining the department.  Her previous work experience includes employment in acute hospitals and the Iowa Veterans Home, in addition to a consultant dietitian practice, where she provided clinical nutrition care, inpatient and outpatient education/counseling and management of food service operations. Frahm has been a health facilities surveyor with the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals since January 2011. Her duties as a surveyor include participating in acute and critical access hospital and long term care surveys.


Deb Freeland, Principal, CliftonLarsonAllen, Indianapolis, IN

Deb Freeland is a principal with the health care group of CLA’s specializing in reimbursement services for senior living facilities and hospitals. She has extensive experience handling the distinctive issues facing health care organizations in today’s challenging environment.


Kyle Gorsh, Fire Prevention Bureau Chief, Fire Marshal’s Division, Iowa Department of Public Safety, Des Moines

Kyle Gorsh began his career with the Iowa Department of Public Safety in July 2001, serving as a fire inspector in North Central Iowa. In 2002, he moved to the Cedar Falls office to cover the Northeast Iowa territory. In 2006, Gorsh was promoted to special agent supervisor, assigned to manage the federal health care inspection program in Des Moines. From 2009 through 2010, Gorsh worked as the SFM CALEA coordinator and assisted with the development of policies and procedures for the division. On January 31, 2011, he was moved to serve as the Fire Prevention Bureau chief. In April of 2012, Gorsh was selected to serve in the Commissioner’s Office as the assistant bureau chief in the Professional Standards Bureau (PSB). He was assigned as the bureau chief of the PSB on November 1, 2012, and served in this role until returning to the Fire Prevention Bureau on February 1, 2014. He was promoted to the rank of special agent in charge on June 21, 2013. SAC Gorsh was asked to serve as the acting bureau chief of the Fire Service Training Bureau from April 2016 until August 2017, when he returned to his assignment as the Fire Prevention Bureau chief.


Marcy Heim, CFRE, PLCC, President and Founder, The Artful Asker, Madison, WI

Marcy Heim, inspiring speaker, life coach, author, singer and mom, provides the mindset and tools for those who want to live their BEST lives and transform the world through generosity. The combination of impactful relationship management, plus 30 years of in-the-trenches major gift fundraising success, have made Heim passionate about creating the beliefs and actions that result in more gifts and more joy for you and your team. Her workshops, keynotes, books, group and VIP coaching packages combine positive mindset with best-practice techniques for dramatic fundraising and team-satisfaction results.  Get ready to sing, laugh and learn!


Erin Shvetzoff Hennessey, MA, NHA, CPG, Chief Executive Officer, Health Dimensions Group, Minneapolis, MN

Erin Shvetzoff Hennessey has expertise in the senior health care industry, advising providers in the areas of post-acute care management, operational and financial performance improvement, and organizational and ownership structure. Hennessey has hands-on experience as an administrator of skilled nursing and senior living facilities in several states. She is active in senior services trade organizations to provide them with education resources, industry information, and support for members. Hennessey is a certified gerontologist and a guest faculty member on post acute care for Estes Park Institute, a provider of professional education for hospital executives, board members, and physician leaders.


Theresa Hogenson, BSW, Consultant, Assisted Living Partners, L.L.C., Cedar Rapids

Theresa Hogenson is a Consultant for Assisted Living Partners, L.L.C. Theresa provides consulting services to assisted living facilities focusing on program development and regulatory compliance monitoring. She has been in the Assisted Living Arena for 20 years working as a Director, Regional Manager, and Consultant. She received her Assisted Living Manager Certification in 2003. She has been with Assisted Living Partners for 8 1/2 years.


Karen Honson, RN-BC, IP, Infection Preventionist, Oaknoll, Iowa City

Karen Honson has worked in long term care since 1991.  She received her associate’s degree in nursing in 1995, from Scott Community College in Bettendorf.  Honson has worked her entire career in long term care.  In 2003, she started working at Oaknoll Retirement Residence in Iowa City.  She is Board Certified in Gerontological Nursing and she earned the APIC Certificate of Infection Prevention for Long Term Care in spring of 2018.  She has worked in the infection prevention role since January 2017.


Darrin Hull, NHA, EVP, Consulting, Health Dimensions Group, Minneapolis, MN

Darrin Hull will provide expertise in post acute operations and serve as project advisor. Hull has more than 25 years of post acute operations management experience, with particular expertise in large-scale, multi-site nursing centers and skilled nursing facility operational turnaround, as well as clinical program development, regulatory compliance, and strategic health system partnering. His experience also includes acquisition and divestiture advisory services.


Andrew Johnson, CPA, Senior Manager, Myers and Stauffer, LC & Fiscal Consultant for Audit and Rate Setting, Iowa Department of Human Services, Des Moines

Andrew Johnson is a senior manager with Myers and Stauffer and has more than 24 years of professional experience.  Through the state of Iowa’s contract with Myers and Stauffer, Johnson manages long term care cost report rate setting for Iowa Medicaid and has provided services to the Provider Cost Audit Unit for Iowa Medicaid since 2005.  His duties for Iowa Medicaid include consulting with the state on rate setting issues and assisting with exceptions to policy and provider communication. He develops quarterly budgets for compliance with regulations, prepares annual budgets for state appropriation bills, and works with other state contractors to recommend state medical assistance policy. Johnson's audit responsibilities include verifying accuracy of data received from other state contractors, implementing any needed changes into rates. He also provides analysis for Iowa legislature and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) requests for information. Johnson has worked with other state contractors and state and federal agencies concerning rate appeals, fraud investigations, and regulatory compliance.  Additionally, Johnson has worked with state agencies and other stakeholders in developing and implementing provider tax and upper payment limit programs, among other things.  Johnson is a certified public accountant who graduated with a BS in accounting from Indiana University/Purdue University. 


Linda Kellen, RN, MS, Bureau Chief, Adult Services/Special Services Bureaus, Department of Inspections and Appeals, Des Moines

Linda Kellen has been with the Department of Inspections and Appeals as a surveyor/monitor in the special services and adult services bureaus since 2008 and is now the bureau chief for both bureaus. Kellen is a registered nurse and has a bachelor’s degree from Morningside College in Sioux City and a master’s degree in administrative studies (health care emphasis) from the University of South Dakota. Prior to joining DIA, Kellen worked as chief operations officer for a brain injury rehabilitation facility in Sioux City and as director of nursing and staff nurse at other facilities in the Sioux City area.


Kathy Kieler, Bureau Chief, Department of Inspections and Appeals, Des Moines

Back in 1975, Kathy Kieler took a CNA class and was hired at local nursing home for the summer and before her senior year in high school. It was at that time that she knew she wanted to be a nurse. Kieler attended Iowa Methodist School of Nursing from 1976-79, graduated with a nursing degree and worked in pediatrics for ten years (Blank Children’s Hospital). Along the way she graduated from Drake University with a bachelor’s degree in health sciences and a K-12 teaching certificate. In 1988, she was able to take a little time off after the birth of her second child and worked weekends at Des Moines General Hospital, mostly in the SNF unit. In 1997 she was hired by the Department of Inspections and Appeals as health facilities surveyor. She spent two years as a surveyor and in 1999 was promoted into the office as a program coordinator for North East Iowa. In December 2008, Kieler was promoted to bureau chief of NE and EC Iowa and supervises 14 survey staff. 


Dr. D. Michelle Kinneer, PhD, JD, MSN, RN, CPHRM, CHPC, CHC, Senior Risk and Patient Safety Consultant, MMIC, Minneapolis, MN

Dr. Michelle Kinneer is an active member of the American Society for Healthcare Risk Management (ASHRM), Health Care Compliance Association (HCCA), and the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE). Dr. Kinneer is a registered nurse licensed in Iowa and Illinois. She has earned a BSN, a MSN in nursing administration, a JD, and a PhD in leadership. Dr. Kinneer works collaboratively with clients, proactively and in trying times, supporting their health care teams so they can continue delivering great care. Early on in her health care career, she became known as someone others could rely on to remain calm and collected in stressful situations. Being a resource and helping clients work through challenges is truly one of her favorite roles. She’s often on-site to provide education, allowing her to engage every level of the organization in defining their role in providing safe, quality processes to best serve their patients. Kinneer has participated with the data analytics team at MMIC to analyze claim experience to learn valuable insights. From these lessons learned, she has been a key contributor to the development of content specifically designed to address the process gaps helping clients avoid similar situations that could put residents at risk.


Andrew Maas, RN BSN, LNHA, Administrator, Briarwood Healthcare Center, Iowa City

Andrew Maas is the administrator at Briarwood Healthcare Center in Iowa City. He graduated with his bachelors’ degree in nursing from Coe College in Cedar Rapids and completed his long term health care administration education at Mount Mercy College in Cedar Rapids. He is a registered nurse as well as a licensed nursing home administrator. He has worked for the past 24 years in skilled nursing g and long term care. He began as a certified nursing assistant, then a registered nurse, and advanced to director of nursing, regional nurse consultant and administrator – continuously expanding his responsibilities in the long term care/skilled nursing care setting. Maas continually seeks change that maximizes the quality of life for residents and optimizes the professional experience for co-workers in the long term care setting.


Ed McIntosh, Attorney, Partner, Dorsey & Whitney, Des Moines

Ed McIntosh is a partner and co-chair of Dorsey’s Health Transactions and Regulations practice.  He helps a variety of health care providers address complex regulatory issues, strategic acquisitions, affiliation and contractual agreements. He represents large metropolitan hospitals as well as critical access hospitals, retirement communities and physician groups, on a broad range of health, employment, regulatory and litigation matters. He has represented healthcare providers in the development of co-management agreements, acquisition of physician practices, and medical director agreements.  He appears frequently before administrative agencies, including the State Health Facilities Council, the agency which evaluates applications for Certificates of Need in Iowa. He represents nursing homes in administrative proceedings related to surveys.


Lisa Milliken, MA, CCC-SLP, FNAP, Education Specialist, Select Rehabilitation, Atascocita, TX

Over the last 30 years, Lisa Young Milliken has served adults and geriatrics as a clinician, manager, vice president, consultant, compliance manager and education director and is most passionate about mentoring health care professionals in the post acute facilities across the country. She currently provides continuing education support to therapists in more than 950 sites nationwide as education specialist for Select Rehabilitation. She has authored and lectured at the state and national level with more than 150 professional continuing education courses on a wide range of topics of importance to the health care professional who works with the older population. Milliken is a member of the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association, where she currently serves as a State Advocate for Medicare Policy (StAMP) to Texas and she serves on the TSHA Executive Council as chair of the business management committee. She has also recently been elected to the Distinguished Fellowship of the National Academies of Practice in Speech-Language Pathology. Through her leadership positions on the Louisiana and Texas Association boards, executive council and other organizations, she has purposed to advocate services of these associations’ members as well as for the clients and families served by the members.


Russell Perry, Safety and Health Consultant/OSHA, Iowa Division of Labor, Des Moines

Russell Perry is employed by the State of Iowa as a safety and health consultant.  Perry is a retired Army Officer who worked full time with the Iowa National Guard for 31 years.  He has extensive experience in aviation and safety, having served in a variety of positions with the National Guard to include supervisory aircraft pilot, safety and occupational health manager, and director of Army Aviation and Safety.  Perry is a rated helicopter and fixed wing pilot and is a combat veteran with service in Afghanistan.  He holds a master’s degree in public administration from Drake University.


Ward Phillips, Corporate Director of Sales, WesleyLife, Johnston

Ward Phillips joined WesleyLife in 2017 as director of sales. In his role, Phillips uses his passion and extensive sales experience in senior housing to support service lines throughout the organization. He’s been in senior living sales and marketing for the past 11 years at community, regional and director level. He previously served as regional sales director for Watermark Communities, where he excelled at census growth, market analysis, and relationship-based selling. Phillips worked closely in both for-profit and not-for-profit environments, selling independent living standalones to CCRCs, to Blue Sky Projects and everything in between.


Hallie Salmen, CPA, CEO, Sunrise Retirement Community, Sioux City

Hallie Salmen has served as the chief executive officer (CEO) for Sunrise Retirement Community since 2016. Prior to that, she served as the chief financial officer (CFO) of Sunrise for 14 years. As CEO, Salmen is responsible for providing strategic direction for Sunrise as well as overseeing all areas of operation including independent living, assisted living and memory care.  Salmen earned her bachelor's of science degree in accounting from the University of South Dakota. 


Barb Schug, RN, BSN, RN Consultant, Assisted Living Partners, L.L.C., Cedar Rapids

Barb Schug received her RN with her bachelors Degree in nursing at Coe College. Barb has been a Nurse Consultant with Assisted Living Partners for 8 years. In that capacity, she has completed regulatory compliance reviews providing written reports with recommendations on improving assessments and tenant charts. Barb also goes to Assisted Living communities as an RN completing assessments, updating service plans, and implementing new systems. She has been a Director of Nursing in long term care for a number of years and has also worked as an MDS Coordinator. Barb has also taught C.N.A. classes along with LPN classes for the Community College.


Catherine R. “Cat” Selman, BS, President and Co-owner, The Healthcare Communicators, Vonore, TN

Educator. Motivator. Communicator. Consultant. Author…Catherine R. “Cat” Selman, BS, uses her dynamic personality and compelling presence to spread the message of positive, realistic, and commonsense strategies for the aging services professional. She presently serves as president and co-owner of The Healthcare Communicators, Inc., a company specializing in continuing education for health care professionals. Selman received her degree from Trevecca Nazarene University, with continued graduate work at the University of Southern Mississippi. With more than 30 years’ experience in management, education and consultation, Selman has trained providers and surveyors in all 50 states. Since 1989, she has often been requested by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to sit on stakeholder/expert panels responsible for the revision of surveyor guidance and compliance issues. In demand, and on topic, she is considered an authority in aging services.


Dr. Yogesh Shah, MD, MPH, FAAFM, Geriatrician, Director of Palliative Care, Broadlawns Medical Center, Des Moines

Dr. Yogesh Shah is the founding director of palliative care at Broadlawns Medical Center. Dr. Shah’s areas of clinical expertise are mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and palliative and hospice medicine. Dr. Shah earned his geriatric fellowship from the Mayo Clinic. He is triple-board-certified in family medicine, geriatrics, and hospice and palliative care. In March 2013, he was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to develop a palliative care curriculum in Rwanda, Africa. Dr. Shah holds a master’s in public health (MPH) from Des Moines University. He has done noteworthy amount of work in the area of social determinates of health (SDOH) in 50314 zip code in Des Moines. Dr. Shah has received numerous awards for his work related to aging and dementia. Recently he was awarded Iowa Juneteenth’s Health Practitioner Award and Preceptor of the Year Award by the Broadlawns Medical Center’s Residents. He received the Passport to Prosperity Award, which honors individuals who immigrated to the state of Iowa and have contributed significantly to the community.


Alissa Smith, Attorney, Partner, Dorsey & Whitney, Des Moines

Alissa Smith is a partner in Dorsey & Whitney LLP’s health group. Smith represents health care organizations such as health systems, hospitals, pharmacies, long term care providers, home health agencies and medical practices, as well as nonprofit and municipal organizations. Smith’s practice involves a wide range of corporate and regulatory matters facing health care providers, nonprofit organizations and municipal entities. Her transactional practice includes contracts, leases, mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures. Smith’s regulatory practice includes the interpretation and application of state and federal fraud and abuse laws, Medicare and Medicaid rules, tax-exemption laws, HIPAA and privacy laws, EMTALA laws, licensing matters, employment laws, governmental audits, open records and open meetings matters, and corporate and health system governance issues including the revision and negotiation of medical staff bylaws. She also assists with hospital-provider relations such as co-management arrangements, peer review investigations and medical staff fair hearings. Smith represents health care providers before the State Health Facilities Council in Certificate of Need hearings.


Barbara Thomsen, CDM/CFPP RAC, MDS/Nutrition Education/Regulatory Consultant, BT Healthcare Consulting, Norwalk

Barbara Thomsen spent seven years working as the MDS/OASIS automation education coordinator/trainer for the State of Iowa/Iowa Foundation for Medical Care/Telligen. Previously, Thomsen was employed in long term care facilities and has her degree as a certified dietary manager, certified food protection professional and resident assessment coordinator, and Iowa Certified Assessment Coordinator. Her responsibilities at the Iowa Foundation/Telligen in conjunction with the MDS/OASIS programs and regulations, included Medicaid case mix reimbursement for the state of Iowa, team member Iowa Medicaid Enterprise nurse reviewers, and partner Iowa QIO’s (Quality Improvement Organization). She currently owns her own health care consulting business and works closely with communities throughout the US on quality improvement initiatives, volunteers on health care committees and is currently working with CMS on the Technical Impact Panel for the Impact Act. Thomsen has been implemental in training MDS 3.0 to over 4,000 providers since May 2010 and is a respected trainer/educational partner for numerous health care associations, DMACC adjunct instructor as well as a national ANFP speaker and ANACC presenter.


Julie Thorson, President/CEO, Friendship Haven, Fort Dodge

Julie Thorson is entering her eighth year as president and CEO for Friendship Haven. She teaches several leadership classes for her team and monthly writes a leadership blog “Living Leadership” for McKnight’s Long-Term Care News. Her blog was named the 2016 “Best New Department” Bronze Award winner by the American Society of Health Publication Editors. Most recently, she was the 2018 recipient of the LeadingAge Dr. Herbert Shore Outstanding Mentor of the Year award. Thorson is a coach’s daughter at heart. A former part-time nursing home social worker, she is a licensed nursing home administrator and has been a participant in LeadingAge’s Leadership Academy. She also currently serves as LeadingAge Iowa's Board Chair.


Steven Wermuth, MPA, Partner, Strategic Health Care, Columbus, OH

Steven R. Wermuth is a partner in the Columbus office of Strategic Health Care. Prior to joining Strategic Health Care, he served as the chief operating officer at the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) since January of 2011. His major duties included overseeing the more than 120 programs at ODH and managing the government affairs staff at the department. Wermuth worked with ODH director, Dr. Theodore E. Wymyslo, to lead ODH as the agency worked with health and human services partners and the Governor’s Office of Health Transformation to protect and improve the health of all Ohioans. He has nearly 30 years of experience in health care and has spent more than 15 years in public health serving as health commissioner in both Tuscarawas and Clark counties. He also managed public health primary care clinics, a home health agency and dental clinics in his public health career. In addition, he served as the assistant director of grants for Akron Children’s Hospital and founded a consulting firm that provides consulting and long term management solutions to complex government policy issues. Wermuth received his undergraduate degree from the University of Cincinnati in community health education with an emphasis in exercise physiology. He earned a masters degree in public administration with an emphasis in health administration from Kent State University.


Mindla White, Bureau Chief, Department of Inspections and Appeals, Des Moines

Mindla (Mindy) White was employed at a local nursing home in Wisconsin as a CNA when she was in high school. After high school she went to nursing school and later returned back to the same nursing home as a charge nurse on the evening shift. In 1995, White moved to Des Moines and worked at another long term care facility as a MDS coordinator.  She joined the Department of Inspection and Appeals in 1998 and was a long term care surveyor for eastern Iowa until 2000. In 2000 White was promoted to a compliance officer within DIA and then in 2006 was promoted to a bureau chief. White oversees the surveyors who conduct the recertification surveys in long term care facilities and also has responsibility for the enforcement actions.


Mary Nell Zellner, Owner, Consultant, Zellner Health Consulting, LLC

As a consultant for 19 years, Ms. Zellner provides interim administrator services, survey management, clinical and administrative training and mentoring, and various developmental activities. With more than 25 years experiences in the health field including work as a clinician, health care administrator, regional director, vice president and senior vice president, lobbyist. Prior to re-establishing her own consulting company she was the Senior Vice President of Health Dimensions Group and a Regional Director for Pathway Health Services.  Ms. Zellner’s background has provided her education and practical experience in acute care continuum, long term care, sub-acute unit management, and assisted living settings. She has served on a variety of long term committees in health care delivery and health reform. Ms. Zellner is a frequent presenter for state and national leadership venues on the topics of quality, turnaround, management and organizational system improvement.  Ms. Zellner completed her undergraduate work at University of Wisconsin- Madison, continued her Long Term Care Administration coursework at the University of Minnesota. In 2012 she completed the mMBA for Health Care at St. Thomas University.