Recognition & Awards

LeadingAge Ohio is proud to celebrate the difference our members and residents make in communities across Ohio.  Various programs are offered through LeadingAge Ohio to shine a light on the impact this difference brings.  From our Annual Awards program highlighting accomplishments of member staff and programs, to honoring shining STARS within our members of front line staff who make a difference every day as well as sharing the talents of our residents/patients through our Art & Writing program, LeadingAge Ohio wants to offer this opportunity to share your gifts with the world.

Click on each of the tabs below to learn more.

Annual Awards

Check out the 2018 Award Winner Video Tributes!


LeadingAge Ohio Awards Program


The LeadingAge Ohio Annual Awards honor individuals and organizations that embody excellence in aging services leadership, are models of quality and innovation, and are making outstanding contributions to our field that merit recognition.

LeadingAge Ohio member organizations and/or individuals associated with them are eligible for consideration. 

Award Criteria and Nomination Forms

How to Submit a Nomination

Nominations for the 2019 LeadingAge Ohio Awards program will open March 1, 2019.   Submit award nominations online no later than April 12, 2019, using the applicable entry form below.  Unless indicated, supplemental materials and/or letters of support are not requested or required.  

Award submissions must be submitted using the online entry forms below.  For questions or issues accessing the online form, please contact Jennifer Taylor at 614-545-9028.

Entry Form Prep Tips

Answer all questions on the entry form for each award nomination you submit.  Provide as much supporting detail as possible without exceeding the requested word count.  Be sure to convey in your answers how the nominee meets the criteria indicated for that particular award.  Finally, save a copy of what you have written for your records.  

Click on the criteria for each award category below to view the requirements and questions to help compose your answers.  You may find it helpful to compose your answers offline, then cut and paste them into the online form when ready to submit your entry.  In your answers, provide concrete examples of leadership, innovation, achievement and impact, as applicable, that support your statements about why the nominee merits recognition.  

2019 Award Categories

Aging Services Impact Award:

Aging Services Impact Award Criteria 

Aging Services Impact Award Entry Form

Board Member of Distinction Award:

Board Member of Distinction Criteria

Board Member of Distinction Entry Form

Emerging Leader Award:

Emerging Leader Award Criteria  

Emerging Leader Entry Form

Excellence in Caring Award: 

Excellence in Caring Award Criteria 

Excellence in Caring Entry Form

Excellence in Innovation Award:

Excellence in Innovation Award Criteria

Excellence in Innovation Entry Form

Excellence in Volunteer Service Award:

Excellence in Volunteer Service Award Criteria 

Excellence in Volunteer Service Entry Form

Excellence in the Workplace Award:

Excellence in the Workplace Award Criteria

Excellence in the Workplace Entry Form

Heart of Hospice - Rose and Sam Stein Award:

Heart of Hospice - Rose and Sam Stein Award Criteria 

Heart of Hospice - Rose and Sam Stein Entry Form

Visionary Leadership Award of Honor:

Visionary Leadership Award of Honor Criteria 

Visionary Leadership Award of Honor Entry Form  

Awards Selection Process

Nominations for the 2019 awards program will open March 1, 2019 with a submission deadline of April 12, 2019. The Awards Committee will judge the entries and present the slate of winners to the LeadingAge Ohio Board of Directors in mid-May. We will notify award winners in late May so honorees can make plans to attend the LeadingAge Ohio Annual Conference and Trade Show in Columbus, Ohio, August 27-29, 2019, to accept their awards. Although we are unable to defray winners’ travel expenses, each winning individual or organization will receive one complimentary registration to the LeadingAge Ohio Annual Conference and Trade Show.

You also will be notified in late May if your nomination is not selected for an award. Even though not every entry will receive an award, all nominations are carefully considered and often lead to additional opportunities to “tell the story” of member accomplishments through such avenues as our website, media outreach, education events and other means.

The committee reserves the right to move nominations to different categories to consider them where they best fit.  To celebrate this achievement, those programs/individuals that have been selected will be asked to create a two minute video sharing your thoughts and congratulations around receiving this honor. 

Awards Program Questions

If you have questions regarding the Awards Program, please contact:

LeadingAge Ohio Awards Committee Chair
Michele Engelbach
Ohio Eastern Star Home Community
Phone: 740-397-1706


     LeadingAge Ohio Contact
     Jennifer Taylor 
     Director of Member Experience 
     LeadingAge Ohio 
     Phone: 614-545-9028

Stars Awards


Employee Recognition

2020 Stars Awards

Stars LogoThe Stars program annually offers a moment of public recognition for your employees with a much-deserved day of honor and celebration. Who are the unsung heroes among your staff who work behind the scenes to meet the daily needs of residents, clients, and program participants? LeadingAge Ohio encourages you to identify the front-line, non-management employees who diligently work to provide selfless gifts to those we serve.

Each event includes unique touches to make the day special for our Stars including:

  • A gourmet lunch

  • “Selfie” Station to make fun memories

  • Commemorative lapel pins

  • Award certificates

  • Copies of the heartfelt nominations for each Star

  • Fun momentos

Program Agenda

12:15 p.m.   Registration
12:30 p.m.   Welcome and Invocation
12:40 p.m.   Luncheon
1:30 p.m.     Dessert and Award Presentations
2:30 p.m.     Program Conclusion

Stars Information Sheet


Stars District Map


2018 Stars Regional Map

It’s time to celebrate!  LeadingAge Ohio encourages members to mark their calendars now for the annual Stars Awards Luncheons.  These regional events offer the opportunity for residents, clients, staff, and family members to express their sincere thanks to the most committed front-line, non-management employees.  Join us to honor stellar employees with well deserved public recognition.

How to Nominate a Star

We want your entire community to be able nominate a special staff Star.  To allow that to happen, there are two options available.

If you choose to use the online Nomination Form:

Click on the link to the Star Nomination Form, complete and submit.  A completed Nomination Form must be submitted for each individual Star nominee two (2) weeks prior to the event.

PLEASE NOTE: Please make certain that the HR Director or appropriate person within your organization is aware of the Star nomination prior to submission.

If you choose to use the paper Nomination Form:

Click on the link to download the Nomination Form.  If you choose to use the paper form please write legibly or type.  A completed Nomination Form must be submitted for each individual Star nominee two (2) weeks prior to the event.  Once all the forms are gathered send them to LeadingAge Ohio, ATTN:  Bobbi Dolan or email forms to

PLEASE NOTE: Please make certain that the HR Director or appropriate person within your organization is aware of the Star nomination prior to submission.

Stars Celebration Event Information

Make plans now to gather with other LeadingAge Ohio members and honor these special employees at one of our regionally located 2020 Stars Luncheons this Spring.  The dates for this year's Stars events will be coming soon!


Take a look at some of our 2019 honorees and what their nominators had to say about them.

2019 Stars Selfie Statements Ah Web2019 Stars Selfie Statements Jschott Web


2019 Stars Selfie Statements Js Web2019 Stars Selfie Statements Ts Web



Resident Art & Writing Program


Art & Writing Program


"Every human is an artist.
And this is the main art that we have:
the creation of our story."
Don Miguel Ruiz

Organize your residents to participate in the 2020 LeadingAge Ohio annual Art & Writing Program! Five District Shows will be held across the state this Spring, with all winning entries progressing to the State Show during the LeadingAge Ohio Annual Conference, August 25 - 27, 2020 in Columbus. Entry is free to all our member residents and clients.

NOW is the time to encourage your artists and authors to prepare an entry (or two or three!) for the 2020 Program. Fuel enthusiasm so it can spread and involve everyone! Both novice and experienced writers and artists may submit entries. Two or more persons may work together on a project and enter one of our cooperative categories.


General Program Information

All Residents of LeadingAge Ohio member facilities are invited to participate! Award winners from each District Exhibition will show their work at our Statewide Show to be held in conjunction with the LeadingAge Ohio Annual Conference and Resident Celebration Day at the Hilton Columbus at Easton, August 25-27, 2020.


Regional Show Information/Details



2020 District Show Information


District 1 Central/Southeast Show
Friday, June 26, 2020
11:30 a.m.
Judging will happen at 12:00 p.m., ribbons will be handed out immediately following.
Ohio Eastern Star Home
1451 Gambier Road
Mount Vernon, OH 43050
Deadline for entry forms and writing entries: Friday, May 15
District Coordinator:  Marci Thomas


District 2 South/Southwest Show

Details coming soon!

District 3 Northwest Show
Wednesday, June 24, 2020
11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Ohio Living Dorothy Love Apartments
2500 N. Kuther Road
Sidney, OH 45365
Deadline for entry forms and writing entries: Wednesday, May 13
District Coordinator: Lori Puterbaugh


District 4 Northeast Show
Thursday, June 11, 2020
10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
10204 Granger Road
Garfield Heights, OH 44125
Deadline for entry forms and writing entries: Friday, May 22
District Coordinator:  Danielle Paluscsak


District 5 East/Mideast Show
Wednesday, April 29, 2020
11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Beeghly Building Main Entrance
Copeland Oaks Crandall Medical Center
800 South 15th Street
Sebring, OH 44672
Deadline for entry forms and writing entries: Wednesday, March 18
District Coordinator: Andrea Blake





Entry form opening soon!



 To learn more about the LeadingAge Ohio Art & Writing program, contact:



LeadingAge Ohio Statewide Coordinator
Danielle Paluscsak
Phone: 216-581-2900



LeadingAge Ohio Art & Writing Contact
Bobbi Dolan
LeadingAge Ohio
Phone: 614-545-9025



Employer of Choice

Employer of Choice GREENWhat is the Employer of Choice?

The LeadingAge Ohio Employer of Choice initiative:

Establishes the operational standards for strengthening workforce practices among aging services employers;

Creates criteria/thresholds by which to evaluate the standards;

Provides a public recognition of this excellence so that residents, clients/customers, prospective employees, payors and other stakeholders can be aware

Through this instrument, LeadingAge Ohio members demonstrate that they strive not just to be residences/providers of choice, but they seek to be employers of choice as well.  They acknowledge the importance of treating their employees – those that serve their residents/clients – with the same care they wish these employees to provide. 


 We are pleased to recognize the following 2019-2020 LeadingAge Ohio Employers of Choice winners!

2019-2020 Gold Employer of ChoiceGold Level

• Otterbein SeniorLife St. Marys (St. Marys)


2019-2020 Silver Employer of ChoiceSilver Level

• Jennings (Garfield Heights)
• Kendal at Oberlin (Oberlin)
• Ohio Living Home Health and Hospice Greater Toledo (Toledo)
• Ohio Living Home Health and Hospice Greater Youngstown (Canfield)
• Ohio Living Home Health Greater Dayton  (Sidney)
•Twin Lakes Senior Living Community (Montgomery)


2019-2020 Bronze Employer of ChoiceBronze Level

• Bethany Village/Graceworks (Centerville)
• Genacross Lutheran Services Napoleon Campus (Napoleon)
• National Church Residences Bristol Healthcare (Waverly)
• National Church Residences Chillicothe (Chillicothe)
• National Church Residences Legacy Village (Xenia)
• Ohio Living Dorothy Love (Sidney)
• Ohio Living Home Health and Hospice - Greater Akron (Fairlawn)
• Ohio Living Home Health and Hospice - Greater Cincinnati (Monroe)
• Ohio Living Mount Pleasant (Monroe)
• Otterbein SeniorLife Cridersville (Cridersville)
• Otterbein SeniorLife Marblehead (Marblehead)
• Otterbein SeniorLife Monclova (Monclova)
• Otterbein SeniorLife Pemberville (Pemberville)
• Otterbein SeniorLife Perrysburg (Perrysburg)
• Otterbein SeniorLife Union Township (Union Township)
• Valley Hospice (Rayland)

Requirements for Eligibility and Criteria

Before beginning the application process, please note there are several minimum requirements an Employer of Choice must meet:

  • In order to apply for this designation, if a nursing facility or home health organization, the facility must be a 3-Star or above (as of the most recent published rating)[see page 6 of application for additional information]; and
  • For newly opened communities, an occupancy rate of 80% or better for at least one year as of the date of application; and
  • If an organization has less than the appropriate benchmark median number of Days Cash on Hand or Current Ratio, additional supporting materials will be requested in order to validate financial viability [see page 8 of application for additional information]. Additional supporting materials should be submitted in advance of completion of the application.

The Employer of Choice designation is applicable to individual communities/locations, that is, it is not applicable to a multi-site.  Note, however, that exceptions to this requirement may be granted on a case-by-case basis to multi-site organizations that centralize their human resource functions. 

The LeadingAge Ohio Employer of Choice recognition program is based on twelve (12) categories of measurement.  The categories are defined in the criteria for Employer of Choice link below. 

2019 Employer of Choice Criteria


2019 Committee Assessment/Application Review Process Findings

The revised criteria are designed to look at every question in the criteria through a three-step process referenced going forward as the ADR process. The ADR process is a simple continuum as represented below:

                                Approach                            Deployment                      Results 

The three components are defined as follows:

  • Approach – what is the process, method, policy, planned action, etc. that the applicant shares in response to the criteria requirement (each of the bulleted questions)
  • Deployment – how has the applicant demonstrated that the approach has been implemented – depth, breadth, systematic versus situational, improvement cycle in place, etc.
  • Results – what measurable reflection of the implementation and/or impact is demonstrated, how many measurement cycles have been completed, improvements reflected over time, etc.

Assessment Scale:

  • Does not meet: limited or early stage implementation
  • Meets: practices are generally established and showing maturity in implementation
  • Exceeds: practices are comprehensive and well established, fully implemented, outcomes measures in place to assess effectiveness

A reviewer would look to ensure that every criteria item is addressed, the extent to which the approaches are deployed, the level of maturity demonstrated by the applicant in the implementation and impact, and the extent to which results/measurement systems are apparent and generating data to support decisions and operational improvement. Providing anecdotal evidence versus systematic approaches is a critical determination in the maturity of an approach, and will be valuable in terms of placing the applicant at the proper level on the assessment continuum.

Placement on the continuum – “Does not meet” through “Exceeds” remains subjective, however, with the ADR continuum, this becomes a bit more accurate. With practice, the process becomes highly reliable in placing applicants in the right “level” on the rating continuum.  

This evaluation approach sets the stage to add a feedback loop going forward, providing applicants with feedback and priorities for action as they seek to enhance their status as a true “Employer of Choice.” This step would further enhance the value of Leading Age Ohio membership while also strengthening the quality of the senior living sector’s effectiveness.

Click the links below for details on organizations that received the "Exceeds" assessment in the specified category.



Questions about the application process should be directed to Kathryn Brod, President/CEO of LeadingAge Ohio;; 614-545-9014.


Need Help?

Kathryn Brod, MBA

Kathryn Brod


  • Is the association's primary spokesperson
  • Oversees staff and daily operations
  • Promotes LeadingAge Ohio's position and public policy goals to elected officials; staff liaison to Advocacy Committee
  • Responsible for implementing LeadingAge Ohio's strategic direction
  • Works with LeadingAge Ohio Board of Directors
  • Staff liaison to Human Resources Committee

Patrick Schwartz

Patrick Schwartz

Director of Strategic Communications

  • Serves as lead member communications and media strategist for key association initiatives
  • Oversees digital strategy, including websites, newsletters and social media channels
  • Provides strategic direction for communicating organizational goals and achievements to members, partners, policy makers and the media
  • Serves as primary contact for media inquiries

Jennifer Taylor, BA, CGS

Jennifer Taylor

Director of Member Experience

  • Manages provider member recruitment and retention strategies
  • Database management
  • Responsible for website content/access
  • Provider Membership staff liaison
  • Staff liaison to Awards and Membership committees
Our national partner, LeadingAge, is an association of 6,000 not-for-profit organizations dedicated to expanding the world of possibilities for aging. Together, we advance policies, promote practices and conduct research that support, enable and empower people to live fully as they age.