AAPACN is dedicated to supporting post-acute care nurses provide quality care.

Board of Directors

AAPACN Board of Directors

The Board of Directors is responsible for the governance of the American Association of Post-Acute Care Nursing (AAPACN). Meet the dedicated post-acute care professionals who serve on the AAPACN Board of Directors and who help drive our mission of supporting the professional development, empowerment, and success of our members.

Elizabeth Florczak, MS, RN, DNS-CT, CDP
Chair

VP Clinical Services, Generations Healthcare Network, Lincolnwood, IL 

Beth has over 30 years of experience spanning the health care continuum. She started as a nurse technician and has worked in a number of settings including critical care, medical surgical, home care, hospice and post-acute care. She has held roles including staff nurse, nurse educator, and director of nursing. 

Beth received her RN degree from Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana and MSN from St. Xavier University, Chicago, Illinois. She is a member of the Professional and Technical Advisory Panel for Joint Commission. She is a contributor to several professional publications and conducts presentations across the U.S. on pressure ulcer and wound management. Beth has served on the board of directors of Telligen and the Illinois Catholic Health Care Association. 

Maureen McCarthy, RN, BS, RAC-MT, QCP-MT, DNS-MT, RAC-MTA
Vice Chair

President, Celtic Consulting, LLC and CEO/founder, Care Transitions, LLP, Torrington, CT

Recognized as an industry leader in clinical reimbursement for long-term care, Maureen has been a registered nurse for more than 30 years with experience as an MDS coordinator, director of nursing, rehab director, and Medicare biller. Maureen twice served as president for the Association of Long Term Care Financial Managers, is the Medicare and MDS 3.0 advisor for several state affiliates, and is an advisor to the J13 Medicare contractor National Government Services Provider Advisory Group. She serves on the Clinical Practice Committee and Reimbursement Committee for AHCA, and she is an editorial advisor for HCPro. Maureen received the ACHCA 2018 Education Award. 

Publications authored by McCarthy include  A SNF’s Guide to Medication Reconciliation and Drug Regimen Review (2018), 5-Star Quality Rating System Technical Users Guide (2017), Medicare Audits: A Survival Guide for SNF (2016), ICD-10 Compliance Process Improvement and Maintenance for LTC (2015), and The Long Term Care Compliance Toolkit (2011).

Rosanna Benbow, RN, CCM, ICC, IP, DNS-CT, QCP, RAC-CT
Treasurer

Owner and Consultant, Leading Transitions Post Acute Care Consultation and Staffing, Marion, IN

Rosanna (Rosie) is the owner and lead consultant for Leading Transitions Post Acute Care Consultation and Staffing, offering MDS consultation and a variety of other consulting for post-acute care, as well as interim MDS services.

Rosie has over 25 years experience in long-term care, beginning as a CNA. She has extensive experience in clinical reimbursement in roles such as director of nursing, MDS coordinator, case mix auditor, clinical IT specialist, and MDS/reimbursement consultant. While focusing on MDS and case management, Rosie has been highly involved in ACO partnerships, policy development, Interact 3.0 implementation, and QAPI program development.

In addition to serving on the AAPACN Board, Rosie is involved in several committees and is a member and speaker for Indiana Health Care Association, LeadingAge Indiana, and Hoosier Owners and Providers for the Elderly.  

Adrienne Ellison, MA-CCC/SLP, RAC-CT
Secretary

Regional Vice President, Broad River Rehabilitation, Mocksville, NC

Adrienne has dedicated over 24 years of experience to the skilled nursing industry. She holds a master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology and started her career as a clinician in skilled nursing facilities. Since, Adrienne has held many leadership roles within the SNF setting, including Rehabilitation Director, Area Manager, and Senior Director of Operations.

Adrienne is currently a Regional Vice President for Broad River Rehabilitation where she supports skilled nursing facilities in North Carolina.  In her role, Adrienne works with internal and external stakeholders to ensure the quality provision of therapy care to all of the residents in the SNFs she serves. Adrienne also holds a RAC-CT, which she obtained in 2017; and specializes in improving access to quality therapy services while maximizing reimbursement for the skilled nursing facilities she serves.

Liz Barlow, RN, CRRN, RAC-CT, DNS-CT

Vice President of Marketing, Synchrony Health Services, Louisville, KY

Liz is a Certified Rehab Registered Nurse who has worked in the SNF industry for over 28 years, with more than 22 of those years working with therapy contract services. She has worked a variety of roles including case manager, marketing, senior director of quality, and vice president of clinical services. Her passion is education and she has spent a large part of her career training other healthcare professionals.  in her current role, she is responsible for the overall marketing brand of Synchrony Health Services which includes Synchrony Rehab, Synchrony Pharmacy, Synchrony Lab, and [email protected] Her clinical background helps to drive a patient-centered care approach through the company’s lines of business.

In addition to serving on the AAPACN Board of Directors, Liz also serves on the Expert Advisory Panel.

Nancy Beecham, RN-BC, BS, CDONA/LTC, FACDONA

Continuing Life, Corporate Clinical Nurse Coach, Vista, CA

Nancy is a certified gerontological nurse who has chosen long-term care as her field of practice for the past 37 years. She has worked in nursing for more than 44 years, beginning as a ward clerk and has more than 35 years of experience in nursing administration. She has held numerous state and national positions within many various organizations, including receiving the 2015 Circle of Honor Award from the San Diego Health Care Association, being honored as the National Association Directors Of Nursing Administration's 2012 Nursing Administrator of the Year, serving as the President of the California Chapter for the National Association Directors Of Nursing Administration (NADONA) in Long Term Care, and is the Immediate Past President of the Nurses Council of California.

Nancy has worked as a consultant to numerous governors, senators, and assembly-persons, sharing her knowledge and advice on issues regarding the effects that pending laws and regulations will have on direct resident and patient care. Having served on the California Board of Registered Nurses for four years, she is very conscientious of how important it is to make a difference in the delivery of healthcare in our nation, and to the education of future nurses who will be working in long-term care.

Mary Ellen Dellefield, PhD, RN

Research Nurse Scientist, VA San Diego Healthcare System, Clinical Professor, Haun School of Nursing and Health Science, University of San Diego, San Diego, CA

Mary Ellen has been actively involved in long-term care nursing since 1985. She has worked as a charge nurse, MDS coordinator, director of nursing, director of staff development, and infection control nurse. Her experiences have been in governmental, non-profit, and for-profit organizations.

Because of her deep commitment to improving the practice environment for nurses working in long-term care settings, she furthered her educational preparation. This included a MS, PhD, post-doctoral fellowship at University of California, San Francisco, and a Career Development Award from VA Health Services Research and Development. Mary Ellen has published papers on topics relevant to the practicing nurse, including care planning, the MDS, QAPI, and RN staffing. She has conducted research studies with a focus on prevention of pressure ulcers and nursing practice. 

Jeanne Gerstenkorn, RN, BSN, MSN, DNS-CT, RAC-CT, QCP

Senior Vice President of Health & Wellness, Presbyterian Manors of Mid America, Wichita, KS

Jeanne been in long term care for almost twenty years, serving in multiple nursing roles from charge nurse to executive, including QA nurse, DON, clinical reimbursement, and informatics. Over the course of her career, she has worked in ICU, private practice, and long-term care. Jeanne has both a BSN and a Masters in Nursing. She became a nurse to make a difference and hopes to make a difference to nurses in long-term care by serving on the board of directors. 

Scott Heichel, RN, RAC-MT, RAC-CTA, DNS-CT, CIC, QCP, IPCO

Director of Clinical Reimbursement, LeaderStat, Powell, OH

Scott is the director of clinical reimbursement for LeaderStat and brings over 25 years of healthcare experience and is recognized for his expertise in the RAI process and clinical reimbursement. Scott’s consulting work includes performing Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement reviews and educational programs for skilled nursing facilities and multi-facility operators. Scott has experience in and has testified as an expert witness in a large Medicare dispute case and has also assisted in Corporate Integrity Audits and corporate compliance reviews. Scott is a member of AANAC’s (American Association of Nurse Assessment Coordination) Expert Advisory Panel, recognized as a Master Teacher through AANAC for their RAC-CT MDS certification courses, and sits on the board as the President of OANAC (Ohio Association of Nurse Assessment Coordinators).

Colleen Oakley, OTR/L, NHA, RAC-CT

Senior Director of Operations, Rehab America, Vonore, TN

Colleen is the Senior Director of Operations at Rehab America. She is an Occupational Therapist with over 27 years of healthcare experience including pediatrics, home health, outpatient, acute care, and LTPAC but considers geriatrics and long-term care her passion. Colleen received her Nursing Home Administrator license in 2010 and her RAC-CT certification in 2020. With expertise in operations, clinical reimbursement, and people development, she has great analytical skills and is passionate about clinical care that results in outstanding outcomes. Colleen has worked with teams to identify areas of opportunity and develop strategies for process improvement, enhanced MDS coding, and reimbursement optimization. She has headed up numerous initiatives that structure and standardized processes for better efficiency and effectiveness.

Denise Egan, RN, BSN, APRN-BC

Nurse Practitioner, Beth Israel Lahey Healthcare, Boston, MA

Denise has over 50 years of long-term care experience, starting her career as a nurses' aide and progressed to a board certified nurse practitioner. Her nursing roles included staff nurse, charge nurse, manager, and assistant director of nursing. Denise has also practiced in home health, hospice, and as a certified surveyor for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Prior to becoming a surveyor, Denise worked for MassHealth, investigating fraud and abuse claims for the state's Medicaid program.  

Denise became a Geriatric Nurse Practitioner in order to provide care and services to our senior population. Her next focus is to educate long-term care staff regarding Trauma-Informed Care. Denise is hopeful that her years of experience in long-term care will be helpful in educating staff in best practices for providing the optimum care for seniors.

Janet K. Feldkamp, JD, BSN, RN, LNHA, CHC
At-large Member

Partner, Benesch Attorneys at Law, Columbus, OH

Janet focuses her law practice in the area of healthcare law, including long-term care survey and certification, state and federal regulation, physician and nurse practice, and fraud and abuse involving hospitals, suppliers, insurers, and physicians.

She retains active licenses as a registered nurse and nursing home administrator. Janet is a member of the editorial board of Caring for the Ages, a monthly newspaper for long-term care practitioners, and is a frequent writer and speaker on health law and related topics, particularly in the area of long-term care. She is a coauthor of Post-Acute Care Handbook: Regulatory, Risk and Compliance Issues, 2015, published by the American Health Lawyers Association.

Janet was awarded her Juris Doctorate from Saint Louis University School of Law and her BSN from the University of Missouri. She is a member of the American Bar Association, Columbia Bar Association, and Ohio State Bar Association. She is the past president of the American Association of Nurse Attorneys. 

Jackie Pappalardi, RN, BSN
At-large Member

Executive Director, Foundation for Quality Care, New York State Health Facilities Association, Albany, NY

Jackie has over forty years of experience in the public and private healthcare delivery system with demonstrated leadership competence in regulatory oversight, lobbying, and corporate leadership. With a clinical background as a registered nurse, Jackie has been a strong advocate for ensuring patients, residents, and clients receive quality health care through access to effective and competent programs. Her vast experiences working across the healthcare continuum with staff, facility and community leaders have shaped her positive approach to the value of enhancing local, state, and national partnerships to achieve regulatory compliance and accreditation, to develop and implement emergency management programs and to build strong quality improvement practices with providers. In her current role, she works with nursing home and assisted living providers to ensure their readiness to changes in state and federal regulations, develops action plans demonstrating standards of quality improvement and fosters the growth of strong collaborative partnerships. Jackie served as President of the Junior League of Albany and is an active member of the Professional Advisory Committee for Long Term Care Services for St Peter’s Health Partners, Albany NY.

Danielle Pierotti, RN, CENP
At-large Member

Independent Consultant, Home Based Care, Orford, NH

Danielle is an executive nurse leader experienced in inter-professional leadership across the continuum of care. She is an author, thought-leader, and speaker. Growing from a front-line nurse in oncology, to a chief clinical officer in home-based care, her unique career trajectory crossed many traditional boundaries moving between acute-care, home-based care, and ambulatory care; in matrixed and regional positions, with union and non-union teams; in academic settings, clinical research, federal advocacy and regulatory development. She is known for combining theory and evidence from a wide variety of sources with creativity, curiosity, and sincerity. As a nurse leader, she specializes in professional practice, shared development, and building collaborative outcomes-focused teams. 

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