PRESS RELEASE | September 28, 2022

Mission-Driven Aging Services Leaders Receive Top Accolades

Contact: Lisa Sanders 202-508-9407

September 28, 2022 Washington, DC — Three executives in aging services will be celebrated next month for their innovation, leadership, and service at the LeadingAge Annual Meeting & EXPO at the Colorado Convention Center, when mission-driven service providers from around the country gather at one of the sector’s most unique events, which is hosted by the association of nonprofit providers of aging services. 

James Bernardo, who retires from his post as president and CEO of Dillsburg, PA-based Presbyterian Senior Living (PSL) at the end of this year, is the recipient of the 2022 LeadingAge Award of Honor. A social worker by training, he joined PSL in 1985, and after holding a variety of jobs with increasing responsibility, was named to his current role in 2019. Details on Mr. Bernardo’s impact at PSL, through inclusive leadership and commitment to innovation, as well as his contributions to the aging services sector in Pennsylvania and nationally, are here.

Andrea MacDonald, RN, BSN, clinical operations manager for Nascentia Health Home Health Aides, a licensed home care service agency in Syracuse, NY, is the winner of the 16th Annual Joan Anne McHugh Award for Leadership in Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS) Nursing.  Established in 2005 in memory of Joan Anne McHugh, the award honors a director of nursing or an assistant director of nursing who creates a supportive and engaged workplace environment by displaying excellent leadership skills while managing nursing and frontline staff. 

Ms. MacDonald, who started her career as a “candy striper,” today oversees a team of 13  registered nurses (RN) and office staff and more than 120 home health aides. Learn about Ms. MacDonald’s creative approaches to solving problems and morale-building leadership style here

 Rhonda Breland-Gill, grants manager at Foundation of Wesley Woods, part of Wesley Woods Senior Living in Atlanta, GA, is this year’s winner of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for Health Equity. This award, launched in 2015, celebrates individuals who have changed systems and policies at a local level to increase the chance that everyone has a fair and just opportunity to live the healthiest life possible. Read about Ms. Breland-Gill’s work to help secure grants to bring free psychotherapy services to residents of housing for low-income older adults and increase overall quality of life of community residents here

 “Service, innovation, and perseverance are the hallmarks of our 2022 award winners. Jim, Andrea, and Rhonda each found a way to have a sustained positive impact, despite the challenges wrought by COVID in recent years,” said Katie Smith Sloan, president and CEO of LeadingAge, the association of nonprofit providers of aging services. “Their transformative leadership serves as an example for all of us. We congratulate them on their achievements and thank them for their commitment.”  

About LeadingAge:

We represent more than 5,000 nonprofit aging services providers and other mission-minded organizations that touch millions of lives every day. Alongside our members and 38 state partners, we use applied research, advocacy, education, and community-building to make America a better place to grow old. Our membership, which now includes the providers of the Visiting Nurse Associations of America, encompasses the continuum of services for people as they age, including those with disabilities. We bring together the most inventive minds in the field to lead and innovate solutions that support older adults wherever they call home. For more information visit