Dedicated Talent

Guided by the Benedictine values and a passion for senior care, Saint Therese employees extend genuine kindness and compassion to residents. We take great pride in hiring industry-leading, talented professionals who find true purpose in our mission. As each employee uses his or her unique set of skills and experience to grow the heart of our communities, we work together, inspired by a single, simple goal—do ordinary things with extraordinary love.


Our corporate leadership team and community executive directors serve with unparalleled commitment, generosity and philanthropy. Get to know them and contact us to learn more.
 

Leadership

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Barbara Rode

Chief Executive Officer
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A leader whose innovations have shaped health care in Minnesota for more than 30 years, Barbara Rode, LNHA, MS, CNCB, has been serving seniors since 1972. She earned an associate degree in business management from Century College and a bachelor’s degree from Bethel College and Seminary in business organizational studies. She completed coursework in long-term care administration at the University of Minnesota and obtained licensure as a nursing home administrator. In 2001, Barbara obtained a master’s degree in gerontology from Nova Southeastern University in Florida. In addition, to support her work in a Catholic-based organization, Barbara earned certification in Catholic health care directives from the National Catholic Bioethics Center in 2003.

Barbara has served Saint Therese as President and CEO for more than 18 years and is responsible for overseeing more than 1,000 employees serving more than 2,000 Minnesotan seniors and their families. She has championed exceptional growth of the organization, expanding thoughtfully from a single entity in New Hope to five campuses across the Twin Cities. Barbara is passionate about building Saint Therese communities around what’s right for its residents, families, and neighborhoods. Her favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is welcoming one another because it celebrates the Benedictine Values that our organization was founded on and exhibits the true spirit of our communities.

Barbara is an active member of the senior care community on both the national and local level, having served on LeadingAge’s board of directors and several of the organization’s committees. In 2007, Barbara received “Employer of the Year” from the Minnesota Dietary Managers Association. The Women’s Leadership Trust Association recognized Barbara in 2014 as one of the “Top Women in Health Care Leadership.” Most recently, in February 2019, Barbara was honored by LeadingAge Minnesota with the Ray Johnson Pioneer Leadership Award.

Outside of work, Barbara is an avid golfer.

Three words that describe Barbara: Passionate, caring, dedicated

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Kym Fisher

Chief Human Resource Officer
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Kym began working at Saint Therese in July 2003. She has extensive knowledge of federal and state labor laws, regulations and legal compliance, employee relations and development, organizational effectiveness, change management, conflict resolution, benefits administration, workers' compensation, OSHA guidelines and union negotiations. Kym earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Minnesota, as well as certificates in industrial relations, SPHR, workers’ compensation (CWC) and OSHA 30.

Kym’s favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is providing heartfelt purpose. She believes serving others brings value to her own purpose in life.

“Hiring people who embrace our guiding behaviors and who fit our culture ensures happier employees and higher quality of care for our seniors.”

Outside of work, Kym raises, trains and shows purebred dogs.

Three words that describe Kym: Impactful, committed, knowledgeable

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Calvin Shelangoski

Chief Financial Officer
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With more than 12 years of experience in senior care, Calvin leads the organization’s financial strategy in a way that honors the Saint Therese mission and positively impact the lives of seniors. Calvin earned his degree in business administration with a focus on finance from the University of Iowa.

Calvin was introduced to the senior living industry through his role as finance director at Lutheran Living, a CCRC in Muscatine, Iowa. Most recently, he served as vice president of finance at WesleyLife, where he led the organization through a period of financial growth and multiple expansion projects starting in 2012.

Prior to joining Saint Therese as chief financial officer in February 2018, Calvin was actively involved with nonprofit trade associations in Iowa. He is a former member of LeadingAge Iowa and one of the organization’s trusted financial consultants as having served as a reimbursement consultant for the association and its members.

Calvin’s favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is welcoming one another.

“Welcoming one another is a key behavior every team member, resident, family member and volunteer can share and take part in at Saint Therese. It’s a remarkable, ever-present feeling experienced when visiting our communities.”

A retired swimmer, Calvin enjoys running, traveling and spending time with his family.

Three words that describe Calvin: Passionate, energetic, sincere

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Amy Taylor-Greengard

Chief Operations Officer of Ascend Rehabilitation
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Amy has been with Saint Therese since November 2004. She earned her degree in physical therapy from Marquette University in Milwaukee, is licensed by the Minnesota State Board of Physical Therapy and is a Geriatric Certified Specialist (GCS). Amy is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Minnesota, teaching rehab management to graduates enrolled in the Geriatric clinical Residency program, and serves as a geriatric residency site supervisor. Amy holds memberships in the American Physical Therapy Association and the Academy of Geriatrics Physical Therapy.

Amy enjoys being a part of a progressive organization grounded in doing the right thing for the people it serves. Her favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is valuing each individual.

“Taking time to listen shows others you truly value their needs, concerns, opinions and who they are as a person.”

Amy lives on a hobby farm with her husband, daughter and son, where they enjoy home improvement projects, outdoor activities and animals. Amy is also a champion handler of Arabian horses within national competitions.

Three words that describe Amy: Passionate, dedicated, kind

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Nicki Cook

Vice President of Revenue
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Nicki began with Saint Therese in August 2017 and has more than 30 years of experience in long-term care, skilled nursing and housing finance. Nicki’s favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is lending a hand. She finds satisfaction at the end of each day, knowing she lessens residents’ stress, helps her coworkers and contributes to the goals and values of Saint Therese.

“Everyone needs a helping hand now and then, whether in their work or personal life. I am a caregiver at heart. Being there for others is one way I can show God’s light through me.”

Outside of work, Nicki can be found reading, playing trivia, cooking, spending time with her children and grandchildren and playing with her three dogs.

Three words that describe Nicki: Loyal, driven, caring

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Marilyn Ramirez

Vice President of Clinical Operations and Reimbursement
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Marilyn joined Saint Therese in May 2017. She oversees clinical programming, education, reimbursement and regulatory compliance. With 15 years of experience, Marilyn brings a wealth of knowledge in acute, post-acute and long-term care with an emphasis in clinical training, education and payment systems. Marilyn earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing and is currently pursuing her Master of Science in Nursing at Saint Catherine’s University. She holds certifications in resident assessment, wound care and infection control.

Marilyn’s favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is spreading kindness and compassion. She loves being part of a mission-driven organization, whose heart is kindness and compassion for residents, families and employees.

Outside of work, Marilyn enjoys reading, running and spending time with family.

Three words that describe Marilyn: Caring, creative, dedicated...

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Jeff Thorne

Vice President of Operations
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Jeff has been with Saint Therese since February 2019. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from the University of Saint Thomas and a Mini-MBA with the Carlson School of Management. In addition, he holds a nursing home administrator license and Eden Alternative Associate certificate. Jeff has over 30 years of experience as a long-term care administrator, providing corporate operations support to senior living communities.

Jeff’s favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is lending a hand because every employee of Saint Therese, regardless of position, is present to serve residents. He enjoys working with talented colleagues to provide extraordinary care and service.

Outside of work, Jeff enjoys spending time with his family, traveling and golfing.

Three words that describe Jeff: Integrity-driven, servant leader, lifelong learner

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Meghan Bethke

Vice President of Philanthropy
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Meghan joined Saint Therese in October 2019. She earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in nonprofit management from Hamline University and brings nearly 15 years of experience in philanthrophy to Saint Therese. Meghan specializes in annual giving, major gifts, planned giving and capital campaigns and has supported teams in social service, health care, education and animal welfare. Prior to joining Saint Therese, Meghan served as Director of Philanthrophy for Animal Humane Society, one of the leading animal welfare organizations in the country. She is also a member of the Minnesota Planned Giving Council and the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

Meghan's favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is providing heartfelt purpose because, at its core, fundraising is about connecting people and their passions to worthy organizations. She says through her work, she helps people find their own heartfelt purpose and opportunity to give of what's been given to them to help others.

Three words that describe Meghan: Genuine, Strategic, Positive 

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Dinah Martin Kmetz

Executive Director of Housing and Special Projects at Saint Therese of New Hope
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As a licensed nursing home administrator with demonstrated success in project management and business development, Dinah has served Saint Therese seniors for more than 17 years. Her ongoing support has been key in the thoughtful expansion of Saint Therese's continuum of care throughout the Twin Cities. 

Dinah holds a Bachelor of Science in Health Care Administration and master's degree in business administration from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Dinah also has a certificate in sales and marketing from LeadingAge. She is a graduate of LeadingAge Minnesota's inaugural Leadership Academy and continues to participate in the program as a coach. 

Outside of work, Dinah enjoys playing softball and volleyball. She also is a CHAASE Board of Adviser Council Member at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

Dinah's favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is valuing each individual. She says she has been fortunate to get to know and care for so many people throughout her years at Saint Therese.

"Seeing residents as their own person makes a huge difference. Learning their story, meeting their families and finding out about what makes each of them unique is the great privilege of our caregiving profession."

Three words that describe Dinah: Dependable, dedicated, engaged 

Administrators

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Paul Metzler

Executive Director of Saint Therese at Oxbow Lake
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Paul began working with Saint Therese in October 2014. He has more than 10 years of experience in senior care and specializes in long-term care, independent and assisted living as well as managing new construction and expansion projects. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from St. Cloud State University and is licensed as a nursing home administrator.

Paul’s favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is spreading kindness and compassion. He enjoys ensuring Saint Therese residents are well-cared for and hearing they are happy to call Saint Therese home.

Outside of work, Paul enjoys working with cars, motorcycling and spending time with family.

Three words that describe Paul: Humble, kind, compassionate

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Brooke Peoples

Executive Director of Saint Therese of New Hope
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Brooke has been with Saint Therese since February 2017. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Health Care Administration and a Bachelor of Science in Dietetics from the University of Wisconsin. As a team-oriented leader, Brooke has built a solid career in skilled nursing and senior residence operations, and her efforts have been recognized by the American Health Care Association (AHCA) with a Bronze, Silver and four Gold Awards. She is an AHCA/NCAL Senior Examiner and Administrator-in-Training Practicum Program Preceptor.

Brooke enjoys the sense of belonging she finds at Saint Therese. She says it is a community that unifies residents, families and caring professionals as one. Brooke’s favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is providing heartfelt purpose, which she believes is the driver of life.

“If you’re living without purpose, you’re not fully alive. We give life to all we serve.”

Outside of work, Brooke enjoys cooking, baking, yoga, reading and spending time with her two sons.

Three words that describe Brooke: Genuine, committed, fun

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Katelyn Nowack

Executive Director of Saint Therese of Woodbury
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Katelyn has been with Saint Therese since May 2017. She earned her bachelor’s degree in health care administration from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and found her love for seniors while working as a nursing assistant and medication technician in assisted living and memory care. Now as a licensed nursing home administrator, Katelyn is passionate about finding innovative ways to enrich the lives of those with dementia.

Katelyn’s favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is providing heartfelt purpose. She enjoys supporting other leaders, caregivers, residents and family members while watching them thrive.

“We are people taking care of people. There is nothing more rewarding or challenging. Every day we focus on making choices for the betterment of the residents and employees we serve.”

Outside of work, Katelyn can be found playing with her yellow Labrador retriever, spending time outdoors, reading a good book or laughing at a comedy show.

Three words that describe Katelyn: Compassionate, innovative, devoted

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Nolay Freeman

Director of Palliative Care at Saint Therese at St. Odilia
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After graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Minnesota, Nolay joined Saint Therese in January 2011. She specializes in nurse management, case management and palliative care and holds a LeadingAge Minnesota Leadership Academy certificate.

Nolay views hospice and palliative care as an opportunity to serve others. She strives to do all she can to comfort and care for residents and their loved ones. Nolay’s favorite Saint Therese guiding behavior is spreading kindness and compassion because it is fundamental to her work. She encourages each of her team members to take time to listen, offer support and simply be a presence of love.

“Every aspect of my work is rewarding. I love caring for residents whose well-being has been entrusted to me. I love my team, and I truly believe in the mission of Saint Therese.”

Outside of work, Nolay enjoys cooking and reviewing Judge Judy’s latest verdicts.

Three words that describe Nolay: Compassionate, dedicated, respectful