Not only is Kim Townsend, an accomplished, published, well-respected leader and educator in the Central New York Community-serving the last 4 years as the CEO of Loretto, a non-profit organization, she has made it her mission to advocate for the needs of people in our community, especially older adults. At Loretto, Kim not only is focused on the needs of the aging population, but on the 2,500 dedicated caregivers that serve them every day. Kim leads a very diverse workforce, 65% live in the most impoverished zip codes in Syracuse, and has pioneered unique programs to support their basic needs--a Free Employee Health Clinic boasting 600 visits in the first 6 months, a car buying program and a free diaper service. She also partnered with CenterState CEO to help champion the Work Train program, resulting in more than 300 jobs at Loretto for New Americans in the CNY community, with an exceptional 89% retention rate vs. the standard 50%. Most notably, in addition to serving on the Executive Leadership Team for Syracuse Go Red for Women campaign from 2011-2018, she served as the Chair in 2016, raising more than $340,000 to fight heart disease in our community.
Over the course of Kim Townsend's career, she has served on numerous non-profits, including Leading Age, which develops policies and advocates for elder rights in New York State. She was also former chair of the Central New York Care Collaborative, and was appointed by the Governor to the New York State Workforce Investment Board, focused on workforce development. Under her leadership, Loretto has continued to expand and innovate care--now 19 programs and leadership in memory care-- partnering in research with Upstate and advocacy with the Alzheimer's Association. Kim regularly speaks regionally and nationally about elder reform and is a go-to expert when it comes to the impacts of the Affordable Care Act, Federal Legislation and tax reform as it impacts our older adult community.
While Kim has been an active lobbyist and involved in healthcare reform during her career at Welch Allyn, it was when she joined the Loretto Board of Directors in 2004 that her eyes were truly opened to the impacts of reforms on elders in our community. After serving for several years as an active board member she was asked to lead the company, and hasn't turned back. She's not only ensured a fiscally stable organization-- Loretto is Central New York's safety net provider and close to 70% of the residents are on Medicaid, so that's a significant success at a time of declining reimbursement. Kim has advocated for innovative programs like the Restorative Care Unit, the first of its kind in Central New York to offer advanced monitoring capabilities in a more homelike setting; secured a state grant for the expansion of our successful PACE program and continued to push for the development of more services, programming and research for dementia care, effectively positioning Loretto as the lead provider of memory care for residents with all levels of the disease, regardless of income level. Kim has the heart of a true champion.