About Woldenberg Village

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Our Team

Joseph E. Townsend, Executive DirectorJoseph E. Townsend
Executive Director
Joe Townsend, a licensed nursing home administrator since 1984, is an accomplished lecturer and seminar-leader in nursing management and leadership, and co-authored “The Principles of Health Care Administration”. Mr. Townsend earned his B.A. from Northwestern (LA) State University, a M.Ed. from LSU-Baton Rouge, and a Master of Healthcare Administration from the University of Mississippi. He was formerly the Chief Operating Officer for a fifteen-facility nursing home organization and was Director of Operations of an eight-facility group. Mr. Townsend has a history of “no deficiency” surveys and high quality assurance ratings. In addition, he has presented programs, across the country, preparing Administrator-in-Training participants for the federal nursing home administrator’s exam.   
Mylene Upson, CPAMylene Upson, CPA
Director of Finance 
Mylene Upson joined the Woldenberg Village team in May 2014. She is responsible for accounting, budgeting, revenue cycle and corporate compliance activities. Mylene graduated from UNO with a MS in Accounting and is a CPA. She previously worked at Ochsner Health System in various Accounting and Revenue Cycle roles and served as a staff auditor at Deloitte & Touche.
Russell C. ByrdRussell C. Byrd, Jr.
Director of Facilities 
Russell C. Byrd, Jr. has been the Director of Facilities at Woldenberg Village since January of 2010. He is responsible for plant operations, projects, maintenance, environmental services, security and emergency preparedness. He previously worked in hotel and real estate development and has more than 25 years of experience in the field. Byrd is a graduate of Louisiana Technical College.
Veronica Hixon, Chief Nursing OfficerVeronica Hixon
Chief Nursing Officer
Veronica Hixon has 30 years experience in critical care, community health and nursing administration. She graduated from Charity School of Nursing and is currently enrolled in Loyola University School of Nursing Master’s program. Mrs. Hixon interests are staff development and training.

Annette Vicks, LPN
Assistant Director of Nursing
Annette Vicks comes to Woldenberg Village with 23 years experience in nursing and healthcare. She is certified in IV and wound care, specialized in ventilators, worked in medical surgical wings for over 12 years and has worked with psychiatric and prison populations. Prior to coming to Woldenberg Village, Annette was ADON for a major area medical center. At present, Annette is pursuing her registered nursing degree.

Tina Bonstaff
Marketing Manager

Tina Bonstaff joined Woldenberg Village with over 18 years of marketing, public relations and project development experience. Her expertise is in healthcare marketing and sales. She graduated from Northwestern State University with a B.A. in both broadcast journalism and public relations/marketing. While in college, Mrs. Bonstaff was selected from over 300 universities to participate in The Walt Disney World College Program. At Walt Disney World, she completed courses based on Disney’s business and marketing philosophies and operating practices. She successfully graduated from the program in 1991.

Tatiana LockTatiana Lock
Director of Human Resources and Payroll
Tatiana Lock has been at Woldenberg Village since January 2010. She brings over 17 years of Human Resources experience. Tatiana is responsible for all aspects of Human Resources and Payroll, as well as corporate compliance for Woldenberg Village. Tatiana received her bachelor’s degree in business administration and a minor in hotel restaurant and tourism from the University of New Orleans.

Melissa O'Brien, LDN
Dietary Manager
Registered Dietitian
Melissa O'Brien joined the Woldenberg Village team in late 2012. She graduated from LSU in 2011 with a BS in Nutritional Sciences/Dietetics. She completed her dietetic internship through the University of Houston where she rotated throughout the Texas Medical Center in various areas of dietetics. Melissa is committed to providing the highest quality of care for all residents by planning, managing, evaluating, and implementing nutritional services in conjunction with educating residents about nutrition and administering medical nutrition therapy.

Kathy MorrisKathy Morris, MBA/HCM
Business Office Manager
Kathy Morris comes to Woldenberg Village with 25 years experience in medical billing and collections. She is responsible for managing the day to day operations of the business office. Kathy graduated from the University Of New Orleans where she obtained her General Studies Degree with a concentration in Medical Coding. She graduated from the University of Phoenix where she obtained her Master’s Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Healthcare Management. Kathy also works with a local proprietary school where she has been an instructor of Medical Insurance Billing for the past ten years.

Rita Austin, Activity DirectorRita Austin
Activity Director

Rita Austin has served as the Activity Director at Woldenberg Village since 2004. Rita is responsible for on and off campus activities for residents as well as the transportation and volunteer program and the beauty salon. She studied criminal justice and social work at Southeastern University in Hammond and received her certification as a certified nurse aide.

Rosylin Ross, Environmental Services ManagerRosalyn Ross
Environmental Services Manager
Miss Ross has been part of the Touro system over 30 years. She has been with Woldenberg Village since 2001 in the capacity of managing all housekeeping and laundry services. In her time with Touro, Miss Ross has served as a housekeeper, coordinator, supervisor and service center representative.

Robert HoernerRobert “Bobby” Hoerner
Director of Social Services
Robert “Bobby” Hoerner, MSW: Graduated with a Master’s Degree from Tulane School of Social Work in 1997, he has been the Director of Social Services at Woldenberg since December, 2006. His duties at Woldenberg include all psychosocial assessments, cognition/mood assessments, discharge planning, care plan conference coordinator, liaison to families for community services, coordination of Alzheimer’s support group and coordination with therapy department for home based rehab services. He also has completed ongoing training in Alzheimer’s and Dementia studies. He has been awarded numerous certificates during his employment at Woldenberg. In addition, he is the lead singer for the popular local band, Bag of Donuts.

Rachel PalmerRachel Palmer, LMSW
Social Worker
Rachel is a New Orleans native who joined the Woldenberg Village family in March 2014. After graduating from Benjamin Franklin High School, she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Loyola University. She went on to receive her Master’s Degree in Social Work from Tulane University in 2009. Rachel has since worked as a social worker in the fields of domestic violence, hospice and end-of-life care, psychiatric care, and also with the federal prison population. Rachel is currently working on her Clinical Social Work License, in order to further her professional goals.

Andrea Centofanti, BSW
Director of The Azaleas Assisted Living Community
Andrea graduated from Southeastern Louisiana University with a BS in Social Work and has over ten years of experience in the field of Long Term Care as well as Mental Health Services. Andrea’s experience includes Social Service Manager, Patient Care Liaison for mental health services, psychosocial assessments, cognition/mood assessments, discharge planning, care plan conference coordinator, liaison to families for community services, and coordination with therapy department for home based rehab services. Andrea is focused on providing unsurpassed resident care to every individual, as well as, assisting with life transitions to the long term care environment.
Debra HamdenDebra Hamdan
Director of The Villas Independent Living

Debra Hamdan has been with the Villas Independent Living Community since 2002 as the Director of Independent Living. Debra is responsible for the daily management of the community and has 18 years of experience.

Laura PhillipLaura Phillip
Admissions Director of Willow Wood Skilled Nursing 

Laura Phillip joined Woldenberg Village with over 15 years of Nursing Home and Hospital experience. Her career expertise includes Admissions, Billing and Collections, and Pharmacy Tech. She is responsible for overseeing all admissions to the skilled nursing facility, Willowwood.

© 2014 Touro. All rights reserved.
Touro Infirmary, 1401 Foucher Street, New Orleans, Louisiana 70115
Phone: 504-897-7011 Pencil
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