Bernice Francois is a Senior House Manager for our Quenita home and also oversees operations in three of our other homes. She was born in New York, but relocated to Florida in 2005 where she started working as a caregiver. Bernice is a happily married mother of three lovely children.
Bernice has been with Sanctuary by Strive for nearly seven years, where she continually cares for the residents, the staff, and their families. She was once asked” Why did you choose to work with the elderly?” Her reply was, “Something that hasn’t changed throughout the years of my experience is my good attitude and my willingness to always advocate for the residents”. She looks forward to continuing to care for your family.
Alva Arrington is the Nurse Administrator for Sanctuary by Strive. Her knowledge base comes with overseeing all operations and ensuring residents receive the care they need in compliance with state and federal regulations. Alva’s compassion for our residents comes from years of experience, care, devotion, and continued education of Alzheimer’s disease for the well-being all residents.
Alva’s nursing career began in the Emergency Department of Jackson Park Hospital in Chicago, IL. She remained there for 7 years and obtained experience in many medical areas. Later, Alva worked with the Department of Veteran Affairs as a Family Support Coordinator for 11 years.
After her mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, she became interested in learning more about the disease. Her desire to help residents and families then led her to specialize in this area. Alva has worked in assisted living/memory care for the last 15 years as a Health & Wellness Director.
Alva has one daughter and two lovely grandchildren. She enjoys spending time with them and introducing them to new experiences in life.
Rebecca Root is the Director of Operations for Sanctuary by Strive. In her current role Rebecca works with the team members to handle all the human resources and payroll needs, as well as all accounting needs for the communities. Rebecca believes in advancing the mission, teamwork, collaboration, integrity, and being a champion for both the residents and the staff who are providing care and services. She is competitive and always wants the team to excel and exceed expectations.
Rebecca brings over 25 years of experience in the senior living industry. She received her master’s degree in health care administration from Utica College. Rebecca is also a licensed nursing home administrator in the state of Florida.
Melissa Bossert began her career in senior living over 26 years ago. She grew up in New England and met her husband of 25 years, Andy, at Johnson and Wales University where she studied Travel and Tourism. Her parents and grandmother, whose suitcases were always packed and ready to go on an adventure, had influenced her love of travel. While working in the travel industry she took senior groups on tours across the United States and this is where she learned about senior living.
Melissa started as a Resident Lifestyle Facilitator at Westminster Towers where she spent 17 years creating experiences for over 300 residents, writing articles for the senior living industry, and giving speeches on how to create a well-rounded wellness program for all to enjoy. After serving as her next company’s interim Executive Director, she moved into an Executive Director/Regional role at Plantation Oaks Senior Living for 5 years. She joined Legend Senior Living as their Area Director of Operations for North Florida and moved in the Regional Director of Operations for Florida overseeing all operations aspects of 10 Assisted Living and Memory Care communities for the last 3 years.
Melissa’s commitment to have seniors enjoy life to the fullest is evident in the work she does to create environments for residents to thrive. Melissa enjoys volunteering at Central Florida organizations and is passionate about the Ronald McDonald House and Habitat for Humanity. Melissa and her husband have one son, Holden, who is a graduate of American University and works for the Defenders of Wildlife in Washington, DC.
Brandon Rowley is the Regional Executive Chef for Strive Senior Living and Strive at Fern Park. He is responsible for developing and planning menus, managing food cost and inventory, maintaining quality standards, and leading, mentoring, and managing the culinary team. Brandon’s vision for Strive Senior Living’s dining experience is to craft simple cuisine that enlivens the senses and surpasses your expectations.
Brandon graduated high school in 2002, and attended Le Cordon Bleu in Orlando, Florida where he graduated in 2005. He started his career working in country clubs and hotels before entering the senior living industry in 2008. Brandon believes that serving meals and caring for seniors is perhaps the greatest reward we have.