Members and potential members look to the CALA Board of Directors for representation and leadership. To have a better vision of all that these Assisted Living leaders do for their companies and CALA members, we asked them a series of questions. Their answers illuminate their ideas on work, community, and caring for seniors, and show the breadth and variety of companies represented on the CALA Board of Directors. To celebrate these thoughtful, dedicated people working on our members’ behalf, we will feature weekly interviews with each board member, available here and on the CALA Board of Directors webpage.
Vicki Clark has worked in the senior housing field for 31 years. She is a Director for Vintage Senior Living, a company headquartered in Newport Beach with 21 communities in California.
1. Why do you work in Assisted Living?
My career started off in property management, then spun off into senior apartments and retirement communities before Assisted Living was an industry. Through the years, as the needs of our seniors began to change, the industry was formed. I feel more like Assisted Living chose me and could not imagine doing any other type of work.
2. What profession other than yours would you like to attempt, and why?
Without a doubt, architecture. One of the advantages of working in operations is the access we have to provide architects, builders, and designers with information to help build a community that works for our residents. From the size of the units to the distance of a hallway to how many square feet we need in the dining room, it’s all important. Being a great architect is a critical part of making sure the community is more than sticks and bricks, but a true home.
3. What are the most important things we should know about your company?
Vintage has, by design, chosen to remain a small regional operator. All our communities are located in California excluding one phenomenal community in Tacoma. As Eric Davidson, co-founder, has often said, “It is important in our culture to keep the company at a size that we will know every executive director’s name and something about their families.”
4. How would you describe your experience on the CALA board?
The opportunity to sit on the CALA board has been a great learning experience. We all see our respective companies as respected leaders in the industry, but I walk away from each board meeting with a renewed energy that each and every one of us share the same passion of making the aging process better for today’s seniors.
5. How would your colleagues describe you in three words?
Confident, ebullient, and magnanimous.
6. What do you enjoy doing in your downtime?
I adore travel. My trip next year to Antarctica will complete my goal of traveling to all seven continents. If an African safari is on your bucket list, I encourage you to “make it happen.”
7. If you could trade places with any other person for a week, with whom would it be, and why?
Any philanthropist…Andrew Carnegie, Audrey Hepburn, or Bill Gates. As Mother Teresa said, “The miracle is not that we do this work, but that we are happy to do it.”