Emerald Heights currently has available assisted living apartments ready for move in. Click here to learn more!

Meet the Leaders of Emerald Heights Assisted Living: Annie Zell and Sharon Cruse

April 6, 2023

There are few people in this world who are as passionate about their careers as Annie Zell and Sharon Cruse, two of the integral members of the Emerald Heights Assisted Living team. 

Both women have decades of experiences and unmatched enthusiasm for their roles at Emerald Heights. Annie Zell, the Health Services Administrator responsible for all healthcare services provided on campus, joined Emerald Heights in 2012. For the last 10 years, Annie has come to work with a positive outlook and a smile on her face. 

Although Annie knew she wanted to work in healthcare, she did not originally plan to find a career in senior living. Annie took a course in geriatrics and intergenerational programming when studying at James Madison University. The deep interest she had in this class put Annie on a path to joining an industry working with older adults. After graduating, Annie started her career in senior living and never looked back.  

“I love coming into work every day and getting to not only work with the amazing staff we have at Emerald Heights, but really connecting with our residents,” said Annie. “They have the best advice, most interesting stories and overall are just amazing people to spend your day with.” 

Sharon Cruse, Assisted Living Manager, oversees the day-to-day operations of Assisted Living. Since she joined Emerald Heights 14 years ago no two days have ever looked the same for her. 

Sharon found her passion for senior living through her children. Her first job in senior living was at a skilled nursing community that offered childcare at a reduced cost for employees. As a new mom who wanted to be close to her kids while still working, this was an ideal situation. It was through the interactions between her little kids and the older residents, that sparked Sharon’s love for senior living. After this experience, Sharon knew she found her dream job. 

“Watching my children run down the halls with residents brought so much happiness to my heart,” said Sharon. “These simple interactions changed the course of my life. Now I come into work and really have a passion for what I get to do. It always comes back to the residents and I am lucky to live vicariously through them.”

Both women are proud to lead a 60-person team in Assisted Living. This all-star staff offers residents any care they may need including different forms of therapy, hygiene assistance, transportation, doctors’ appointments, medication management, daily activity support, and more. Residents also have access to all amenities and resources offered in Independent Living including social groups, continued learning, dining, activities, trips, fitness programs, and more. 

Emerald Heights is offering direct admissions to Assisted Living for those who are looking to move into senior living but may need more support than what is offered at Independent Living. 

Emerald Heights is a Life Care Community often known as a continuing care retirement community (CCRC) which is a great way for residents to receive a vast range of services as their care needs change. It also provides the comfort of knowing there is onsite care and space available in Assisted Living, Memory Care and Skilled Nursing if it is needed. 

This model will still bring the majority of residents to Assisted Living, but now there are few open spots available to those who aren’t currently residents in Emerald Height’s Independent Living. 

Assisted living currently has 40 apartments in the community with six spots open. If someone you know is interested in a direct admission to Assisted Living, direct them to (425) 556-8100 for more information.