Russell R. Barksdale, Jr. MPA/MHA, FACHE, has been named President and Chief Executive Officer of Waveny LifeCare Network. In his new position, Barksdale will be responsible for managing the strategic growth, operations, development and future direction of Waveny’s comprehensive continuum of healthcare.
The New Canaan-based nonprofit eldercare organization includes 76 skilled nursing beds at Waveny Care Center, 50 assisted living apartments for memory care at The Village, 37 independent living apartments at The Inn, a robust and growing home-based services division that includes Waveny Home Healthcare and Waveny at Home, an active Adult Day Program, the Brown Geriatric Evaluation Clinic and an outpatient rehabilitation facility. Barksdale’s appointment concludes a nationwide search launched earlier this year.
“On behalf of the Waveny board, I am pleased to announce the appointment of Russell Barksdale as our President and Chief Executive Officer,” said Tom Ferguson, Chairman of Waveny’s board of directors. “Russ is an experienced healthcare executive with a diverse background that spans many facets of the senior care and hospital industries. All those served by our organization will benefit from the depth and breadth of his experience. We look forward to continued excellence and growth under Russ’s leadership.”
Barksdale was introduced at Waveny’s Celebration of Community Generosity in late October, at which donors were recognized for their charitable contributions to the organization, and the public phase of the Forever Generosity Campaign for Waveny was announced. He said he was humbled by New Canaan’s support of the organization. “Residents of this town truly reinforce Waveny’s mission for providing the highest quality of compassionate care through their generous giving, as well as through their heartfelt service and volunteerism,” Barksdale said. “We will continue to be worthy of our community’s sustained support every single day.”
With over 30 years of healthcare experience, Barksdale most recently served as the Chief Executive Officer of Summit Holdings, and is the past President and Chief Executive Officer of Friendship Foundation. The largest retirement community in Virginia, Friendship touches over 1,000 seniors each day in capacities ranging from acute rehab, skilled nursing, assisted living, memory care, retirement living, pharmacy, homecare and hospice care. In his seven years with Friendship, Barksdale led the organization to dramatic improvements in both quality and financial performance.
Barksdale launched his healthcare career in 1985 as the head of St. Clare’s Hospital’s business development and strategic planning division. He was also instrumental in bringing Memorial Sloan Kettering to northern New Jersey, and in the development of one of New Jersey’s first continuing care retirement communities. Over the past two decades, he has managed multiple site campuses, acquired and merged healthcare systems, and developed new skilled, assisted living, adult day care, home care and retirement communities.
Barksdale received his undergraduate degree in pre-medicine from the Pennsylvania State University, holds a master’s degree in public healthcare administration from Rutgers University of New Jersey and is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.
“It is a true honor to be selected as the next leader of Waveny,” said Barksdale. “We stand on the shoulders of so many distinguished past and present community members. Working as a team of professionals, I know that our best days lie ahead. Together with our entire team, Waveny will forever seek and retain the highest levels of quality care, dignity for those we serve and the greatest degree of compassion for our elders. They deserve nothing short of our very best.”
Barksdale will reside in New Canaan with his wife Katie. “A commitment to being part of the fabric of this community and volunteerism are not only important traits for me but for our entire management team. Working together, nothing is impossible,” he said.
Waveny LifeCare Network provides a comprehensive continuum of healthcare to serve the changing needs of older adults from all areas. Waveny is a nonprofit organization that offers independent living at The Inn, assisted living and short-term respite care for people with memory impairment at The Village, and skilled nursing, inpatient and outpatient Rehabilitation Services at Waveny Care Center. It also includes the Brown Geriatric Evaluation Clinic, an Adult Day Program that provides free door-to-door transportation throughout most of lower Fairfield County, and an array of community-based services through Waveny Home Healthcare, Waveny at Home and Geriatric Care Management. For more information, call 1-855-WAVENY-1 or visit www.waveny.org.