Sr. M. Peter Lillian Di Maria, O.Carm., Director

Sr. M. Peter Lillian Di Maria, O.Carm., BA, LNHA 


Sr. M. Peter Lillian has over thirty-five years' experience in the continuum care ministry as a Carmelite Sister for the Aged and Infirm. Sr. Peter Lillian has served her community in many administrative positions and has lectured many times on Alzheimer's disease, palliative care, geriatric spiritual care, family care issues, stress reduction, leadership development, and team building. Sr. Peter has developed successful dementia-care programs, dementia care curriculums and assisted in developing a palliative care resource manual that is specific for geriatric care. Over the past fifteen years, Sr. Peter and the Avila Institute of Gerontology have worked with many Congregations concerning aging issues, as well as, providing congregational management and education services. She has a BA in Secondary Education and currently holds three state licenses as a Nursing Home Administrator.

Sr. Therese Mary Bukowski, O.Carm.

Sr. Therese Mary Bukowski, O.Carm., LNHA
Advisor and Accountant Assistant

Sr. Therese is a board-certified administrator in long-term care. She has more than 40 years of experience caring for the elderly in the Long-term Care setting. Her expertise and sharp eye is a valuable contribution when assisting site visits and reviewing data.

Kasia Siwik, Assistant Director

Katarzyna (Kasia) Siwik
Assistant Director

Kasia assists the Director in all aspects of the Avila Institute of Gerontology. Her main concentration is to assist Congregations throughout the United States with enhancing long-term care services for their members using her experience in the assisted living industry, while appreciating the unique needs of Religious living in community.

Tricia Misonznick, Head of Operations

Tricia Misonznick, BS
Head of Operations

Tricia manages our business office in Germantown, NY, overseeing our day-to-day operations, human resources and coordinating our annual conferences and programs. With over 18 years of experience in project and employee managements, she brings her logistics knowledge to Avila Institute’s management team. Tricia has a BS in Business Administration from SUNY Empire State College and is currently pursuing an MBA

Shane Cooney, Head of Education

Shane Cooney
Head of Education

Shane is responsible for developing educational content and programs for AIG. His main project is the CARE (Compassion, Advocacy, Recognition, Excellence) Program, which is designed to provide leadership skills education and professional development to staff working in Carmelite homes.

Alfred Norwood, Faculty

Alfred Norwood, BS, MBA

Alfred is an expert in physiological psychology who has worked with the Avila Institute for the last 15 years, developing and presenting workshops and in-services on a number of topics associated with aging. He has years of experience working as a consultant for long-term care systems and facilities and trained staff in the use of non-pharmaceutical, individualized care plans for residents with moderate to severe dementia.

Michelle Rogers, Faculty

Michelle Rogers
Faculty and Coordinator of Educational Services

Michelle’s vast experience in education as a teacher, professional development provider, instructional coach, and board member to Greene County’s special education preschool and Head Start enables her to fulfill her role at Avila, which focuses on revising, editing, and developing curriculum and training materials.

Clare Horn, Faculty

Clare Horn

Clare is a licensed social worker who has worked with the elderly for over 25 years, serving as a director of social work in various nursing home and rehabilitation centers. She provides consultation and education on various topics in aging to residents, families, and staff.

Erica Balazs, In-Service Coordinator

Erica Balazs, LPN
In-Service Coordinator

Erica has been a licensed practical nurse since 2010 with a special interest in Geriatrics and dementia care. She has been a part of the Avila Institute team since 2016 and has used her nursing background to assist with AIG’s programs. Erica is currently pursuing additional education to become a Registered nurse and will be using her knowledge to benefit staff at the Carmelite Homes.

Julia Sheehy, IT Manager

Julia Sheehy
IT Manager

Julia works with all projects and issues related to information technology, which includes monitoring network security, improving searchability of online content, developing databases for program and event records, and keeping Avila staff apprised of network updates and other information. She also ensures the operation of streaming equipment and provides end-user support for various technology issues.

Liz Lococo, Administrative Assistant

Liz Lococo, BA
Administrative Assistant

Liz works as a collaborator in many capacities within the Avila Institute. Her Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre Studies from SUNY New Paltz, gave Liz experience in performing arts management and design. She brings creativity to the development of marketing and education materials and execution of events. As a Catholic youth and young adult minister, Liz created and led dynamic programming about leadership and spirituality which has equipped her to assist in the facilitation the workshops, seminars, and webinars for the residents, staff, and families of the Carmelite homes.

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