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2018 LeadingAge Kansas Foundation Scholarship Recipients Announced

2018 Scholarship Winners

Topeka, Kan – Twelve individuals have been selected to receive a LeadingAge Kansas Foundation Scholarship through the 2018 Call for Applications. The individuals work in LeadingAge Kansas member organizations and are contributing to the health and wellness of individuals living in nursing homes and assisted living residences across Kansas. The scholarships will be awarded in Manhattan on October 5, 2018 at the Manhattan Convention Center during the LeadingAge Kansas Policy and Leadership Conference.

“These exceptional individuals are receiving scholarships ranging from $300 to $1,500 to advance their knowledge to benefit Kansas seniors”, stated Dana Weaver, acting executive director for the Foundation. “Their applications impressed the Scholarship Committee and we are thrilled to help them achieve their goals and dreams.”

The 2018 Scholarship Recipients include:

  • Tasha Alvarez Garnica, Director of Nursing at Kansas Christian Home in Newton is working toward her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at Oklahoma Wesleyan University
  • Dayna Babler, Human Resources Associate with Brewster Place in Topeka is seeking a Bachelor’s Degree in Management with an emphasis in Human Resources through Fort Hays State University
  • Ashley Baker, Co-Director of Nursing at Brewster Place in Topeka is working toward her Adult Care Home Administrator’s License through KACE
  • Mary Chipley, Director of Nursing at High Plains Retirement Village in Lakin is working toward a Board Certification in Gerontological Nursing through the American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • Malayia Decker, Director of Mission and Spiritual Care at Via Christi Village Georgetown in Wichita is seeking a Master of Divinity degree through Regent University
  • Sonja Hammer, MDS Coordinator at Presbyterian Manor in Sterling is working toward receiving a Resident Assessment Coordinator–Certified Program credential from AANAC
  • Jenna Lehrman, Director of Nursing at Pine Village in Moundridge is working toward a Board Certification in Gerontological Nursing through the American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • Evelyn Morales, CNA at the Presbyterian Manor in Lawrence is seeking a Certified Medication Aide (CMA) credential through Johnson County Community College
  • Megan Schmidt, Dietary Aide and Cook at Wheatstate Manor in Whitewater is seeking a Certified Dietary Manager credential through the Association of Nutrition & Foodservice Professionals
  • Candy Silbaugh, CNA at Wheatstate Manor in Whitewater is seeking a Certified Mediation Aide (CMA) credential through Bethel House
  • Branda Tilley, CNA/CMA at Lone Tree Retirement Center in Meade is working toward her Associate Degree in Nursing from Seward County Community College
  • Amy Wedel, Senior Living Advisor at Schowalter Villa in Hesston is receiving the Bob Bethel Memorial Scholarship to become a Licensed Adult Care Home Administrator through KACE

This is the sixth year that the LeadingAge Kansas Foundation has awarded scholarships to deserving individuals wishing to advance their education to support older Kansans. To date, the Foundation has provided nearly $50,000 to 61 individuals. The program was developed to support individuals in their advancement in knowledge and expertise in the field of aging services.

The scholarships are made possible through generous donations from individuals and companies across Kansas including LeadingAge Kansas members and Central National Bank.


The LeadingAge Kansas Foundation was formed in 1988 to advance the health and well-being of older adults by providing research, education, training and the dissemination of information for providers of long-term supports and services. Learn more at www.leadingagekansas.org/foundation.