To Our Residents
We endeavor to provide compassionate quality care that promotes dignity, independence, autonomy, and self-esteem. Our environment is a joyful one that nurtures the spirit.
To Our Staff
We endeavor to provide you with the systems, training, and tools that will allow you to focus on providing quality, loving, and compassionate care to our residents. In providing a supportive environment, Sydney Creek seeks to encourage personal growth and the enhancement of self-esteem amongst all personnel.
Kellie comes by her take-charge, problem-solving, straightforward style naturally. She grew up a tomboy with rodeo in her bones. Growing up in Bakersfield, she roped and rode with the best of them; and when it came time to go to work, she landed a position as Activities Director in the Alzheimer’s Unit of her local hospital. Soon, she was promoted to Associate Administrator. That was 30 years ago, and she has worked in geriatrics and dementia care ever since.
Receiving specialized training with the Alzheimer’s Association, Kellie worked with David Troxel, the internationally acclaimed expert who literally wrote the book on Alzheimer’s care. She earned her RCFE license early on and comes to Sydney Creek with just the right mix of long experience and intuitive gifts. “I know their language,” she says. “I relate to their reality.”
Kellie’s hopes for Sydney Creek residents know no bounds. Through innovative programs for mental stimulation, decreased anxiety, and better self-esteem, she sees a vastly improved quality of life for all.
Director of Wellness
Having lost her mother at just four years old, Kahlua was raised by her father—with lots of help from her grandparents. So it’s only natural that she feels drawn to, and at home with, the elderly. Born in San Luis Obispo, and raised in South County, Kahlua graduated from Arroyo Grande High School and earned her CNA at Hancock College in Santa Maria. Soon after, she earned her LVN.
“I had two aunts who were nurses, and an uncle who was a physician,” she explained. “I could see how fulfilled they were in their jobs and I wanted to be like them.”
Before coming to Sydney Creek, Kahlua racked up experience providing home care for individual clients, and then worked in a continuing care community as both a CNA and as a Medical Technician. She also has grandparents who suffer from dementia and Lewy Body Dementia, which gives her first-hand knowledge of these diseases and their effects.
About her position at Sydney Creek, Kahlua says, “Every day, I love seeing the residents as part of my life; and knowing that I’m a part of theirs. Sydney Creek is so unique in our industry…we are continually working to bring our residents the best quality of life possible. I love being a part of that, too.”
Life Enrichment Director
Raised in one of the hottest places in America—Needles, California—Anne-Marie Browder is an expert in the art of adaptation. Her parents were early “event planners,” holding family celebrations throughout the year. Her grandmother, Marion, was Anne-Marie’s best friend, teaching her how to love without judgment. Her grandfather was diagnosed with dementia and Anne-Marie spent much of her time helping to care for him. This unique set of life experiences, plus great educational choices that include marketing, psychology and massage therapy, have led Anne-Marie to a job she loves.
“I know that I’m part of the reason our residents smile, and I love that I can be a shoulder to lean on in their tougher moments … as they are for me,” she says. “I want to inform the larger community that our residents are still capable of helping and inspiring others.”
Adult Day Care Director
Having earned her degree in the Behavioral Sciences, Krystal Cornejo’s first professional job was with the Camarillo Health Care District as Activities Leader for the adult day care program. It was there that she began to learn everything she could about Alzheimer’s disease and the other dementias, knowing she had found her calling.
“I think it’s a privilege to take care of the generation that took care of us,” she says, describing her participants as extended family. “We live, play and laugh together.”
Krystal works hard to ensure that Sydney Creek continues to be the beacon of hope that families are looking for: “A positive, caring, and safe place for residents and families alike.”
In her spare time, Krystal enjoys spending time with her loving husband and daughter. “They’re my happiness,” she says. She also enjoys exploring the central coast and keeping up with her photography hobby.
Community Relations Coordinator
Benjamin Morris found what he was always meant to do by accident.
Born in Corpus Christi, Texas, he was one of six children and went to work at the age of 15. He spent 10 years in the restaurant business and another three in landscape construction. In 2013, an unexpected lay-off led him to jump into something he never thought he’d do. And that turned out to be something he now hopes never to leave—working with seniors.
Benjamin worked at Las Brisas retirement community for four years before coming to his current position at Sydney Creek. He began in the kitchen and worked his way up quickly to the lead sales position by declaring “I have what can’t be taught, and everything else I can learn.”
We agree. Knowledgeable, talented, and gifted with a natural affinity for the elderly, Benjamin works daily to share what he knows with Sydney Creek families and the larger community.
Business Office Manager
With not one, but two of her grandparents affected by dementia, Heather Chapman sees first-hand how it affects them and her family. With a decade-long background in Behavioral Health, supplemented by university courses in Special Education, Heather is uniquely well-qualified for her position at Sydney Creek.
She started as a Med Tech, was promoted to Assistant Director of Wellness, and was then offered her current job as Business Office Manager. “Whether it’s family members, residents, or co-workers, just knowing I’m helping to make things easier on them makes me happy,” she says.
When she's not at Sydney Creek, Heather likes spending time at one of our pretty beaches, hiking our hillsides, and hanging with her husband and son who, she says, "are amazing, and inspire me each and every day."
Dining Services Manager
Bringing a broad-based set of food industry experiences to The Village at Sydney Creek, Bonifacio Aboites was part of the first kitchen crew in 2000, when Sydney Creek opened its doors to the community.
Born and raised in the state of Guanajuato, Mexico, Bonifacio moved to California in 1992 when he landed a job in fresh produce. He was soon snatched up by the famous Apple Farm restaurant where he worked his way up from prep cook to line chef, and eventually to server. Preferring “the back of the house” to the front, Bonifacio spent the next decade in the kitchen of the popular SLO Brew as well as a long stint at New Frontiers grocery store before assuming the top job at Sydney Creek.
Well organized and meticulous, Bonifacio runs his kitchen with confidence and calm, and enjoys his daily interactions with residents, who always have questions for him.
As the weekday receptionist for the past twelve years, Linda has considered it a true privilege and joy to work at such a unique community. Soon after she began her job, she discovered that it was much more than just a clerical position.
Having taken the journey along the trying road of Alzheimer’s disease with her mother, Linda feels a special connection with the daily experiences of the families and their loved ones as they follow a similar path. She has discovered that finding the right words is sometimes difficult, but non-verbal communication in the form of hugs and smiles goes a long way.
Being part of a dedicated and compassionate work team and having the opportunity to meet and make many special acquaintances has brought much meaning and happiness to Linda’s life.
Michael Guinn has a long and varied background as the head “fix-it” man. First as a U.S. Marine / aircraft electrician during the Vietnam War, and later as a technician for a well known air conditioning company and two County Offices of Education. So he knows how to keep most anything in good working order. Having lived in an “over-55” community himself, he also has an affinity for working with the elderly, enjoying his role as the guy who can help.
Born and raised in Fresno, California, Guinn moved to the Central Coast where he spent time as the maintenance director for a large local retirement community before landing the top job at Sydney Creek. Here, he takes pride in keeping the building itself gleaming, with all its various parts running like a clock. But it’s the little jobs he does for residents that make him the happiest. “I really enjoy helping them out,” he says, “because I know how hard it can be.”
We are always interested in speaking with talented people who would like to work in a challenging and rewarding environment. Please email your resume or visit us at Sydney Creek to fill out an application.
Meet with one of our Community Relations Coordinators, request more information or schedule a tour.
Caring for a loved one with Dementia or Alzheimer's is emotionally challenging—as is the decision to move them to a Memory Care facility. The Village at Sydney Creek is here to assist you with this transition. Our community in San Luis Obispo, California provides a knowledgeable staff and the necessary resources to make this step as smooth as possible—logistically, mentally, and emotionally.
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