About Us

Senior Management

Senior Management

Orion H. Bell IV, MBA

President and Chief Executive Officer

Orion Bell is President and Chief Executive Officer at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging. He joined Benjamin Rose in 2019 with more than 3...

Orion Bell is President and Chief Executive Officer at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging. He joined Benjamin Rose in 2019 with more than 30 years of leadership experience in not-for-profit management. Prior to joining Benjamin Rose, he served as President and Chief Executive Officer at CICOA Aging and In-Home Solutions, the largest of Indiana’s 16 Area Agencies on Aging, overseeing a staff of 240 and an operating budget of $27 million.

During his tenure at CICOA, the organization grew to have an annual economic impact of more than $100 million through services, grants and vendor payments. CICOA’s care managed population grew from 2,753 to 8,528, and the organization achieved accreditation for its Flourish care management service.

Before joining CICOA, Bell served at the American Red Cross in a variety of capacities, including the Director of Chapter Operations Support for the Great Lakes Service Area; Chief Executive Officer of the Fort Worth, TX, chapter; Executive Director of the Topeka, KS, chapter; and Assistant General Manager of the Louisville, KY, chapter. He has been an active member of the American Society on Aging and National Association of Area Agencies on Aging. Bell earned both a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and humanities from the University of Louisville.

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David M. Bass, PhD

Senior Vice President, Senior Research Scientist, Director of the Center for Research and Education

Dr. David Bass is Senior Vice President, Senior Research Scientist and Director of the Center for Research and Education at Benjamin Rose...

Dr. David Bass is Senior Vice President, Senior Research Scientist and Director of the Center for Research and Education at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging. He has led over 80 funded research projects on topics such as: coping with chronic illness; family caregiving; quality of care and services; dementia and dementia care; and use and impact of formal services and informal support. Results of these investigations have been widely published in scientific and clinical journals, such as the Journal of the American Geriatric Society and The Gerontologist. Results also have been used to develop innovative programs for older adults and their family members, such as BRI Care Consultation™, which has been delivered by over 60 licensed service organizations across the US.

His current research focuses on development, testing and implementation of evidence-based programs, with a special emphasis on care for persons with Alzheimer's disease or other dementias and their family caregivers, and caregiving among diverse populations. In accord with the mission of Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging, a consistent theme of Dr. Bass’ work is the translation of research into practical applications that enhance the wellness of, and quality of care for, older adults and their family members. Dr. Bass received his doctoral degree in Sociology from the University of Akron and Kent State University in 1985.

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Mary Marita, LNHA, MHSA

Senior Vice President, Chief Operating Officer

Mary Marita is Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging and its subsidiaries Benjamin Rose P...

Mary Marita is Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging and its subsidiaries Benjamin Rose Property LLC, Eldercare Services Institute LLC and Rose Centers for Aging Well LLC. She has more than 22 years of executive leadership and administrative experience in the field of aging including long-term care and community-based organizations.

She joined Benjamin Rose in 1999 as the Assistant Administrator of Kethley House, the organization's former 184-bed nursing facility, and was named Executive Administrator in 2003. Since 2006, Marita has been responsible for property management and campus development of the organization's subsidiary, Benjamin Rose Property LLC. In 2008 Marita was responsible for the award of a $4.3 million grant under HUD Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly Program to rehabilitate 36 units of housing. In 2011, she oversaw the renovation of these 36 one-bedroom units added to Margaret Wagner Apartments, the organization's affordable senior housing located in Cleveland Heights. In 2012, she was instrumental in negotiating the sale of the 144,000-square-foot Kethley House to Kindred Healthcare for $17.4 million. The following year, she led the development and construction of the organization's 31,000-square-foot, $11.4 million headquarters in Cleveland. Most recently in 2014, she assumed her current position, overseeing the organization's home- and community-based service subsidiaries, Eldercare Services Institute LLC and Rose Centers for Aging Well LLC, which include behavioral health services, social work, adult day services, senior companions, BRI Care Consultation™ as well as a home-delivered meal program and seven senior centers. In 2015, Marita oversaw and managed the $1.25 million sale of 1.5 acres of campus property to Choice One Development for future development by Fresenius Medical Care.

Marita began her career in the field of aging in Northeast Ohio as an Assistant Administrator with a for-profit long-term-care provider. She earned a master's degree in health services administration from Xavier University and a Bachelor of Science in business administration in management from John Carroll University. She has been a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator in the state of Ohio since 1998.

In 2012, Marita was recognized by Crain's Cleveland Business in the 40 Under 40 awards. In 2014, she was honored as a Woman of Professional Excellence at the YWCA Women of Achievement Awards. She is a member of the Cleveland Bridge Builders Class of 2014 and a 2015 graduate of the American Society on Aging Leadership Institute. Marita currently serves on the Dance Alliance of Beck Center, and recently served on the Greater Shaker Square Area Development Corporation.

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Michael Billnitzer, SHRM-SCP

Executive Director of ESOP, Vice President at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging

Michael Billnitzer is the Executive Director of Empowering and Strengthening Ohio’s People (ESOP), where he oversees the strategic develo...

Michael Billnitzer is the Executive Director of Empowering and Strengthening Ohio’s People (ESOP), where he oversees the strategic development, operations and implementation of ESOP’s programs. He also serves as a Vice President at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging.

Billnitzer has 25 years of human resources and organizational development (OD) experience, and a passion for strategic planning, performance management and leadership development. His recently led projects at ESOP include: Board Transformation and Development (2014); Executive Director Search and Transition Process (2013); Strategic Planning Implementation (2011); and HR and OD Transformation (2010).

Billnitzer has a bachelor's degree in Psychology from the University of Toledo with additional studies at Harvard University, is a certified trainer of Blanchard's "Situational Leadership" and a 2014 graduate of the Social Transformation Project's "The Art of Transformational Consulting." He is a Senior Certified Professional with the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM-SCP), and currently serves on the Steering Committee for The Cleveland Foundation’s HR Collaborative for Non-Profit organizations. Billnitzer’s clients and employers have ranged from Fortune 500 companies to non-profits.

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Anne-Marie E. Connors, MA.Ed

Vice President of Institutional Advancement

Anne-Marie E. Connors is the Vice President of Institutional Advancement, and oversees development and marketing for Benjamin Rose Instit...

Anne-Marie E. Connors is the Vice President of Institutional Advancement, and oversees development and marketing for Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging and its subsidiaries. She joined Benjamin Rose in 2013.

Connors has more than 25 years of institutional advancement experience that includes work in development, alumni relations, admissions, marketing and communications. She also has a special passion for women’s leadership development and mentoring of emerging professionals.

Prior to joining Benjamin Rose, Connors was Director of Advancement at Hawken School in Gates Mills, OH. She has served as the Executive Director for Development at Case Western Reserve University's Weatherhead School of Management and as Interim Associate Dean and Director of Operations, Donor & Alumni Relations at the Case Western Reserve University School of Law. Connors also worked at the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law at Cleveland State University as Director of College Development and Alumni Relations.

Connors earned a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology from John Carroll University and a master’s degree in higher education administration from Saint Louis University. Connors completed the YWCA Women’s Momentum Leadership Program 2009, American Society on Aging's Leadership Institute in 2014 and Cleveland Leadership Center's Cleveland Leadership Institute in 2017.

Connors currently serves on the Engaging Women’s Committee of the Union Club and Cleveland Leadership Center's Leadership Council.

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Dabney K. Conwell, MSSA, LSW

Executive Director of the Rose Centers for Aging Well, Vice President at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging

Dabney K. Conwell is Executive Director of the Rose Centers for Aging Well and Vice President at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging. She jo...

Dabney K. Conwell is Executive Director of the Rose Centers for Aging Well and Vice President at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging. She joined Benjamin Rose in 2015.

Conwell has committed her career to working with underrepresented populations developing, implementing, supervising and evaluating social service programs. Prior to joining the Benjamin Rose senior management team, she served as Executive Director of the East Cleveland Neighborhood Center. She was also previously Project Coordinator of the Families and Schools Together (FAST) program for the Alcohol, Drug Addiction & Mental Health Services Board of Cuyahoga County, and later became a national trainer and program supervisor for FAST in Madison, Wisconsin. She has also served as a social worker with the East Cleveland City School District and Guidestone. Conwell’s professional passion includes addressing issues of inequity for marginalized populations.

She currently serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU).

Conwell received her Master of Social Service Administration degree at Case Western Reserve University, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Work from Edinboro University. Conwell completed the YWCA Women’s Momentum Leadership Program in 2015. Ms. Conwell is an inaugural Fellow with the Sisters of Charity Innovation Mission, developing the first Food is Medicine process in Cuyahoga County; she is also the recipient of the CWRU Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences Alumni Achievement Award. She is a National Board of Governor for the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and co-chair of the local HRC Steering Committee.

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Susan L. Eagan, PhD

Vice President of Strategic Development and Corporate Compliance Officer

Dr. Susan L. Eagan is the Vice President of Strategic Development and Corporate Compliance Officer at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging an...

Dr. Susan L. Eagan is the Vice President of Strategic Development and Corporate Compliance Officer at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging and is responsible for developing, executing, assessing, sustaining and communicating Benjamin Rose’s organizational strategies. She joined Benjamin Rose in 2014.

Dr. Eagan has held major leadership positions in the nonprofit sector for over 25 years. These included serving as Executive Vice President at The Cleveland Foundation and Executive Director of the Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations at Case Western Reserve University. She has also been active as a researcher, teacher and consultant. She has held faculty positions at the University of Massachusetts and Case Western Reserve University and served as an adjunct faculty member at John Carroll University. Dr. Eagan also founded and led a consulting business specializing in strategy development and assessment.

She has served on the boards of a number of organizations including the Foundation Center (New York), the Nonprofit Academic Centers Council, the Billie Howland Steffee Fund of The Cleveland Foundation, Leadership Cleveland Alumni Association, Business Volunteers Unlimited, Institute for Educational Renewal, Ohio Grantmakers Forum and Hawken School. Her awards include YWCA Career Woman of Achievement, Crain’s Cleveland Business Woman of Influence and Northern Ohio Young Leader.

Eagan holds a Ph.D. and a master's degree in Public Policy from Harvard University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science (summa cum laude) from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

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Janet Schneider, MLRHR

Vice President, Human Resources

Janet Schneider is the Vice President of Human Resources at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging and its subsidiaries and is responsible for ...

Janet Schneider is the Vice President of Human Resources at Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging and its subsidiaries and is responsible for all human resources functions including compensation and benefits; recruitment and selection; employee relations; and training and development. She joined Benjamin Rose in 2019 with over 20 years of non-profit management experience. 

Prior to joining Benjamin Rose, Schneider served as Vice President of Human Resources and Corporate Compliance for a federally qualified health center with seven locations near Cleveland’s west side. In addition, she held various leadership positions at the YMCA of Greater Cleveland, including Operations Director for the Y-Haven Branch, New Business Development Director and Executive Director of Child Care Services.

Schneider earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Akron, and a Master of Labor Relations and Human Resources degree from Cleveland State University.

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Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging Board of Directors

Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging Board of Directors

Cynthia H. Dunn
Chair

Nancy A. Adams, JD
Vice Chair and Secretary

Emily A. Drake
Past Chair

Sarah M. Dimling
Treasurer

Barbara Bellin Janovitz, JD

Kathryn Bryan, PhD

Belva Denmark Tibbs

Deborah C. Enty

Diane Downing

Patricia R. Frutig, JD

Amy Scott Gilchrist, JD

Giesele Robinson Greene, MD

Connie Hill-Johnson

Katherine B. Hollingsworth, JD

Yvette M. Ittu

Maggie Jackson, PhD

Kathryn Kaesberg

Hermine Krasny

Denise M. Kresevic, PhD

Christine A. Lobas

Lori A. Lozier

Jennifer I. Markworth

Sue Omori

Elizabeth F. Stueber

Annapurna Valluri, PhD

Benjamin Rose Property Subsidiary Board

Benjamin Rose Property Subsidiary Board

Giesele Robinson Greene, MD
Chair

Patricia R. Frutig, JD

Yvette M. Ittu

Lori A. Lozier

Robert V. Secrist

Peter Volas

Eldercare Services Institute Subsidiary Board

Eldercare Services Institute Subsidiary Board

Lori A. Lozier
Chair

Amy Scott Gilchrist, JD

Maggie Jackson, PhD

Denise M. Kresevic, PhD

Belva Denmark Tibbs

ESOP Subsidiary Board

ESOP Subsidiary Board

Katherine B. Hollingsworth, JD
Chair

Tiffinae Ware
Treasurer

Patrick O. Peters
Secretary

Nancy Barnes

Carlos Chavez

John Farmer

Amy Scott Gilchrist, JD

Robert S. Ginsburg

Ann Hatvany

Carla Macklin

Eileen McConville

Jacques McKee

Jennifer Rodgers

Rose Centers for Aging Well Subsidiary Board

Rose Centers for Aging Well Subsidiary Board

Connie Hill-Johnson
Co-Chair

Sue Omori
Co-Chair

Barbara Bellin Janovitz, JD

Carol Dayton

Diane Downing

Cynthia H. Dunn

John E. Herman

Maggie Jackson, PhD

Kathryn Kaesberg

Christine A. Lobas

Christopher Morrison

Frank S. Novak

Elizabeth F. Stueber

Councilman Michael D. Polensek

Margaret Wagner Apartments Board of Directors

Margaret Wagner Apartments Board of Directors

Patricia R. Frutig, JD
Chair

Giesele Robinson Greene, MD

Yvette Ittu

Sara Wallace