Member Spotlight: Kayla Zellmer of Northridge Village

March 9, 2023

Kayla Zellmer began working as a nurse aide in college and found a career in long-term care to be fulfilling and special. Now, Kayla serves as the executive director at Northridge Village. Kayla is also a member of IHCA’s 2022-2023 Executive Health Care Leadership Institute.

How did you get started in the long-term care profession?

I’ve always been passionate about interactions with older adults. After working as a nurse aide through college and then on the outside of many nursing homes throughout the Midwest, I always knew a career in long-term care would be fulfilling. During this time both of my parents faced life-threatening health issues that opened my eyes to how important it is to be an advocate for not only the residents but their family members as well.

What do you like most about working in long-term care?

Supporting residents and their families during this transition of life is crucial. It’s an honor to be a part of that process.

What would you tell others to encourage them to consider a career in long-term care?

Long term-care is hands down the most “fill your cup up” career. No day is ever the same and the bonds you build are incredibly special. You’re able to make a difference in someone’s life every day.

What lessons have you learned working in long-term care that also helps outside of work?

I learn a new lesson every day working with older adults whether it’s personally or professionally. A few really important lessons would be to slow down, lean into the hard times, celebrate the good times and listen more than you speak.

When you’re not at work, what do you enjoy doing?

Outside of my career I enjoy spending time with my husband and three children. We spend our summers anywhere on water. I’m a mom of twin boys and a girl so I always laugh that my career is a break from my crazy home life. I enjoy every second of it!

What is your favorite quote and why?

“Get comfortable being uncomfortable.” Life throws a lot at you so if you’re okay with being uncomfortable you’ll grow from each experience.

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