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Communication Centre

Categories : Media Releases and Statements

March 4, 2021

Chartwell Retirement Residences Leads the Way With Opportunity and Equality For Women

MISSISSAUGA, ON, March 4, 2021 – Chartwell Retirement Residences has a long- standing commitment to the advancement of women to the highest levels of leadership.

“On International Women’s Day and every day, I am proud that Chartwell is a destination for women looking to grow their careers,” says Chartwell CEO Vlad Volodarski.

At Chartwell, women are:

  • 82% of 16,000 employees
  • 74% of residence Managers
  • 54% of Vice Presidents
  • 71% of Senior Vice Presidents
  • 50% of our Executive Officers
  • 43% of Independent Board Members

The Globe and Mail Report on Business’ Women Lead Here list recognized Chartwell as a trailblazer in gender diversity in corporate Canada.

Since 2011, 144 participants have completed Chartwell’s Aspiring Leaders Program for candidates with the potential to become Retirement Residence General Managers or Long Term Care Residence Administrators. Of the attendees, 77% were female.

Chartwell’s mentorship program, introduced in 2005, includes one-on-one mentorships as well as sessions with members of the Senior Executive Committee, SVPs and VPs, and education sessions. Since 2016, an average 67% of mentees and 68% of mentors have been women.

“We are committed to continue strengthening diversity and inclusion in our residences and corporate offices,” says Volodarski. “Chartwell, like Canada, is a mosaic of generations, cultures and genders. Each one of our employees adds to our rich and diverse culture that defines the Chartwell experience.”

Here are inspirational stories of some extraordinary Chartwell women who stepped up to the challenge to lead their residences.

From Personal Support Worker to the Top Job – Candace Lanthier

As soon as Candace Lanthier joined the staff of a Chartwell LTC home, she saw the potential for advancement when her Administrator said he started his career in the Recreation department. Now, Lanthier is the example.

“When people see that I worked as a Personal Support Worker (PSW), it gives them that motivation that it’s possible to grow within Chartwell,” says Lanthier, an award-winning Administrator now at Chartwell Queen’s Garden Long Term Care residence in Hamilton, ON. “Right from the get-go, I always felt that I could do more. Every single one of the leaders and mentors I had over the years saw something different in me that they could grow.”

She served as a union steward, continued her education, and graduated from the Aspiring Leaders Program.

“There is no divide at Chartwell between men and women,” Lanthier says. “We are all treated as equal, that we are here to do one thing which is to take care of our residents and our staff. We all have an equal say at the table.”

In Our Leaders, I Saw What Was Possible - Luciana Vieira

Adjusting to Canadian life after moving from Brazil as a teenager, Luciana Vieira found comfort and appreciation in her afterschool job at a seniors’ residence. Inspired to become a nurse, she progressed through three Chartwell residences to Health & Wellness Manager at Chartwell Gibson in North York, ON and won a place in the “truly life-changing” Aspiring Leaders Program.

“It allowed me to match my knowledge and my passion and take my wish to make a difference to the next level. I’m so glad that Chartwell invested in me, in my career, my dreams and my aspirations,” says Vieira, now Chartwell Gibson’s General Manager and a member of Chartwell’s Diversity & Inclusion Leadership Council. “Chartwell is such an amazing example of what businesses should be like for women. There are so many women in power. They give us that sense that we can achieve whatever they have achieved because they are there.”

Lift As You Rise - Kim Grant

Kim Grant was enrolled in dental school when she became a part time server at Chartwell Royal Park in Calgary AB.

“I thought, ‘Nope, I think I want to be here.’ It was a big deal. I really loved the way I could change somebody’s life and make it better. I loved that feeling and it was something that just totally clicked,” she says.

Grant advanced through receptionist, office manager and sales positions, and earned a place in the mentorship and Aspiring Leaders programs. In 2019, at age 28, she became Chartwell Royal Park’s General Manager.

As leader, she is dedicated to spotting the next rising stars, regardless of their current age or position.

“You just get that vibe from them and see their potential, that we’ve got to hold on to this one and do everything we can to help them get to where they need to be,” Grant says. “I have some future female leaders in my building right now that we’re working with. I was given those opportunities at Chartwell. All I had to do was make it known and they helped me. It’s important to me everybody be given that same opportunity that they deserve.”

Aspire High and Your Goal Will Be Reached - Heidi Gagné

As a college Recreation program graduate, Heidi Gagné started at Chartwell as a Lifestyle and Programs Manager and rose through the ranks. After learning all facets of management in the Aspiring Leaders program and earning a certificate in Administration, she became General Manager of Chartwell L’Unique Retirement Residence in St-Eustache, QC.

She is committed to supporting for her staff and ensuring women on her teams are confident to assert themselves and feel proud of their accomplishments. Gagne is committed to supporting her staff advancing, as she has done.

About Chartwell

Chartwell Retirement Residences is Canada’s largest operator in the senior living sector with over 200 quality retirement communities in four provinces offering a complete range of services from independent supportive living through assisted living to long term care. Chartwell is committed to its vision of Making People's Lives BETTER and to providing a happier, healthier, and more fulfilling life experience for its residents. For more information, visit

For more information about Chartwell’s career development programs, photos and to interview one of our inspiring women leaders in your area, please contact:

Claire Bickley
Senior Manager, Communications & Public Relations
Chartwell Retirement Residences
416-937-4622 |