Chilewich Contract Fresco Seaspray 0085 RT

Chilewich Contract Introduces ‘Fresco’ for Floors, Walls, and Windows

New York, NY – The latest addition to the Chilewich Contract range brings organic forms and enduring texture to high-performance flooring, rugs, wall textiles, and window coverings. Debuting in five tonal colorways, Fresco is exceptionally durable and easy to maintain, making it ideal for a broad range of senior living environments.

“Fresco is an organic original,” says Sandy Chilewich, creative director of Chilewich. “The design team and I were inspired by the character of surfaces that grow more interesting with time and patina.”

Chilewich Contract Fresco all tiles

Made in the United States with Chilewich’s signature bi-color yarns, Fresco features a veil of organic forms, evoking the beauty of antiquity and the nuances of nature, from venerable murals and peeling paint to fingerprints and magnetic fields. Fresco launches in five versatile colorways: Concrete, Obsidian, Sage, Seaspray, and Teak.

“At a time when deep and thorough cleaning is top priority, the bleach cleanability of Fresco—and all Chilewich Contract products—provides peace of mind,” says Joe Sultan, CEO of Chilewich. “Additionally, antimicrobial protection is integrated into our yarns at the polymer level.”

Fresco is available in flooring (square or plank tiles, rolls for wall-to-wall use, and rugs), wall textiles, and window coverings. It is made with TerraStrand: extruded yarns composed of a fiberglass core encased in phthalate-free vinyl and containing a minimum of 18% renewable vegetable content. Strengthened by Microban, it resists stain- and odor-causing microbial growth for the lifetime of the product.

Complimentary samples of Fresco are now available to order at

About Chilewich Contract

Chilewich Contract provides design solutions for floors, walls, windows, and upholstery to architects and designers worldwide. Made in the United States, these products combine innovative weaves and a distinctive color palette with proven durability, easy maintenance, and a 15-year warranty. ​They are used extensively for the global healthcare, hospitality, commercial, and residential markets. Seven Chilewich designs are in the permanent collection of the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum. Learn more at

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K4Connect Reimagines the Digital Resident Experience in Senior Living, Launches K4Community Plus

RALEIGH, NC–K4Connect, a mission-driven technology company that creates solutions that serve and empower older adults and individuals living with disabilities, today announced the release of its new K4Community Plus resident application.

The new app redefines the digital experience for older adults, taking the best experiences of today’s popular social media platforms and integrating them into a sophisticated application specifically designed for them.

K4Community Plus allows community residents to easily and efficiently connect with family and friends, engage and socialize with their community and fellow residents, as well as control their smart living environments all from their personal devices. K4Community Plus is now available to all existing K4Connect senior living community partners, as well as new partners.

“Our company exists to serve older adults through technology that adds value to their lives. This mission has never been more important than right now as older adults—and the senior living communities serving them—are turning to technology solutions to help manage the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said K4Connect CEO and Co-Founder, F. Scott Moody. “K4Community Plus brings material present day utility to senior living, enabling communities and their residents to truly connect, communicate and engage in secure, meaningful ways both in and outside of the communities they live in. Isolation is one of the more significant challenges they’re facing today, which is why our expediting and releasing K4Community Plus now to better support them was incredibly important to us.”

Even beyond today’s crisis, older adults today are increasingly engaged and interested in technology and online experiences. The K4Community Plus design and functionality is inspired by the ease and intuitiveness of social media platforms to bring older adults the ultimate digital experience in an application that uniquely suits their needs and lifestyles. Several senior living communities beta tested the new application and as White Horse Village resident Sam G. said of the experience, “I’ve been very happy with the [K4Connect] program and hope to have it expand to include many other goodies! This technology is the future!”

The solution integrates the latest in communication, engagement, smart home and information technologies to promote better, more independent lives for residents. Through K4Connect’s patented operating system, called FusionOS, senior living communities benefit from comprehensive enterprise technology deployment, management and support, enabling seamless integration with community systems and minimal management or training required of staff teams.

Key K4Community Plus capabilities include:

  • Community Social Feed – Senior living communities can now reach residents with a wide variety of curated content and important information in the style of a social media feed. Residents can securely browse community updates and information, browse external content like news articles, and directly engage with community activities and events (save, sign-up, etc.).
  • Dynamic Communications & Voice – Communications features span the ability to message and call fellow residents as well as voice-activated options for resident-to-resident communication with the “Alexa, Call My Neighbor” feature. Voice features also include numerous ways to communicate with staff whether using Alexa to call the front desk or get the latest community updates through our voice-activated Hotline feature.
  • Friends & Family Experience – Loved ones stay connected to residents and the community with constant access to important community information and updates (a particularly critical tool as communities continue to navigate COVID-19) and direct communication with their resident family member through the only native video calling social feature in senior living, as well as messaging, and photo-sharing.
  • Customized Smart Home – Residents can control and customize their smart living environments, such as temperature and lighting settings, directly from their mobile or tablet device.
  • Optimized Community Information & Programming – Residents have their community at their fingertips by bringing community information, communication and programming to a digital platform. From important announcements and dining menus to virtual or in-person events and activities, residents are not only able to remain informed but also encouraged to engage and socialize with their communities. The events reporting tool also brings value to staff, providing insight into trending resident interest in community activities that can inform future programming.

In response to the continued impact of the Coronavirus on the senior living industry, K4Connect is offering fully remote installation of K4Community Plus to any senior living community at no cost for the coming months. Reach out to the company at for more information.

K4Connect is the leading provider of enterprise-grade technologies for senior living communities, currently serving tens of thousands of residents at over 800 premiere continuing care, independent living, assisted living and memory care communities across the nation. The company’s flagship solution, K4Community, brings together the best in technology to serve residents, staff and operators alike. All communities currently using K4Connect’s flagship K4Community solution will continue to have access until they migrate to K4Community Plus.

New Post-Acute Rehabilitation Resort Under Construction in Oklahoma City

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK–Diakonos Group, LLC, in conjunction with Pi Architects, SCI Construction, LTD, and SMC Consulting Engineers, P.C., have begun construction on Parc Place Medical Resort, a post-acute rehabilitation facility in Oklahoma City.

Located on an 8.3-acre, 349,892 square-foot site offering 75 private rooms, this facility is designed to create a short-stay rehab setting where patients will receive modern rehabilitation services within a spa-like setting. Patient’s experiences will include a café and hotel-like lobby greeting them as they first enter the building to create a sense of welcome hospitality and social healing.

The building’s shape is designed to maximize the reach of natural light warming each of the conversation and activity spaces. Other atypical design features include multiple dining venues that spill out into each of the garden courts, providing guests with a variety of seating options for meals throughout the day. Therapy spaces energize guests to stay active with thoughtful ceiling and window designs that draw the eye from the moment they enter with color and height inviting them out to the connected private therapy courtyard.Located on an 8.3-acre, 349,892 square-foot site offering 75 private rooms, this facility is designed to create a short-stay rehab setting where patients will receive modern rehabilitation services within a spa-like setting. Patient’s experiences will include a café and hotel-like lobby greeting them as they first enter the building to create a sense of welcome hospitality and social healing.

The building is divided into three houses, each with its own themed dining rooms, outdoor cafés, and shaded garden courts. Additionally, guests can be treated to a modern salon experience, join one of the activity programs, or just relax at any of the cozy lounges provided throughout the building.

“We want to create an environment where people see others getting better and are inspired to pursue their therapy goals,” said Scott Pilgrim, Owner and CEO of the Diakonos Group. “They are here to get better and go home. But while they’re here, we want them to experience a resort-like environment where they feel pampered and engaged.”

“There are very few programs like this is in the Oklahoma City area. We look forward to bringing the medical resort idea to this community,” Pilgrim said. Parc Place Medical Resort is expected to open February 2021.

Oakmont of the Lakes Adds Traditions Memory Care Program to its Offerings


EST LAS VEGAS, NV–Oakmont of the Lakes (formerly Oakmont of West Las Vegas) is now offering its Traditions program.

Traditions is a program offered exclusively by Oakmont Senior Living that provides a soothing environment and activities based on music, sensory and tactile stimulation for people with advanced memory loss. Highly-trained team members engage with residents with the extra care and patience they may need.

As part of Oakmont Senior Living’s commitment to serving seniors and working to help meet the needs for those suffering from dementia, 31 apartment homes, with four of these being companion, are available. The apartment homes range from 375 to 515 square feet.

Residents in this area will have their own dining room with the first-rate cuisine Oakmont Senior Living has become known for throughout the senior living industry.

Elizabeth Hernandez, executive director at Oakmont of The Lakes, said she is pleased with the addition of Traditions at the community she now leads.

“I couldn’t imagine doing anything else. Knowing that I am making a difference in the lives of seniors, even with a simple hello or hug, brings me joy and satisfaction. I get to go home at the end of each day feeling a sense of fulfillment,” Hernandez said.

Eric Portnoff, vice president of memory care and resident programs, is responsible for ensuring that Oakmont’s memory care and residents programs are progressive, innovative and industry-leading.

“I often say that the cruelest enemies for a person living with dementia are isolation and inactivity. When a person with dementia is isolated, they turn inward on themselves more and more, become less active, and it often becomes a rapid, downward spiral of decline,” said Portnoff. “The main purpose of our Traditions program is to provide relationships and activity. Our goal is to connect residents living in Traditions with us and with each other. In the context of caring, meaningful relationships, we can provide the assistance they need to realize their potential, despite the limitations of cognitive changes caused by aging and disease.”

Oakmont communities have enacted many safety measures to help protect residents and team members from potential exposure to the coronavirus. Group dining rooms will reopen when it is deemed safe. Until then, meals are delivered to each resident’s apartment home.

Team members also have been bringing activities to the residents so they can enjoy individualized programming. Many residents have engaged in new technology such as Skyping and FaceTiming with loved ones.

Founded in 2012 and headquartered in Santa Rosa, CA, Oakmont Senior Living is a recognized leader in the retirement industry. Residents receive customized care services delivered by compassionate team members in luxurious, resort-style settings with an impressive array of five-star amenities.

Watercrest Senior Living Group Partners with FranklinCovey for Innovative Leadership Training

VERO BEACH, FL–When the Franklin Covey Company announced the launch of its newest leadership development solution, The 4 Essential Roles of Leadership, Watercrest Senior Living Group principals Marc Vorkapich, CEO, and Joan Williams, CFO, immediately recognized the potential value for their growing organization.

The 4 Essential Roles of Leadership is the result of a two-year research project conducted by FranklinCovey to understand the most vital leadership roles and the need for leaders to be “ready now” to lead within their organization. In the significant demographic shift in the marketplace, younger millennials are making up the largest demographic group in the workplace and are often in leadership roles years before they have received meaningful leadership development.

Watercrest Senior Living Group is unique in their growth mindset, modeling servant leadership and exceptional standards of customer service within every level of the organization. Watercrest was founded in 2012 to honor our fathers and mothers and develop the growth of servant leaders, acting as faithful stewards and inspiring a sense of community through their “Common Unity” initiatives.

Watercrest first partnered with FranklinCovey in 2017 when their executive leadership team attended the Leading at the Speed of Trust conference in Sundance, Utah, gaining critical communication and team building skills.

Upon the recent release of FranklinCovey’s newest leadership solution, Watercrest implemented a company-wide training of The 4 Essential Roles of Leadership, led by FranklinCovey’s premier consultant, Sean Frontz.  Modeling excellence, the executive leadership team first attended the immersive training in May, then provided community-wide support to bring all department heads to Vero Beach for an exclusive two-day leadership training.

“FranklinCovey engages associates in an impactful journey, providing cutting-edge research, training, and year-long engagement which benefits our entire organization,” said Marc Vorkapich, principal and CEO of Watercrest Senior Living Group. “By investing in our associates, we are building a family of servant leaders who inspire trust, speak a common language, and work together to achieve excellence.”

With over 25 years of world-class leadership development experience, FranklinCovey’s The 4 Essential Roles of Leadership was created to teach leaders to inspire trust, create vision, execute strategy, and coach potential.

“Today’s leaders must be able to visualize and achieve results, adapt quickly, translate strategy into meaningful work and coach people to a higher level of performance,” said Adam MerrillFranklin Covey’s Executive Vice President of Innovations. “The 4 Essential Roles of Leadership offers leaders insight into the crucial roles they must play, which are highly predictive of success.”

Franklin Covey Co. is a global, public company specializing in organizational performance improvement. FranklinCovey clients have included 90 percent of the Fortune 100, over 75 percent of the Fortune 500, and thousands of small businesses.

A certified Great Place to Work, Watercrest Senior Living Group specializes in the development and operations of assisted living and memory care communities and the growth of servant leaders.

Empower Equity Announces $2 Billion in Funding to Provide Critical Equipment Capital During COVID-19

ITHACA, NY– Empower Equity (EMPEQ), a service-disabled veteran-led fintech company focused on delivering equipment and project financing for commercial and industrial buildings, has broadened its portfolio with over $2 billion in available funding. With this fund, EMPEQ can provide immediate financing, ranging from $10,000 to $10 million, for small- to mid-sized organizations to upgrade their essential building equipment—such as HVAC systems, chillers, and boilers—with new systems. This funding is designed to help companies critical to the fight against the Coronavirus keep their buildings and equipment operational, preserve capital amidst the current economic slowdown from COVID-19 and to cover the gap between their true need and the government stimulus they will receive.

Former US Marine, Herbert Dwyer, CEO of EMPEQ, co-founder of the service-disabled veteran owned and led company said, “We deeply understand and share in the concerns that business owners and building managers are facing in these unprecedented times, and are eager to help ease that burden in as many cases as we can. This funding is our way of helping companies and building owners optimize cashflow and ensure business continuity. It will also provide much needed work for professionals installing HVACR, lighting, and other equipment.”

With the developing situation in mind, the funding will prioritize businesses classified as essential in the fight against the pandemic, including hospitals, medical facilities, pharmacies, telecommunication providers, long-term care, and banks. EMPEQ will also accept applications from nonessential business owners looking for help to ease financial challenges stemming from COVID-19. While the CARES ACT is focused on providing essential working capital, and is flooded with requests, already exceeding initial expectations, EMPEQ has alternative private sources.

EMPEQ is uniquely positioned to help organizations struggling with the current business climate through its program, designed to fund projects faster than other companies. The suite of online tools developed to expedite the application can be completed in less than 5 minutes.

Businesses and building owners who can’t find the money in their budget for critical equipment—or are unable to get the funds from the stimulus package, can get their desired upgrade at no upfront cost and with no adverse effect on their balance sheet.

In one instance recently, the owner of a multi-unit housing complex in upstate New York had already decided to replace an outdated HVAC system in his complex with a newer, energy-efficient system, but he hesitated to pay upfront due to the economic uncertainty. After filling out the online application, EMPEQ quickly approved the $85,000 loan to pay for the new HVAC system in full, freeing up the owner’s cashflow. The new program is to help Small Business Owners keep operations running during the difficult times ahead.

According to a recent report from the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), improved airflow and recycling capabilities in HVAC systems can reduce airborne transmission of infectious diseases by diluting and removing the infectious agents from the area. For this reason, several leading industry experts are predicting a renewed emphasis on replacing HVAC systems in a wide variety of commercial buildings in the next year.

Incorporated in 2016, EMPEQ is changing the way commercial and industrial buildings finance their critical energy equipment and infrastructure projects. EMPEQ is a financial technology (Fintech) company that utilizes technology to provide small- and mid-size businesses, nonprofits, and municipalities easy to use and simple to understand finance options and tools for HVAC commercial contractors to close more deals, faster. EMPEQ deploys traditional financing as well as its unique subscription model.

Creative Collaboration—Hospitality Partnership Results In New Furniture Line For Senior Living

Partnerships between the hospitality design and manufacturing communities have netted plenty of creative solutions in the lodging space over the years, but a recent collaboration could potentially also have a broad impact as it has resulted in a new line of custom furniture for senior living facilities.

Design firm Gensler partnered with The New Traditionalists—a U.S.-based manufacturing, design and engineering company—on the Elevate Collection, which has been touted as an innovative line of furniture that’s aesthetically built and designed specifically for senior living.

During a panel entitled “The New Traditionalists Collaboration 101: Rethinking The Norm For Senior Living” at last week’s HD Expo, the executives primarily involved in the development of the line offered some detail on the collaboration.

Brandon Larcom, director of product development, Gensler, commented. “At Gensler we said, ‘let’s create a line that can stand the test of time that is designed for seniors but really appreciated by everyone.’ Gensler was based on enhancing the human experience and as Philip [Erdoes, founder and CEO, The New Traditionalists] and I spoke a bit, it was aligned with what their vision was as well. How can we take just a traditional line of product and make it something that has research behind it?” he said.

Erdoes, meanwhile, acknowledged his own aging parents were part of the inspiration for the new line. “My rationale for going into it is necessity is the mother of all invention. When I looked around, what I saw was a whole bunch of crap. It was poorly designed and it hadn’t changed since the days of the nursing home. We were trying to figure out ‘can we do something else?’ So we entered the market over a year ago doing some levels of custom design stuff,” he said.

Erdoes later commented on the dearth of product in the senior living market. “I think people want to feel safe but not old, and that’s a hard thing to pull off with the current product lines that are out there…That’s an unfortunate part of the business right now, but that actually provides an opportunity and that’s why we’re here,” he noted.

Larcom further explained, “When Philip and I entered into this collaboration we both had that vision of ‘this is just the beginning of a new style of life, it’s not the end.’ Let’s actually elevate your style. Let’s have those great materials, let’s have something that doesn’t differentiate one [group] from the other and instead brings that full community together, so that was my passion and feeling for this.”

Erdoes noted the new Elevate Collection currently has some seven pieces, while adding, “we’re about to launch the rest of the collection.” He added between another seven to 10 pieces are expected to debut with six more collections around it.

Meanwhile, Larcom called attention to some of the line’s unique qualities, such as the seat height being 19 inches as opposed to the standard 17 inches making it easier for seniors to get in and out of. In addition, he noted the egress of the back of the design is at a 100 degree angle “so that you don’t lean too far back.”

Larcom further commented that seniors naturally tend to segregate as they get older, which the duo tried to address as well.

“As Philip and I connected, we really understood that that was our original goal—to create a collection that would bring different populations together. So in the design there’s a little bit of a workplace bench area which allows for a younger generation to come over and visit their grandparents or their aging family members. But you still need to have that differentiator,” he added.

Erdoes also underscored the need for differentiation, pointing out that often it’s the oldest daughters of parents who are making the decisions with regards to assisted living.

“They will go look at most three, maybe four facilities, and they’re usually pretty close to each other. So if you don’t have a way to differentiate your facility from a design standpoint, then all of a sudden it becomes how many bingo games there are. It’s just kind of all the same, and it becomes a price game. The problem with the price game is there’s no differentiation with that, and it’s a race to the bottom. So what we’re trying to provide is the ability to actually have design differentiation between your locations and other locations,” he stated.

Larcom acknowledged there’s been a shift in senior living to a more diverse age group; therefore any product must have broad appeal. “When we began to design this collection there’s a big difference between someone who’s 65 and someone who’s 80, but they may still like style. How can do you design it so it’s all encompassing? So that was another main focus for this collection,” he commented.

Erdoes finally touted the company’s inherent advantages with manufacturing capabilities in the U.S. “We have a very short supply chain so we can react very quickly for either replacements or of you need us to hold onto something. We find that historically it’s been a bit of a tricky issue for people; sometimes they want it fast, sometimes they don’t. But for us from a construction standpoint and an operational standpoint, we’re set up to actually address this market way differently than anyone else right now,” he concluded.