When Michael Johnson was first hired as a part-time server at Plymouth Harbor in May 2000, he was immediately recognized as an asset to the dining services staff. Promoted to full-time wait service Caption in 2002, he continued to go above and beyond his responsibilities jumping right in to take care of what needs attention.

Thirteen years after his initial hiring, Michael is still being recognized for his good work, this time at Employee of the Month in November 2013.

In the nomination, one of his supervisors was quoted, “Michael is very caring and gives impeccable service to the residents.  It has been great watching him grow and mature in his tenure here.”

Disciplined work and the growth that results enabled Michael to further his career with a full-time administrative position with Chapman & Associates and night school at Sarasota County Technical Institute, all while continuing to work part-time at Plymouth Harbor.

Through these years and most recently, Michael has received several Shining Stars from our residents.  They all complement his skills, professionalism, patience, accuracy, and overall pleasant disposition when providing services to the residents.

As with many of the long-time staff in this community, work is a family affair.  Michael met his wife, Susie, while working here at Plymouth Harbor.  They now have a son Collin, 3 ½  years old, who keeps them both very busy.

Congratulations, Michael!  Your work is appreciated by so many here!


Please join us in congratulating Armando Cortez, our Employee of the Month for October 2013.

Armando came to Plymouth Harbor as a part-time Steward in February of 2010 and was promoted to full-time status two months later.  Prior to working at Plymouth Harbor, Armando was employed by the Manatee Fruit Company for almost 20 years as a laborer.

Throughout his time here at Plymouth Harbor Armando has received several Exceeds Standard remarks on his appraisals from Chef René, in the categories of job knowledge, quality of work, responsiveness to supervision, attendance, attitude, relationship with people, and personal conduct.

Comments from his supervisor are very complimentary:  Armando is a very good worker who follows all the rules, keeps a positive attitude, and is liked by the staff. His demeanor and work ethic are to be admired.  He is a team player.

Armando, originally from Jalisco, Mexico, has resided in the local area for over 20 years.  He and his wife Dionisia will celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary next April.  They have a son Juan Armando and three grandchildren who live in Bradenton.

We are very pleased to bestow this well-deserved recognition upon Armando.  Thank you for choosing Plymouth Harbor as your employer!


Please join us in congratulating our August 2013 Employee of the Month Pete Berkery!   Pete has been with Plymouth Harbor as a Security Officer since April of 2012.  He retired after 30 years from the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office, and worked as a Firearms Instructor at the Sarasota County Technical Institute prior to joining us.

From the very beginning Pete has received Exceeds Standard remarks on his appraisals in several categories such as Quality of Work, Efficiency, Problem Solving, Attitude, Responsiveness to Supervisor, Safety, and Care of Property. 

Comments on Pete’s performance include:

Pete is always willing to assist others.  His desire to perform in an optimum way is recognized and admired by his peers.  Pete has a great attitude and he expresses a big degree of interest and enthusiasm to support the mission of Plymouth Harbor.  He consistently maintains a cooperative and positive relationship with his peers, residents, and guests. Pete has been a real asset to Plymouth Harbor.  He is a very dedicated employee. 

Originally from the Bronx, NY, Pete graduated from Riverview High School and received a BA degree from the University of Central Florida in Orlando. He enjoys hiking and nature.  He and his wife Karen have three children and 4 grandchildren. 

Thank you, Pete, for all of your hard work, and congratulations on being recognized with this fine distinction!

Congratulations to Sheila Strahorn, our Employee of the Month for July 2013. Sheila Strahorn July 2013 Employee of the Month

Sheila is a full time certified nursing assistant (CNA) in the Smith Care Center.  She came to Plymouth Harbor in December 2011.

Sheila received Exceeds Standard remarks in Quality of Work, Efficiency, Attitude, Relationship with People, and Attendance.  Her supervisors describe her as, “Very kind and friendly, helpful and considerate with the residents and staff.  She is supportive of the vision of Plymouth Harbor.”  “Sheila has demonstrated a very high standard of performance.”

Sheila’s nominators said of her:

Sheila is always pleasant with staff and residents.  She never gets upset and always helps others with a great attitude!  She is a good team player.  When asked to do something she never hesitates, she is always there to help any resident even when the resident is not in her section.  Sheila is very pleasant, friendly, and hard working.  She has a wonderful attitude and we know the residents are getting the best care when she is here.

Originally from Rockford, Illinois, Sheila graduated from Harlem High School and earned an Associate in Arts Degree from Rock Valley College.  Before moving to Florida she worked as a CNA at Riverbluff Nursing and at Super Nurse, LLC for 8-½ years.

Sheila and her husband Lorron and have two children: Alec (14) and Anna (16).

Please join us in congratulating Sheila for an exemplary job!

Nancy Cressotti, LPN, is has joined Plymouth Harbor to serve as Admissions Coordinator at the Smith Care Center. Nancy says when she first started working at the young age of 14 in a nursing home; she knew her life-long calling was in health care. She will be responsible for the Smith Care Center (SCC) admission process and coordination of residents moving into the SCC in a manner that is supportive of the Center’s mission and values. As the Admissions Coordinator, she is accountable for all Smith Care Center admission activities.

Nancy Cressotti is the new Admissions Coordinator at Plymouth Harbor's Smith Care Center. “I am thrilled to have Nancy join our team. She will help improve our accessibility to residents of Sarasota and provide the medical community with information about Plymouth Harbor’s Smith Care Center,” says Joe Devore, Vice President of Health Services at Plymouth Harbor.

As the Admissions Coordinator, Nancy will be the first point of contact to build relationships with future families and patients that will come to the Smith Care Center. She looks forward to taking personal care of each family member and patient to make them feel comfortable during this crucial time in life.

Prior to joining the team at Plymouth Harbor, Nancy was with Universal Health Care in St. Petersburg, FL as a Case Manager. She has an impressive career of over 30 years of experience in the areas of direct patient care, patient evaluation, coordination of care, and verification of health services.

Some of Nancy’s other experiences include an External Care Coordinator at Skilled Nursing Facilities in Hartford, CT, and Admissions Director at Evergreen Health Care in Stafford Springs, CT.  Nancy started her career at Johnson Memorial Hospital, also located in Stafford Springs, CT, as a Staff LPN Nurse, Continuing Care Coordinator, and Placement Coordinator.

Nancy was born in Morrisville, Vermont, before moving to Enfield, Connecticut.  A Connecticut nursing home provided that first experience for Nancy who later graduated from Enrico Fermi High School in Enfield, CT, and Thompson School of Practical Nursing in Brattleboro, VT.  She relocated to Florida only one year ago with her husband. Now that their children are grown they love to spend their vacations cruising.

“With all my years of experience in nursing homes and hospital settings, none can compare to my new position at the Smith Care Center. Everyone has warmly welcomed me and it is a pleasure to come to work every day,” says Nancy. “I look forward to a long and rewarding career with Plymouth Harbor!”

Karen Novak, RN, MS, says that her daily goal is to touch the life of another and make things better.  Stepping into the role of Clinical Mentor as part of the excellent Health Services team at Plymouth Harbor, she will be responsible for training of all the nursing and ancillary personnel associated with health services.  In addition to continually assessing and polishing the clinical skills of the entire health services team, Karen will provide direct service in assessing potential residents and monitoring all infection control and skin condition issues.

Karen Novak is the new Clinical Mentor at Plymouth Harbor. “I am thrilled to have Karen join our team. She will help continue to raise the level of our staff competence, which will directly translate to even better resident care,” says Joe Devore, Vice President of Health Services at Plymouth Harbor.

Karen has experience as a staff development and training director and was the Account Clinical Director at Hill-Rom Industries, Inc. Karen has an extensive background in the health care industry, and has received several prestigious awards for her services during and including the years 1981-2006.

“I have been a nurse for over 33 years. To this day, I can gladly say that I am as dedicated to helping others as the day I received my nursing pin from Col. G, (the army nurse that taught me well),” says Karen.

Prior to Hill-Rom Industries, she was with Shands Lakeshore Regional Medical Center as the Infection Control Officer/Patient Representative and at Hillenbrand Industries, Inc. as a Clinical Consultant. At the Gainesville Healthcare Center she was the Director of Corporate Compliance.

At the Shands at Alachua General Hospital in Gainesville Florida, Karen wore many hats, including Nurse Educator for Subacute Nursing Unit, Nurse Educator for the Clinical Support Office, Clinical Practice Coordinator, and Staff Development.

Clearly, as Karen points out, “Nursing has always been my calling and my passion.”  In 1980, she started her career at Tampa General Hospital as a Pediatric Intensive Care Registered Nurse while she completed her first degree at the University of Tampa in 1982.  She continued in this field at Cincinnati Children’s Medical Center until 1987 and soon after completed a graduate degree at Concordia University in 2003 for Health Care Management.

Karen is a proud mother of three daughters. One daughter is a Program Director for the Children’s Miracle Network, another is an Elementary Kindergarten Teacher in Mississippi, and her youngest daughter attends University of Florida.

As a family they enjoy making creative pizza on the barbeque. Time and laughter with her daughters are always a priority for Karen, especially as they grow into their own lives. Karen feels that laughing comes easy when you do things fun and inventive with your family.

About that daily goal, she says, “I have yet to have that day where I didn’t touch someone’s life and make something better!” And for someone who is in the midst of career in the nursing field with a lot of time invested in Pediatric Intensive Care research in Food Science and Human Nutrition and Nursing Education, that’s saying she’s really dedicated.

Please join us in congratulating Maggie Mendoza, our May 2013 Employee of the Month!

Maggie has been a full time Housekeeper at Plymouth Harbor since August of 2011.  Prior to joining us at Plymouth Harbor, she was employed by Heartland and Sarasota Memorial Hospital in housekeeping.

Maggie Mendoza is Plymouth Harbor's Employee of the Month.From day one with Plymouth Harbor, Maggie has received “Exceeds Standard” remarks on her appraisals for Job Knowledge, Quality of Work, Efficiency, and Attitude.  Her supervisors say of her:  “Her quality of work is outstanding.  I often received phone calls from residents telling me what a nice job she does.  She definitely goes above and beyond their expectations.  She will not leave an area without making sure that everything looks nice and clean.”

Maggie’s nominators commented:  “Maggie is very efficient.  She has great enthusiasm.  It is very obvious that she enjoys her job very much.  I have never seen her without a smile on her face.”

Originally from Mexico, Maggie moved to the area in 1996.  She and her husband Eric (a former Security Officer) have three beautiful children, Eric Jr. (13), David (7), and Hailey (3), who keep them very busy.

Thank you, Maggie, for sharing your talents with us here at Plymouth Harbor!

Please join us in congratulating Jim Oates, Plymouth Harbor April 2013 Employee of the Month!

Jim Oates is Plymouth Harbor's Employee of the Month for April!Jim came to Plymouth Harbor in April of 2007 with over 20 years of experience as a painter, including Journeyman status.  He has been described by his Plymouth Harbor supervisors as efficient, positive, prompt, and an asset to the Maintenance department.  Previous Shining Stars awards demonstrate he is a team player and is dedicated to our residents.

Nominators of Jim stated that he deserves to be recognized for his loyal, dedicated, and constant efforts.  There is no job too big or too small for Jim, and he always goes the extra mile.

Prior to his Plymouth Harbor employment, Jim was with West Rentals Corporation in Wheeling, West Virginia, self-employed for several years in Santa Monica, California, and with Pelican Cove Condominiums in Sarasota. Jim’s previous employers describe him as dependable, dedicated, a great quality worker with good follow-through, and very good with people.

Jim is married to Theresa Oates who was a Plymouth Harbor employee several years ago.  Originally from Carlisle, Pennsylvania, Jim is a graduate of Triadelphia High School in Wheeling, West Virginia.  He moved to the Sarasota area in 2005.

Congratulations, Jim!