Our leadership team
President and Chief Operating Officer
Read bio for Jason Shannon
Jason Shannon is President and Chief Operating Officer of Shannex Incorporated. Under Jason’s leadership, Shannex has achieved significant growth over the past 15 years, while maintaining the organization’s focus and commitment to its values.
Jason provides thoughtful direction and maintains close connection with operational and organizational development activities. He is also engaged in the company’s business planning and development. Jason’s passion for innovation and delivering exceptional client service continues to inspire collaboration with stakeholders across Canada on ensuring the needs of seniors are being met in home care, retirement living and long term care.
Jason is a graduate of Dalhousie University with a Bachelor of Commerce (1994) and an L.L.B (1997). Jason began his career as a corporate lawyer and joined Shannex in 1999. He cares about his community sitting as a current board member of the Atlantic Institute on Aging and as a board director of the Loran Scholars Foundation. He is also an active supporter of the United Way, the Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia and the Alzheimer’s Society of Nova Scotia.
Senior Vice President, Operations
Read bio for Catherine MacPherson
Catherine joined Shannex in 2010 to lead the development of our academic nursing home partnership with Dalhousie University and has since held operations leadership roles on both the Enhanced Care and Retirement Living teams. In her current role as Senior Vice President, Operations, Catherine supports Shannex and Parkland operations in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Ontario. Prior to joining Shannex, Catherine held program and project management positions in Nova Scotia’s former district health authorities.
Catherine is a Certified Health Executive with the Canadian College of Health Leaders and an EXTRA Fellow with the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement (now Healthcare Excellence Canada). She holds a Bachelor of Health Sciences from McMaster University, a Master of Health Services Administration from Dalhousie University and has completed further executive education from Harvard Business School.
Catherine currently serves on the Dalhousie University Board of Governors. She has previously served on the IWK Health Centre Board of Directors; as Chair of the IWK’s Board Quality Committee; as Chair, Bluenose Chapter, of the Canadian College of Health Leaders; and as sessional faculty in Dalhousie’s School of Health Administration.
Vice President, Finance
Read bio for Laura Scott
As Vice President, Finance, Laura oversees the company’s Finance team. Leading and supporting the finance, accounting, purchasing, payroll and benefits teams, Laura ensures that Shannex maintains financial policies and accounting practices that result in reliable reporting measures to our stakeholders that meet long term organizational objectives, strategic directions and the values of Shannex HealthCare.
Laura joined Shannex in 2000 as the Director of Finance, moving into the VP role in 2011. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Saint Mary’s University and is a professional member of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants and the Nova Scotia Institute of Chartered Accountants. Prior to joining Shannex, Laura worked for several years in both the post-secondary education environment as well as the public accounting sector in Nova Scotia with Deloitte.
Read bio for Kiersten Amos
Kiersten joined the company in late 2018 as General Counsel. Kiersten provides legal advice and support to the leadership team on a wide variety of legal issues. She is also responsible for leading and supporting the labour relations and occupational health teams.
Kiersten holds a law degree from the University of New Brunswick, and a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and a Bachelor of Science (Psychology) from Acadia University. She is a member of the Nova Scotia Barrister’s Society and the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans where she is an Instructor for the Advanced Trusts Management Standards (ATMS™) program.
Prior to joining Shannex, Kiersten worked with a large regional law firm where she practiced in the areas of labour law, employment law, and pension law. She represented and provided advice to employers, pension plan sponsors, administrators, and employee groups. Prior to shifting careers toward law, she had a career in healthcare, practicing as a clinical dietitian in various acute and long term care settings in Canada and the US.
Vice President, Brand and Business Development
Read bio for Heather Hanson
As Vice President of Brand and Business Development, Heather is responsible for marketing, communications, and sales. She also leads the brand integrity strategy for the company and is responsible for business development. Heather values building trusted partnerships with all stakeholders and advancing the organization’s social responsibilities – she wholeheartedly believes that Shannex is leading the way to better living and is proud to be part of this team.
Heather first joined Shannex in 2011, and has worked in agency as well as government, academic and financial sectors. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration and a Master of Public Relations, both from Mount Saint Vincent University (MSVU). She also holds a Certificate in Executive Leadership from Dalhousie University and a certificate from the International Association of Public Participation.
Active in her community, she is a member of MSVU’s Board of Governors and chairs the Advancement and External Relations committee. She is also a member of the International Association of Business Communicators and the International Association of Public Participation.
Vice President, Property and Support Services
Read bio for Kim MacDonald
As Vice President of Property and Support Services, Kim is responsible for a portfolio that includes property and asset management, procurement and contracts, sustainability, new development and support services which includes housekeeping, laundry, waste and inventory management.
In 1991, Kim joined Shannex as the Director of Food Services at Arborstone Enhanced Care. Since that time, she has held a variety of management positions in the organization. In 1995, she moved to Truro when Shannex purchased Hillcrest Manor, where she worked as the administrator. With the expansion in the Colchester Cumberland region, as part of the Building for Better Living project, Kim became the Regional Manager for the Enhanced Care Division overseeing five nursing homes in the region. She then took on a similar role in the Halifax/Dartmouth area as the Director of Operations. More recently, Kim spent 3 years in the role of Director of Operations for new development and during that time she led the opening of 6 buildings in New Brunswick and Ontario. This included the relocation of residents from 2 existing buildings to newly constructed buildings in the Miramichi.
Chief Culinary Officer
Read bio for Dana Schiefer
Dana joined Shannex in 1998 as the Executive Chef of Parkland Clayton Park and is proud to have spent the last 20 years building on care and service excellence delivery for residents and their families. As Chief Culinary Officer, Dana oversees the company’s Culinary direction, and leading and supporting the Culinary teams to deliver an exceptional dining experience. Dana is also passionate about including locally sourced ingredients in residents’ dining experience.
Throughout his years with the company, Dana has held numerous management roles in both Culinary and Procurement divisions. He has been a part of opening every Shannex residence in operation today. Prior to joining Shannex, Dana worked with various upscale restaurant groups in Culinary management roles.
Dana graduated from the NSCC Culinary Art Program in 1993 and the Executive Leadership Program from the Rowe School of Business at Dalhousie University in 2015.
Senior Executive Assistant
Read bio for Cayla Wierstra
As the Senior Executive Assistant at Shannex Cayla is directly responsible for the day to day operations of the office of the President and Chief Operating Officer. Cayla also works closely with the rest of the Senior and Executive Leadership teams and is responsible for oversight over the corporate office as well as the corporate administration team.
Cayla joined Shannex in 2017 and holds a Paralegal diploma from Nova Scotia Community College. Her previous experience was primarily as a legal assistant in the areas of both Corporate and Real Estate Law before moving into a role in marketing and event planning at two of Atlantic Canada’s top law firms.
Vice President, New Brunswick Operations
Read bio for Derek Green
Derek joined Shannex in late 2018 as Vice President, New Brunswick Operations, where he supports Parkland Retirement Living Campuses and Shannex Enhanced Care facilities throughout the province. Derek’s focus is to support the company’s current and expanding operations in New Brunswick to ensure residents continue to receive top quality accommodations and services from engaged employees.
Prior to joining Shannex, Derek had a 20-year career as a senior leader with Medavie Blue Cross, accountable for implementation and management of their federal government contracts with Veterans Affairs Canada and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. Prior to that, he served as an Artillery Officer with the Canadian Armed Forces for eight years, stationed in Quebec, Ontario, and Chatham, NB.
Derek holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the Royal Military College of Canada and holds several financial services industry designations including Fellow, Life Management Institute (FLMI). He has gained the respect of the New Brunswick business community and has also found the time to support amateur sports through volunteering as a coach in hockey, soccer, football and lacrosse over the past 25 years. He is currently Assistant Coach for the Riverview Royals, playing in the NBIAA high school hockey league.
Vice President Operations, Nova Scotia Retirement Living
Read bio for Ian Mader
As Vice President Operations, Nova Scotia Retirement Living division, Ian supports and leads the operations our Parkland Retirement Living communities to ensure our residents and families are receiving outstanding service and accommodations. Ian believes we are able to deliver on our promise to residents because of our Great People. In addition to our Parkland communities, Ian is also responsible for our Care at Home division and is actively involved in many of our new developments and acquisitions. He was very pleased to welcome the Milestone community to our family of operations in February 2022.
Prior to joining Shannex, Ian had a lengthy and successful career with Tim Hortons Corporation spending nine years developing the Canadian operations before moving to the United States for another nine years to expand their operations. During his time at Tim Hortons he was particularly proud to lead the momentous opening of the Tim Hortons at the Kandahar air field in Afghanistan.
Ian holds a Bachelor of Arts from Dalhousie University as well as a Certificate in Hospitality Management from the University of Guelph. He is pleased to be working for an organization that makes a significant difference in the lives of others.
Vice President Operations, Nova Scotia Enhanced Care
Read bio for Dana Power
Dana joined the Shannex team in 1998 as a Clinical Dietitian and has progressed through a variety of leadership roles in both Shannex Enhanced Care and Parkland Retirement Living divisions. Currently serving as Regional Director, Enhanced Care Operations Nova Scotia, Dana leads the operational teams of the 16 licensed long-term care sites in the province.
Dana has participated in and led many successful projects to advance the organization’s strategic goals including: the Shannex Culinary Production Centre; retirement living governance and policy structure; the opening of Caritas Residence for the Sisters of Charity Halifax; and a large campus revitalization and construction project at Parkland Clayton Park.
She holds a Bachelor of Science in Applied Human Nutrition and Masters of Adult Education from Mount Saint Vincent University (MSVU), as well as certificates in Foodservice and Hospitality Management from the Canadian Tourism and Human Resource Council, and Executive Leadership from the Rowe School of Business at Dalhousie University. Dana maintains a connected relationship with MSVU serving as sessional faculty and guest lecturer in the Department of Applied Human Nutrition.
Senior Director, Strategic Planning, Risk and Quality
Read bio for Kathleen Norman
As Senior Director, Strategic Planning, Risk and Quality, Kathleen oversees planning, performance and system integration. In this capacity, she leads and supports the information technology, business systems, innovation & research, quality improvement, business intelligence & analytics teams that serve our residents, team members and other stakeholders. Kathleen’s focus is to ensure those various systems are aligned to meet organizational needs and strategies and deliver value in our homes.
Kathleen joined Shannex in 2013 as the Director of Business Intelligence and Analytics. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Mount Saint Vincent University and a Masters of Business Administration from Saint Mary’s University. Kathleen is currently a PhD candidate at the University of Waterloo’s School of Public Health and Health Systems, with a research focus in how data in LTC can be leveraged to improve the quality of life for residents. She is also a certified Project Management Professional and has her Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma quality improvement methodologies.
Kathleen currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Canadian Mental Health Association’s Nova Scotia division, chairing the strategic planning committee. Previously, Kathleen served as Vice Chair on the Board of Directors for Bryony House and as a sessional lecturer in Dalhousie’s School of Health Administration.