Our team of senior living specialists

Meet our leadership team.

Chris Barstein

Chris Barstein

Executive Director

Chris Barstein, a longtime Benchmark executive director, has overseen Meadow Ridge’s operations since December 2020 after serving seven years as the campus executive director of Edgehill in Stamford. He brings with him a solid background in running premier continuing care retirement communities with a proven track record of success.

Chris leads the management team and has overall responsibility for the operational and clinical results of the community at Meadow Ridge.

His career spans over 40 years in the hospitality industry, including the Water’s Edge Resort, the historic Goodwin Hotel, Omni and Sheraton hotels. His extensive experience as a hotelier and comprehensive knowledge of the senior living industry serves Meadow Ridge and its residents graciously.

Chris has a Bachelor of Science degree in Hospitality from Johnson & Wales University and is a Certified Director of Assisted Living (CDAL).

The best part of Chris’ day is caring for others. “It is the highest calling I can imagine. The feeling is difficult to describe, but it is a job with a feeling of altruism.”

When he is not at Meadow Ridge, Chris likes to spend time with Sue, his wife of 35 years. He is a voracious reader, enjoys cooking and a good game of golf on Sunday mornings.

Mark Gapski

Mark Gapski

Chief Financial Officer

Mark oversees all aspects of Meadow Ridge’s financial activities, including accounting, financial reporting, cash management and budgeting. Since joining the community in January 2016, he has worked closely with the management team, finance committee and ownership to ensure everyone understands our current financial results, so that we can develop timely future strategies.

Mark has 30 years of experience, which includes working for a Big 4 public accounting firm, a Fortune 50 Company (including international assignments), a large multi-state nonprofit organization, and a senior living consulting firm where he was responsible for establishing accounting departments at communities such as Meadow Ridge. He has a Bachelor of Science and obtained his certified public accounting license in the State of New York.

“I’m excited to work with such a genuine and sincere team. They want to do their best to serve our residents, and are open to continual learning and raising the bar. Ultimately, this leads to positive changes that lead to positive results.”

Mike Myers

Mike Myers

Director of Sales & Marketing

Mike Myers joined Meadow Ridge as Marketing & Sales Director for Meadow in spring of 2020.   Mike has been working in the field of senior services since 1989. He started his career with program planning at a senior center in Seattle, and recently restarted a struggling continuing care retirement community in Lincoln, Massachusetts.

Mike has a strong skill set that ranges from developing effective marketing programs to creating a sales culture of success. Primarily working in senior housing for the last 20 years, Mike has helped both for-profits and non-profits to achieve their goals.

Prior to joining Meadow Ridge, Mike worked as the Marketing & Sales Director at Duncaster, a Life Plan community in Bloomfield, Connecticut, and in a variety of senior level sales and regional roles for Benchmark Senior Living, a New England based senior housing management company.

Mike’s motto is “if you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you have always had”.

JoAnn Brant

JoAnn Brant

Director of Resident Life

JoAnn and her team manage all resident related activities and fitness programming for independent living and the “Channel 3” in-house television communication channel. In addition, she acts as liaison with The Salon at Meadow Ridge and the resident run Country Store at the community.

JoAnn has been part of the Meadow Ridge family for over 5 years. In that role she has worked in a variety of departments. JoAnn enjoys the relationships and friendships of both residents and fellow employees, and takes great pride in offering a remarkable variety of programs, entertainment and engaging activities to appeal to our resident’s wide-ranging interests. JoAnn and her team work particularly close with our newest residents to assist them in acclimating to their new home. This includes the monthly “Freshman Orientation” program throughout their first year, as well as encouraging new friendships or renewing prior acquaintances among the residents.

JoAnn has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Oklahoma and is also a Certified Nursing Assistant.

“I enjoy being part of a leadership team that works hard to make a difference in the lives of our wonderful residents.”

Heidi Goodhart

Heidi Goodhart

Human Resources Director

Heidi joined the Meadow Ridge team in spring of 2020. In her role, she is responsible for the oversight, planning, coordinating and administering of all human resource activities for the community.

Heidi has been working in the field of human resources for over twenty-five years, with a particular focus on the hospitality industry. Early in her career she worked with Marriott International in their Conference Center Division. She later joined the Dolce Hotels and Resorts organization, working in both property and corporate office roles. She also worked for Macy’s Herald Square in New York, NY, and for Hilton Hotels. Prior to joining Meadow Ridge, Heidi most recently worked as the Director of Human Resources for Benchmark Hospitality/Doral Arrowwood.

Heidi has a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Dickinson College. She also holds the certification of Senior Professional in Human Resources. (SPHR) from the Human Resources Certification Institute.

“I am so fortunate to have joined the amazing team of Meadow Ridge employees who have shown me in so many ways how much they value their responsibilities to our residents and each other. It is a privilege to be in a role that has the responsibility of serving people who take care of people. I look forward to further enhancing the wonderful work environment that is here at Meadow Ridge.”

Jimmy Misbach

Jimmy Misbach

Director of Dining Services

Jimmy joined the Meadow Ridge team in Summer 2019 as the Director of Dining Services and is responsible for overseeing all of the dining venues at Meadow Ridge. Jimmy comes to Meadow Ridge with over 20 years experience in senior dining. He specializes in creating restaurant style dining for both the front of the house and back of the house. Prior to making the transition to senior living Jimmy worked in many restaurants and was part of the team at the largest wedding complexes in New England.

Jimmy’s philosophy is being a coach and a leader, to inspire his team members to strive for the absolute best and bring out their hidden talents.

Jimmy served in the US Army Reserve and is a graduate from the Connecticut Culinary institute.

“I’m so excited to be a member of the Meadow Ridge team. Breaking bread and sharing a meal with friends and family is one of the most therapeutic and rewarding things you can do for the mind, body and soul. There’s an old saying “you’re only as good as your last dining experience” that’s why we have to have exceptional food & drink every day.”

Yvette Dobruck, RN, MS, LNH

Yvette Dobruck, RN, MS, LNH

Health Services Administrator

Yvette Dobruck, RN, MS, LNH, joined us as the Health Services Administrator in the summer of 2019.  Yvette works with our management company, Life Care Services (LCS) and is a seasoned nursing home administrator who lives in Connecticut.  In the past, Yvette was the Administrator for StoneRidge, an LCS community in Stonington, Connecticut and then took on the role as an interim Administrator and/or Executive Director at LCS locations all across the country.  Since joining Meadow Ridge, Yvette has been instrumental in ensuring high quality standards and survey readiness are maintained, and is an amazing problem solver.  At the community, Yvette has direct responsibility for Ridge Crest, as well as environmental services, security and the transportation team.

Yvette is both a registered nurse and a long-term care administrator.  She has a Master of Science Degree in Nursing, as well as her Long-term Care Administrator certificate from the University of Connecticut.  She is also certified as an Infection Preventionist and in Quality Improvement.

About working at Meadow Ridge Yvette says, “I love the team spirit and true collaboration at the community.  It is a place like no other I have had the pleasure of working at.”

Corey Seigel

Corey Seigel

Executive Chef

Corey is responsible for all the cuisine here at Meadow Ridge. This includes creating of all menus, handling budget for his department, and managing and mentoring the culinary team. Since joining the community in 2017, Corey has worked closely with the management team to offer the residents familiar favorites, as well as cutting-edge dishes to keep everyone excited about dining here.

Corey has 29 years of experience, which includes country clubs, restaurants, fine hotels, and his own venture. He spent several years working for Chef Support Services, traveling as a consultant and serving as interim chef at a variety of properties. Corey is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, and has had stints on the advisory boards of The Community Culinary School of Northwestern Connecticut, the Connecticut Chefs Chapter of the American Culinary Federation, and the Connecticut Department of Agriculture’s Farm to Chef Program.

“I’m thrilled to work with such a dedicated team that strives to enhance the lives of not only our community residents, but also each other. ‘A shared meal is the kindling for the warmest conversation.’”

Sal Gaetano

Sal Gaetano

Plant Operations Director

Sal has been at Meadow Ridge for over 10 years. His job is making sure that our one- million-square-foot-community and all its many mechanical systems are maintained and operate efficiently, to ensure our residents are safe and comfortable at all times. He and his team are also responsible for maintaining the 136-acre grounds throughout the fabulous seasons of New England.

Sal grew up and attended Alfred E. Smith Mechanical School in Bronx, NY. He was also honorably discharged from the U.S. Army, and is a talented musician.

“I believe we were put on this earth to serve one and other, and at Meadow Ridge we’re given that awesome opportunity every day. Actually, I don’t even need a sentence to describe Meadow Ridge magic; just one word sums it up: family.”

Paul Brown, MS, MBA

Paul Brown, MS, MBA

Resident Health Services Director

As the Resident Health Services Director, Paul oversees the RHS department which provides health services to the both the Independent and Assisting Living community. Services include medication management, social work assistance, nursing clinic hours and assistance with activities of daily living. Paul is also responsible for the personal assistant program at Meadow Ridge, which provides non-medical assistance to residents (like shopping, letter writing, gift wrapping and companion services).

Paul has a Master of Science in Exercise Science/Nutrition from Sacred Heart University and a Master of Business Administration from Southern Connecticut State University. Paul enjoys traveling across America, traveling overseas, hiking, and reading history.

“I love my job, especially the aspects of taking care of the health of our residents and continuing to support their high quality of life.”

Tracy Yost

Tracy Yost

Fitness Manager with National Institute for Fitness and Sport at Meadow Ridge

Tracy comes from a business background with a BS in marketing from Binghamton University. She has been a certified personal trainer through American Council on Exercise (ACE) since 1999. Tracy has worked in corporate fitness as Program Director at Westchester New York Life in Tarrytown, NY and Duracell in Bethel, CT and more recently as Fitness Director at Round Hill Club in Greenwich, CT. Tracy’s favorite form of exercise is functional training which involves training the body for the activities performed in daily life.

Tracy moved to Santa Cruz, CA for several years before returning to Connecticut in 2015. She lives in Westport, CT with her husband, Pete and their dog, Nashville. Her three grown daughters live in California so she visits often.  Over the last few years, Tracy started a beach bike rental business, Westport Bike Rentals and co-founded a local giving circle, 100 Women Who Care Fairfield County, CT in which she is still actively involved.  Her hobbies include hiking, reading, jigsaw puzzles, crochet, and  American mahjongg. She believes in active aging and is inspired by the Blue Zones of Happiness, a book dedicated to studying the places on earth where people live the longest, healthiest lives, and tend to be happy.

Christine Schiffer

Christine Schiffer

Executive Assistant

Christine comes to Meadow Ridge with an extensive background in supporting busy executives, so she is up to the task to support Meadow Ridge’s busy Executive Director, Chris Barstein.

Christine considers herself to be a problem solver, as well as always proactively sharing her positive attitude and outlook with her fellow co-workers and residents.

In the short time that she has been here, she has taken the newly-created weekly resident newsletter, The Insider, and made it into a valuable resource for not only the residents, but for the staff and the residents’ families and friends.

Prior to joining Meadow Ridge, she worked for 15 years at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals in a variety of departments, including Human Resources and Sales. She was responsible for managing regional meetings, analyzing data and budgets, as well as serving on many high-profile committees while on their staff.

In addition to strong computer and organizational skills, Christine always portrays her warm, friendly personality that has been a wonderful addition to our team.

“I am so glad that I took a chance to work within a senior living community. I consider the residents, my co-workers and the overall atmosphere like a hidden gem in Connecticut, and I am glad to be a part of the Meadow Ridge family.”