Two team members of Givens Communities are among the 15 “Rising Stars” working in senior living, skilled nursing or home care, who will be honored as 2024 McKnight’s Women of Distinction, program organizers announced today, Feb. 13.

Christian Grunder, Vice President of Human Resources and Jessie Bosshard, Executive Director of Givens Home First, were selected for having demonstrated an exceptional commitment at the community, facility, agency or corporate level. “Rising Stars” are women 40 years old and younger with less than 15 years of experience in the field.

The honorees will be feted May 14 as part of the 6th annual McKnight’s Women of Distinction awards banquet. The Women of Distinction program is a joint effort of McKnight’s Long-Term Care News and sister brands McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Home Care.

Christian Grunder

Grunder oversees HR for four campuses and began her career in the Givens Programming Department, working her way up to HR Manager. She was promoted to VP in 2019, just in time for dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, where she calmly provided leadership, energy, and new ideas in dealing with the crisis that ensued. She now serves on the nonprofit’s Leadership Team and contributes new ideas for all areas related to Givens operations and is a key leader for workplace diversity and inclusion training.

Jessie Bosshard

Bosshard’s journey in the field of aging services began, remarkably enough, in high school when she trained as a Certified Nursing Assistant. While pursuing her undergraduate studies in Economics and Public Health, she interned with Givens Estates’ Human Resources team, and later worked as HR Manager. After several years abroad, she earned a master’s degree in International Health Management from Imperial College London. Her time abroad included significant contributions to Elder Technologies Ltd., the largest live-in care agency in the UK at the time, where she held several key positions. In 2022, she returned to Givens to help build the new Home and Community Based Services program, Givens Home First.

“The judges were impressed with the difference these women have been able to make with limited time in long-term care,” said John O’Connor, McKnight’s Editorial Director, Vice President and Associate Publisher. “We’re thrilled to be able to shine a light on their contributions and look forward to honoring them in person.”

Kevin Schwab, CEO of Givens Communities, said “We are indeed fortunate to have dedication and talent that Christian and Jessie bring to our team. We are equally proud that they have been recognized and will be honored by McKnight’s publications.”

Givens Communities, based in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina, is comprised of four distinct senior living communities, two membership services programs, along with regional outreach and partnerships that support older adults and their families. For more information, go to

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