A Fresh Take on The South Shore’s Leading Memory Care Program

An unmatched foundation. A fresh perspective. Learn more about Welch Senior Living’s Memory Care Program leaders, Shannon Fenerjian, RN, CDP, and Laurie Welch Guthrie, LCSW, MSW, CDP, and the experiences they bring to their roles in support of residents and families.

When longtime Welch Senior Living employees Joyce Watson O’Neil and Ellen Laramee embarked on their respective retirements in 2022 and 2023, they took with them a combined 75 years of experience but left behind an unmatched foundation for the South Shore’s leading memory care program.   

Today, Welch Senior Living (WSL) Memory Care Program leaders, Shannon Fenerjian, RN, CDP and Laurie Welch Guthrie, LCSW, MSW, CDP, bring their own rich experiences planning, developing, and managing senior care programs and a fresh perspective on how to continually deliver the standards required for WSL’s cutting-edge program, focused on person-centered care. Collaborating with all levels of community leadership, they define, develop, and implement care protocols and specialized memory care staff training programs.

As program leaders, they provide clinical oversight and quality assurance for care planning and resident engagement programs and are important resources to support the staff, as well as families struggling to cope with a loved one’s diagnosis.

Laurie Welch Guthrie (L) and Shannon Fenerjian (R), Welch Senior Living Memory Care Program Experts

“Our goal is to provide each resident with a customized, personal treatment program that leverages our cohesive, consistent approach,” says Welch Guthrie. “Each person – who they are, their life experiences, what they enjoy, their individual strengths – should always remain at the center of their care. Creating a therapeutic and home-like environment that emphasizes each individual has proven benefits of generating self-worth, positive emotions and increased quality of experience.”

Fenerjian echoes the importance of balancing individual needs with consistent planning and delivery methods. “We want to continue to encourage what was done at home to help ease the transition to a memory care residence,” she says. Ensuring the plan development is custom-tailored to an individual resident is the role of specially trained nursing staff, whom Fenerjian oversees. All Welch Senior Living Memory Care staff are required to receive certification as Certified Dementia Practitioners (CDPs).

Welch Guthrie sees her role as always working to fortify the bridges between an exceptional care team and residents and their families. She is currently working to explore how to better collaborate and connect our Memory Care residents, their families, and our care teams via support groups, expert webinars, presentations, and more. “By working with families in this way, we learn how to truly work alongside our residents for the betterment of care and wellbeing,” Welch Guthrie said.