News & Press: General News

LeadingAge Texas Board Member Profile Series

Thursday, August 22, 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Julianna Ems
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Starting this month, LeadingAge Texas will profile a board member each week who dedicates their time, energy, and perspective to our collective mission.


We are kicking off the series with the newly elected Chair of LeadingAge Texas, Marsha Cayton. Over the past three decades, she has served in multiple capacities for the association always seeking ways to improve care and services for seniors across the state.  We are honored to have her leading our association.

The best advice I could give…
1. Golden Rule: Treat others as you want to be treated.
2. Team work and high level collaboration.
3. Exercise the power of forgiveness.

The best advice I’ve ever received…
Came from my Mom - When you are overwhelmed or stressed, try this: Take a moment, consciously take a few slow deep breaths and reflect. This simple 1 minute break will deliver a powerful restart.

What is the best article or book you've read recently?
7 Men and 7 Women and the Secret of Their Greatness by Eric Metaxas. He explores the question of what makes a person great. I found it an enlightening read! Some of the men and women were unknown to me and I am glad that I read their story.


The best advice I could give…
Give grace and receive grace, to others and yourself.  Mistakes and failure are part of the process. Good people make mistakes and fail, and use those experiences to grow and expand forward. Let go of the ideal of “perfection” and embrace the journey – there will be bumps in the road.  

What do you wish other people knew about aging services?
The rewards of serving this population will impact and enrich you in ways you could never imagine. You are inspired daily with reflections and life experiences of our seniors, and reminded, regardless of your chronological years, youthfulness and living are a state of mind

What is the best article or book you've read recently? 
Being Mortal by Atul Gawande. Should be required reading for anyone serving in healthcare, as well as all of us as we face aging and struggle with quality of life versus quantity of life. Superior writing and insight into the aging, illness and medical approaches currently in America and how often they work in opposition versus in unison. 


Why do I belong to LeadingAge Texas?
I belong to LeadingAge Texas for multiple reasons but the biggest one is the networking that is available with all of the experts in our association. As a stand-alone ministry, we do not have a corporate office to inform us of all the changes in our field. LeadingAge Texas and the networking opportunities it provides, helps fulfill that role for us.

What have I done for fun lately?
I grew up on a farm loving the outdoors. Now in an office most of the time, outdoor time is limited. I always try to work some outdoor time in the form of fishing and kayaking into my schedule.

What is the best article or book you've read recently?
Although not so recent, I believe one of the best books I have read is Being Mortal by Atul Gawande. In it, he talks a great deal about aging and end of life issues and how to improve those experiences. I thought it was so relevant, I gave copies to all of our executive team as well as Board members and we discussed it at our Board meeting.


Why do you belong to LeadingAge Texas?
I belong to LeadingAge Texas because of the incredible network of similar, mission-driven organizations and colleagues from which to learn and with whom we can collaborate. The association looks out not only for the best interests of its members, but also for the population we serve. It is important for members to take an active role in the association because we are stronger influencers by our engagement in obtaining and promoting public policy favorable to the people we serve.

The best advice I’ve ever received…
“Always hire people far smarter than you are and support them in their drive for success.”

Why do you love your job?
There are few careers today that allow you to be involved in such a diverse number of business practices, all at the same time – healthcare and financial management, event planning, culinary services, social and spiritual wellness, property management – and the list goes on. At the same time, we get the honor of working in peoples’ homes. It is a sacred responsibility and gift. It gives me great joy to do what I love and share in the lives of the people we are here to serve.