Editor’s Note: McKnight’s Long-Term Care News, McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Home Care are profiling the McKnight’s 2023 Women of Distinction honorees daily from July 5 to Aug. 15. For additional McKnight’s Women of Distinction content, visit this page.

Having a disabled father, Cindy Longfellow from a young age had a passion for helping those with health vulnerabilities. Her early work was in vocational rehabilitation. This experience led her to the insurance and worker’s compensation industry and eventually into long-term care with Alterra Healthcare. She joined Juniper Communities in 2003 as the director of community relations. 

Juniper’s focus on helping residents and their families obtain quality, highly individualized care resonated with Longfellow. She was promoted to regional sales director, national director of sales and, in 2014, to her current role of vice president of business development, sales and marketing, bridging the gap between sales and operations. 

Longfellow’s responsibilities have grown along with Juniper’s portfolio and census. Juniper had 12 communities in 2010 and 30 at the end of 2022. She serves on the advisory board of the American Seniors Housing Association’s Where You Live Matters consumer campaign. 

During Longfellow’s time as in that role, Juniper has implemented a comprehensive digital strategy that has delivered more than 8,000 inquiries with a qualification rate of 73% and a move-in rate of 19%; developed a “scorecard” designed in conjunction with operations that assesses the health of a community via more than 100 benchmarks; and introduced customer relationship management systems that improve data collection, reporting and analysis of sales metrics. In 2021, Juniper exceeded industry standards for inquiry-to-lead qualification (79%), speed to lead (less than one hour) and tours. 

Longfellow was the primary creator of Camp Aging Insurrection at Burning Man, Juniper’s camp focused on combating ageism, and she has been central to the development of many of Juniper’s acclaimed programs. 

Her colleagues know Longfellow as a consummate professional who has charisma, passion, humility, an intense professional will and the ability to relate to many different individuals and work styles. She also provides a constant reminder of the positives to be found in each individual.

The McKnight’s Women of Distinction program is jointly administered by McKnight’s Long-Term Care News, McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Home Care. PointClickCare is the Diamond sponsor of this year’s program. PharMerica is the Silver sponsor. Additional sponsors include American HealthTech, Healthcare Services Group, Omnicare, Sentrics and ShiftKey.

Visit this web page to see lists of honorees from 2023 and previous years.