Editor’s Note: McKnight’s Long-Term Care News and McKnight’s Senior Living are profiling the McKnight’s 2021 Women of Distinction honorees daily July 6 through Aug. 6. To see the 2021 McKnight’s 2021 Women of Distinction awards ceremony, register for free here. For additional profiles of McKnight’s Women of Distinction, visit this page.

Jean Bryan may not have known it at the time, but her work as a candy striper for a local nursing home 40 years ago would be a precursor to her career. 

After attending college and earning an undergraduate degree in health and nutrition, Bryan started a job as a food service director at a geriatrics center. During this time, she realized her true passion was working in senior care. She then became involved in various senior living and care organizations and held multiple positions, including environmental health specialist for the county health department. 

Jean Bryan headshot
Jean Bryan

Her transition into senior living began at Harrison Senior Living in East Fallowfield, PA where she served as corporate director of dining services. She then moved into her current role as executive director of Harrison House Chester County in Fallowfield, PA, where she has continued to serve for the past 25 years.

Bryan has found numerous ways to improve care and services at Harrison Senior Living and is able to streamline processes and create efficient systems, colleagues say. Her collaborative leadership style helps her understand the needs of her community, resulting in a high-standard of care and service, they add.

During the pandemic, Bryan has remained confident and positive while putting measures and systems in place to keep her residents and staff safe, colleagues say. 

In addition to her duties at Harrison Living, she has served on the board for the local senior center for the past six years and is an active member of the Pennsylvania Assisted Living Association and the Pennsylvania Health Care Association. 

Bryan also gives back to her community. Passionate about teaching children about life skills and how to be independent, she regularly enlists students with special needs to work alongside dining staff and learn both job and life skills.

The McKnight’s Women of Distinction program is jointly administered by McKnight’s Long-Term Care News and McKnight’s Senior Living. The program’s Diamond sponsor is PointClickCare, and the Roundtable Sponsor is Paycor.