The Maplewood Leadership Team is made up of professionals with diverse talents and experiences who share a common goal — to redefine senior living. Their shared passion and commitment have led Maplewood to become an industry leader, setting new standards in the industry and inspiring a renewed outlook on life for residents and families.
Gregory (Greg) D. Smith was a true visionary and industry leader, credited with transforming the future of senior living. Greg founded Maplewood Senior Living and Inspīr out of a personal passion to change the promise and potential of our later years and served as President & CEO until his passing in 2023. With a background in real estate development and hospitality, Greg set out to assemble a team with strong senior living expertise to help fulfill his vision. That vision began to become a reality in 2006 with the opening of Maplewood at Danbury. In the decades since, Maplewood has influenced the entire senior living industry, earning the company a reputation as a leading innovator in the field.
A native of Massachusetts, Greg studied marketing and finance at Bentley University. He cared deeply about helping others and was committed to supporting his local community and funding advancements in care. Greg served as Chairman of the Board of Directors for Ability Beyond, was a long-standing member of the board of directors for the Alzheimer’s Association New York City Chapter, and was a loyal donor supporting many projects and campaigns across Nuvance Health including the establishment of the Andrew Cruz Endowed Chair in Palliative Care in memory of his cousin, among other civic and philanthropic efforts.
Thomas Gaston has spent the majority of his career in real estate development, including nearly two decades dedicated to the luxury senior housing sector. As chief investment officer, Tom is responsible for growing the company’s portfolio through the developments and acquisition of both suburban and urban properties. He began his career with Leggat McCall Properties and Amicus Healthcare. The breadth of his experience involves managing the development of more than 2,000 senior living units over his career.
Tom’s experience also includes executive leadership roles in the areas of operations and development and acquisitions at a number of other well-regarded regional senior living organizations. Additionally, Tom co-founded Northbridge Senior Living in Burlington, Massachusetts.
Shane Herlet has more than 25 years of experience in the luxury senior living industry and has managed more than 3,000 units of senior housing throughout his career. He has been recognized for operational excellence in the industry for delivering unmatched senior living experiences that seamlessly integrate luxury accommodations, exceptional hospitality, cutting-edge technology, innovative wellness programs and world-class care.
In addition to his responsibilities as COO, Shane serves as the president of Maplewood’s HEART Foundation, Inc., a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization established to provide financial support to associates experiencing unexpected life circumstances. He is also actively involved in a number of Alzheimer’s and senior living associations, including ESAAL, OALA, Mass-ALA, and CALA. Shane has a master’s degree in Gerontological Studies from Miami University.
In his role as General Counsel for Maplewood Senior Living, Arthur (Art) Miller oversees the company’s legal matters, including managing the legal aspects of acquisitions, development, financing, employment, litigation and contracts.
Art has been practicing law for more than 30 years. He graduated from Duke University, A.B., magna cum laude; and Georgetown University Law Center, J.D. He is a member of the Connecticut Bar Association.
As chief accounting officer, Stefanie brings more than 20 years of accounting experience to Maplewood Senior Living. Before joining our team, she was the managing director at CFGI – Consulting Services and also worked as a senior manager, SEC/Financing Reporting at General Electric, and as senior manager/Audit at Deloitte.
Stefanie graduated from the University of Delaware with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting. She is a CPA in the state of Connecticut.
As senior vice president of sales & marketing, Heather Freemont is responsible for expressing how Maplewood meets the needs of our residents and their families. From developing marketing plans to interpreting market data, her work truly keeps Maplewood top of mind in the senior living world. With more than 20 years of experience in the senior care industry, Heather understands the people we serve like no one else.
Heather’s extensive background in the industry includes roles as vice president of Sales and Marketing for Judson Senior Living and Heather Hill/UHHS, as well as executive director for the Eliza Jennings Senior Care Network. Heather attended Kent State University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Family & Consumer Studies, Gerontology and Long-Term Care Administration, and is an OALA board member. Her valuable skill set and dedication to the industry make her an invaluable asset to the Maplewood team.
Brian is a key member of our Executive Team, contributing significantly to our strategic direction, effective leadership, and the establishment of best practices in memory care, lifestyle, and behavioral health. With a relentless commitment to transforming senior care, Brian fosters a culture of excellence and drives continuous improvements in outcomes to enhance the health and wellbeing of our residents. Additionally, he oversees the Maplewood Center for Aging Innovation & Technology.
As an experienced healthcare leader and seasoned clinician, Brian possesses a deep understanding of emerging care models and population health strategies. His strategic and innovative thinking guides our organization towards the forefront of the industry.
Previously, Brian held the position of Western Massachusetts Regional Clinical Director at Commonwealth Care Alliance (CCA), where he helped lead organizational development, care model improvement, and transformation initiatives. His efforts strengthened and expanded CCA’s next-generation care delivery model.
Brian holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Arizona State University and a Master of Science in Nursing from Yale University.
As the Vice President of Resident Services, Tino Popescu oversees the most important aspect of our business: resident care. In collaboration with the Operations team and regional and community clinicians, Tino is responsible for the compliance and quality of services provided across all Maplewood Senior Living and Inspīr properties.
Tino is an enthusiastic and caring healthcare professional with over 10 years of experience as a professional registered nurse leader. He has supported patients in a variety of healthcare settings, including hospitals, home-care, hospice, and assisted living communities, and has a proven track record of directing complex projects and achieving positive outcomes for his patients.
His nursing career with Maplewood Senior Living spans seven years. Serving first as the Regional Director of Nursing for the state of Connecticut, then as Director of Nursing across multiple states before assuming the role he holds now, Vice President of Resident Services.
As a nurse, Tino takes pride in his core values of respect, kindness, integrity, and persistence and is excited to extend these philosophies to his team, his residents, and their families. Working with the talented clinical team at Maplewood Senior Living and Inspīr, as well as our clinical partners, he ensures that every resident receives exceptional healthcare and the services delivered meet the company’s high standards of excellence.
As vice president of real estate development, James oversees all facets of Maplewood Senior Living’s real estate development needs including design, permitting, construction and analysis to ensure the financial feasibility and operational success. In this capacity, James is also responsible for internal business systems and project controls required to mitigate potential risks to approved budgets and schedules, as well as associated reporting requirements to both internal and external stakeholders.
James came to Maplewood from Steiner NYC (a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based real estate developer) and holds a Master of Science Degree in Real Estate Development from Columbia University. James also spent five years with PricewaterhouseCoopers advising clients on real estate development matters related to financial analysis and project controls on billion-dollar capital projects.
James resides with his wife and two daughters in Fairfield County, Connecticut.
Kim Bragoli is an accomplished marketing strategist with over twenty years of experience specializing in communications and public relations. In her role as Vice President of Communications, she leverages her expertise in strategic communications and content creation to maximize online engagement and brand awareness and to drive business growth. She excels at harnessing market trends and consumer insights to craft impactful strategies and captivating marketing campaigns. Kim’s collaborative nature and strategic mindset empower her to forge seamless partnerships with cross-functional teams, ensuring flawless execution. Her unwavering dedication, creativity, and profound understanding of communications and public relations have earned major recognition for the Maplewood Senior Living and Inspīr brands, contributing significantly to their success and prominence in the industry.
Jill McGroarty is an experienced human resources leader with over 15 years of diverse industry experience in aligning business goals with HR strategies. As vice president of human resources, Jill oversees all aspects of HR with a particular focus on attracting and retaining the very best people to deliver an exceptional experience for residents.
Joining Maplewood Senior Living in 2013, Jill led the buildout of human resources infrastructure and business process optimization through an aggressive 8-year expansion. She is a trusted advisor to the leadership and operations teams and provides expert guidance in the areas of risk mitigation, workforce alignment, organizational culture transformation, total rewards systems, talent acquisition and retention strategies.
Jill holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Michigan in Organizational Behavior/Industrial Psychology and a Master of Science from Michigan State University from the School of Human Resources and Labor Relations.
Moriah is an experienced sales leader with more than a decade of sales experience in the senior housing industry. During her tenure with Maplewood Senior Living, she has held a variety of regional sales positions. In her current role as vice president of sales, Moriah is responsible for the company’s sales force, development and monitoring of performance and accomplishment of business objectives. Moriah was instrumental in the overall occupancy success in the company’s portfolio of properties.
Moriah received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Management from Kent State University.
Tom joined Maplewood in 2010, and has single-handedly built the IT department. When he started, the company only had two communities. Today, he has built a successful IT support team that services 16 communities including our flagship sister brand, Inspῑr, in New York City.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Tom and his team moved mountains to provide technology initiatives to benefit our communities and included temi robots, iPads, Microsoft Teams, and Zoom. These kept our associates, residents and their families virtually connected.
Morgan is a dynamic and successful leader with over 20 years of experience in the senior living industry working in the areas of Business Development, Sales/Marketing and Operations. Morgan currently serves as the Corporate Director of Business Development & Reputation and is responsible for establishing new business and strategic partnerships.
Morgan attended Kent State University where he earned a Bachelors of Science in Nursing and a Bachelors of Arts in Family & Consumer Studies, Gerontology & Long-Term Care Administration. Morgan is an active volunteer with the Alzheimer’s Association- Greater East Ohio Chapter where he served as the Board Chairman. Morgan was recognized as the 2022 recipient of the Legacy Achievement Award for his ongoing fundraising and awareness efforts.
In his role as corporate director of Real Estate, Mark oversees the asset management and real estate branches of Maplewood. He supports the operations team on all aspects of capital projects, maintenance, housekeeping and new community openings. Mark brings 17 years of experience in several different aspects of senior housing to his role as an executive director and also brings a background in accounting and insurance.
Since joining Maplewood, Mark has been part of the development of five projects and will be completing and opening his sixth community, the first in New Jersey, in 2021.
Mark has been a member of the Empire State Association of Assisted Living (ESAAL) and is currently a Board Member of Argentum New York.