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Riderwood goes high tech

New director of general services enhances services at Silver Spring community

Created date

October 14th, 2014
headshot of new director of general services
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Earlier this year, Wendy Ferris became the director of general services at

Grounded in values

Ferris has been working in the senior living industry since she was 16 years old. She studied at the University of Maryland–Baltimore County, and after graduation, she took a job with Life Care Services, LLC, a management company based in Iowa. There she was assigned to work as an assistant administrator at two start-up communities in Florida.

After that, she worked as an assistant administrator at a large skilled nursing facility in North Carolina and studied to become a licensed nursing home administrator. She moved to the Baltimore area and worked as an associate administrator at a continuing care retirement community (CCRC). 

Before coming to Riderwood, Ferris was an administrator at a CCRC in Annapolis, were she was responsible for several operating departments and served as the nursing home administrator.

What attracted Ferris to Riderwood, she says, is that the staff works so hard to provide the highest quality services and amenities to its residents. She says she also finds it refreshing that Riderwood is such a diverse community, where differences are embraced and celebrated.

“I was immediately attracted to the sense of community I felt when I visited Riderwood the first time,” Ferris says. “I was amazed that such a large community could feel so friendly and grounded in values.”

Technology upgrade

One of Ferris’s chief responsibilities this year at Riderwood is overseeing the implementation of Riderwood Connect. This first phase in Riderwood’s master planning process will initially provide landline phone service and wireless Internet for residents. 

As a result of the technology upgrade, Ferris says many residents will experience better cell phone service in their apartment homes as well. 

“It offers a way to connect to different services and possibilities for the future through an installed fiber-optic infrastructure,” Ferris says of Riderwood Connect. 

Ferris expects the 32-week wiring process to be completed in the beginning of 2015. She says residents will start making appointments with the Erickson IT staff to port their phones and connect their devices to the Riderwood Connect Wi-Fi services in January 2015, and the entire project is expected to be complete in the spring of 2015. 

If residents need assistance during the Riderwood Connect implementation, Ferris says she and her staff will be a simple phone call away to offer tech support. 

Riderwood may undergo additional technology upgrades via Riderwood Connect. Ferris says future improvements could include expanded security and emergency services, keyless door entry, temperature monitoring, a redesigned resident health portal, and point-of-sale charging capabilities on campus.

Dedicated wife and mother

When she’s not hard at work making sure Riderwood residents have access to all of the services they expect, Ferris is busy shuttling her two young daughters to various after-school activities. 

Ferris, an Annapolis native, worked at a CCRC there for five years while she was in high school and college. There, she met her husband. 

Ferris and her family currently live in Howard County. In her downtime, she enjoys walking and shopping.

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