Community Leadership

Advena Living on Woodlawn celebrates the importance of ethics, compassion and commitment in the healthcare profession as we honor our nurses, volunteers and staff, who demonstrate such passion and dedication to our community members every day.

Our staff works side-by-side with families and physicians to ensure our community members are in the most appropriate care setting, customized for their needs and preferences. Our licensed professionals are available to answer questions and address any concerns you or your family may have.

Please feel free to contact our key staff members about our services:

Rebeka Jones, Administrator

Growing up, I spent the summers with my grandparents and visited my mom as she worked in a nursing home. I loved being around the elderly population. When I began college, I knew I wanted to work with seniors and in healthcare. My junior year of college I did an internship at a local nursing home as an Administrator in Training. In that very moment I knew that is what I wanted to do and to change lives. I ended up moving to Kansas from Virginia in 2017 where I completed my AIT and became a licensed Administrator. Every day I walk in the door it is my home away from home. I love building the relationships with the residents, their families, and the staff. Working in long-term care and being an Administrator is extremely rewarding and I never truly feel like it’s work because I love what I do.

Whitney Gray, Social Service Director

I have worked with Advena since 2010. I started as a CNA and received my certification for Social Service Designee in 2013. I have been in this role ever since and have taken on responsibility for marketing and admissions as well. As a CNA for more than 15 years, I am dedicated to ensuring that every community member receives the care and resources they need to thrive. I am excited about the growth and direction of Advena, and I look forward to growing along with them.

Stephen Christian, Marketing & Admission Director

I grew up on the East Coast living in small towns, with my dad as a minister.  We spent most of our Sunday afternoons going to nursing homes, loving on the residents, and offering church services. Little did I know that after 23 years of working in a church, my life would be turned upside down.

Over the last several years I have had the honor of working with local hospice companies and assisted living communities.  These experiences helped to foster a new passion within me to be a part of a team that provides quality of care to those in need of senior and nursing home care.

I love Wichita and the people in this city.  In my spare time I enjoy being with my family, running, and chilling in a hammock. I am excited to be a part of the Advena Living on Woodlawn team.

Deborah McGehee, Activities Director

I spent my childhood on the family farm near a small route town in northwest Arkansas. My career as a caregiver began in my early teens with my grandfather. I got my first job as a CNA in 1977 and have worked in long-term care ever since. I studied psychology and nursing at the University of Arkansas at Fort Smith. I have been employed here since February 2001 and have served as CNA, RA and Activity Director and Health Information Officer. 

Clarissa Watson, MDS Coordinator/ADON

I have been an LPN for 17 years, and before that I was an CNA and CMA. I have had many different roles as an LPN including MDS Coordinator, ADON, and Medical Records Nurse. My current position is MDS/ADON and Infection Preventionist. I am excited for this new journey as I am eager to learn and assist in all departments at Advena Living on Woodlawn.

Sheila Shugart, Director of Nursing Assistant (DONA)

I grew up as a kid doing bible study and volunteer work in nursing homes. As I got older, that made me want to help those who couldn’t help themselves and make a real difference in people’s lives, “young or old.” I’ve been hooked on helping others ever since.

I became a CNA in 2001, obtained my Activities and Social Service’s Certificate in 2014, and I recently obtained my CMA in March of 2022. I started at Advena Living on Woodlawn as a volunteer in 2012 teaching bible study and I have a long-standing employment history in this community since 2013. Since 2012 I have done CNA, Central Supply, Activities, and Transportation.

I am currently the DONA (Director of Nursing Assistant) which includes a variety of task assisting the DON/ADON. I’m excited to continue learning different aspects in this role.

Jayden Kelly, COTA, Therapy Director

A native of Arkansas City, Kan., I started my career here in July 2020 as a caring and passionate occupational therapy assistant helping patients overcome barriers and enhance their lives by adapting to their disabilities. I earned my associate’s degree in occupational therapy as well as a bachelor’s in healthcare science at Newman University. As Therapy Director, I oversee the therapy department for all three disciplines: providing quality care to patients, excellent care planning, and promoting a positive clinical environment to meet program standards and guidelines. I enjoy building relationships with our patients and seeing them excel in therapy to meet their goals.

Heather Owens, Maintenance Director

More info coming soon…

Debra Lowry, Certified Dietary Manager

I have been a Dietary Manager since 1983. I have an associate degree in Dietetics from the University of Florida at Gainesville. I have an advanced certificate in Food Management from the University of North Dakota. I am a member of the Association of Nutrition and Foodservice Professionals. I have been Central district president of Kansas for ANFP for the past 4 years, I am state treasurer for Kansas ANFP. I have been a Certified Dietary Manager since 1999. I have been a manager in Michigan, Illinois, Vermont, and Kansas. I love working with my residents.