NIC Notes

Insights in Seniors Housing & Care

By: NIC  |  September 20, 2022

Women’s Networking Meetup: 15 Life Lessons for Professional Women in Senior Living

Ideas and Discussion  |  NIC Fall Conference

An inaugural Women’s Networking Meetup was held last week at the 2022 NIC Fall Conference in Washington, D.C., co-sponsored by ASHA, Argentum’s Women in Leadership, the Senior Housing Women’s Initiative, and NIC. The gathering was designed to support women who remain underrepresented in senior living and allow them to get to know and support each other.

Beth Mace-2-2

Beth Mace, NIC’s Chief Economist, welcomed meetup attendees and shared some guiding principles and career advice from her own life. Mace's remarks are shared below. 

"For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Beth Burnham Mace and I am the Chief Economist for NIC and have been in this role for the past eight years. I have been a practicing economist for my entire career in a range of industries from an electric utility to a bank to a think tank to a private equity group to working on Capitol Hill. About 25 years ago, while at AEW Capital Management, I became involved in senior housing and it totally hooked me and have been thrilled ever since to be involved in an industry that cares passionately for older adults.


I am a mother of two sons, and have been married for many, many years. Like most of us, I have also faced a number of challenges along the way as well as a number of incredible opportunities and experiences. Being a woman and being the industry’s first chief economist is among them.

I have also been able to witness first-hand the changing role of women in society and professionally and I can say that while we have a lot of room to go forward, we’ve also come a long way baby as the phrase goes. For example, when I adopted my two sons, no maternity leave was offered since I was not physically pregnant. Today, many business offices provide lactation rooms. IMG_4342

As professionals, we wear many hats. Some of us are mothers, grandmothers, stepmothers, godmothers, wives, singles, widows, aunts, sisters, and cousins. Collectively, we support each other from a distance and from close proximity. Today, we hope to nurture more of those relationships as we support one another.

In preparation for today’s gathering, I thought I might provide you with some of the lessons I have learned along the way of life, with the hope that one of these observations may provide you with some insight, encouragement, or a bit of wisdom.

  1. HEALTH: It’s true what they say: if you have your health, you have everything. Indeed, as a multiple-time cancer survivor, I know personally that health is precious—mind your health.
  2. BALANCE: Balance is key, prioritization is key, saying no to certain things is okay, even good to do! You can’t do it all well, we need to compromise on some matters; know what’s important to you and make that your priority; and carry no guilt (easier said than done) regarding your family, work, or friends.
  3. LIFE IS NOT A DRESS REHEARSAL: Be the best version of yourself; life is not a dress rehearsal; find out what motivates you; do not let fear get in the way of anything.
  4. FLEXIBILITY: Be prepared for the shock waves that life sends to you; despite the best laid plans, life may have an alternative view; be flexible and roll with the punches.
  5. BE OPEN TO CHANGE: Be open to opportunity, challenge, and change.
  6. ATTITUDE: Attitude and narrative matter! You tell your story to the world, make it count and make it be the narrative you want. Look at the world as half full, not half empty: be an optimist.
  7. SELF CONFIDENCE: Have confidence in the choices you make and know that you are making the best decision you can at that moment in time with the information that you had at that moment.
  8. CARRY NO CHIPS ON YOUR SHOULDER: Try not to have regrets; learn to let go of things; don’t hang on to past angers and grudges; don’t have a chip on your shoulder (as my mother always said) or hold a grudge.
  9. PASSION: Find a job/career that energizes you and doesn’t deplete you; follow your passion if you are able.
  10. FOCUS: Make your professional hours professional; use them wisely and efficiently; stay focused; don’t hang around at the proverbial water cooler.
  11. LEARN: Be a student of life; keep educating yourself, engage with stimulating persons and put yourself in stimulating situations.
  12. IT TAKES A VILLAGE: It takes a village, no woman gets there alone. ASK for help and HELP each other personally and professionally. We pave the path for our daughters and next generation of women; help them, don’t add new obstacles for them (or make it tough on them because it was tough on you). Be around friends and family members that support and nurture you; surround yourself with positive role models and mentors, elders, and friends. Reach out to someone to be your mentor/coach.
  13. SELF-CARE/DESTRESS: Learn how to destress. Don’t burn out: take time for yourself, engage in self-care in whatever way you need or define it—diet, exercise, journaling, prayer, social activities, clubs, parenting activities, meditation, spirituality, dancing, laughing; find something that fulfills your heart, soul and essence.
  14. BEAUTY: Find beauty in your life because it will renew your spirit.
  15. FUN: Have fun! Laugh, engage, and party!

2022 NIC Fall Conference

I hope you find this meetup beneficial and I hope that you seed a few new female relationships. I, for one, know the benefits of women friends and know that there is nothing better.

As the years go by, I hope the seeds of these relationships will blossom into life-time connections with other women in our profession who carry the same torch you hold for caring for our seniors and older adults. And remember, let’s support each other today and as we move forward!

About NIC

The National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to support access and choice for America’s seniors by providing data, analytics, and connections that bring together investors and providers.

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