At Northland Heights, we’ve put together a team of passionate healthcare professionals with years of experience. We are dedicated to the humanity, dignity and well-being of residents entrusted to our care, and our team acts more as a family than just coworkers.
Hello, my name is Cheryl Fester and I am the administrator of Northland Heights. For over 20 years, I’ve worked in the senior healthcare industry. I obtained my license as a Licensed Practical Nurse in 2005 and worked my way from floor nurse to Director of Nursing to Administrator. I have used my knowledge and passion for helping others to make the communities I lead the best they can be.
I have infused this knowledge and passion into the creation of this truly special community. I’d love to share that passion with you and answer any questions you might have as you learn more about senior living. If you have not had the chance, please schedule some time to visit us. I’d love for you and your loved one to meet our caring staff and residents and experience first-hand what a special place Northland Heights is.
As a local graduate of Citizens Nursing School in New Kensington Pa, Kelly has made significant contributions to patient care through mentoring and leadership. Starting as a floor staff nurse and quickly advancing into a supervisory role, she has shared her knowledge and compassion for quality care and service with her patients as well as colleagues. Throughout her experience she discovered her love for teaching and mentoring other nurses.
Kelly has 10 years of nursing experience in both an inpatient and outpatient care setting. She has worked in various care settings– from inpatient and outpatient psychiatric care to long term skilled and assisted living care. Raised by her grandparents, advocating for and ensuring quality, caring service for seniors is of top importance. For the last 5 years Kelly has been overseeing long term care in senior communities doing just that. She is excited to be part of our team to guarantee service excellence and compassionate care for your loved ones.
When not at Northland Heights, Kelly is a lover of camping, fishing, bonfires with friends and family and dogs.
Michael Pugliese has over two decades as a Seasoned Healthcare Foodservice Professional. He has spent the last seven years traveling the country supporting Senior Living Facilities. He is excited to bring some of the regional favorites he discovered while on the road and introduce them to the residents and families of Northland Heights.
Michael is a Certified Dietary Manager and is actively involved with the Association of Nutrition & Foodservice Professionals as the President-Elect for Pennsylvania 2021. He also is a Certified ServSafe Instructor and Exam Proctor.
A Lifelong Pittsburgher, Michael roots for all the hometown teams. He has been married to his wife Stephanie for 30 years and together they have raised 2 daughters.
Michael and the entire culinary team invite you to pull up a chair and join us at the family table.
Director of Recreation
Hi, I’m Debra Rajchel, Director of Recreation at Northland Heights Senior Living Community. It is my desire for residents to simply enjoy life. Debi’s personal interests include kayaking, fishing, traveling and especially family time which is why she looks forward to daily interactions with my residents where I am building trust and fostering special, lasting relationships.
I believe that if you give someone a “better day today”, they will find encouragement and hope for tomorrow. I am compassionate and interested in the physical, emotional and spiritual development of those I am privileged to serve.
By offering a wide variety of activity choices and accommodations, I proactively encourage every resident to find their purpose and place in their new home and I will seek to identify and develop their unique gifts in order that they may make positive and rewarding contributions to the Community.
Sales and Marketing Department Representative
Nancy has spent most of her adult life in the helping professions. From her days of supporting families in her role of Executive Director of a Minnesota Habitat for Humanity affiliate, to assisting families as they seek out in-home supportive services for seniors and finally now as Admissions Director for Northland Heights, Nancy’s greatest gifts lie in supporting others.
Nancy finds joy in coming alongside families and helping them transition themselves or a loved-one into the “next best step” – a new home to age in place. She is excited to show off our beautiful new building and is hoping that you will call soon to book your tour to learn more about Northland Heights.
As a free-lance writer, Nancy believes that everyone has a story to tell. She is just waiting to listen to your story and help you envision your next new chapters.
Sales and Marketing Department Representative
Christine is a 2010 graduate of Point Park University with a Master’s Degree in Healthcare Administration and Business Communications. Working as a healthcare Marketing Admissions professional has been her passion for over 16 years, however, it is her 2nd career path. She is also a Graphic Designer and graduate of Art Institute of Pittsburgh. Christine is known for her artistic talents, which have molded her into the creative relationship marketer she is today.
In her spare time, you can find Christine in her studio doing an art project, tending to her many flower gardens or at the beaches of the OBX where she is the proud mom of her daughter, a Kill Devil Hills Ocean Rescue Lifeguard.
Business Office Manager
Elicia Smith joined the Northland Height’s management team as Business Office Manager approximately 6 months prior to their official opening. She brought with her over 5 years of experience in the long-term care industry with special focus on Human Resources, Policy, Compliance, and Internal Audits.
Elicia is responsible for all facets of managing the Business Office including but not limited to screening candidates, new hire onboarding, compliance, company payroll and facility billing. Prior to long term care Elicia worked in the home health industry as a Human Resources Coordinator. Elicia is currently attending Penn State University to complete her BA in Health Policy and Administration She is a member of Penn State’s SHRM Virtual Chapter.
Elicia enjoys spending time with her three wonderful kids, hanging out at her grandma’s house and reading.
Doug has been on board with Northland Heights since renovations began on the building in 2017. He knows every inch of the Northland Heights campus, inside and out. Doug is a master carpenter and has had a lifetime in property management and building maintenance. Doug is committed to seeing that the building runs safely, smoothly and efficiently. And while it is the building that Doug oversees, it is the people, both staff and residents that are at the heart of his daily work orders. Doug’s goal is to make every resident’s stay as comfortable and enjoyable as possible.
Doug is married to his wife Patty, has six children and ten grandchildren and enjoys fishing, camping and the great outdoors.