Meet Our Team
The skilled team of professionals at Shaker Place has over 35 years of experience in the medical field. Our staff of nurses, doctors, dietitians, and administrators strive to provide quality care to our residents on a daily basis. Their commitment to making residents feel at home and welcome is why Shaker Place has been awarded the 2020 Silver National Quality Award from the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL). Below are just a few of the staff who make Shaker Place what it is today.
Mark S. Olsen
- Position: EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Mark S. Olsen has over 35 years of experience in long term care administration in the Capital District area of New York State. He has served as a licensed nursing home administrator since 1988. With a passion for service excellence and a track record of “Best in Class” customer satisfaction surveys, Mark is dedicated to assure each resident receives Person Centered Care by a team of qualified and friendly staff. Mark received the “Administrator of the Year Award” from the American College of Health Care Administrators-NY Chapter in 2018. Currently Mark serves as the Vice-Chair of the New York State Health Facilities Association and regularly advocates for his long term care profession in Albany and Washington, DC. As an active member of the American Health Care Association, Mark was recently appointed to their Workforce Committee to assist in the development of sustainable national workforce solutions. Mark was born and raised in Colonie and has resided with his wife and 4 children in Latham for the past 28 years.
- Position: Executive Deputy
Shawn Thelen has over 20 years of service at Shaker Place. He graduated with a B.S. in Accounting and a M.S. in Taxation from the University at Albany and has always had a passion for long-term healthcare. Pursuing this passion in his tenure at Shaker Place, he has held several positions at the facility, including Fiscal Officer, Director of Fiscal Operations and currently as the Deputy Executive Director. He became a licensed Nursing Home Administrator with hopes to better serve the residents of Shaker Place. Shawn was born and has been a life-long resident of Albany County, raising a daughter who is currently pursuing her own passion for healthcare in college.
- Position: Administrator
Thomas Coffey has become very active in multiple associations that are dedicated to expanding the possibilities for the aging. He participates in ongoing education forums, and has been actively serving on the associations’ board of directors for multiple terms. He has served as a licensed Nursing Home Administrator since 1982. Thomas was born and educated in Albany, has been married for 35 years and has a daughter. Both family members are also professionals in the healthcare field.
Rebecca Provost, RN
- Position: Director of Nursing
For over 20 years, Rebecca Provost has been caring for those in need. Her first venture into nursing began in the late 1990’s as a medic for the United States Army. With a passion for long-term care, Rebecca spent her career in skilled nursing facilities. Starting as a Licensed Practical Nurse at Shaker Place Rehabilitation and Nursing Center she continued her education and earned her degree as a Registered Nurse from Maria College. She has held many positions here such as a staff RN, Unit Nurse Manager, Assistant Director of Nursing and now the Director of Nursing for Shaker Place Rehabilitation and Nursing Center. Rebecca is a life-long resident of the Capital District and has two children.
Vanessa Denning, MD
- Position: Full-time Medical Director
Dr. Vanessa Denning has been in practice for over 25 years. She is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, with sub-specialty in Clinical/Medical Nutrition. She is a current diplomat of the ABIM (American Board of Internal Medicine). She is entering her 5th year as the full-time Medical Director at Shaker Place (ACNH). In July of 2019, Vanessa will also have eligibility for a Board Certification in Post- Acute and Long Term Care (CMD). She is active on the St. Peter’s Hospital Medical Staff and is a 20-year member/officer of the Executive Committee of the Medical Staff at St. Peter’s Health Partners/SPH. She has resided in Albany County since 1984, and has been married for 33 years, with two adult children.
- Position: Resident Care Director
Laura Vartanian has received a B.S. in Nursing, with a concentration in Geriatrics, from Russell Sage College. She has earned her Certification for Nurse Executives from the American Association of Nurse Assessment Coordinators (AANAC). She has been employed by the facility for over 34 years, with many different position titles, including Head Nurse, Resident Care Coordinator, Quality Assurance Nurse and Director of Nursing. Laura is currently serving as the Shaker Place Assistant Administrator. She has been married for 28 years, has two grown sons, and is currently living in Latham, New York.