President & CEO – Doug Farmer

Doug Farmer is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Colorado Health Care Association and Center for Assisted Living (CHCA/CCAL), effective July 25, 2014. Farmer joins the CHCA/CCAL team with a wealth of health care and policy experience. Farmer led the Sunflower Foundation Advocacy Fellowship Program, which provides intensive leadership training for nonprofit leaders from around the state of Kansas. He also worked on a range of policy issues for the foundation including the Kansas Clean Indoor Air Act, promotion of the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid expansion.

Prior experience also included working in Kansas government in various capacities, beginning in 1996 as an analyst in the Governor’s Budget Office. In 2008, he became director of the State Employee Health Benefit Plan, which was then jointly overseen by the Health Care Commission and the Kansas Health Policy Authority (KHPA). He also served as KHPA’s deputy director. Before taking the job at KHPA, Doug was deputy secretary at the Kansas Department on Aging and later at the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Vice President of Operations – Bonita Jones

Bonita JonesBonita Jones joined the CHCA staff in January 1990. Prior to her position as VP of Operations, Bonita served as Office Manager and support staff to the Director of Program Administration. In her position, Bonita is responsible for planning CHCA’s ongoing educational programs, the CHCA annual convention, and supervises the Administrative Services Department and assisted living. She came to CHCA from Briarwood Health Care and has worked in long-term care since 1980. Bonita graduated from Denver Technical College and Emily Griffith where she obtained an associate’s degree in Business Communication. Email Bonita

Director of Quality & Regulatory Affairs – Ann Kokish

Ann KokishAnn Kokish brings more than 23 years of diversified experience in long-term care to CHCA/CCAL. A successful Nursing Home Administrator she has managed a 198-bed facility, including a 44-bed secured unit and 50-bed subacute unit. She has supervised and supported approximately 300 staff members with 15 department heads. She brings to CHCA/CCAL an extensive knowledge of federal and state regulations, Medicare, and insurance regulations.

Director of Communications – Sam DeWitt

Sam handles all media relations and outreach for CHCA, as well as developing and maintaining the CHCA brand for all publications, educational material, email, web presence, and social media. A veteran of the communications industry, Sam received his BA in Journalism from The University of Montana, and has worked in print, radio, television, and online. In 2012, he founded a consulting firm to help small businesses in the Denver area create and maintain a strong social media and online content brand. He served as a legislative aide to Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush at the state capital in 2015, and is looking forward to using his legislative experience to further in the interests of the Colorado Health Care Association and its members. He lives in a fortified compound in Downtown Denver.

Director of Finance – Josh Fant

Josh FantJosh Fant is responsible for all accounting functions and local IT support for CHCA. He came to CHCA after five years as senior accountant for Myers & Stauffer, LC. At Myers & Stauffer, Josh audited Medicaid cost reports and assisted in the review of other accountant’s work. He obtained his Bachelors of Accountancy from New Mexico State University and his MBA from the University of Colorado at Denver.

Membership Services Manager – Cheryl Strong

Cheryl Strong comes to CHCA after more than 10 years in Customer Service & Operations. She fulfills many roles at CHCA, but her primary responsibilities include maintaining member information, supporting the VP of Operations with education, both in-house and at convention, and supports the Director of Communications with publication creation and distribution. She has an Associate’s Degree in Business Administration, with a focus on Management, and is pursuing her Bachelor’s in Accounting from Colorado Technical University.

Executive Administrative Assistant – Shay Winfrey

Shelanda “Shay” Winfrey is a veteran of the property management industry, and has worked in that sector for more than 15 years. At CHCA, she performs a variety of administrative functions, including the details that make our education programs an conference/convention move along without a hitch. She lives in east Denver with her husband and two children.



Contract Lobbyist – John T. Kunkle

John T. KunkleJohn serves as contract lobbyist for the Association.He has worked with the legislature and state government for the past 10 years. As a contract lobbyist, he works directly with the President/CEO of CHCA to communicate the Association’s position on various bills and regulations that affect long-term care. Email John



Executive Consultant for Government Affairs – Arlene Miles

Arlene MilesArlene Miles serves as one of two contract lobbyists for the Association. She served as President & CEO for the past 30 years and continues to provide CHCA/ CCAL governmental policy guidance, public policy development and legislative representation.



Contract Lobbyist – Amber Valdez

Amber ValdezAmber Valdez is a named member of the Valdez Associates lobbying firm and has worked with the Colorado General Assembly since 2007. Ms. Valdez has successfully represented over 15 clients, including national firms, Colorado entities, local governments, small business and nonprofit organizations. Her clients express their appreciation for Ms. Valdez’s ability to communicate and keep them informed in this fast-paced and ever-changing political environment and her ability to represent their issues before members of the General Assembly.