Meet our Cottages at Garden Grove Leadership Team
Tara Zgoda LNHA
Tara is the Administrator at the Cottages at Garden Grove. In this role, Tara leads a team of professionals from a variety of disciplines providing all aspects of skilled nursing and short term rehabilitation including but not limited to nursing, therapy, social work and therapeutic recreation. Tara is a licensed nursing home administrator and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Services Administration from SUNY Institute of Technology. Tara is also an Eden Associate and is a certified LEAN Six Sigma Green Belt.
Tara is no stranger to the nursing home industry, having spent almost 20 years as an Administrator at profit, not for profit, and governmental facilities, which taught her the importance of providing compassionate and person-centered care as well as building relationships with residents, family and staff members. Being responsible for the overall operations of the Cottages, Tara believes in a teamwork-based approach and empowering her staff to make their own decisions based upon what they know is best for their residents. Empowering staff members creates a sense of ownership of the facility, ultimately resulting in greater satisfaction and overall care.
Tiffiany Abruzzese MSN, RN, CNE
Director of Nursing
Tiffiany joined The Cottages as Assistant Director of Nursing in December 2021, and was previously an Associate Professor at St. Joseph’s College of Nursing. She holds a master’s degree from the University of Phoenix, a bachelor’s degree from SUNY Geneseo, and is a graduate of St. Joseph’s College of Nursing.
Tiffiany served many roles in her leadership position as a nurse educator which included student advisement, clinical and lab skills instruction, development of simulation experiences, member of the curriculum committee and faculty organization committee, as well as chairperson of the Faculty Scholarship Committee. Prior to nursing education, she served as a charge nurse on a cardiac unit at St. Joseph’s Health.
She is excited to share her expertise in education and health care delivery into the long term care environment.
Donato Pinnisi PT,DPT
Director of Rehabilitation
Donato is a graduate of Utica College where he received his bachelors degree in Health Sciences and his Doctorate in Physical Therapy. Donato has 5 years experience as a physical therapist having worked in skilled nursing facilities throughout New York State. Donato leads a team of therapists within physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy disciplines dedicated to getting our patients back to their highest level of function in a timely manner.
Director of Admissions
Michelle is a graduate of the University of Albany. Michelle has over 15 years working in the health care field. She started her career as a Social worker and has now worked in Admissions for over 7 years. Michelle understand that it can be very difficult for people to navigate through health care and would love for you to reach out to her or to schedule a tour to help you along the way.
Adam Fitzgerald PHR
Director of Operations
Adam is a graduate of the University at Buffalo with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and a concentration in Human Resources and Marketing. He is also a certified Professional in Human Resources through the HR Certification Institute(HRCI) and holds a Green Belt in Lean Six Sigma. He has worked for 15 years in Long Term Care holding several different positions. As the Director of Operations Adam leads a team that is responsible for Human Resources, Payroll, Scheduling, Marketing, IT services, Process Improvement and leading general business operations.
Cathy Piston LMSW
Director of Social Work
Cathy is a graduate of Syracuse University with a Bachelor’s degree in in Social Work. She also obtained her Master’s degree in Social Work from Boston University and has a license to practice social work in New York State. Cathy has been a volunteer with the Alzheimer’s Association where she has served as a support group facilitator, team captain and member of the local chapters’ planning committee for the annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s.
As the Director of Social Work, Cathy leads a team of social workers who are dedicated to the well-being of our residents and guests. She has over 18 years of experience in the field of health care. She has worked in a variety of settings including acute rehabilitation, social and medical day programs, home health care, assisted living, managed long term community based care, skilled nursing and short term rehabilitation.
Director of Therapeutic Recreation
Michael is a graduate of the University of New York at Brockport with a Bachelors degree in Journalism. He also has a Bachelors in Education from the University of New York at Cortland in Therapeutic Recreation. He has over 25 years of varied experience within the health care field working with people in long term care, head trauma, and developmentally delayed. Michael is a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist as well as holding a certification as an instructor for nonviolent crisis intervention. While always stressing the importance of meaningful engagement and life long learning for the residents, his own hobbies include fishing, running and reading.
Director of Facilities
Scott is a Graduate of the University of New York at Brockport with a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and a minor in Business Administration, Economics. He has worked in Long Term Care for over 12 years. He has experience leading many departments, including food service, housekeeping, maintenance, central service and purchasing. As Director of Facilities, Scott coordinates the smooth functioning of the cottages and grounds and leads a team committed to creating an environment for our residents and guests, so they truly feel at home.