Sunrise of Des Peres

Meet the Sunrise of Des Peres Team

BenAnderson.ED_DesPeresBen Anderson

Executive Director

"I’ve been with Sunrise since March of 2019 and have over 10 years of experience in Long Term Care. I have worked as an administrator in both skilled nursing and assisted living communities before joining the Sunrise team.

My favorite part of my job making a connection with our residents, learning their story and having an opportunity to make a difference in their lives every day. The best part of working at Sunrise is the amazing culture that we offer and the many wonderful programs for residents and team members.

In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my family, watching Cardinal baseball, Blues Hockey, hunting and fishing."


Sunrise of Des Peres Team Member JennaJenna Gullett

Director of Sales

"I have been with Sunrise since 2008. I started when I was in high school as a concierge and fell in love with this place. I have worked in many different positions within our community, and I feel very fortunate to have experienced many different roles so I can share with families what makes Sunrise great!

I spend most of my day talking to families who are trying to make a really tough decision. The highlight of my day is when someone tells me about their loved one's needs and then seeing their relief they get when I show them how Sunrise can meet their needs.

Sunrise is truly a family. I feel lucky to have the opportunity to build such close relationships with both residents and team members.

I enjoy spending my spare time with my husband and our young son. We love looking for fun and new things to share with him."


brooke fickeBrooke Ficke

Resident Care Director

"While I started as the Resident Care Director in 2021, I actually worked for Sunrise as a care manager while I was in nursing school in 2012. I have a background in logistics, inventory, and operations management, mixed with sales and customer service. I changed course about 10 years ago and ventured into Nursing as I love helping and caring for people. I am a graduate of the UMSL College of Nursing. As a Nurse, I have worked in Acute Care Medicine, Special Care Nursery and Neonatal Resuscitation, Pediatric Operating Room, and Outpatient Urology. I realized I wanted to venture into Healthcare Management and Nursing Administration, and started working on my MBA in Healthcare Management in 2020, and will hopefully be completed at the end of 2021. When I made the decision to further my career in nursing, I realized that I missed working with seniors and jumped at the opportunity to return "home" to Sunrise. 

When it comes to my favorite part of the job, I can’t really choose just one. One of my favorite parts, and the reason I came back to Sunrise, is my love for the residents at Sunrise. While the original residents I fell in love with are no longer here, I am quickly making new friends and family with the residents here now. They bring so much joy, love, and laughter into my life on a daily basis and really do become family to me. Next to that, the staff also make this a great place to work and make coming to work fun. Everyone cares about our residents so much and are very passionate about assisting them in living their best lives! It’s not really work here, it’s time I get to hang out with some good friends and family.

If I am not working on homework, I can typically be found chasing my two boys around the house or yard! They are my crazy and I absolutely love being their mama! They are my whole world! As a family, we love spending time with our extended family or exploring all that St. Louis has to offer us!"


Laura Cross

Assisted Living Coordinator

"I have been working in healthcare since 2013 and enjoyed the environment. During that time my grandmother was living in a senior living community out of state and I saw the difference the staff there made in her life. After she passed I away I felt it was important for me to give back to the industry, and that is when I found Sunrise in 2017. 

Getting to know each resident is a favorite part of my day. I love when residents stop into my office and I get to have long conversations and learn about their lives. I know it creates pleasant days for them, but it really ends up being the highlight of my day as well. I’m so glad I joined the team here at Sunrise of Des Peres because everyone is so positive and works well together. 

I have a dog named Walter who I like to spend time with. I even bring him out to some of the restaurants in my neighborhood to hang out with me and my friends! I also enjoy going to the many festivals that St. Louis hosts throughout the year."


Kristel Yocomrsz_kristel_yocom

Activities and Volunteer Coordinator

"I’ve been working at Sunrise since 2018. I have been working in senior living for about 10 years and worked at a few other communities before finding my home at Sunrise."

"My favorite part of your job is spending time with the residents and creating pleasant days for them. I love to see residents come out of their shell and enjoy spending time with each other while engaging in activities they enjoy."

"I love coming to work every day because we have so many wonderful team members here. I also think Sunrise has a great foundation for our activities programming through Live with Purpose, and I then have the opportunity to customize my calendar each month for our residents here."

"In my spare time, I enjoy spending time outdoors. I love going hunting, fishing, and working in my garden. I also love when I have time to catch a Blues game with my husband"


Cliffie Rucker

Cliffie Rucker

Reminiscence Coordinator

"I did not choose Sunrise Senior Living, it chose me. After fighting myself for six months, Sunrise Senior Living gave me the opportunity to be a Care Manager and I am so dedicated to Sunrise Senior Living and their core values that now I am the Reminiscence Coordinator!"



Kourtney team member profileKourtney Johnson, CNA CMT

Lead Designated Care Manager

“I found out about Sunrise because of school. Once I spent some time at Sunrise of Des Peres, there were so many things I found that I love. 

I love how we treat all of our residents with dignity, no matter their situation. There is so much support in the community, from team members to family members to residents. I think the home-like environment makes Sunrise a great place to work and it is certainly a great place for residents. My favorite thing about working here is all of my residents, who I love like my own family.”


Sandy Sayre

Business Office Coordinator

"I have been working for Sunrise since 2005. I really enjoy helping to serve breakfast in the dining room so I can interact with the residents and help start their day off on a positive note. I love working in a community that has such a comfortable, home-like environment. When I come in to work every day I feel like I’m coming to my second home.

In my spare time, if I’m not sitting in the sun and reading a good book, then I’m trying to keep up with my grandkids."


Sunrise of Des Peres Team Member NickNick Napolitano

Dining Services Coordinator

"I have worked at Sunrise since 2011, and prior, I worked in a variety of St. Louis restaurants for more than two decades. I love making residents' days better through creating dishes they love. My favorite days are events and parties because I really get to be creative.

Outside of work, I like spending time at home with my four children."


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