Sunrise of Newton

Meet the Sunrise of Newton Team

Valerie HousharValerie Houshar

Executive Director

"I have been working in the assisted living industry for over three decades. My dedication and commitment to seniors started at an early age. As a native of San Diego, I was blessed with a childhood filled with a family of elders. I spent most of my time with my great grandparents, great aunts and uncles and all the generations that followed.

Today, I live in Rhode Island and enjoy spending time with my twins, Michael and Margo. I also love to travel, listen to music and enjoy the beach!"


Nicole LeoneNicole Leone

Director of Sales

"Although I have just begun my career with Sunrise, I have been working in the Senior Living industry for nearly 10 years. Working with seniors gives me such a sense of pride and happiness knowing that I supported them and their families with such a big decision while making the transition as seamless as possible.

The best part about working at Sunrise is the community. Sunrise strives to meet the best level of care for residents, while incorporating the principles of service, core values and strong leadership team.

In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my husband, John, our 3 kids and our dog, Lilly."


Sandy LacrossSandy Feeney

Director of Sales

"I have been with Sunrise since June 21, 2021. Prior to joining the Sunrise family, I have worked with other Assisted Living Communities and have over 10 years of experience with senior living.

What I like most about working in Senior care is getting to know my families and our residents; they all have a unique background and love hearing their stories. It also gives me great pleasure in guiding our families through a difficult time and process and seeing the relief when they know their loved one is in the right place.

In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my husband Pat and my two kids. As a family, we enjoy spending time at the beach.”


Hillary TherriaultHillary Therriault

Reminiscence Coordinator

"I joined the Sunrise family back in 2017 as a Life Enrichment Manager at Sunrise of Norwood. During my time at Sunrise of Norwood, I had the opportunity to go through the Department Coordinator in Training program. I was then promoted to Reminiscence Coordinator in 2020 before joining the Sunrise of Newton team. I developed a passion for working with seniors after becoming a Certified Nursing Assistant at the age of 16. I have held many roles during my time in senior care, and each role has given me the opportunity to learn more about how to care for and support my residents and their families.

I honestly love all parts of my job, but I think my favorite part is forming close bonds with our residents - I am sure to be having fun and laughing every day with them, all while working to provide high quality, personalized care. I also love getting the chance to work with my residents to Live with Generosity and give back to our local community.

My favorite part of working at Sunrise is that no matter which community you walk into, you feel as though you are home. I take pride in what we do here at Sunrise and am honored to work alongside an amazing team that believes in our mission to champion quality of life for all seniors.

When I’m not at Sunrise, I like to explore new places, browse bookstores for the next best thing to read and spend time outdoors with my dog, Charlie. I also enjoy baking; the best thing I’ve made so far has been lemon blueberry cupcakes!"


Rebecca ScalzoRebecca Scalzo

Assisted Living Coordinator

"My name is Rebecca Scalzo, and I am the Assisted Living Coordinator at Sunrise of Newton. I have been with Sunrise since 2018 – first as a supervisor at Sunrise of Norwood, then as the Assisted Living Coordinator at Sunrise of Cohasset. Prior to working at Sunrise, I was a Personal Care Giver in Bloomington, IN.

The best part of my job is how much I can accomplish away from my desk. I also love interacting with residents and their families around our community. I am always so pleasantly surprised at how quickly new residents and team members become like family within a community. There is so much love and compassion within our home and it’s impossible not to be filled with pride for what the team accomplishes each day.

In my spare time, I like to spend time outdoors with my husband Joe and dog Tito. I also love trying new places to eat around the Boston area."


Elsa PerezElsa Perez

Business Office Coordinator

"My name is Elsa Perez, and I am the Business Office Coordinator at Sunrise of Newton. I have been with Sunrise since January 2021. Before Sunrise, I worked in the Hospitality Industry as a Human Resources Manager.

I very much enjoy my job, because it is rewarding to be able to engage with team members and being a go-to person for all team member's needs.

The best part of working for Sunrise is being able to surround myself with a team that cares about their residents and making a positive impact in our community.

In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my family, traveling, and exploring new restaurants around the city."


Christopher ValenciaChris Valencia

Maintenance Coordinator

"Hello, my name is Chris Valencia and I am the Maintenance Coordinator at Sunrise of Newton. I’ve worked in the maintenance/engineering industry for just over a decade now. What I love most about my role is that no two days are ever the same. I’ve always been a hands-on type of learner and I look forward to getting my hands dirty.

The best part about working at Sunrise is that we all are very passionate about what we do, and we treat each other like family. I look forward to coming to work every day!

In my spare time, I enjoy being a father. I have two young boys, Cameron (4) and Alex (2). They keep me very busy! We enjoy playing pretend, taking trips to the playground, going to bounce houses and eating vanilla ice cream."

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