Sunrise on Vernier

Meet the Sunrise on Vernier Team

Kathy BrittonKristy Britton

Executive Director

"I thoroughly enjoy serving our elderly population and have been doing so for over the past 20 years. I have worked as a social worker in a skilled nursing facility and as a memory care director in an assisted living community. I feel blessed to be at such a beautiful community that is doing wonderful things for their residents and families, at Sunrise on Vernier.

I enjoy socializing and reminiscing with my residents, and I love exercise and sports as I am a Detroit & U of M fan. I also enjoy baking, nature, gardening and travel." 


Mary Jo Fresard, Director of SalesMary Jo Fresard 

Director of Sales

“I started serving seniors with Sunrise of Rochester in 2008. After working with other senior communities I am happy to return home to Sunrise and service my local Grosse Pointe community.

My mission as director of sales for Sunrise on Vernier is to help families in my community with the struggle of finding the right senior living options for their loved one.

My favorite part about my job is, in being a long time Grosse Pointe resident, I can use my knowledge and experience to work with families in my community. It puts a smile on my face to give family members the peace of mind that their loved ones are being cared for.

In my free time, my family keeps me busy. My husband, my three children, and my English bulldog, who needs to go on many walks in the neighborhood, all keep me busy.”


Sunrise on Vernier Team Member Laura

Laura Manion

Resident Care Director

“I have been with the Sunrise team since 2016, and prior to joining, I worked in a skilled nursing facility for five years. Along with that, I have worked as a home care nurse, and within a hospital in the neurology unit.

My favorite part about my job is that I am able to make a difference in the lives of our residents; I cherish the relationships I’ve made and love to reminisce and have fun with them. It’s rewarding to come to work and feel among family.

When I am not working, I enjoy spending time with my husband, two children, cat, and dog. I also love to garden and spend time in nature.”


vanessa valentineVanessa M. Hunter-Valentine

Reminiscence Coordinator

"I am a proud mother of two grown children. My son has his MBA in Management, and my daughter has a MSE in Data Analytics. I love the theater and Broadway plays, bowling, and bicycling. Some of my other interests include arts and crafts, travel, puzzles, and exercise."



Janet Barolo - Vernier AVC

Janet Barolo

Activities & Volunteer Coordinator

"My passion for seniors started as a volunteer in high school.  Shortly after high school, I started my career as an Activities Assistant in a skilled-nursing facility. In 2006, I advanced my career into the position of Activities Volunteer Coordinator when Sunrise on Vernier opened their community. I truly love working with seniors, and I do everything I can every day to make our residents' days brighter and happier.   

Fun facts about me:  I was a swimmer, a diver, and a ballerina."


jerry lafave

Jerry LaFave

Dining Services Coordinator

"I have been married to my wonderful wife, Nancy, for 30 years, and we have two beautiful daughters. I have worked in the restaurant business for 30 plus years before joining Sunrise in 2011. 

In my free time, I enjoy watching or playing sports, pets, nature, and gardening."



Sheila Lyons

Business Office Coordinator 

"I have been a Business Office Coordinator for Sunrise since 2008.  I have been married to my spouse Jason since 2001 and we have twin daughters, Jayla and Shay. I also have an older step daughter who has two sons. I can’t believe I am a grandmother! In my spare time I enjoy martial arts classes and taking my dogs for a walk." 



Gus Zaatari

Maintenance Coordinator 

"I've worked at Sunrise since 2018. I've been married to my wife, Angie, since 2014 and have two children, Scarlett and Giorgio. In my spare time I enjoy spending time at the park and fishing. My family loves trips to SeaWorld."  


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