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July 17, 2014 40 Under Forty 2014

Michelle M. Pandolfi

Age: 38

Title at work/what I do: Director, Consulting Services at Qualidigm. I was inspired to work within long-term care because of my grandmother, who suffered from early-onset Alzheimer's disease, and because of my mother, who juggled a marriage, raising three teenagers, working full-time, and taking care of her aging parents. I don't remember my grandmother before her memory started failing, but I learned so much courage, compassion and empathy from her and my mom over those many years. I started working in the long-term care profession because I wanted to improve the experiences of the elders and their families, so they felt supported and achieved the highest quality of life possible. One of my proudest achievements has been serving as a founding member and active leader of the Connecticut Culture Change Coalition, an educational group and resource for improving the quality of life for both residents and staff within the nursing home. As a director at Qualidigm, I am able to continue my efforts to positively impact long-term care, both locally in Connecticut and nationally.

Town where I work: Wethersfield

Town where I live: Newington

College I attended: Providence College (undergrad); UConn (graduate)

My passion, hobby or special talent: My passions are my family and friends and learning – anything and everything! My hobby is home improvement projects.

Twitter handle: @MPando22

No. of LinkedIn connections: Over 175

Favorite place to network: Various healthcare professional events, both locally and beyond CT

Favorite drink at a networking event: Who me? Drink at a networking event? Never!

How do I create connections in my professional life?

I create connections by being honest and genuine. Health care is a very large industry, yet everyone knows everyone, especially in long-term care. When I am just me, I am most authentic and that helps me create connections and build trusting relationships – so far this has served me well both professionally and personally.

What's been my biggest challenge professionally?

I'm very passionate about what I do and I get personally invested in my projects and work. That passion has propelled me throughout my career and yet it can also be one of my biggest challenges. I work hard to not let my passions cloud my judgment nor let my emotions hijack my rational thinking – without losing my passion and dedication for my work.

What is the best advice I received?

I have received wonderful advice from a variety of leaders I admire and mentors of mine over the years – it's hard to choose! The best advice a mentor of mine gave me was: Don't let fear hold you back. She told me to cast aside any insecurities or self-doubt and just go for it.

What do I want my legacy to be?

A legacy – that's a lot of pressure! I would want my legacy to be that I made a positive impact, however small, on the long-term profession that benefits the elders (and their families) that we serve. And that I did it all with integrity and compassion.

Check out the other 40 Under Forty for 2014 winners

Brian Rich

Matthew Ritter

Robert Ruffolo

Lindsay Ryan Jensen

Zachary Schwartz

Jarrett Solomon

Erica Ann Thompson

Jason J. Warnke

Tim Yergeau

Jennifer Young

Christopher R. Zito

McKinley Albert

Keshia Ashe

Dr. Jill Buban

Stephen Carrabba

Leticia Colon de Mejias

Erin M. Concepción

Molly Devanney

Jennifer R. Fiereck

Betsey Castle Gainey

Martin Gugliotti

Bryan Hall, II

Benjamin Howarth

Ashley (AJ) Johnson

Garrett Kenny

Vincenzo M. Landino

Heather Loranger

Ashley M. Maagero

Kim Margolis

Lindsey Mathieu

Tracy I. McKaveney

Ryan McKeen

Adam McLaughlin

H. Scott Miller

Alison Morris

Peter J. Murphy

Kristina Newman-Scott

Brandon Ojakian

Erin Pirro

Ken Procino

Steven Raider-Ginsburg

Check out the Digital Edition of this year's 40 Under Forty.

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