Ascension Living leadership represents exceptional expertise and experience; embody professional excellence; and cultivate an innovative, collaborative, mission-centric culture.

Meet our leadership team

Ascension Living is non-profit and vision-driven to provide high-quality, compassionate, personalized care with dignity, especially to those in our community who are most in need. Get to know the people who serve as our leaders.

Karly Mucks
Chief Operating Officer

Karly Mucks, LNHA, has been named Chief Operating Officer of Ascension Living.

In this role, Karly will establish operational excellence within the organization serving as an advocate, mentor, teacher and role model for integrating best practices into our Ministry. In addition, she will represent the organization within local communities to build and operate a collaborative continuum of care in the communities being served. She will help us live out our mission as we focus on growth through improvement in our operations and promoting efficiency. With her knowledge of the industry, collaborative spirit and leadership approach, Ascension Living is well positioned to continue strategic growth and focus on relationships of trust with our care partners, referral sources, service lines and partner organizations.
As a former nursing home administrator and senior living executive director, Karly is experienced in working with physicians, senior living leaders, healthcare professionals, residents and family members. She has well-rounded experience in operations, strategy, and customer service along with a proven track record of success in increasing revenue and profitability, improving processes, and overseeing organizational initiatives. As a Senior Baldrige Examiner and Team Lead, Karly has evaluated and provided feedback to organizations across the United States. She will use the insights gained from countless evaluations and the Baldrige performance excellence framework to continually improve the care and service we provide throughout Ascension Living.

Erin Shadbolt
Chief Nursing Officer, Ascension Post-Acute and At-Home Services 

Erin is an experienced healthcare leader skilled in post-acute care operations, finance, growth, regulatory compliance, quality improvement and strategic planning. She has a proven track record of implementing new programs, improving financial outcomes, increasing census, developing critical relationships, successfully completing regulatory surveys, improving quality metrics, and improving staff and patient engagement.

Erin came to Ascension from Mayo Clinic Health System, where she served as Nurse Administrator. In that role, she was responsible for implementation of Advance Care at Home (hospital at home) and had oversight over home health, hospice, senior services in skilled nursing facilities, and palliative care in northwest Wisconsin. 

Erin received her Associate of Science degree in Nursing, Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing and Master of Science degree in Nursing from Weber State University. She also is a Nursing Fellow of the Golisano Institute for Intellectual and Developmental Disability Nursing at St. John Fisher College, New York, New York and is currently completing a certificate through Indiana University in Healthcare Innovation and Implementation.

Michael Gordon
Chief Financial Officer

Mike leads all financial aspects of our financial activities, including financial strategy, planning, management and analysis; budgeting and forecasting; accounting; general ledger; cash management; financial relations; and policy development.

He began his career in the health care industry in 1999 as the Corporate Director of Finance for Provena Ventures. In 2001, he then went on to become the company’s Chief Financial Officer and eventually the Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of Finance, Housing and Pharmacy Operations when the company became Presence Life Connections, which is now part of Ascension Living. Prior to that, Mike worked in the banking industry.

Mike is a certified public accountant with thorough knowledge of the senior living industry and has substantial experience in operating multi-site senior living locations. He is a mission-driven leader with excellent analytical, strategic and management skills who thrives on supporting other leaders to ensure the continuation of our founders’ mission. In addition, Mike creates and maintains a partnership between associates, the community, and those we serve that fosters an environment honoring individual preferences, choices and traditions.

He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Governors State University, University Park, Illinois, and a Master of Business Administration from Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnais, Illinois. He has served on the Finance Committees for Servants of the Holy Heart of Mary, College Church of the Nazarene and on the Finance, Skilled Nursing and Assisted Living Cabinets of LeadingAge Illinois.

Bob Smoot
Chief Mission Integration Officer

Bob Smoot began his service as Chief Mission Integration Officer for Ascension Living in December 2018, having previously served as the Senior Vice President and Chief Mission Officer for AMITA Health, the Chicago-based joint venture of Ascension’s Alexian Brothers Health System and Presence Health with Adventist Midwest Health.

In this pivotal role, Bob is responsible for establishing a collaborative framework for the growth of a common culture across Ascension Living, building upon the richness of the healing traditions of our legacy organizations and advancing our ministry integration grounded in our Mission and Values. His team works to deepen the awareness of and fully realize our identity as a healing ministry of the Catholic Church in all aspects of strategy, organizational culture, service and community collaboration and promote Ascension’s broad strategic and organizational commitment to our Mission. Bob assures the evolving initiatives, programs and resources that support the One Ascension journey, engaging the gifts of all for the sake of our Mission.

He brings a wealth of knowledge as a thought leader in the nuanced application of ethics, spirituality and community transformation with special attention to those who are poor and marginalized. Bob received his Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Saint Louis University, St. Louis, and his Master of Divinity and Master of Moral Theology degrees from Kenrick-Glennon Seminary, St. Louis. In addition, soon Bob will complete the Master of Arts program in Bioethics and Health Policy at the Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics & Healthcare Leadership at Loyola University, Chicago.


Learn more about Ascension Living communities and services

We’ve only begun to tell you our community, services and residents’ stories. There’s much more to Ascension Living, and what you and your family may want to understand about:

  • Our residences and accommodations
  • Our inclusive and innovative culture
  • Our local community presence and national network leverage
  • Our professional, compassionate, devoted caregivers