Our Declaration of Independence

  • People, as they age, deserve to live a healthier, longer, and more independent life.

  • Adults want to learn better self-care and management of their own lives, they just need to learn how.

  • People should be supported, encouraged and celebrated as they learn new skills for a better, more independent life.

  • Independence should be affordable and available to everyone.

  • Based on years of comprehensive scientific research on how to live independently longer, THIS IS NOW POSSIBLE.

Our Motivation for Independence Through Health Programs

We are a well-known and respected healthcare organization that is solidly built on decades of evidenced based research by Nurse Scientists that is proven to help facilitate healthy aging and independence in aging. Therefore, we, and our products, can be trusted to help you deliver a program you will be proud of offering to individuals and to your constituents.

As founders, we have over 100 collective years of experience at nursing and are passionate about studying how to get people to live a more independent life as they age. There were three primary motivations for our research:
  1. Decades of experience seeing people lose their independence as they age because of mounting chronic diseases
  2. We see the impact of the high and rising cost of disease care
  3. We believe that nursing must return to its roots of holistic care in support of independence, prevention of illness, and maintenance of health

Our Healthy Aging Innovators

HealthyLifetime founders are some of the country’s premier Nurse Researchers and Scientists from the University of Michigan with the knowledge and expertise to develop and guide this innovative healthy aging program. Their research interests include research and practice with an aging population, family caregiver science, advanced nursing practice and scope, among others. Widely published in national and international scientific journals, these executive nurse leaders are sought after speakers and advisors for expert panels, presentations, curriculum content development for medical and nursing schools, and consulting.

Dr. Kathleen Potempa, PhD, RN, FAAN

Program Executive and Scientific Director

Dr. Kathleen Potempa is an internationally recognized nursing, education, and science leader. Her former positions include progressive leadership in health systems and in higher education, most recently serving as dean of the University of Michigan School of Nursing from 2006 through 2016. She is currently a professor at the University of Michigan. Dr. Potempa is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine and a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing.

Her research program focuses on the benefits of exercise on fatigue, cardiovascular fitness, and cognition in physically impaired populations and the elderly. In addition to her research for HealthyLifetime, she studies the benefits related to the cognitive and behavioral benefits of using computer-based video conversation in the elderly with mild cognitive impairment. She is the principal investigator on a clinical trial to evaluate a healthy aging intervention in people over fifty.

Marna Flaherty-Robb, MSN, RN, CNS

Senior Researcher

Marna has been in nursing practice for over fifty years, as staff RN, Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Director of Nursing, Regional Manager, Chief Nursing Information Officer and Nurse Faculty Researcher. She is known as an influential leader, organizational effectiveness facilitator and systems capacity builder. She has conducted research in Medicare and Medicaid Policy and service design, including SHMO, Self-efficacy, Motivational interviewing, healthy aging, the care planning process, family caregiving assessment and capacity building, curriculum renewal and health economics.

Marna has designed curriculum content for undergraduate and graduate medical and nursing curriculums, inter-professional education, and Nurse Coaching in self care capacity building. Marna serves as the Co-Lead Investigator for the HealthyLifetime Program.

Margaret Calarco, PhD, RN, NEA-BC

Senior Researcher and Program Services Manager

Dr. Calarco is a Psychiatric Clinical Nurse Specialist and counsellor who has held executive leadership roles in health care settings for more than 25 years, serving as the Chief Nurse Executive for 17 years for the University of Michigan Health System. She is an accomplished researcher in the field of administrative and organizational change with her most recent funding in the areas of nursing environments, nurse retention and professional development. Dr. Calarco has presented on a wide array of topics nationally and internationally, and has published widely in the areas of clinical depression and in leadership and organizational change. Dr. Calarco also served as a fellow in the inaugural cohort of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Executive Nurse Fellowship program.

Ted Dacko

Business Advisor

Ted serves as Senior Business Advisor. He has over 45 years of experience in executive-level management and leadership, including Sales, Marketing, M&A and the Chief Executive Office, principally in the area of software applications and solutions. As a 7-time CEO, he has been credited with taking great ideas and turning them into great companies, which he did at HealthMedia, a company he grew from zero to an exit of $185M (sales to J&J).

Ted serves as mentor and board member to early-stage companies and currently serves on the board of Possibilities For Change, Health Focus and Sightline. He has also served on the boards of meQuilibrium, Court Innovations, XLerant, GoNoodle, DNA Software and other early-stage companies. He worked with early-stage successful companies like Groundspeed Technologies, Workout Health and MyStrength. He is an instructor at the University of Michigan in the Center for Entrepreneurship program. He has authored a series of eBooks titled “From Passion To Profit”. He has been the keynote speaker at numerous events. Ted holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics from Waynesburg College in Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, and a Master’s Degree in Mathematics from The College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.

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John Vander Meulen

Sales Executive

John provides guidance and strategic direction for the sales of the HealthyLifetime solution. He has over 30 years of sales, professional services, and operations management experience in delivering software applications and solutions, with over 25 years of experience in the healthcare field. John has served in executive leadership positions in privately held companies and larger organizations, including Johnson & Johnson, EDS, Chrysler, and Compuware Corporation. He has held various leadership positions across these companies, including sales, marketing, software development, professional services, client services, operations, and strategy development.

John Vander Meulen Profile Picture