Dr. Adrienne Green joins the SFCJL as its new CEO on July 18, 2023. Please enjoy this Q & A with Dr. Green, and join us in welcoming her to campus.
Why did you choose to be a doctor?
As a student, I always knew that I wanted to do something in the sciences. I spent a few years after college doing bench research in an immunology lab. While it was important, fascinating work, it confirmed for me that I was better suited for a career in medicine. Being a doctor includes not only the cognitive work of making diagnoses and treatment decisions but also the privilege of supporting patients at incredibly vulnerable and impactful times in their lives.
What draws you now to work with older adults?
As a hospitalist, much of one’s work is with the elderly. I developed a strong interest in geriatrics early in my career. I had an early opportunity to provide care in a skilled nursing environment, which helped me to better understand the challenging journey across the care continuum that our elderly patients experience. While we’ve made many improvements over the years there is still much opportunity in this domain.
Why are you excited to join a faith-based, Jewish institution?
I am excited to work in a place where organizational values and my personal values will align. I’ve observed this firsthand as an SFCJL board member, particularly during the pandemic. Upholding those core values allows SFCJL to provide exceptional care and a living experience not only for the Jewish community but for the whole, diverse, community that we embrace in San Francisco.
What do you think is the biggest change or challenge in senior healthcare?
The simple answer right now would be to say that finances and staffing are the primary challenges. While true, I think it is more important for us to ask: What do seniors of the 21st century need and want in senior care? Our current care models were developed for my grandparents’ generation; we’re going to need to shift our thinking as the baby boomers and subsequent generations age into senior care. Developing a strategic plan with the SFCJL board and leadership team will be a priority as I get settled into this role.
Can you share about an older adult who has inspired you during your life?
It would be hard to pinpoint just one. I’ve had the privilege of caring for many inspiring elderly patients, some older than 100. I love learning from their life stories and watching the way they care for those around them, even at the most challenging of times. I’m fortunate to have had a grandmother and an aunt who inspired me with their independence, compassion, and, of course, the ability to seamlessly host a Jewish holiday dinner well into their 80s and 90s.
What do you do when you’re not working?
You will find me out hiking with family and friends, learning to play pickleball, trying a new recipe or reading a good book.