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Washington State University
Carson College of Business Granger Cobb Institute for Senior Living

Granger Cobb
Institute for Senior Living

Education. Research. Service.

Serving as a transdisciplinary global institute

for operations excellence in senior living

New! Senior Living Management Major

Senior Living is a growing, dynamic industry where residents 55+ make their homes in independent, assisted living, or memory care communities. This residential model promotes active, social interaction among residents and their families, while providing a safe and caring environment. Managers and professional staff make a positive difference for residents and enhance the quality of their lives on a daily basis. This degree will prepare students for:

  • Managerial positions and upward mobility in an industry that is nearly recession-proof
  • Purposeful work on a daily basis and throughout your career
  • Careers in a growing industry as the Baby Boomers move in
  • Training in sound business fundamentals, with a focus on hospitality operations
  • A very rewarding work-life balance

Where We Are

  • Industry-driven courses and program of study focused on operational performance
  • Partner with industry leaders to maintain curricular relevance and increase the number of professionals and students studying Senior Living Management
  • Courses led by full-time, industry experienced clinical assistant professor, Scott Eckstein, who connects real-world operations with best-in-class education
  • Provide undergraduate students with immersive learning every semester at senior living communities
  • Students gain real-world industry experience through the school’s 1,000 hour industry/ internship graduation requirement


  • Serve as a source for research that will impact daily operations, improving lives for all stakeholders
  • Partner with industry leaders to maintain curricular relevance within the senior living program at Washington State University
  • Put Senior Living Management at the forefront of student career options

Who was Granger Cobb

Granger Cobb was a pioneer of senior living and always put people first. From owning one community in 1989 through becoming the CEO of Emeritus and a Brookdale board member, Granger was always gracious and grounded. He shared his passion for seniors and their families as a board member of industry groups such as Argentum, NIC, and ASHA as well as by teaching students in the senior living program at Washington State University. He touched countless lives, and his legacy will live on through the Granger Cobb Institute for Senior Living.


Nearly 300 people gathered Oct. 30 on the Pullman campus to celebrate the naming of the Granger Cobb Institute for Senior Living. As one person after another took the stage and spoke through tears and laughter about Cobb’s caring nature, it became easy to understand why Washington State University named the institute after a man who left an indelible mark on the past and future of the senior living industry.

Photos from the Event

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Steering Committee

Industry Partners

Chris Belford
Executive Vice President, American Healthcare Investors

Maribeth Bersani
Chief Operating Officer, Argentum

Matt Bromen
Human Resources Director, ERA Living

Adam Clark
Vice President of Growth Strategies, Aegis Living

Caitlin Cobb
Communications Manager, Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation

Cassie Cobb
Director of Customer Experience, PrettyLitter

Patrick Dooley
Chief Operating Officer, Milestone Retirement Communities, LLC

Barb Duffy
Shareholder, Lane Powell

Mark Finkelstein
Columbia Bank, Director

Tana Gall
Chief Executive Officer, Blue Harbor Senior Living

Bre Grubbs
Senior Vice President, Leisure Care/180

Chris Guay
Founder & President, Vitality Senior Living

Justin Hutchens
Chief Executive Officer, HC-One, UK

Chris Hyatt
Chief Operations Officer, New Perspective Senior Living

Cindy R. Kent
EVP & President, Brookdale Senior Living

Bob Kramer
President & Founder at Nexus Insights. Founder & Strategic Advisor, NIC

Jerry Meyer
President Emeritus & Board of Directors, Aegis Living

Gary Milner
Canyon Ranch

Travis Palmquist
Vice President & General Manager, Senior Living PointClickCare

Bill Pettit
President, R.D. Merrill Company (Merrill Gardens)

David Schless
President, American Seniors Housing Association (ASHA)

Mark Southern
AVP Food and Beverage, VI Senior Living

Steve Tarr
Gartner EXP, Senior Executive Partner

Melanie Werdel
Columbia Pacific Advisors

Shamim Wu
Chief Operating Officer, Elmcroft Senior Living

Faculty Fellows

Olusola Adesope
WSU Associate Professor, Kinesiology & Educational Psychology

Cory Bolkan
WSU Associate Professor, Human Development

Robert Catena
WSU Assistant Professor, Kinesiology & Educational Psychology

Minyoung Cerruti
WSU Instructor, Interior Design Program, School of Design & Construction

Deborah Compeau
Sr Assoc Dean Faculty & Research of Management, Information Systems, and Entrepreneurship, Carson College of Business

Diane Cook
WSU Chair/Professor, School of Electrical Eng & Comp Science

Julia Day
WSU Assistant Professor of Construction Management, Director: Integrated Design & Construction Lab, School of Design and Construction

Maureen Edgecombe
WSU Professor, Psychology

Shelly Fritz
WSU Assistant Professor of Nursing

Mel Haberman
Executive Associate Dean and Director, College of Nursing

Laura Hill
WSU Vice Provost for Faculty Development and Affairs
WSU Chair/Professor, Human Development

Zihua Ma
UNLV Hospitality, Assistant Professor In Residence (SHBM PhD Alumni)

Bidisha Mandal
Associate Professor & Extension Economist

Deb Nelson
WSU Instructor, Human Development

Lynne Nelson
WSU Professor, Veterinary Science

Paola Ossola
WSU Adjunct Faculty, César Ritz Colleges, Switzerland

Shikha Prashad
WSU Assistant Professor, Kinesiology & Educational Psychology

Catherine VanSon
WSU Associate Professor, College of Nursing

Raven Weaver
WSU Assistant Professor, Department of Human Development

WSU Administrative Team

Darcie Bagott
Program Coordinator

Kelvin Chiang
SHBM Graduate Student

Michelle Snyder
CCB Assistant Director of Development

Nancy Swanger
Founding Director