CG Header 1024x384 - Carynes Gitler's Growth from Portfolio Manager to Director of Operations Training and Development

At Cardinal, our team members are the heart and soul of our culture. A team filled with men and women who want to be a part of something bigger than themselves, who go the extra mile to help change the industry and challenge the status quo. We are so grateful for those efforts and celebrate our team members who have dedicated years of service to the growth of our team.

Today we’re celebrating Carynes Gitler and her five years as a team member. Carynes decided to join the Cardinal team after her positive experience working as a portfolio manager with another client and her journey has led her to Director of Operations & Training.

Learn more about Carynes and her journey below!

What is your role?

Director of Operations Training & Development, Champion of People & Culture!


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Tell us your Cardinal Journey

I started out as a Portfolio Manager and have since transitioned into my current role as Director of Operations Training & Development.

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How did you decide to join the Cardinal team? 

I was managing a portfolio with another Client group that joined Cardinal under their white label umbrella in 2017, so not entirely by my own choice, but was excited to join a company that offered a larger platform of resources, and whose exciting culture I could feel upon my first meeting with them. The previous client I was partnered with decided to leave Cardinal in 2021, and so after working with the group for over 10 years, I made the tough choice to continue my career at Cardinal because of the strong leadership and culture that was in place. Cardinal’s commitment to being the best leadership company in our industry helped me see my future growth with a company that invests in its people and prioritizes Doing the Right Thing All the Time.


What do you find most exciting about your job? Most challenging? 

Getting to work with team members, being able to help them focus on their professional development while offering tools, and resources to invest in themselves as much as they invest in their teams, residents, and clients. I love being able to assist team members with finding their joy, what motivates them and gives them purpose in their daily roles.

Most challenging for me has been going fully remote. I’m a people person, I like engaging, getting to know the people around me, and some days I really miss in-person human interaction; connections are just different over a screen versus in person, something I’m still getting used to.


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Who has been influential in your professional and personal life and how have they helped guide you?

I am grateful everyday to have had a strong peer-to-peer network that has encouraged me along the way in my career to take chances, trust myself in using my voice and professional experience for the greater good. What has really helped me shape my career and trusting where I want to go in the past couple of years has been working with an Executive Coach who has helped me define where I want to be in my career and motivated me to take chances I didn’t think were possible. I will forever be grateful to CGC for introducing me to Susie Tomenchok who inspires me every day to get out of my comfort zone, and to not settle.

What’s something people may not know about you?   

I’m an extrovert in my professional life, but an introvert in my personal one.

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What advice would you give to someone starting out in the industry?

Pay attention to what parts of your role make you feel fulfilled and provide purpose, and be intentional at creating more of those moments for yourself. Everyone wants growth but pursuing a path of growth that allows you to do what you do best is how you will stay engaged and connected to what you are doing every day. It’s up to ourselves to invest in our own development, to steer our careers where we want them to go, and being intentional with our focus is key.


What is your proudest moment working at Cardinal Group?

It was a few years ago at a Leadership Summit. I was in the audience listening to a panel and there was a female leader speaking who voiced that seeing me in the role of Portfolio Manager, a Hispanic Female, inspired them to take a chance in applying for the role themselves. She’s now one of the top performing Portfolio Managers at Cardinal and has accomplished so much in such a short time frame. Sometimes we don’t realize that simply by showing up, putting in the energy and dedication it takes to get the job done can inspire others to believe in themselves and motivate them to take chances on themselves.


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What has been the most interesting change that you’ve seen in the industry, and why? 

So much has changed in this industry from when I first started what feels like forever ago, and continues to change every year. For me, the main thing that I want to highlight are the resources, training, and conversations we’re having today about Diversity, Equity and Inclusion topics. Being a minority female-working mom, I have seen first hand the benefits of having a DE&I council that focuses on providing our team members with the tools they need to handle interactions and conversations with not only our teams, but our clients and residents as well. If I had the tools we offer today on DE&I when I first started as an onsite team member in the industry, I would have been better equipped to deal with situations I found myself in as a young leader that I truly did not have training for. I am grateful to work for a company that prioritizes investing in education and resources for our team members so that they are prepared and confident in dealing with difficult situations both onsite and within our own roles.


What is your favorite college town in America?

This is tough because Tallahassee will always have a special place in my heart as my alma-mater – GO NOLES! I have been lucky enough to visit many college towns nationwide in this industry and will say some of my other true college-town favorites are Champaign, IL (the locals are some of the nicest people I have ever met ), and State College, PA is a beautiful and vibrant college town that I have recently enjoyed visiting.


Are you ready to start your Cardinal Journey and have a chance to work with Carynes and be our next culture champ?

See our open opportunities