Our Team

Brenden Gardens

John Balota
Executive Director

John grew up in Benton, IL and graduated in 1972 while stationed in Crailsheim, Germany in the US Army.  He attended ISU University and went to work for Caterpillar as a shipping and receiving dock manager for over 20 years. As Executive Director he has attended many certification programs to enhance his ability to lead his staff and provide a wonderful experience for our residents  here at Brenden Gardens. He and his family have owned and operated family restaurants throughout Illinois. John married his wife in September of 1976 and they have 2 sons. "My 11 years working  at Brenden Gardens long side of my wife has been a joy."

Carolyn Balota
Assistant Director

Carolyn Balota has two great sons with two great grandchildren that she enjoys spending time with on her days off! Carolyn came from a family owned business for 25 years and got interested in the health care industry after being involved with the nursing area where her mother was residing. She started doing some years of research on Alzheimer and Dementia to progress her knowledge on these heartbreaking diseases. Carolyn has been Director for 11 years at Brenden Gardens and has enjoyed the challenge of working with a great staff and the greatest residents and their families! "It has been a great experience!"

Christine Brimer
Lifestyle360 Director

Christine grew up in Bushnell, Illinois where she graduated high school. Christine moved to Springfield when she met her husband. They have been married for 10 years. Christine started working at Brenden Gardens in 2005. She has been at Brenden Gardens for 11 years. Christine started as a dishwasher and has held other positions within our community such as Housekeeping Manager, Dining Room supervisor, and now the Lifestyle360 Director.  She absolutely loves being around our residents every day and hearing their stories of their lives.


Keith Myers
Food & Beverage Director

Keith Myers grew up in Riverton, IL and graduated from Riverton High School where he played football & baseball.  Keith has 1 son, Wesley.  He enjoys spending time with his son & family and going on road trips, camping on the current river, ball games in Chicago & St. Louis. Keith was a kitchen manager at Golden Corral and a kitchen manager at the different Mavericks locations in Springfield. He has enjoyed his position as the Executive Chef here at Brenden Gardens since  2012.  Keith has recently been promoted to Food & Beverage Director. He enjoys talking with the residents and learning about their life adventures. 

Brandy Ayers
Dining Room Supervisor

Brandy grew up in Riverton, IL, and graduated from Riverton High School, Class of 2001. Brandy had a few restaurant management jobs when she was younger.  She then went into retail Management at Shoe Carnival for five years.  She took some time off when she had her daughter Jaydyn.  Brandy then re-entered the work force at Brendan Gardens to which she has been employed
since 2011.  While working there she had her second child, her son Brysyn. She enjoys working here and hearing all the residents life stories and helping them out.