Board of Trustees

Mary Ellen Pisanelli (2023)


Mary Ellen Pisanelli was appointed to the Board of Trustees by Governor John Kasich in August 2015.

Mary Ellen is a partner with Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP, a law firm with over 240 lawyers with offices in Toledo and Columbus, Ohio; Tampa and Sarasota, Florida; and Charlotte, North Carolina.  Her principal areas of practice include corporate finance, corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, and SEC disclosure.  She joined Shumaker in 1982 and has been a partner since 1990.  Mary Ellen has served as a member of the Firm’s Management Committee, been the relationship Partner for Health Care REIT, Inc. since 1991 and serves as a Co-Chair of the Firm’s REIT practice group.

As outside counsel for Health Care REIT, Inc. (NYSE:HCN), Mary Ellen manages a team of professionals who service most legal matters for HCN, an S&P 500 company and a real estate investment trust (REIT) with headquarters in Toledo, Ohio, that invests across the full spectrum of seniors housing and health care real estate.   Over the last 19 years, during which time HCN became one of the largest healthcare REITs and owners of over 1,411 seniors housing and other health care real estate in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, Mary Ellen has had a prominent role in HCN’s growth, leading the Shumaker team in HCN’s SEC registered capital transactions aggregating over $28 billion in gross proceeds. 

Since 2005, she has been listed in Best Lawyers in America, was named Best Lawyers, "Toledo Corporate Law Lawyer of the Year," 2014, and is AV Preeminent® Peer Review rated by Martindale-Hubbell.  Mary Ellen is a member of the Toledo Bar Association, the Ohio Bar Association, the American Bar Association and the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT). 

Mary Ellen earned her J.D. from Temple University School of Law, her M.A. in comparative western European studies from the University of Chicago, and her B.A. in Political Science, cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of Vermont.   She was a recipient of a pre-dissertation fellowship from the University of Chicago and studied at the Johns Hopkins Center for Advanced International Studies (SAIS) in Bologna, Italy.

Mary Ellen is active in many organizations and serves on numerous Boards.  She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Toledo Museum of Art, the Museum’s Leadership and Governance Committee and chairs its Audit Committee.   She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Toledo Zoo, served as the Zoo Board’s President for two terms and is a member of several Zoo Board committees.  Also, Mary Ellen is a member of the Rotary Club of Toledo, Women & Philanthropy at The University of Toledo and until recently, was a member of the ProMedica/Toledo Hospital Foundation Board of Trustees. 

Mary Ellen lives in Ottawa Hills, Ohio and has two daughters, Eleni and Lia, who live in New York City and San Francisco.

Last Updated: 9/2/15