Meet Our Team

Shari Dingle (Sandifer) Costantini

Chief Executive Officer

Shari Dingle (Sandifer) Costantini, RN, MBA, is a renowned expert in the healthcare industry, with 29 years of experience in strategic leadership, nursing and international nurse staffing. As a registered nurse and accomplished business owner in healthcare staffing, she offers a unique perspective and keen insights into a wide range of issues affecting medical staff today and is an authoritative source on issues concerning international workers.

Costantini is a strong advocate for creating supportive work environments in which healthcare workers will thrive and improve patient outcomes. Her company, Avant Healthcare Professionals, has placed more than 1,500 international nurses, physical therapists and occupational therapists throughout the U.S. The company, which has grown 40 percent annually since inception, is recognized as an industry leader and innovator in healthcare staffing.

Avant was a founding member of the American Association of International Healthcare Recruitment. Through AAIHR Costantini actively lobbies Congress for immigration reform to allow a consistent flow of highly skilled healthcare professionals. She belongs to numerous professional organizations and she has authored various articles and blogs. Costantini is on the Rollins College Center for Advanced Entrepreneurship and the Central Florida Foundation boards, Immediate Past-Chair of Orlando, Inc., and Chair of Regulatory Affairs for AAIHR.

Awards & Recognition

  • Inc. 500/5000 (2012, 2013, 2017)
  • Women Presidents’ Organization’s Top 50 Women-Owned/Led Companies in the U.S.
  • E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year, 2017 Florida Regional Award Winner Healthcare
  • 100 Most Influential People in Staffing – Staffing Industry Analysts 2013
  • Global Power 100 – Women in Staffing – Staffing Industry Analysts 2017
  • Healthy 100 Work Place (Awarded by Florida Hospital)
  • Florida Companies to Watch 2012 (Awarded by GrowFL)
  • Orlando Business Journal’s Women Who Mean Business
  • Top 100 Companies for Working Families by the Orlando Sentinel
  • Enterprising Women of the Year Award 2012

Lesley Hamilton-Powers

Senior Vice President of Operations

Ms. Powers joined Avant Healthcare Professionals in 2006, bringing extensive international recruitment experience to the company. She is one of the most tenured executives in the industry with more than 25 years of experience in international healthcare staffing. Her nursing career began in 1989 when she graduated from nursing school in New Zealand and worked in Oncology. Her experience as a Registered Nurse spans several countries including the United Kingdom, New Zealand and the United States.

Ms. Powers began her career in international healthcare staffing with O’Grady Peyton International, a division of AMN. She was instrumental in building the worldwide recruitment platform for Assignment America, a division of Cross Country TravCorps. She later joined Geneva Health International in New Zealand where she led the recruitment efforts for healthcare professionals seeking international placement.

Ms. Powers has a passion for the U.S. recruitment business borne out of her own nursing experience gained in the U.S. in the early stages of her nursing career. Her experience as a nurse in three countries provides her with a unique and valuable perspective to Avant’s recruitment and clinical programs. She has successfully recruited in many countries, including the United States, Canada and the Middle East. While at Avant, Ms. Powers has been instrumental in developing and leading many of the operational areas of the company including recruitment, immigration and licensure processing, exam preparation, quality compliance, clinical programs, transition, and retention support of Avant’s healthcare professionals. She currently oversees recruitment, document control, quality compliance, immigration, licensure and credentialing, client services and nursing education.

Brian Hudson

Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing

Mr. Hudson is a seasoned sales and marketing executive with a successful track record of developing and leading regional and nationwide sales organizations. He has entrepreneurial business start-up and large public company experience with total P&L responsibility up to $300M. Mr. Hudson has a proven track record of developing and executing strategic sales and marketing plans designed to drive momentum and exceed sales and profitability goals.

Mr. Hudson was a member of Avant’s executive leadership team when the company pivoted its business model to therapy services and was instrumental in building a nationwide post-acute client base in 2009 through 2011. He relocated to the West Coast of Florida, joining KForce Healthcare as a Managing Director. When KForce divested that business unit Mr. Hudson joined Pyramid Healthcare Solutions as their VP of Sales & Marketing. Anthelio acquired Pyramid Healthcare Solutions in 2015.

Mr. Hudson is a member and actively involved in the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA) and has served on the board of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE).

Adam Kless

Vice President of Clinical Operations

With over 10 years of experience as a Chief Nursing Officer for academic, non-profit and for-profit health systems, Mr. Kless has worked in notable health systems such as Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals, Community Health Systems and HCA.

Mr. Kless expertise lies in the development of performance improvement initiatives, strategic planning of clinical services, patient experience, creating positive cultures, electronic medical record implementation, regulatory compliance and remediation, and development of business models for clinical programs.

Mr. Kless received his MBA degree through Western Governors University. He also holds a MSN degree from Case Western Reserve University and an NEA-BC certification.

John Townsley

Senior Vice President Human Resources and Compliance

Mr. Townsley is a strategic human resource leader with over 30 years of experience working with both publicly traded and privately owned large and mid-sized, national and international organizations including Fortune 50 public companies. He has led human resource initiatives in technology, pharmaceutical, manufacturing, and construction markets. Mr. Townsley has expertise in talent lifecycle, leadership development, employee and labor relations, business analysis, compensation, benefits, mergers and acquisitions and organizational change management.

Mr. Townsley brings a deep understanding of cultural diversity working with organizations that have a global presence, most notably in Asia, Europe and the United Kingdom. His HR and Compliance background is extensive having worked in engineering and construction with Balfour Beatty, technology with FARO and Syniverse, manufacturing with Emerson, Danaher and Crane Co. and healthcare with Cardinal Health.

Bill Bucher

Executive Vice President of Finance and Strategic Operations

Mr. Bucher is an operations-focused financial executive with over 25 years of progressive experience leading complex and high-growth organizations. Currently, he oversees the finance and accounting functions and supports the operational teams at Avant.

Mr. Bucher has been the CFO for 6 companies, mostly private equity backed, and has served as a COO for a large national health care organization. Prior to Avant, he was a member of the executive team at Axium Healthcare Pharmacy/Kroger Specialty Pharmacy and was able to successfully grow a private equity-backed organization from less than $50M in annual revenue to over $3B during a 10-year period, which included merging with the Kroger Co. in 2012 and acquiring a larger competitor in 2016. Earlier in his career, he was a Director for Caremark/CVS and served in various financial and operational roles. Additionally, he has nearly 10 years of experience as a management consultant with PWC as a practice leader, EY as a consulting manager, and as an equity partner with Tatum, a national CFO services firm.

For years, Mr. Bucher served on the board for the Orlando Economic Partnership and the Association for Corporate Growth Orlando Chapter, including serving as President. Mr. Bucher has an MBA in Finance from Old Dominion University, a BS in General Business from the University of Wyoming and is a CPA.

Tony Hughes

Vice President of Information Technology

Mr. Hughes is an accomplished technology leader with more than 35 years of experience leading global companies. Mr. Hughes has served as CIO for a publicly traded manufacturer of measurement equipment and software, CIO for a financial services and real estate investment firm with $19 billion of assets under management, and Senior VP of Solution Delivery for a Fortune 500 hospitality company.

In addition to his technical background, Mr. Hughes has expertise in strategic and financial planning, mergers and acquisitions, business process improvement, organizational change management, and program management.

Mr. Hughes earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Rollins College and a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information Systems from West Liberty University. He also served in the United States Marine Corps.

Healthcare Professionals

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Avant Healthcare Professionals is a member of the Jackson Healthcare family of companies.