This special section of the National Real Estate Investor features the American Seniors Housing Association's (ASHA's) 15th annual compilation of the nation's largest seniors housing owners and managers.

To ensure the accuracy of the 2008 ASHA 50, ASHA assembled a list of prospective ranked companies from every available source. A senior officer from each firm was asked to provide their current holdings as of June 1, 2008. Data was also used from outside sources deemed reliable, such as public filings. Companies listed in the ASHA 50 are not required to be members of ASHA, although most firms that appear in this year's rankings are ASHA members.

For purposes of this survey, seniors housing units include independent living units and assisted living units, as well as skilled nursing beds which are part of a larger retirement living complex (such as a CCRC), and include rental, entrance fee, condominium, and cooperative units designed and operated exclusively for adults aged 55 years and over. Units where residents receive Section 8 or equivalent rental subsidies, single-family homes, hotel rooms, stand-alone skilled nursing beds, or mobile home units and pads are not included. Additionally, the ASHA 50 rankings do not include properties where more than 30% of the units are licensed for skilled nursing.

Respondents were requested not to report properties owned indirectly through ownership of shares in another company and were instructed not to include properties leased from other owners for purposes of calculating the ASHA 50 owners list.

The ASHA 50 was compiled and analyzed by Krystalle Campo, Rachelle Bernstecker and David Schless of ASHA, who express their appreciation to the industry leaders for their participation in this annual effort. Valuable assistance was provided by summer intern Duncan Hardock of Colby College, Waterville, Maine.

In addition to the ASHA 50 rankings and analysis of the results, this section includes a listing of the leadership, members and employees of the American Seniors Housing Association.

For those readers interested in more information about the activities and resources of the American Seniors Housing Association, please visit our website at: www.seniorshousing.org or call (202) 237-0900.