By Kay Cozad
FORT WAYNE — Saint Anne Home and Retirement Community of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend has experienced much positive growth and change throughout its 47-year history becoming “the benchmark for high quality healthcare in Fort Wayne.” This year is no different with the changing of the guard in the administration office. David Deffenbaugh has been named the new administrator as Mary Haverstick retires.
Deffenbaugh is no stranger to the senior healthcare field. With a degree in healthcare administration and a resume that includes holding assistant and executive administrative positions in four healthcare facilities, the most recent being administrator/CEO of Signature HealthCARE of Fort Wayne, he brings a plethora of skill, experience and dedication to the job.
Deffenbaugh feels his advancing career is a vocation that stems from the experiences of his childhood. “I spent a lot of time as a child with my grandparents. They were a very significant part of my upbringing,” he says. “I came to know many older adults through our church, many of whom left lasting impressions on me as I grew up. Being with them as they aged influenced my decision to work with older adults. I wanted to ensure that quality of life and dignity were preserved and protected. In addition, I wanted to make sure that families could ‘sleep well at night’ knowing their loved one was being taken care of.”
A native of Moline, Ill., Deffenbaugh, and his wife Jennifer have resided in Fort Wayne since 1999. The couple and their son Jack became active members of St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Fort Wayne after joining the Catholic Church at Easter of 2013. Deffenbaugh is involved in the Knights of Columbus and is currently serving on Christ Renews His Parish team 56 at St. Vincent. As an active community member, Deffenbaugh enjoys a variety of outdoor activities including hiking, biking, softball and basketball as well as traveling and spending time with family and friends.
As for the chance to lead the Catholic-centered Saint Anne Home into the future, Deffenbaugh says, “The opportunity to combine my career with the ability to serve God was simply too great to pass up. As my faith has deepened, so has the need to incorporate those beliefs into all aspects of my life.”
The faith-filled administrator of Saint Anne’s believes in servant leadership and intends to continue the long-standing tradition of caring for the residents, families and staff at the home. “I have always believed that if you take care of people and do what’s right, everything else takes falls into place. As the administrator, I will look to preserve and protect the core values, while guiding and redefining Saint Anne’s through the changing landscapes of healthcare,” he says.
Saint Anne Home, a nonprofit health care and retirement community, began its mission in 1967 as a three-story nursing center. Over the years three sections of apartments were added to include independent and assisted living quarters. Currently, it houses 164 nursing home beds and 95 apartments to serve the community. A large memory care unit has also been established on the second floor of the nursing home and a relatively new and well-received program, The Courtyard Club at Saint Anne’s, provides adult day services. Saint Anne’s offers inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation services as well, including physical, occupational and speech therapies.
As for future growth, Deffenbaugh has a strong and definite vision for the home. “My vision for Saint Anne Home is to continue to preserve the mission of a culture of self-respect and dignity in a Christian atmosphere. Saint Anne Home has and will continue to offer each resident individualized, high quality health care that encourages freedom and independence while preserving their dignity and uniqueness as creations of God,” he says.
He continues, “Outside of the home, I see opportunities for Saint Anne Home to become a market-based healthcare solution provider. I believe we can leverage our high quality care, compassionate staff and expertise in long-term care to enhance our service to the Fort Wayne area.”
Deffenbaugh began administration of Saint Anne Home on April 15.
Saint Anne Home and Retirement Community is located at 1900 Randallia Dr., Fort Wayne, IN 46805. For more information call 260-484-5555 or visit www.saintannehome.com.
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