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Two heads are better than one

By Staff | Jun 15, 2014

People may be noticing some new faces when they visit Parker Oaks in Winnebago.

That’s because there will be not one but two new people filling the administrator role.

Bob Johannsen will serve as an administrator along with Lorna Craig-Paulson.

“Bob and I are both from the area; I’m from the Armstrong, Iowa area and Bob is from the Wells area,” Craig-Paulson explains.

Both are employees of Eldercare Minnesota facilities and serve other communities, as well. Craig-Paulson will split her time between Truman and Winnebago and Johannsen will go between Wells and Winnebago.

Eldercare Minnesota owns a number of senior care facilities and wants to make the transition at Parker Oaks to becoming a non-profit organization.

“That, in the long run, will save us money,” Johannsen says.

The non-profit organization will be made up of various boards which will help Parker Oaks continue to run smoothly.

“We will not leave a hole in any community,” Johannsen says.

And through all of this transition, the new administrators have one important goal in mind.

“We want to keep Winnebago residents in Winnebago,” Craig-Paulsen says.

The partners hope they can draw a lot of support from the community as they

work toward improving the Parker Oaks facility.

“We are by no means closing Parker Oaks,”?Johannsen says. “We are actually looking to build and expand.”

News hit the community almost a year ago that due to low numbers, the Patriot Home Assisted Living would be closing.

The new administrators have some hope regarding that facility, as well.

“We want to open that up again and eventually expand,”?Craig-Paulson says.

According to Johannsen, the staff at Parker Oaks is going to help make all of these improvements possible.

“They have a lot of passion to make this happen,”?he says.

The two administrators will continue to work toward their goals and are going to start by introducing themselves to the community.

Craig-Paulson has worked in the health care field for many years and recalls her first job as a teenager working as a dishwasher in a nursing home in Armstrong.

She continued serving in a variety of roles in various health care facilities in the area.

In 2007, she obtained a bachelor degree in business administration in healthcare management and marketing. Then in May of 2011 she completed the requirements for becoming a licensed nursing home administrator.

Craig-Paulson has been the administrator at Truman Senior Living Nursing Home since August 2011.

Johannsen grew up in Alden and graduated from Alden High School. He attended the University of Minnesota to get a bachelor’s in healthcare administration.

He is currently the administrator in the Parkview Care Center in Wells where he feels he is finally working in his element.

The previous owners of Parker Oaks, Jim and Kathy Birchim, have announced they will be retiring and wanted to ensure the care at the facility would continue to serve the Winnebago community.

“Jim and Kathy asked us to come in and manage,”?says Johannsen.

So, despite the major change in transition at the Parker Oaks facility, these two have a background and passion for the position they are in and hope to continue to bring good care to the communities they serve, including Winnebago.