Dearborn, Mich., January 16, 2018 – When Trenton resident Karen Miller, R.N. starts her work day as director of residential care for Oakwood Common in Dearborn, she is rarely sure when the day will end. While caring for an older adult population with differing needs of assistance, along with responding to questions and needs of family members and staff, there are few breaks in the day.
However, on a recent morning, Miller was given a “surprise” break and honored as recipient of the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses. In 1999, this award was established by The Daisy Foundation in California to honor the memory of J. Patrick Barnes and the hospital nurses who cared for him as he battled an auto-immune disease.
Since then, this prestigious award program has expanded to include more than 2,700 healthcare facilities in all 50 states and 17 countries worldwide. Beaumont, which includes Oakwood Common’s senior living community, is among partnering organizations to annually recognize outstanding nurses.
To highlight Miller’s hard work, congratulations and tributes were posted on a large poster board to describe how Miller has impacted the lives of residents, their family members, and staff.
One of Miller’s nominations came from a staff member who thanked Karen “for always supporting me, trusting me, assuring me and always there for me.” Another staff member described how Miller makes a special effort to connect with each resident personally and even tells them when she goes on vacation, because she know they would be concerned if they didn’t see her.
Employed by Oakwood, now Beaumont, for more than 25 years, Miller started her career as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) working in geriatrics at Balmoral, later known as Oakwood Trenton.
She received her nursing degree at Henry Ford Community College and has worked as a nurse in different areas of the health system.
“I really enjoy my job and love the older population,” said Miller, who has served at Oakwood Common for nine years. “I feel that I can make a difference.”
Oakwood Common Administrator Linda Nickerson presented The DAISY award to Miller, who received a beautiful African Shona Tribe sculptured entitled “A Healer’s Touch,” an award pin, a certificate, and a bouquet of daises. More information about the DAISY award and foundation is available at www.daisyfoundation.org.
For Miller, the award is even more special, because she understands the heartfelt concern families have for their residents. Her dad, who emigrated with their family from Scotland to Canada and then to the U.S. in the late 1960’s, now has dementia.
“His eyes lit up when I showed him the award,” said Miller, who works hard to build the trust of residents’ families. “I want our families to go home and sleep at night knowing their loved ones are in good hands.”
Miller credited the wonderful employees and great administrative team at Oakwood Common for the award. She added, “It’s easy to do well at your job when you have such wonderful support. We are a very close knit community.”
Oakwood Common, a Beaumont community, offers one and two bedroom senior living apartments located at 16351 Rotunda Drive, within a beautiful 29-acre community. It includes exquisite landscaping, nature trails and scenic views along the historic Rouge River Gateway in Dearborn. Assisted living and a comprehensive rehabilitation and skilled nursing center are also available for those with additional needs. For more information and to arrange tours of Oakwood Common, call 800-642-4663.
Margaret Blohm, APR
Partner, Studio 313 LLC
Margaux & Associates, LLC