Nationwide Healthcare Services recently announced new leadership at the Milford Wellness Village, including a new Executive Director for the growing campus in southern Delaware.
Seaford, Delaware, resident Lon Kieffer brings 20 years of experience working in leadership positions within the healthcare industry to the innovative, multi-use Milford Wellness Village, which serves the City of Milford, Kent and Sussex counties, and the State of Delaware.
A self-professed “Navy brat” born in Livermore, California, Kieffer lived in 13 states by the time he was 13 years old. He settled in Baltimore through college and eventually moved to Seaford in 1993.
How did you hear about Milford Wellness Village?
The Village enjoys a certain buzz of excitement in the healthcare leadership community. I was very happy, in a very good position in western Baltimore and home in Seaford on the weekends. When I was approached about the opportunity to join the Village, and after meeting Mr. Gelley and learning of his vision, I couldn’t resist coming home to such an exciting opportunity.
Describe your role as Executive Director.
In short, anything that will benefit the Village, the programs and operations of Nationwide Healthcare Services, our tenants, our employees, those we serve, and being a good steward to the greater community at large are all things I consider to be my responsibility.
Describe an average day.
An average day at the Village could see us hosting community stakeholders and neighbors for a tour of the campus; followed by helping with a job fair or assisting a nonprofit group hold an event in our conference room.
And of course, helping all of our providers serve the public.
What’s your favorite part about MWV?
Everything about the Village is so refreshing and synergistic. Every tenant and service provider offers a secondary advantage of benefiting other tenants and the people we all serve. This is truly an extraordinary campus.
What sets MWV apart from others or what else is offered in Delaware?
Our vision of filling gaps in healthcare, rather than competing with others, is what differentiates us. We are truly hosting a tremendous array of services to people that otherwise might not be able to benefit from access to a wellness approach.
What’s your favorite menu item from Village Café?
It’s hard to turn down a good ol’ cheesesteak or burger, but the meatloaf special is pretty popular!
You founded “Defender of Caregivers,” which focuses on the importance of the caregiver and decision maker in forging professional and personal relationships in the senior living industry. Tell us more about it.
The “Defender Of Caregivers” is something I have been passionate about for many, many years after I realized the professionals working to serve others, and the family members helping their loved ones share some of the same personality traits — they take satisfaction in serving others.
Yet there is often conflict between professional and personal/family caregivers. Recognizing they are motivated by the same thing helped me learn how to advocate — defend them and help them work together without conflict and with greater satisfaction.
I’ve been sharing this message in private consultation, on stage in large and small venues and the internet for years and have been able to help a lot of people.
Fundamentally, this is also my role at Milford Wellness Village, and I am grateful that Mr. Gelley’s vision for this campus and my passion found each other.
What upcoming developments are you most excited for at MWV?
Our state-of-the-art Ventilator Care Unit, the only such unit in Kent or Sussex counties, will be opening soon. I am also looking forward to announcing many more new tenants who want to reside at the Village and provide services to the greater community.