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Flabbergasted would be the most appropriate description for Sandy Carlson’s response when it was announced that she had been voted by her peers as the Employee of the Year for Lutheran. She was quick to comment that others were more deserving, but it was by popular vote that she was chosen.
Each year Lutheran hosts a special luncheon to celebrate the twelve employees of the month and to announce the employee of the year. Tom Holt, president and CEO, says that this is one of his favorite events. “I’m enjoying every day here at Lutheran because I know our residents are in your loving and caring hands,” he told the honorees. “You make this a great place to live, to work and to spend time as a family. Your exceptional work has been recognized by your peers, which is the best form of flattery. Congratulations.”
Sandy tends to the reception desk at the main entrance to the nursing home and is most often the first person who greets staff, visitors and family members. “I love the people connections,” she said. “I enjoy visiting with people as they come through the door and helping them when needed.” Over the last 41 years, Sandy has held positions at G.A. Family Services and in the nursing home. “This is a darn good place to work,” she added with a smile.
Shelly Quackenbush, a member of the COPP (Collection of Positive People) Team gave highlights from the list of exceptional qualities that Sandy embodies. “She brings so many positive attributes to Lutheran it is difficult to know where to start. She possesses the extraordinary characteristics that make Lutheran a destination of excellence. She shows compassion to everyone who crosses her path and makes everyone feel like they are the most important person at that moment. She gives her all and considers Lutheran her second family.”
Members of the COPP Team hold the Employee of the Year event annually. They are employees who give extra time and talent to enhance the work experience at Lutheran through fun events and recognition of outstanding employees. The Program was started by Richard and Shirley Carlson in honor of their son, Richard D. “Rick” Carlson, who passed away in 2005. He had been a long time resident at the Lutheran Home and the family wanted a way to honor him and the wonderful staff who cared for him.