For the second year in a row, a locally-owned assisted living facility is celebrating statewide recognition for its employees and, for the first time, statewide recognition of a resident as well.
The Kentucky Center for Assisted Living honored Stilley House Resident Assistant Charles Shubert as 2019 Outstanding Caregiver of the Year and Aubert Rose, Jr., a Stilley House resident, as 2019 Resident of the Year. Gina Wallace, Stilley House Activities Director, was awarded 2018 Caregiver of the Year. All three were nominated for the award and then selected from a pool of candidates from across the state, even larger, corporate facilities in major cities such as Louisville, Lexington, Bowling Green and Owensboro.
Stilley House Assisted Living and Memory Care Community Administrator Allen Jones said, "Both Charles and Gina have done standout jobs and we feel very honored that we won Caregiver of the Year two years in a row. It's a big deal and it shows we're doing something right. We're also honored to have Mr. Rose here with us because he's done so much with our community on a nationwide scale, but also here with the other residents."
In the nomination letter for Shubert, Memory Care Supervisor Regina Carter described him as "the person you dream of having care for your loved one but think you'll never find."
Although Shubert has only been with the Stilley House since Feb. 2018, Carter said he has earned the love, trust and respect of the residents, their families and his colleagues, and has a soothing voice able to calm even the most agitated residents while validating their feelings and helping them work through it.
Carter described Shubert as a caregiver by nature who chooses to work night shifts so he can care for his mother at home during the day and then, when possible, volunteers at the Stilley House so he gets daytime activities and special events time with the residents. She recalled Shubert bringing a grill one day so the men could reminisce about a backyard barbecue and a Father's Day when he loaded his van with fishing poles and residents to take them on a fishing trip. For Easter, Schubert made individual, miniature, homemade loaves of bread and delivered them to residents and staff.
"It's not just the activities that he creates or the events that he assists with, it's the love that he puts into everything he does," Carter wrote. "Every day that Charles is at work, he gives of himself unselfishly. Charles is a role model to us all, not just as an outstanding caregiver but also as a phenomenal human being."
In the nomination letter, Jones described Rose as a humble, caring man who takes a special interest in his fellow residents. He noted Rose leads the facility's largest activity--Bible Study--who has made "immeasurable" impact.
Jones said Rose was trained in the artillery division of the U.S. Army and served directly under General Patton in WWII, traveling to France and Germany to liberate prison camps. After returning home, Rose taught school and practiced carpentry "until he found his true calling of being a minister." His main goal with the churches he served across the country was growth.
But his "claim to fame," Jones said, is his time spent as associate pastor to Dr. Charles Stanley in Atlanta, Georgia, who is known as one of the leading southern Baptist preachers today and can still be seen on television every Sunday.
"Aubert likes to tell the story that the reason Dr. Stanley hired him was to be the yin to his yang," Jones wrote. "Dr. Stanley has a very dry sense of humor where Aubert loves to laugh and smile, so they made a good team."
"He is so soft-spoken and nice to everyone; he doesn't meet a stranger and loves to love on people," Jones added.
People from all over the country have traveled to Benton to visit with Rose, Jones wrote, which is indicative of the impact he has made in the lives of others in his lifetime. And he continues to make those impacts and relationships, he said, with his neighbors at the Stilley House.
Jones said Wallace, who was honored as last year's Caregiver of the Year, has been with the facility since its doors opened 22 years ago and that entire time has lifted the spirits of everyone around her, always exceeding expectations.
"One of our mottos is, 'If you don't use it, you lose it,' and Gina is great about getting folks to participate in activities which we provide seven days a week, not just Monday through Friday," he explained. "She's exceptional with big events, creativity and counseling, and she goes above and beyond to make sure the residents feel at home, involved and safe."