Anna Holt has worked for CarDon & Associates for 15 years now, and tries hard every day to make Arbor Trace a little bit tidier and a whole lot friendlier.
Holt has been at Arbor Trace since it opened in 2007 on a park-like campus in a quiet neighborhood of Richmond, Ind. She previously worked at an older facility that required major renovations, so the company built a thoroughly modern community and actually moved about 40 residents to Arbor Trace.
“It was a huge challenge, bringing all the residents here with their personal belongings,” Holt said. Buses were brought in to make sure it was a safe journey, particularly for those seniors or rehabilitation residents who need a great deal of medical care. But everything went surprisingly smoothly, Holt said.
Of course, people had also built up lots of memories and attachment to the old place. But when the residents saw how much of an upgrade Arbor Trace was, and realized that many of their caregivers like Holt would be making the move with them, it made the transition that much more easy.
As the environmental supervisor, Holt oversees a team of 12 people responsible for the daily housekeeping and laundry of the entire campus. As you can imagine, it can be quite a challenge to keep everything clean, especially when Holt’s own standards are so high.
“We stay very busy, of course. It is a beautiful place and we try to maintain it that way on a daily basis,” she said. “Due to our short-term rehab business, we have new residents coming and going on a regular basis. Sometimes we’ll have three or four discharges in a single day, and bring in the same number of new residents. The building stays full!”
Though she supervises a large staff, Holt isn’t a stay-behind-her-desk sort. She’s out running the floor machine herself almost every day, keeping the floors shiny and clean. And she very much enjoys interacting with the residents, helping keep their apartments familiar and personal. She even helps serve breakfast three times a week.
“We really roll up our sleeves and get into it. I’m almost never in my office, I’m always out on the floor,” she said.
Holt has made many lasting personal connections with residents over the years. One special lady named Sue Ellen actually followed Holt from a previous employer to the older CarDon community and finally to Arbor Trace. Altogether, Holt helped care for the woman for 20 years. They shared many conversations and memories together. When Sue Ellen passed about two years ago, it was like losing a member of her own family.
Her own tightknit family includes her “wonderful” husband of 37 years, David Holt, a daughter and son and three grandchildren, including a grandson who has enlisted in the U.S. Army. They are a clan of hardy outdoorsmen and women, going camping virtually every weekend. The Holts love to go boating, hiking and almost everything imaginable as long as it’s outside.
During the work week, Holt turns her attention to keeping the indoors at Arbor Trace spic and span. She’s passionate about making Arbor Trace as comfortable and livable as possible for those who call it home.
“I love it here. It’s a great place to work. We have a good team that has real connections and relationships with the residents. Here at Arbor Trace, it’s like we’re one big happy family. We love our residents,” she said.