Meet Raiana Lyons, Hospitality Manager

I worked in the medical field for 17 years where I discovered my passion for customer service. I was always striving to ensure all our patients were being taken care of.  

Later, I was invited to work for a small Pediatric Group in Yukon who was struggling tremendously with overall customer satisfaction and front office organization. I was successful in quickly growing the practice and helping it expand.

During that time, I was offered a part-time evening position for Levy Restaurants at The Chesapeake Energy Arena. It was there that I first met Epworth Villa’s Dining Services Director, Chuck Abell. I worked in the premium clubs as the supervisor until the pandemic shut down the season. At the same time, I begin to realize that sitting behind a computer screen at a medical practice all day- everyday just was not what I wanted to do anymore.  I missed being able to be up and around visiting with guest and making sure all their needs were being met. A few months after the closing of the 2020 season I received a call from Dining Director, Chuck Abell offering me the position with the Unidine Corporation as the Hospitality Manager at Epworth Villa.

Welcome Pastor Laura!

We are proud to announce the an exciting addition to the Epworth Villa Family. Welcome Pastor Laura!

Pastor Laura Glover was born in Oklahoma City and was raised primarily in rural Oklahoma farming communities. She loves her rural Oklahoma upbringing and credits it with giving her strong personal values, a love of people, a commitment to strong community, a firm foundation in the Methodist tradition, and a rabid love of sports. She attended Sweet Briar College in Virginia for her undergraduate degree, OU College of Law for a law degree, and Saint Paul School of Theology for a master’s in theology. Though she lived several years in Houston and Virginia, Oklahoma has always been home. She has served United Methodist churches in Perkins, Ripley, and Stillwater, and most recently served as pastor of Parish on the Prairie, a cooperative parish of churches in Jefferson, Medford, and Wakita.

Pastor Laura is blessed with two wonderful adult children. Daughter, Amber, teaches high school science in Houston and is married to her high school sweetheart, Justin. Son, Patrick, is living in the Dallas area and working multiple jobs so he can enjoy more visits home to Mom.

In addition to her commitment to helping residents and staff at Epworth Villa thrive spiritually, Pastor Laura enjoys sports (especially college football), laughter, music, reading, knitting, gardening, and travel, and she is always up for a good game of Scrabble!

Meet Chuck! Dining Services Director

Hear from Chuck Abell, Director of Dining Services:

“After my enlistment in the Air Force, I began a restaurant career in 1997 with Charleston’s restaurants in OKC for 4 years. I then moved on to Chili’s, where I spent 13 years working in most of the metro area. At both Chilis’s and Charleston’s, I spent time managing both the front of house operations as well as the kitchen staff. I spent a period of time with Chili’s as the area culinary manager, launching new menu roll-outs and training each restaurant on preparing new menu items.

In 2014, my oldest son was entering high school, and I felt the need to spend more time with family at home and the rigors of the restaurant industry did not allow for that. I left Chili’s and began a career in real estate, which I continue to this day. It was through a client that I sold a home to in 2015 that I found out about an opportunity to meld my career experience managing restaurants with my passion for sports. I was hired by Levy Restaurants to manage premium clubs at Chesapeake Energy arena where I spent the 2019 OKC Thunder season and what there was of the 2020 season. Levy is the Sports and Entertainment arm of its parent company, Compass Group.

When the pandemic caused the Sports and Entertainment industry to come to a halt, Compass Group offered its employees opportunities to remain under the umbrella. I was able to move to Epworth Villa with Unidine Corporation – the healthcare arm of the Compass Group.

Social Work Month – Spotlighting Courtnee

Social Work Month in March is a time to celebrate the great profession of social work.

Meet Courtnee Williams. Courtnee is a rock star for Health Services and is in charge of the social services. She has a BS in Psychology and has 10 years experience in Long Term Care and Skilled Nursing. She is the point person for most families concerning the rehab progress, discharge plans, or barriers to progress. Families comment that she calls when she says she will and follows up on their concerns. Since COVID Courtnee has been exceptional in scheduling hundreds of face time visits, car visits, compassionate care visits and supervised face to face visits.

Health Services Administrator, Michelle Brown says that “There is nothing asked of her that she doesn’t give her all to complete. Courtnee is very valuable to us!”

We are #ThrivingTogether

Social Work Month – Spotlighting Elizabeth

Social Work Month in March is a time to celebrate the great profession of social work. The theme for Social Work Month 2021 is Social Workers Are Essential.

Meet Elizabeth Newell, LCSW. She has been at Epworth Villa 7 years. You will never meet a more caring, loving, compassionate person. We are so very lucky to have Elizabeth as part of our team. She cares very deeply for all of the Residents that she serves. SHE IS ESSENTIAL!

Social workers are essential to community well-being.As practitioners, social workers are trained to help people address personal and systemic barriers to optimal living. They are employed to effect positive change with individuals, families, groups and entire communities.

Thank you Elizabeth! We celebrate you!

FINDING JERUSALEM AT EPWORTH VILLA

A temporary Chapel Space sponsored by the Religious Life Committee has been designated and prepared for personal worship and meditation until the Brill Chapel has been repaired from the recent water damage. The new space normally known as the activities area is located on the second floor above the Café.

In keeping with the theme “Walk to Jerusalem” activity beginning March 1 and the Lenten/Easter Season the décor features the country of Israel. Many of the items on display are souvenirs, pictures, and stories on loan from our residents who have visited Israel. A committee of three, JoAnn M. Sallie S. and Wilma R. are responsible for the design and decoration of the room.

Residents and Staff are invited to come by anytime 24/7 for quiet reflection on the Lenten weekly scripture postings, prayer, meditation and reading material on the coffee table. We believe you will be pleasantly surprised and pleased with the peaceful ambiance, background music, and beauty of this special room prepared with Loving Care for your Spiritual Enhancement.

Thank you to the residents who have contributed both in loaning their treasures from Israel and in your financial support that has made the additional décor possible.

Walk to Jerusalem

For our second 6-week movement challenge, we are trying something new!

In celebration of Lent, Walk to Jerusalem will begin March 1st and end April 7th. The idea is to walk the distance from Epworth Villa to Jerusalem, which is 6680 miles to symbolize Jesus’s own Walk to Jerusalem. We know individually someone won’t be able to walk that distance in 6 weeks, so it’s a group effort! The more people we have participating, the more chance we have to cover that number of miles.

Meet the Chef!

Chef Jonathan Groth is a graduate of the prestigious Coach House Apprenticeship Program in Oklahoma City. As a Certified Chef, Jonathan has had a wide-ranging career; from a couple of stints teaching culinary school, to being an executive chef, to operating a food truck. While the primary focus of Chef Groth’s culinary training has been in the French cuisine tradition, he also has a wide range of culinary experience and influences; from Korean, to Italian, to Latin, to Indian, to American.

Chef Groth is a father to two wonderful girls: Greysen (12) and Lauren (9). The household also consists of a Siamese-American Shorthair cat named Storm and a Maltese puppy named Musketeer.

As our Restaurants open back up, Chef Groth will take us on a culinary journey. We can’t wait!