By Baura Zia / Posted on October 14th, 2013
When Claire Lucas entered a nursing home for the first time, she was anticipating walking into a room filled with smiling faces with laughter echoing throughout the halls. She expected to see nurses walking alongside Elders as they’d wave hello to her, their faces gleaming with happiness and joy. She thought she’d see something resembling a real home. Instead, she was greeted by unpleasant fumes and the sound of someone calling numbers for bingo. A group of Elders were huddled around the nursing station and the atmosphere was unsettling. Almost instantly, Claire felt like leaving – but thankfully, she stayed.
Although gerontology was never a field Claire thought to consider, the need to bring cultural change to the field was something Claire knew she had to help to achieve. Growing up listening to her grandparents stories and witnessing their love and affection, Claire knew the current way in which traditional nursing homes were run was not acceptable. To Claire, Elders held a certain value for which they needed to be appreciated. Thus, she decided to dedicate her efforts to helping reshape Elder care by working toward empowering and helping them at a time in their life when they needed it most.
Throughout her years Claire has worked in various capacities to assist people in Elderhood and at the end of life. As Director of Facility Based Hospice & Bereavement for The Denver Hospice in Colorado, Claire oversaw hospice services including opening a new patient care center and helping The Denver Hospice apply for The Eden Registry. Prior to her work with The Denver Hospice, Claire served as the Vice President of Operations for Vivage Quality Health Partners. Today, Claire serves as a Project Guide at the Green House Project and continues to contribute her skills and experience to help establish Green House homes across the nation.
- 19 years of experience as a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator, opening new facilities and assisting in specialty program development
- Masters of Science in Gerontology, emphasis in Direct Service
- Regional Vice President for nine skilled nursing facilities in Colorado
- Eden Educator and LEAP Educator
- Presenter at numerous national conferences, including her special interest in Alzheimer’s Disease and culture change
- Board Member Colorado Culture Change Coalition
Claire has been incredibly active in her passion toward assisting those with Alzheimer’s. She has worked on developing some of the earliest Special Care Units and continues to remain active with those projects.
Claire enjoys international travel and visiting new places. She also enjoys theater, the arts along with the outdoors and hiking.