Kathy Walner, a licensed practical nurse at Cottesmore of Life Care

On Aug. 24, 2015, Life Care Centers of America honored Kathy Walner, a licensed practical nurse at Cottesmore of Life Care in Gig Harbor, Washington, with one of two President’s Awards for its Northwest Division.


The honor, given during Life Care’s annual management meeting at its headquarters in Cleveland, Tennessee, recognizes distinguished service in a long-term health care management role. The Northwest Division includes 29 skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities in Idaho, Oregon, Utah and Washington.


Walner was praised for her personal touch with residents. Stories of her going above and beyond her job duties are numerous, including riding with a patient from the hospital to the facility when the patient was scared of riding in the ambulance, and taking in a resident’s dog when the resident had no one to care for the animal.


She also made a house call to check on a resident’s husband who had not been reached by phone. When she found him in poor condition, she was able to get him the help he needed.


Walner assists her fellow associates and the community as well, whether by coming in to Cottesmore of Life Care at a moment’s notice to assist her co-workers with admissions paperwork or participating in the local Aging Smart Network meetings.


On top of all of this, Walner is studying to become a registered nurse and hosts studying sessions for the two other resident care managers working on their nursing education.


“Kathy has demonstrated professional skill and compassion in dispatching her responsibilities to the associates, residents and families she serves,” said Beecher Hunter, Life Care president. “She has uniquely demonstrated a leadership style for others to emulate. This is a distinguished award to receive because it goes to the heart of our mission.”


Fifteen President’s Awards are presented annually to leaders of overall successful facilities or organizations within Life Care.