Campbell has new vision for Valentine Care
ELKINS — When opportunity knocked on the door of Denise Campbell, she decided to answer and put her years of service in the healthcare profession to good use.
Campbell, who served the residents of Randolph and Pocahontas counties for three terms as a District 43 delegate, recently purchased Valentine Personal Care Home on Davis Avenue in downtown Elkins.
“I’ve been a nurse for 28 years and I’ve worked in healthcare probably 30-plus years,” Campbell, whose purchase of the facility was official on Aug. 20, told The Inter-Mountain.
“I had always thought about owning a place like Valentine, but the opportunity never presented itself. When I heard it was for sale, I started looking into it and after talking it over with my family, we decided it seemed like a really good opportunity. It was a big step and challenge, perhaps the biggest one I’ve ever made.”
Campbell believes her extensive background in healthcare will make her a perfect fit to take on everything that goes with running such a facility. While serving in the state Legislature, Campbell was a member of the Health Committee for six years. She was also Vice Chair of the Minority Health Committee and a member of the Senior Issues Committee.
Away from politics she was case manager at Davis Medical Center, nurse manager at St. Joseph’s Hospital, and the administrator at Elkins Rehabilitation and Care Center. She has been a professor in nursing at Alderson-Broaddus College and currently teaches health courses at Huttonsville Correctional Center.
“I’ve worked in long-term care, I’ve worked in home health, I’ve worked in several different aspects of nursing,” Campbell said. “And I’ve also worked quite a bit in administration. So buying Valentine kind of seemed like a perfect fit for me and I took the challenge.”
The 20-bed facility, which currently has 12 to 15 employees, will be known in the future as Valentine Assisted Living.
“The staff here are wonderful, I just can’t say enough good things about them,” Campbell said. “It’s a great opportunity to take care of people who sometimes feel like maybe they’re sort of forgotten about. We want them to feel like they’re special and that every day of their life has meaning. We want to bring them as much joy and happiness as we can while they are here.”
Since the purchase, Campbell said the facility has endured some painting and upgrading in some of the rooms and common areas. She said one of the main focuses is going to be on revamping the facility’s activities program.
“We really want to focus on different activities, even though we are battling COVID,” she said.
“Last week was so exciting when the Highland Dancers came over and performed for our residents. Our residents sat out on the porch and they danced on the sidewalk for them, making it COVID friendly. The smiles on our residents’ faces were just priceless.
“We want to do more things like that and try to be creative with it. We don’t want our residents to feel like they are isolated.”
Campbell’s husband Ric and her 18-year old son Logan have been helping with some of the upgrades around the facility. She said Logan has done a tremendous job with some of the landscaping.
“I’ve always had a special place in my heart for individuals with disabilities or individuals that need help,” Campbell said. “I always want to try and be that person that makes a difference in people’s lives. If I can get a smile out of someone, that really makes my day.”