After 23 years as executive director at Regency Retirement Village, Trudy Darnell will take on a bigger responsibility
She will be a regional director of operations for Regency, overseeing six assisted living villages in three states, two in Virginia, two in Tennessee and two in Georgia. No matter where she goes, Morristown is still home.
“I’ve been here almost 23 years,” Darnell said. “I’m going to miss these folks in this community because this is my home away from home. Some of these residents have been with me for years. They’re just like my family.”
Darnell said that breaking away from her residents will be very difficult.
“I will be back to visit,” she said. “I’m also going to miss the owners of Regency because they have been absolutely wonderful to me. We’ve been together now for 17 years.”
When the current ownership came in 17 years ago, there were a lot of changes and upgrades made.
“They really care about the residents,” Darnell said. “Their number one thing is that when we change something, how is this going to benefit the residents. I’m really going to miss working with them.
“When I first started here, Regency was licensed for home for the aged for 40 apartments out of the 200-plus,” Darnell said. “Since Regency purchased this building 17 years ago, we’ve extended from 40 homes for the aged to 168 living apartments.”
Among other improvements include a memory care unit and a special unit for veterans. The facility is in process of developing a daycare on the first floor.
“Those are the things that stand out to me,” she said. “The way we’ve grown in this community and we’ve offered more services over the years. That’s really special to me.”
Veterans are dear to Darnell’s heart.
“I love working with the veterans,” she said. “We’re known at the Mountain Home VA Hospital for what we try to do for our veterans.”
When she isn’t working, Darnell loves to camp and to attend church.
“One of the things I love about camping is that I’m a registered nurse,” she said. “When I’m at the campground, if anyone needs anything, that’s just part of me. I love to serve others.”