Meet Deborah Ashamu, Director of Iris Park Commons Assisted Living & Katy’s Cottage Memory Care
How long have you been in your position? Can you tell me a bit about your training and other jobs you held at Episcopal Homes?
I have been in the Director’s position for 2 ½ years. I became a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator (LNHA) after completing a 2-year master’s program and a 6-month practicum with Melissa Schneider, ECH Administrator. I shadowed each department at ECH and attended meetings to learn about roles. I became licensed as an assisted living director in 2021 with MDH (Minnesota Department of Health) changes that required the director to be certified. I shadowed with the previous housing director when I started my position for the first week.
I have worked for Episcopal Homes for 7 ½ years. I started as the Volunteer Program Coordinator for Episcopal Homes for 4 years, then I went back to school and became a LNHA and worked as the Associate Administrator ECH for 1 year.
What qualities make a good leader?
Dependability, Critical thinker, Empower others, Open-minded, Problem-solving, and Interpersonal communication.
What are the most important skills you use as a leader?
Team building, Problem-solving, Communication, Ability to manage others, and strategic thinking.
Please share an accomplishment you are especially proud of:
I am especially proud of how we managed throughout the height of COVID. We lost 3 vital nurses, had 14 open beds, and staff continued to work despite the risks of COVID. We had low COVID cases among residents and staff. We never had to stop admission to IPC due to staffing. We have since been able to hire nurses in all our open positions, we also have restored our occupancy to pre-COVID percentage, and we have been able to provide stable staffing as well.
Please share a goal(s) for your area for 2022:
A goal for IPC in 2022 is to increase the number of activities we have and offer more off-campus activities for residents to enjoy.
A short sentence or two about you personally:
Every day is different and poses new challenges. It is important to take time to ask questions and make decisions based on all the information.