ROANOKE, Va. (June 5, 2019) – Friendship, the local leader in senior living and rehabilitation, is proud to announce the appointment of Luke Campbell as Executive Director of Dining Services for both of its campuses.
“Luke brings a wealth of experience in dining and customer service to our community,” said Joe Hoff, Friendship’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “He has worked with several prestigious organizations who, during his tenure, improved their dining programs to become the best within their regions.”
Campbell has worked in food and beverage management for over 25 years, with the past 12 having been with an emphasis in senior care.
“Dining services plays such a crucial role in one’s wellbeing, especially in the senior living community setting, because food and nutrition ties in with almost every dimension of wellness,” said Campbell. “Encouraging individuals to make smart and healthy choices while, at the same time, providing the comfort foods to which they are accustomed is a fine balance.”
Campbell joined the Friendship team in April and was immediately immersed into a busy event schedule, with several impending occasions specifically focused on highlighting Friendship’s dining services team and talents.
“At Friendship, events are always taking place — it’s something I truly appreciate about this community. The dining services team realizes the responsibility it has in making sure that each and every occasion goes as smoothly as possible, and is memorable for all involved. They take tremendous pride in their work and service,” said Campbell.
Having Campbell join Friendship’s dining services team is the latest of several enhancements the community has made to differentiate Friendship, and to make the decision when one is considering a rehabilitation stay or transitioning to a retirement community even easier.
“Food often has a major influence in one’s decision-making process,” said Hoff. “Friendship already has several terrific dining venues and with Luke now part of the team, dining services will have even greater support and leadership in offering delicious, healthy, creative, comforting, and convenient food choices.”
In addition to Campbell, Friendship recently hired James Elmore, Director of Dietary, who manages dining services at Friendship Health and Rehab North.
Elmore, who joined Friendship in January, got right to work in streamlining kitchen operations, improving production and consistency, and incorporated more choices into the daily menus.
“The team and I have committed to do our best to meet the preferences of our residents and patients. To do so, it requires offering a greater selection of options,” said Elmore.
In addition to more choices, the team has shifted its focus to include improving food presentation.
“People are here at Friendship for a whole host of reasons. Some are ill or battling tough health situations, while many are on the upswing in their healing and recovery. In these different stages, sometimes even the thought of eating for some is hard or unappealing. That’s where the team and I find motivation and recognize the opportunity to step up, by providing meals that look and taste so good that people won’t pass them up.”
With the new team members, Friendship has also been upgrading key dining components within its physical infrastructure. In the Assisted Living residence, the entire kitchen was overhauled.
“Significant upgrades were made in our kitchen by replacing the entire front-line cooking station and installing a new stainless-steel hood,” said Chuck Flynn, Administrator of Assisted Living. “These improvements come with the latest safety features and are proving to be extremely helpful in streamlining our dining operation. Art Mook and his team were already providing wonderful food, and now with these upgrades, they are able to offer additional food preparation methods that weren’t previously available, due to equipment limitations. Now they are appealing to every palate and better meet dietary specifications.”
The Café, located in the North Health and Rehab building, was also recently outfitted with new equipment. Club Friendship, the community’s on-site restaurant which is open to the public, also received a new kitchen hood and has implemented a new “specials” calendar.
“When you are at Friendship, whether you are a resident, family member, employee or guest, in any of our venues, we will do all we can to make sure you are delighted and have the best dining experience possible,” said Campbell.