Annual Report 2021 Highlights
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As it is stated in Isaiah 38:16, “O Lord, by these things men live, and in all these is the life of my spirit; O restore me to health and let me live!"
At the beginning of the 2021, we announced a rebranding, complete with a new name, logo, colors and Mission Statement. Our new name, eliseo, in Hebrew translates to “God is My Salvation” and our new Mission Statement reads “Engaging lives through active living, compassion and dignity.” What a simple, yet great and powerful message this is!
Beginning in 2021 and continuing into 2022, we have made significant investments in our staff. If there is one lesson we learned from this pandemic, our staff are true heroes. We, like many other organizations, lost staff members due to burnout and health issues. For those who stayed with us, we revamped our wage scale and implemented a wage increase for all employees on December 1st. Everyone will receive a 4% increase on their anniversary date in 2022. Our employees continue to be the most important asset and we are so grateful to them. Please join me in thanking them for their dedication.
Despite challenges throughout 2021 to occupancy due to COVID, especially in our Health Center, we were able to secure financing in September for the construction you currently see taking place across our campus. We are adding 91 new Independent Living homes in three new buildings. In addition to this, major remodeling will take place in many of the public spaces of the Health Center building. We have set aside funds to upgrade apartments and Six-Plexes to meet the standards of tomorrow’s customers and we are continuing with improvements to our campus landscaping (where construction is not taking place).
I want to welcome all new Directors who joined us in 2021. I have always been impressed with the level of programming that is provided to our residents and I am so appreciative of the creativity that was displayed by both the current and new Directors in keeping our residents engaged with social events as well as increasing the number of programs offered all across campus. We are truly blessed.
Our Board of Governors and Board of Trustees continued their work throughout 2021, always keeping their work focused on the future and making sure eliseo remains aligned with our Mission as we plan for growth in the future. As we approach our Annual Meeting, I want to say thank you to Larry Gaffney and Jan Leng, whose terms will end on April 3rd. Both have served faithfully on the Board for many years and their work will serve as an inspiration to all of us.
As we look back on 2021 and utilize lessons learned to build success in 2022, I want to thank all involved at eliseo for your continued, unwavering support. It truly takes a village, and I am constantly reminded about how fortunate I am to be a part of this village. As stated at the end of the scripture at the beginning of this article, “…let me live,” I close by reminding us that Psalm 3:5 tells us “I lie down and sleep; I wake again, because the LORD sustains me.” Now that we are past the pandemic, we are living again. We will be sustained!
R. Kevin McFeely President and CEO
board of governors
board of governors chair
It has been an eventful year as we plan for a sustainable future. Ground has been broken on the new independent living units and construction is well underway.
2021 has proven to be another challenging and eventful year for elìseo. There is, of course, the ongoing challenge of the response to Covid infections. The Board of Governors greatly appreciates the work the staff has done in responding to the infections as they continue providing quality services to and with residents for the well-being of the whole person – physical, social, emotional & spiritual - by Engaging lives through active living, compassion and dignity.
The Board of Governors has developed a strategic plan to help guide its work moving into the future. We are committed to supporting the good work that has been a hallmark of elìseo throughout its history. We will continue to work with Kevin McFeely in maintaining the mission and vision for elìseo.
2022 promises to be another eventful year. The Board of Governors looks forward to what will be a hopeful time in the life of elìseo.
Thanks to the members of the Board of Governors for their commitment and support for the work of elìseo. A special thanks to Larry Gaffney and Jan Leng for their years of service as they retire from the Board of Governors, and to Marc Streleski who so ably served as Chair of the elìseo foundation Board of Trustees. Thanks to the Covenant Congregations for their participation in elìseo as an extension of their own ministry.
Please continue to hold elìseo, its residents, staff and volunteers, in your prayers.
The Rev. Ron Kempe Chair, Board of Governors
Because of your generous investments, the eliseo foundation was once again able to serve eliseo
residents and the community they call home.
As we reflect on the work that took place during the past year, we are equally humbled and inspired. This past year, eliseo welcomed 32 new residents to the campus. That’s 32 new individuals that we are able to assist and support thanks to donations from you for our various programs.
One of the new residents, Sue Bauer, sent us this very kind letter about how grateful she is now to call eliseo home:
“I have always been impressed by the concern and quality of (eliseo) and its workers and so sought to live here myself someday. I’m especially impressed and thankful to God for your ability to make life so good for such a large number of people over so many years, those people with very different needs.”
In August, the foundation hosted its 10th annual golf classic fundraiser, presented by Walsh Construction Co., at Highlands Golf Course. Approximately 60 golfers participated in the event, which netted us nearly $34,000. This year, the eliseo foundation board is looking forward to bringing back our annual gala and auction event with 2022 Adventure Awaits Us: A Night in Venice. We hope that you will join us then for a fun evening as we celebrate eliseo and the community and continue to raise funds for programs that support our residents.
Also in 2021, Rev. Lyle and Sonja Miller served as our honorary chairs for our Annual Fund Drive. Thanks to their leadership, our end-of-year campaign raised more than $26,000 and added 26 new members to our Enthusiast Club (those who give a gift of $500 or more each year). Our Enthusiast Club members (54 now in total) are a strong asset of our donor base, and we are grateful for each member. We held our annual Enthusiast Club luncheon in October at the Mortvedt Center and look forward to other events we will be hosting throughout 2022 to show our appreciation. Finally, with the new building project that started last fall, the eliseo foundation board has set a goal to raise $1 million in 2022 for the project.
The money raised will come through various naming opportunities and spaces to dedicate in the new building as well as smaller items such as brick pavers that we will have for purchase at the entrance and in the new courtyard. We hope you will consider joining us in this campaign and make a meaningful gift to eliseo towards this new expansion. The work we do at the eliseo foundation is only possible because of you. This report illustrates what we have accomplished together. We look forward to continuing our partnership with you to ensure everyone at eliseo has access to the community they need in order to thrive.
Marc Streleski Chair, Board of Trustees
eliseo is blessed with resources to navigate these uncertain times with confidence and security. Our strong financial position has allowed us to move forward, no matter how turbulent the financial storm around us becomes. Risk is neither feared nor sought after, but rather, it is analyzed quantitatively to guide us in the right direction.
As we look at 2021 financially, let us take a moment to remember how we concluded 2020. At the beginning of last year, the end of the pandemic was in sight, and we were looking forward to getting back to our lives, Covid-free. However, the virus was not quite ready to pass silently into the history books; it had other plans. Despite the pandemic’s continuation and the challenges that arose, eliseo was able to navigate its financial challenges, maintain a strong balance sheet, and increase its net assets.
In October, eliseo secured the funding that will support the growth of our campus, including new independent units and additional common areas for all to enjoy, as well as a long overdue remodel of our main building’s service center. This new debt came in the form of a public bond offering, purchased by multiple investment funds who integrated eliseo’s new debt into their tax-exempt, fixed-income portfolios. With the expertise of our underwriters, we were able to lock in extremely competitive interest rates to provide a favorable cost of capital.
The hard work of our financial team has allowed us to accomplish something remarkable. We are proud to be expanding our mission to a new a group of residents, improving a section of our existing footprint, and offering new, expanded common areas for the enrichment of our residents’ lives, both current and future. Achieving this during the continued financial stress of 2021 makes this a very proud moment. I am extremely grateful for the efforts of our entire team – both staff and contracted support – as well as the kindness and patience of our current residents.
On the operations side, the healthcare labor shortage that dominated 2020 only intensified in 2021. Labor issues grew beyond healthcare workers and affected every area of our organization. Various monetary stimuli coupled with the Federal Reserve’s continuously increasing balance sheet spiked the amount of cash available to the economy. Wage inflation was one result of this policy, and eliseo needed to be proactive. The recruitment and retention of the highest quality staff is one of the most important duties we owe to our residents. To fulfill that duty, we provided salary increases beyond measured cost of living raises, in anticipation of future inflation.
At this time, those concerns have been realized, as the US economy is currently experiencing 7% annualized inflation across all goods and services. Our work to combat this wave of inflation continues into 2022, in anticipation of what 2023 may bring. Our path forward is bold but measured. It is an amazing time to be a part of the eliseo family, and I am very grateful for the small role I get to play in our future.
David Hoffman Chief Financial Officer
Organizations we proudly supported in 2021.
Peace Community Center
Lutheran Community Services in the Northwest
Healthcare Providers Council
Global Ageing Network
Redeemer Lutheran Church
Catholic Community Services
Nourish Pierce County Food Banks
Agnus Dei Lutheran Church
Bethany Presbyterian Church
Bethany Lutheran Church
Christ the King Lutheran Church
Lutheran Church of Christ the King
Mount Cross Lutheran Church
Peace Lutheran Church – Puyallup
Peace Lutheran Church – Tacoma
Redeemer Lutheran Church
Resurrection Lutheran Church
St. John’s Lutheran Church
St. Mark’s Lutheran Church
Trinity Lutheran Church
United Lutheran Church