September 2003

The St. Joseph Living Center, Reading, Pa.

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Diana Blair, RN, BSN, CRRN, NHA

St. Joseph Living Center, part of St. Joseph Regional Health Network, Reading, Pa., a 126-bed assisted living center, celebrated its 13th anniversary in July. As administrator for the past five years, Diana Blair believes the Living Center daily exemplifies the mission and vision of Catholic Health Initiatives.

"A primary focus for the Living Center is reaching out to the community and providing services that aren’t available elsewhere," Blair said. "For example, in October we will begin the first early stage memory loss support group in Berks County. Another successful program is our Mall Walk group, which has more than 534 members. Members receive discounts to stores in the mall, monthly blood pressure screenings, and the opportunity to socialize and exercise at the same time."

Blair enjoys talking with other administrators within Catholic Health Initiatives; working together to develop customer service evaluation guidelines for independent and assisted living facilities; and sharing challenges and effective methods for overcoming them. "It helps to know that other entities face the same issues," she said. "We always have someone we can call for help."

Previously, Blair worked at Reading Rehabilitation Hospital for 17 years, where she began her career as a nursing assistant. She served in a variety of roles, including nurse manager and nursing home administrator for the skilled care unit. Blair was responsible for opening the sub-acute care unit, and during her three-year tenure as administrator the unit was deficiency-free.

"My background in rehabilitation nursing is very helpful at the Living Center," said Blair. "Part of our mission is to help residents achieve the highest quality of life possible, and one way to do that is maintain the highest function possible."

Blair is currently working to complete a master’s degree from Millersville University, Lancaster, Pa., to become a certified nurse practitioner. She earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Kutztown University, Kutztown, Pa. Married for 32 years, Blair and her husband, Patrick, have two children, Kendra and Kristen, and two grandchildren, Jordon and Nevan.