Deirdre “DD” Burnside, Receptionist Assisted Living/Memory Care
Summit Place Senior Campus, Eden Prairie
Receptionist is an Understatement, Maybe “Director of Goodness”
Receptionist duties are just one part of being DD at Summit Place community. Other duties include but are not limited to assisting move ins and move outs, delivering newspapers, getting to know residents’ families, observing residents to inform nursing of changes, plus generally assisting residents and staff as needed, and training in front desk staff.
Assisted Living and Memory Care is Her Perfect Place to Serve
DD’s education and work history was primarily in medical office management. Her experience included hospitals and clinics followed by some years in education as a paraprofessional. Combined with years of caregiving for her aging parents it became clear that an office was too confining for all the heart she has to offer.
After some time feeling less than fulfilled in her work a friend said to DD “What a waste limiting all your light to just one office!” When DD found the position posted for Summit Place in 2004 it felt like a good place for shining her light. It wasn’t far from home and the flexibility was a plus. It was the right fit. As DD describes it “This job offers meaning and purpose.”
Senior Living Requires Many Skills
The other skills and experience she possesses combined with a willingness to always pitch in allowed DD to become a priceless utility player for the community. In addition to her main role she has at times handled Activities and Resident Services responsibilities. She also attends all the dementia trainings offered and maintains her Parkinson’s care certification.
DD summarizes it all by saying “I love what I do, the variety of the work and all the staff. The only hard part is losing a resident and grieving with the families.” The company recognizes her value for sure. In 2015 DD received the company’s Star Award for outstanding teamwork and going above-and-beyond the call of duty.
A Day in the Life of Seniors
DD also engages personally. There are some memorable instances. She once helped understand a speech challenged gentleman explain he had a fishing hook stuck in his bed (it’s a good story). There was the time a physician resident whose daughter was scheduled for knee surgery wanted to “bone up” his knowledge of the procedure. DD found him the online video of the entire surgery. Another resident needed help training her little dog, so DD helped the dog learn to ask for treats.
“DD provides exemplary customer service always by really getting to know residents and their families. Her care and compassion builds trust which makes her a resident favorite. She always makes time to help, and her patience is endless. Summit Place is fortunate to have DD part of our community.”
Elizabeth Stroner, Director of Resident Services, Summit Place Senior Campus
“I am so excited that you selected DD for this article. She is a wonderful representative of Summit Place and the industry.”
Teri Sigurdson, Sales and Marketing Associate, Summit Place Senior Campus
“DD was a joy to work with. She was always upbeat, fun and dedicated. Residents and families alike know DD very well and rely on her kind and patient nature. If you are in the area, chances are you will hear laughter, most of it coming from DD.”