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Ecumen Employees

Honoring Margee Polanka — A 38-Year Ecumen Employee

In 1978 Margee Polanka was at the University of Minnesota-Duluth studying to be an elementary school teacher.  On spring break, she took a job at Ecumen Lakeshore as a part-time nurse’s aide that changed her career path from young kids to older adults.

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Randi Handegaard Celebrates 40 Years at Sunnyside Care Center

On Nov. 5, 1975, Randi Handegaard took her first job at Sunnyside Care Center in Lake Park, Minn., as a newly minted occupational therapy assistant.  She blinked, and now it’s 40 years later.  She’s still at Sunnyside as the Activity Director — still loving her job every day.

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Ecumen Employee Jen Rasmussen: Making Life Better by Making Life Fun

Jen Rasmussen is Director of Fun at Ecumen Lakeview Commons. Today she has unleashed a feisty dog and a small child on the residents of the Maplewood assisted living community. Her boss passes through the commotion and jokingly tells her she is fired — for the third time this week. 

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Ecumen Employees: Sandy Lia’s Career of Caring at Ecumen Detroit Lakes

In her 36 years at Ecumen Detroit Lakes, Sandy Lia has been an activity director, a volunteer coordinator, the founder and manager of the adult day services program, a housing manager and currently the fund development coordinator with additional duties in marketing and event planning.

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Ecumen Employees: St. Mark’s Living Nurse Debbie Klouse Embraces Her 40 Years in Long-Term Care

In 1974 Debra Klouse, a newly minted nurse, first walked through the doors of St. Mark’s Living in Austin, Minn. She remembers how welcoming and friendly everyone was… how it was like being part of a big family. “I’ll try this for a little while,” she remembers thinking, “and a little while turned out being 40 years.”

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