The Oak Times – December 2022 / January 2023

Candas Schouvieller, CEO/Administrator

Each December we gather our management team together and leave the building to share a meal together. I couldn’t help but feel my eyes well with gratitude for the dedication and perseverance of the fantastic Team that chooses Oak Hills as their employer. From nurse managers to the business office teams, each of these individuals could choose many other places to work. Knowing the seriousness and very difficult decisions that will need to be made about the future of Oak Hills these amazing people choose our residents and choose to strengthen the bond between us. My gratitude just flowed over a bit.

Earlier this month we shared our story with staff, donors, families and our local newspaper. Much like many other long term care facilities in Minnesota, we are limiting admissions due to staffing. McKnights Senior Living just issued an article this week stating, “Access to long-term care in Minnesota is in a ‘dangerous decline,’ as evidenced by a recent survey revealing that older adults were turned away from assisted living communities and nursing homes 11,000 times in October due to the state’s workforce crisis.”

While we are not alone in our current crisis at Oak Hills, we are very much in crisis. We are fighting every day to keep skilled nursing care in New Ulm, however, we cannot fight alone. We need you to use your voices to contact legislators, commissioners, mayors, and council members to ask what they are doing to ensure this essential service stays in New Ulm.

Where will our loved ones go when they can no longer care for themselves? Nursing care is only part of the equation, socialization and nutrition are equally important. We need to care for the whole person. You can help today by contacting your legislator, health and human services committee and Governor Walz. Please write a letter to the editor about the impact of losing skilled nursing care in New Ulm would mean to you and your family. Above all, please be supportive of our staff who choose to care for our elderly. They deserve the utmost respect.


Long-term care is in crisis. The industry is crumbling and this issue is much larger than Oak Hills Living Center. We need YOU to engage with your legislators, write a letter to the editor and advocate for change. Read more about the current issues at

LeadingAge MN is coordinating a day at the Capitol for all long-term care members on March 13th, 2023. Last year they had 125 individuals attend and look to double that this year. We can do better! Let’s pack as many busses as we need and make our voices heard. If you would like to attend with us please email [email protected] or call 507-233-0851.

Many thanks to Dr. Ann Vogel for her work in securing us a face-to-face meeting with Senator Hoffman in January. More to come as details are finalized.

Contact your 2023 Health and Human Services Committee Chair

Senator John A. Hoffman (36, DFL)

95 University Avenue W. Minnesota Senate Bldg., Room 2235 St. Paul, MN 55155 651-296-4154

A letter template is available at

Meet Dana Oswald RN Case Manager – Deer Haven

Dana started working in healthcare 18 years ago as a CNA at a skilled nursing facility while going to school for Nursing at Moraine Park Technical College in WI. In those 18 years my nursing experience has been working in long term care, post-acute care, and hospice care. Our family moved back to MN and with great excitement I joined the OHLC team in 2020 as an RN Case Manager for our Rehab unit, I have been with OHLC for 2 years now and I feel truly blessed to be part of such a wonderful organization. It truly feels like a family!

What do I love about Oak Hills? We have wonderful residents. They are that familiar face we get to see each day when we come to work. It’s a pleasure to be able to be a part of an organization that truly cares for the community and the residents that live here. I truly enjoy assisting our short-term rehab residents transition back to home following their recovery from a surgical procedure or medical illness. It is a pleasure to help serve those in our area and ensure they get back home. We have a wonderful team on our rehab unit, that works closely with our therapy staff (Blue Stone therapy) to ensure a smooth transition back home.

Employee of the Month – Ruth Zender

Congratulations to employee of the month, Ruth Zender. Ruth is hard-working, dedicated and just plain fun to have around. Her positive attitude and kind disposition make her the perfect employee of the month. Thank you for being you, Ruth!

December / January Employee Anniversaries

December 2022 NameHire YearJanuary 2023 NameHire Year
Margaret Eheresman1998Carmen Broste1991
Luann Reding2013Rachal Becker1996
Carol Flygare2013Tara Peters1998
Rejean Buck2014Janice Kral2000
Kyla Thomas2015Sarah Reinhart2005
Lisa Bohlin2017Brittany Rose2014
Sarah Mathiowetz2017Scott Ries2014
Jamaica Heyer2018Tessa Achman2017
Beth Domeier2019Jody Braulick2018
Paige Olson2019Kali Denn2018
Dawn Larson-Carlson2019Jessica Nachriener2018
Abby Gieseke2019
Bailey Tadlock2020
Kortney Schroeder2020
Connor Vertsch2021
Darla Dezeeuw2021
Jenna Ebert2021
Michelle Lamecker2022
Alexis Polus2022
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