Karen Downs, certified nursing assistant at Life Care Center of Cheyenne

Karen Downs, a certified nursing assistant at Life Care Center of Cheyenne, Wyoming, received Life Care Centers of America’s Mountain States Division Whatever It Takes And Then Some Award on Aug. 16, 2017, for her dedication to customer service.


Executives from Life Care awarded Downs a $1,000 cash prize during an awards ceremony at the company’s headquarters in Cleveland, Tennessee. She was chosen from among hundreds of associates in the Mountain States Division and was one of only eight associates from Life Care’s more than 200 facilities nationwide to receive the award.


Downs came in on her time off to help a resident organize their closet, and she brought in her sewing machine and materials for another resident who wanted to teach her grandchild how to sew. She spearheads fundraising effort for the center’s Walk to End Alzheimer’s team and has made and sold homemade jellies to support the Alzheimer’s Association.


Outside Life Care Center of Cheyenne, Downs organized and leads a community Alzheimer’s support group that helps family members learn how to respond to their loved ones.


“She is truly an incredible asset to Life Care Center of Cheyenne,” said Bryan Merrell, executive director. “She is always going above and beyond for the residents, staff and family members.”


“I’m just a very giving person, and I give from my heart,” said Downs.


Life Care Centers of America’s Whatever It Takes And Then Some program rewards associates for extraordinary acts of kindness. Monthly awards are presented in Life Care facilities nationwide based on nominations from fellow associates, family members, residents and guests. Each facility then chooses an annual winner, from which the divisional winners are selected.


“Dedicated caregivers routinely go far above and beyond their job descriptions, and Karen Downs certainly demonstrates by her example their professionalism and compassion for the residents they serve,” said Beecher Hunter, Life Care president. “We are proud of Karen and the thousands she represents in their selfless approach to the needs of others.”