Kelly Sanders Wins Rising Star Award

November 24, 2015

At the annual Care Providers of Minnesota, held November 16th - 18th, Prairie View Senior Living employee, Kelly Sanders, graduate of Southwest Minnesota State University in 2013, received the Rising Star Award her work within the Long Term Care Profession.

Kelly Sanders, Social Worker at Prairie View Senior Living received the Rising Star Award. The Rising Star Award recognizes the contributions of an employee who is new to their profession within the last five years and has made an impact in their years of service. The award winner should have a can do attitude, be a team player and have made a positive impact on their organization.

Kelly started in 2013 as a social work intern. Not long afterwards, the position of social work director became available and Kelly was a perfect fit. She had knowledge and great enthusiasm for the job plus a positive attitude and lots and lots of energy! Even though Kelly is young, she understands the residents. In fact, many of the staff say she is an “old soul” because of her ability to relate to them. Kelly has done a lot in the span of two years: she is the social service director, a Team STEPPS Champion, and a member of the Fun committee. You can find her helping out with activities, passing trays to residents in the dining room, helping housekeeping, and most recently, she asked to get certified as a nursing assistant so she could help staff with transfers and other cares.

When Kelly started, her basic job was to complete admission paperwork and assist residents when they move out. Since then she has updated the admission packet, assisted in starting a nursing assistant mentor program, helped formulate tools to decrease med errors and improve communication, has brought up new ideas with the FUN club and helped with the discharge program. All the while, Kelly has never forgotten that the residents are her FIRST priority! You will often see Kelly working on her laptop at the front desk instead of her office so she is visible to the residents and families that enter Prairie View. A co-worker said: I have seen Kelly here late, come in early, and stop by on a Saturday or Sunday to go to a resident’s funeral or to grab something. Often she will end up staying to assist with resident cares during a busy time. All of this is pretty amazing – considering this is Kelly’s first full time job out of college.

Prairie View was named facility of the year by Tealwood Senior Living in 2012 and won the prestigious James B. Swanson Service of Excellence Award through Care Providers of Minnesota in 2013. In 2014, Prairie View was a Silver Award Recipient through the American Health Care Association/National Centers for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL). Care Providers of Minnesota is a non-profit membership association with the mission to Empower Members to Performance Excellence. Our 800+ members across Minnesota represent non-profit and for-profit organizations providing services along the full spectrum of care. We are the state affiliate for the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living, and with our national partners we provide solutions for quality care. More information can be found at