WEBSTER – One of the highlights of the May 3 annual investor meeting of the Partnering For Progress (Darke County Community Improvement Corp. (CIC) and Darke County Economic Development) was the presentation of the Business of the year award.
That award went to Wayne HealthCare, with CEO Wayne Deschambeau accepting the award.
It was noted that the hospital is coming up to its 100th year of service, having had its beginnings in 1922, and is ranked in the top 10 percent of hospitals in the United States.
In his acceptance speech, Deschambeau talked about the newest plan of expansion at the medical facility.
The groundbreaking event at 835 Sweitzer St. will be from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. May 23, in a special community celebration as the hospital officials kicks off its facility expansion project.
According to Wayne HealthCare’s website, the new addition will be a state of the art “Special Beginnings” birthing unit with two antepartum, four post partum and six LDRP rooms; Expand Lifestyle Enhancement and Wellness Center’s redesign loading dock and materials management area with Improved Access; a 32-bed acuity adjustable nursing unit with fully private beds; and a new entry and public concourse linked to existing main lobby for maximized campus wayfinding.
“It will look more like a campus and not a city hospital,” Deschambeau said.
Jeff R. Subler, vice president of support services at the hospital, stated, “To make this project happen, we had to work with the City of Greenville. We see ourselves as an anchor to the south side of Greenville. We’re real excited about this project. We tore down 10 or 11 houses. Our first patient will be seen in 2020.”
“When I came here, there was $35 million in the bank,” he said. “We have about tripled the amount of getting to this particular place.”
Guest speaker for the program was Lydia Mihalik of the Ohio Development Services Agency and former mayor of Findlay. She talked about why there has been successful ventures in that city.
“People make the big mistake when they think they can go it alone,” she said. “You have to collaborate. Every community in unique, so capitalize. Don’t be afraid to look around at what others are doing. Learn from their mistakes.” Mihalik went on, “In Findlay, we decided to reinvent downtown. We had a goal, we had a plan, and we started at the heart of downtown. Things like this take time…many, many years. Once we invested in downtown, small businesses came in.”
Mihalik said her final piece of advice was “share information on a county level. That’s the importance of communicating,. People want to be prideful of their community.”
She also asked those in attendance to have make sure they have the 2020 census on their radar.
Other updates during the program were given by Tamala Marley and Mike Bowers of Darke County Economic Development.
The event was held in the Riviera Room at the Stillwater Valley Golf Club.
Reach reporter Linda Moody at 937-548-3330.