Member Spotlight: Mary Rasmussen of Manilla Manor

April 29, 2019

Mary Rasmussen began working in the laundry department at Manilla Manor in Manilla, Iowa to help her family financially. The plan was to work there for six months and then quit once the bills were caught up. However, the facility became a second home to her. Over 40 years have passed, and Mary can continues to be found working full time in the laundry department and enjoying the time spent with her coworkers and the residents.

How did you get started in the long-term care profession?
In April of 1976, Manilla Manor opened their doors. At that time, I was a stay-at-home mom and had a loving husband and four small children to fill my days. But money was tight, and we were struggling so I decided to try for a job at the Manor. There was an opening in the laundry department, so I applied, got the job and on June 7, 1976, I started working.

The original idea was that I would work for about six months, get caught up on bills and then quit. However, I really liked the job and the people I worked with, not to mention all the interesting residents.

What do you like most about working in long-term care?
The Manor is like a second home to me. It’s resident-centered with employees that show love and compassion for the residents and concern for each other.

What would you tell others to encourage them to consider a career in long-term care?
Surround yourself with people who will build you up and work won’t feel like work. That applies to your personal life as well.

What lessons have you learned working in long-term care that also help you outside of work?
Since I am not a people person, working at the Manor has given me a chance to come out of my shell and feel comfortable talking to others both at work and outside of work.

When you’re not at work, what do you enjoy doing?
When not working, I enjoy sitting on my front porch and watching the sun set, or working in my yard, going for long walks, and of course spending time with family which includes four-wheeling with my grandson.