By Terri Heggie, Executive Director Crookston Area Chamber & Visitor’s Bureau

Terri on the Town made a recent visit with Cindy Hulst, Director of Foundation Development & Marketing at the Villa St. Vincent, The SUMMIT Foundation. What a pleasure it was to hear about all the great changes that have taken place for the residents they care for and their families. They opened their doors to serve in 1919 when 42 more Benedictine sisters arrived from Duluth. They proceeded to operate the St. Vincent Hospital which was across the street from the current Government Center. In 1950 the St. Vincent Hospital converted to a Nursing Home and built, staffed and operated St. Francis. In 1970 St. Francis Hospital was closed and three short years later it was converted into a board and care facility. The Villa St. Vincent as we know it, opened in 1978. Currently, 60 beds are deemed extended care and 20 beds are designated “short term care and rehab” They expanded again in 1993 and opened a 24 bed Memory Care Unit. Another change was made two years later as they resurrected and established The SUMMIT, Sr. Housing with services. Since 2005 they have offered short term stay suites for full inpatient and outpatient OT, PT and Speech therapy. They presently employ 260 full time, part time and flex positions.

While walking through the Villa and The SUMMIT I reminisced with Cindy about the years I worked in the Memory Care Unit and quickly that same feeling of love for the residents came back when I walked through the doors. There may be a new updated look to this health care system but the pride and care for those they serve in and outside their doors have not. When asked why being a Crookston Area Chamber member is important to the Benedictine Health System Cindy replied “The Villa St. Vincent and The SUMMIT represents a huge portion of elder care in our community and it is a large employer in this community, too. To be a continued leader in the care of our aging and ill people who are in need of long-term nursing care, memory care, short term care, and rehabilitation and senior housing with services.” For more information feel free to contact Cindy Hulst at 281.3424 or visit wwwvillastvincent.org.

Thank you, Cindy, for sharing your passion for your residents and their family members, staff and the community. It was a pleasure spending the morning with you.