Future resident has strong ties to Glenaire

Published: July 29, 2022
Back in 1993, Margie Best heard about an opportunity at a brand-new community that was getting ready to open in Cary, N.C., where she could continue to pursue her passion for working in long-term care. The community was Glenaire. And now, nearly 30 years later, Margie is ready to begin a new chapter as a resident in the community she helped launch. 
“When I started at Glenaire, we were starting from scratch,” recalls Margie. “I started in April, and we opened in July… I often think how fortunate I am that I was hired and got to know the residents so well. They were such nice people and still are!” 
As Glenaire’s first Director of Nursing, Margie quickly established high standards for the nursing staff, helping create a culture of accountability and adding to the community’s outstanding reputation. Many staff members still recall “the look” that Margie would give that made it clear to any staff member when efforts didn’t meet her expectations. 
“I didn’t know I was giving ‘the look,’” she adds with a laugh. “It just happened.” 
Along the way, she was there for every addition and every challenge that comes with a growing community. “I am very proud of the great staff we developed and how well we always did on our state long-term care surveys,” she says. 
Although she retired from Glenaire in 2009, she has maintained a strong connection to the community. Many residents, staff and family know Margie well.  
“There are several residents and residents of the future who are children of residents I cared for here,” says Margie. 
That familiarity is also due to her continued connections to the community. A few years after retiring, she started a nursing scholarship which allows anyone from the Glenaire staff to apply for financial assistance to pursue a nursing degree or certification. According to Margie, the Brightspire Foundation (formerly called the Presbyterian Homes Foundation), has awarded a half dozen or so of the scholarships so far. 
And now, Margie is preparing to continue her relationship with Glenaire in a new way — as a resident in the expansion apartments that are scheduled to open late summer of 2023. But with such high standards, how does Margie feel about becoming a Glenaire resident?  
“I am confident I’m in the right place,” she says. “I trust the staff… Like many people, I am reluctant to leave my house. But I’m looking forward to being taken care of… with no yard work or maintenance. I have a lot of church friends moving there, too.” 
Before taking the position at Glenaire in 1993, Margie enjoyed a long nursing career after earning her degree from what is now Virginia Commonwealth University and working at the UNC Hospital in Chapel Hill. She fell in love with working in long-term care when she became nursing supervisor, and eventually director of nursing, at a retirement home for merchant mariners, known as Snug Harbor, in Sea Level, N.C. 
“I was working with merchant marines from around the world,” explains Margie. “I found the process of aging interesting. And it was heartwarming to be there for them.”

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