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VNA director retires from agency

February 10, 2014 News Extra

BUTLER TWP — With a successful affiliation now in full-swing, the longtime head of the Visiting Nurses Association is retiring.

“It’s that time,” said Liz Powell, whose retirement will be affective Feb. 18.

Powell, who has been with the VNA for about two decades, was vice president of hospice and then she was chief executive officer for about three years.

That position was eliminated last year as part of the VNA’s affiliation with Lutheran SeniorLife. At the start of this year, Powell became the VNA’s executive director.

“In the past year about 90 percent of the transition has taken place,” Powell said, noting the affiliation is allowing both organizations to enjoy an economy of scale and to provide a broader care continuum.

The VNA, with about 300 employees, provides many levels of home- and community-based health care in Butler and Armstrong counties as well as parts of Mercer, Beaver, Lawrence, Allegheny and Westmoreland counties. It also has an inpatient hospice facility in Butler Township.

Adams Township-based Lutheran SeniorLife provides residential living, personal care, long-term care and skilled nursing care in six facilities in Western Pennsylvania.

It has five LIFE facilities in Butler, Beaver and Lawrence counties.

The LIFE program, which stands for Living Independence for the Elderly, provides care alternatives that help seniors remain in their homes.

Lutheran SeniorLife employs about 1,300.

“We are wishing her well,” said David Fenoglietto, president and CEO of Lutheran SeniorLife. “(Powell) was a long-standing employee of the VNA who contributed to the overall growth and development of the organization.”

Powell did not comment on how she would be replaced, and a representatives from the VNA’s board of directors said a statement would be issued later.

In her retirement, Powell, 63, of Emlenton, Venango County, said she will take some time off, then she will likely do consulting and volunteering work.