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New social service director focused on building connections

Since becoming the community’s new social service director back in October, Debra Bilyeu has become a regular presence in the hallways around Newton Presbyterian Manor. That’s because, for Debra, getting to know—and building strong, lasting relationships with—the people she serves is a critical part of her job.

“For me, it’s always about the connection with the residents,” said Debra.

But while Debra definitely enjoys the chance to get to know the residents on a personal level, these visits aren’t purely social.

“A lot of what I’m doing is visiting with residents and doing assessments—problem solving. It’s very task oriented so you have to separate your task from your person,” said Debra.

As a result of these one-on-one visits, Debra is then able to look at each resident as an individual and develop a unique, personalized care plan specifically for them.

And beyond the rewards provided by her work, Debra is also really enjoying being a part of the community.

“It’s just a really nice community,” said Debra. “The therapy’s fantastic, the nurses are fantastic … it’s really cool.”

When she’s not at work, Debra is an avid reader—usually with more than one book going at a time—and loves spending time with her family which includes a daughter, bonus daughter, a grandson and two bonus grandchildren.

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