By G. Randolph Bishop

Greg Fosselman was undoubtedly born with a trace of newsprint in his blood.  Born in Waterloo, Iowa, he was number five in a family of seven siblings.  After graduating from St. Mary’s High School in Waterloo in 1945, he enrolled at the University of Iowa, receiving his BA degree in Journalism in 1950. 

From 1950-52, Greg was stationed in Germany with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Headquarters, that handled logistics for the Engineer units in the field.  First stationed in Frankfurt, he spent the last eight months in Kaiserslautern; his job was administrative.

Back in the States, Greg started out on what was to be a lifelong journalistic career; he left Waterloo and headed north to Wisconsin.  For the next seven years, he lived in Madison and Milwaukee, working for United Press International as a newspaper and broadcast editor.  (News for the two media was presented in different formats.)  In 1960, UPI moved him to Chicago where he became a national broadcast news editor. 

In 1968 Greg went to work for the Chicago Tribune, where his duties were not quite the same as with UPI; he was now a headline writer as well as a news editor.  He stayed with the Tribune for 21 years, until his retirement in 1989.

Greg was active in two professional groups.  For four years he belonged to the Milwaukee Press Club and to the Chicago Press Club for 21 years.

Never a great traveler, Greg spent his retirement years relaxed, living the good life, and a pleasant, satisfying one.  From 1990 to 2011, he wintered in Mesa, Arizona, and summered in Chicago, a “snowbird” with a different nest.

When the time to give up “snow birding,” Plymouth Harbor was Greg’s logical retirement choice; his brother Don already lives here.  Greg is looking forward to pursuing his interests of reading, walking and as an old newspaperman, keeping up with the news. 

 By Lee Yousri

When portraying an individual, it is fitting to place that person center stage.  This is most appropriate in the case of our new friend, George Salley, who joined the Plymouth Harbor community in December, 2012.

From South Carolina to New York to Florida; this represents his life’s journey, with a few of the usual detours.  Born into a farming family, he developed a closeness and love of the land which led to his first degree at Clemson University, a BS in Agronomy.  According to Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, this is “a branch of agriculture dealing with field-crop rotation and soil management.”

After a Navy stint in the early fifties, which afforded him world-wide travel, he was inspired to go a step further in his chosen field by earning a degree in Landscape Architecture.  We enter a somewhat related field but now we’ve added people.  A landscape architect is concerned with “the arrangement of land for human use and enjoyment.”  Again I quote Mr. Webster.

George’s first job was with a firm in Fort Lauderdale working on the master plan for Longboat Key.  Following this he was recruited by another architectural firm which was planning the New York City World’s Fair of 1963.

His move to New York resulted in his residing all over Manhattan and Brooklyn Heights where he bought a near derelict brownstone in the Landmark Preservation area and converted it into four two-bedroom apartments.  His tenants were mostly young couples just out of college and newly married.  He very much enjoyed his role as landlord.

Of course, his professional life continued.  Among the many prestigious projects in which he participated were the Sculpture Gardens at the Museum of Modern Art, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and Paley Park, all in New York City; the Hirschhorn Museum on the National Mall in Washington D.C., and the Johnson Presidential Library in Texas. 

By this time he was living six months in New York, six months in Sarasota.  And he was pursuing his hobbies of gardening, travel, music, walking, and reading (the New York Times and the New Yorker are a “must”).

His last job was with the New York City Housing Authority.  While this dealt with lodging for the underprivileged, he also moonlighted in special projects for the wealthy, thus affirming his diverse talents. 

Art, history, theatre, branches of life both practical and artistic are all represented here.  Truly an admirable repertoire!  George deserves his place center stage.

We welcome him to Plymouth Harbor!

 Who among us doesn’t immediately think about the aching knees, fatigue, or extra pounds when asked “How healthy are you?”  Probing further, “What’s your plan for wellness?” may prompt answers like “fewer calories and more exercise!”  But maybe you are among those who have already learned to stay away from “deficit thinking” and your plan takes into account all the strengths that you do have in the multiple facets of wellness. If yes, then you are already on the same page with leading of Whole Wellness advocate, Jan Montague.

Residents and staff of Plymouth Harbor spent time in person with Jan Montague during her July 10-11 visit.  She’s a dynamo of information and inspiration and she is an internationally recognized expert in wellness in the Third Age.

We learned from Jan that whole-person wellness is multi-dimensional, positive health leading to a satisfactory quality of life and a sense of well-being. This pertains to individuals and an organization or community as a whole.  It’s different from the typical “what’s wrong so we can fix it” or deficit approach to wellness.  Jan talked about a wellness lifestyle perspective that includes self-responsibility, optimism, resilience, positive social support and a consistent can-do attitude.

As Plymouth Harbor follows its mission to complete an expanded Wellness Center by Spring 2014, it’s important to note that, like Whole-Person Wellness, it will not simply be a new class, program, or facilities, but a whole philosophy and approach to maximize strengths and focus on what joyful qualities we all want in our lives.  Jan summarizes this approach as “focusing less on what we don’t want and more of what we want.”

“Life is a constant journey for balance to stay well and staying well is really an inside out endeavor,” shared Jan. Emphasizing that negativity is dangerous, she also urged residents and staff to be careful with the words they use when describing their health as words tend to be self-fulfilling. We get what we focus on. Rather than saying, “I’m a fat, aging, achy person,” she suggested, “I am strong and managing my age and health with grace.” 

There are six dimensions considered for whole-person wellness:

Emotional – moods, self-esteem, optimism, self-efficacy, gratitude, humor
Vocational – feeling useful and needed, participate in lifetime interests, learning new skills
Intellectual – feeling mentally stimulated, learning and interacting, memory
Physical – exercise, nutrition, positive lifestyle habits, safety consciousness and health screening
Spiritual –meaning and purpose, values, devotional rituals, prayer, meditation
Social –relationship with others, welcoming and respectful interactions, social connections and mutual support

“Wellness Coordinator Chris Valuck led the effort to bring Jan Montague here to inspire a broader cultural shift to view everything we do here at Plymouth Harbor through this all-encompassing lens of wellness,” said Tena Wilson.

One reflection of this culture change will be seen in the launch of “Voyages” a refreshed, wellness–centric monthly newsletter which will take the place of the Harbor Light starting with the September issue.  Jan Montague may have returned to her home in California and busy schedule of teaching and training, but her influence will be felt for years to come.


Please join us in congratulating our August 2013 Employee of the Month Pete Berkery!   Pete has been with Plymouth Harbor as a Security Officer since April of 2012.  He retired after 30 years from the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office, and worked as a Firearms Instructor at the Sarasota County Technical Institute prior to joining us.

From the very beginning Pete has received Exceeds Standard remarks on his appraisals in several categories such as Quality of Work, Efficiency, Problem Solving, Attitude, Responsiveness to Supervisor, Safety, and Care of Property. 

Comments on Pete’s performance include:

Pete is always willing to assist others.  His desire to perform in an optimum way is recognized and admired by his peers.  Pete has a great attitude and he expresses a big degree of interest and enthusiasm to support the mission of Plymouth Harbor.  He consistently maintains a cooperative and positive relationship with his peers, residents, and guests. Pete has been a real asset to Plymouth Harbor.  He is a very dedicated employee. 

Originally from the Bronx, NY, Pete graduated from Riverview High School and received a BA degree from the University of Central Florida in Orlando. He enjoys hiking and nature.  He and his wife Karen have three children and 4 grandchildren. 

Thank you, Pete, for all of your hard work, and congratulations on being recognized with this fine distinction!

Elizabeth and James Murphy joined the Plymouth Harbor community in March, 2013.

By Isabel Pedersen

A college graduation does not seem an obvious place for a middle-aged man to meet the love of his life but that is what happened when Jim Murphy first saw “Elizabeth.”  Her son and his daughter were graduating from Miami University in Ohio.  The night before graduation, all families celebrated and exchanged introductions.  The lasting one was the relationship that began that night.

The odds of their meeting any other way seem slim.  Lee grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota.  After graduating from Centenary College in New Jersey, she returned to St. Paul where she raised three sons, became a Junior League member, but was busiest as the owner and buyer of a specialty store.  For 15 years, she traveled on buying trips to England, Ireland, Iceland, and in America.

Meanwhile, Jim grew up in Darien, Connecticut.  His father’s printing business near Philadelphia was sold when his father died quite young.  Jim stayed in the area to attend West Chester University, graduating in 1951.  While attending the University of Pennsylvania, he taught Journalism while going to night school. 

After graduation, Jim was selected into the Naval V-5 program which sent him to Georgia Tech.  His life work has been the interconnected world of mortgage banking, real estate development, and construction.  From laborer to president, Jim enjoyed and profited from exposure on local, state, and national levels while living in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Florida.  His lifelong commitment to charitable causes has involved working with the poor, which he continues to do to this day.

When Lee arrived in Florida, her northern roots and family ties to a nature center and an arboretum brought a new sense of appreciation for Mother Nature.  She spent 16 years in Founders Garden Club.  It was fitting that the Murphys were married at Spanish Point in Osprey.  They resided at The Oaks where Jim continued his custom home building business.After 20 years, the Murphys moved to Kenaya in the Burns Court District before coming to Plymouth Harbor. 

Together these two have 13 grandchildren.  It is not surprising that they have been mentoring young people in Sarasota County schools for years in the Take Stock in Children program. Please welcome this interesting couple to Plymouth Harbor. 

LeadingAge Florida, an affiliate of the national professional organization for the senior housing industry, honored Harry Hobson as their 2013 “Executive of the Year” at the annual conference held in Orlando, Florida, July 14-18, 2013. The announcement was a complete surprise to Harry who was enjoying his coffee surrounded by colleagues and Plymouth Harbor staff during the awards luncheon on Wednesday, July 17 at the Disney Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando.He was listening to the description of the individual to be named Executive of the Year. Only when certifications in Ohio emerged at the end did he look up to say, “Uh-oh, this is embarrassing.”  He went on to accept the award at the podium and graciously thank his industry colleagues.

Unbeknownst to Harry, the senior staff at Plymouth Harbor had collaborated on the nomination that resulted in this recognition of his exceptional leadership and management style as well as specific accomplishments of the past year.  Among those accomplishments is the establishment of The Plymouth Harbor Foundation, which garnered charitable contributions of $760,000 in the first year to support life at Plymouth Harbor.  His team also fully implemented Electronic Medical Records in the Skilled Nursing and Short Term Rehabilitation Center. And during this year, the design and capital campaign for a newly renovated and expanded Wellness Center at Plymouth Harbor is underway and the conceptual planning of a new assisted living facility which will also serve memory support residents. 

These accomplishments all occurred during a financially secure year of high occupancy rates while achieving a 5-Star rating for the skilled nursing facility with U.S. News & World Report and the Governor’s Gold Seal Award for Excellence in Long-Term Care.


Harry thanks his wife, Nancy. They truly work as a team.

Harry has served as CEO of Plymouth Trustee of Plymouth Harbor since 2004.  From the beginning, he employed his transparent, communicative, and participatory style of leadership to pull together teams that would work together for the good of the whole.  The result of his early leadership were a new structurally sound electrical and plumbing system, an economic stabilization program led by employees that resulted in no layoffs and a balanced budget, and a satisfied resident population, as evidenced by Holleran resident satisfaction surveys. 

After hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, Harry’s leadership skills revealed themselves among his senior housing peers when he recognized that those in our industry in and around Sarasota could and should pull together during these catastrophic disasters.  He reached out to five peer organizations in the area to form a consortium that would work together in a supportive nature during any impending emergency. The consortium continues today.  The executives from all member organizations meet on a regular basis to share best practices, so that every provider of services to seniors in our area has the most recent and comprehensive information possible to deliver the best of care to those we serve. 

With a career in both hospital and retirement community administration, he holds advanced degrees in Business Management and Healthcare Administration, and has completed gerontological studies at George Washington University.  He is also a licensed Nursing Home Administrator in Ohio and Florida. 

Harry is an educator as well and has held adjunct faculty and lecturer positions in the Fisher College of Business and College of Public Health at The Ohio State University where he taught Executive Leadership and Long Term Care Policy, respectively. He has served two terms as a member of the House of Delegates of the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging and was elected to the Virginia Association of Homes and Services for the Aging Board of Directors.  He served as Chairman of the Health Services Agency’s Certificate of Need Review Board for hospitals and nursing homes in Ohio.  He currently serves on Governor Scott’s Continuing Care Advisory Council in Florida. 

Is this enough evidence that Harry deserves the recognition he has received?  Perhaps, yes. But there is more.  We can’t measure the admiration, appreciation and affection that Harry inspires, but it was present in full force at a reception thrown in his honor at Plymouth Harbor the Monday after the award luncheon. Residents, staff, board members, and former board members lined up to congratulate the honoree and to sign Harry’s banner of honor. Guests enjoyed cake, punch and many stories of how Harry, and his wife Nancy, have enriched the community of Plymouth Harbor through their leadership and care.

LeadingAge Florida was established in 1963 as a Florida not-for-profit corporation, as the only statewide association representing the full continuum of care for seniors.  The organization serves nearly 400 mission-driven communities trusted with providing quality care and services.  LeadingAge Florida promotes practices that support, enable, and empower people to live fully in the Third Age.  This year’s conference marked the 50th anniversary of the organization. 


Harry Hobson, Monica Copeland & Joe Devore

Through the generosity of the Mildred and Bernard Doyle Charitable Trust, $5000 scholarships have been awarded to Plymouth Harbor employees Monica Copeland and Franco Valencia. 

Thirteen applications were received this year, with one previous recipient applying for a continuation of his scholarship funding.  It was the wish of Mr. and Mrs. Doyle, former Plymouth Harbor residents, that this scholarship provide educational assistance to “a worthy and needy student of an employee of Plymouth Harbor” or “a worthy and needy employee seeking to increase their skills or to obtain a higher education.”

Harry Hobson & Franco Valencia

The scholarship selection committee at Northern Trust Bank includes former Plymouth Harbor executive director Jack Smith.

Monica Copeland joined the Smith Care Center staff as an LPN in February 2008.  Monica plans to enroll in the LPN to RN Transition Program at State College of Florida. 

Franco Valencia joined the Plymouth Harbor staff in March 2011 and serves as a Line Cook.  Franco is pursuing his bachelor’s degree in Hospitality and Hotel Management at the University of South Florida. 

Congratulations to both!