Where are you from? Where have you lived before moving to Oak Hammock?
Daun: We retired in Gainesville before moving from Oak Hammock. Before that, we lived in Atlanta. I am an army brat so I have lived overseas and in many states.
What was your career?
Daun: I started as a speech pathologist and worked with deaf children for seven years. I also worked as an assistant principal, the assistant director of special education for 5,000 students with special needs, and the executive director of 51 schools. I then worked as an area superintendent for Fulton County School System in metro Atlanta.
John: Well I’m happily retired now, after 43 years in public school education as a teacher and an administrator. I was the principal of Lincoln Middle School, here in Gainesville, for 16 years.
What is your biggest accomplishment (professionally or personally)?
John: I was on the cutting edge for the development of middle schools in the United States and the world during the late 60s and early 70s. When I was the principal of Lincoln, we did many innovative things and were considered a model school in curriculum and instructional delivery system. I also went overseas, where I worked in the Middle East establishing academic programs for adolescents.
Daun: My biggest accomplishment is helping implement Public Law 94-142. This is when special education came out of the basement and into the classroom.
What is a goal of yours in your retirement?
John: My goal in retirement is to continue learning as much as I can. That’s what made Oak Hammock so attractive. Living in Gainesville the past few years and having gone to school here, I know the reputation of Oak Hammock is outstanding. It wasn’t a hard decision to come here. I learned about all of the classes offered here. The continuous learning cycle was very important to us when deciding to move.
Daun: My goal is to stay healthy. That’s easy with all the exercise options here at Oak Hammock.
Do you have any hidden talents?
John: I am a tenor and have been singing all my life. I joined the Oak Hammock chorus, and I look forward to working with them.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
Daun: I love water aerobics here at Oak Hammock. We love to take walks, and we volunteer at a local middle school. John is in the chorus, and I joined the travel club. We are loving the ILR classes that take place every day.
What made you want to join the Oak Hammock community?
John: Joining the Oak Hammock community was originally Daun’s idea. She was concerned about continuous care as we age. I was concerned about it too, because I didn’t want to be a burden to my family.
Daun: I had a bad experience in a different short-term skilled nursing facility. I didn’t want to have that experience again, so I started doing some research. I became very interested in Oak Hammock’s well-known continuous care.
What is one thing you would want the residents/and prospective residents of Oak Hammock to know?
Daun: There are unbelievable people here. They have been so welcoming to us. They have such rich experiences and a variety of educational backgrounds. It truly is a learning community and we are so excited to be a part of it.