Willow Valley Communities'
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John G. Swanson, CEO of Willow Valley Development Corp. receives McKnight’s Senior Living Pinnacle Award

Credited for helping launch a new U.S. standard for 55+ living based on “building for people, not building for seniors.”

Lancaster, PA Lancaster, PA – John G. Swanson, CEO of Willow Valley Development Corp., has been awarded the Setting the Standard Award from McKnight’s Senior Living in their second annual Pinnacle Awards. McKnight’s Senior Living is a national media brand providing news, perspective, and analysis for the senior living industry. The Pinnacle Awards are a joint effort of McKnight’s Long-Term Care News and sister media brands McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Home Care.

Swanson joined Willow Valley Communities, a premier 55+ community in Lancaster, PA in 1991 and later served as President/CEO of Willow Valley Living, the management company for Willow Valley Communities. Swanson is credited for helping to launch a new U.S. standard for senior living based on the philosophy of “building for people, not building for seniors.”

Mr. Swanson was honored along with thirty other national senior living industry leaders in six categories encompassing driving change, setting new standards, and inspiring others. Honorees include an array of long-term professionals with careers of 20 years or longer performing at the highest levels of the industry. They were nominated by peers; winners were chosen by an independent panel of skilled nursing, senior living, and home care leaders who assessed nominees across four major criteria groupings.

In his prior role, Swanson oversaw many innovative advances at Willow Valley Communities, including being one of the first senior living communities to construct single-family, multi-story homes, building an 80,000 sq. ft. Cultural Center and a 30,000 sq. ft. intergenerational Clubhouse, and developing a wide variety of culinary venues not typical in senior living communities. Now as CEO of Willow Valley Development Corp., he oversees real estate development projects on Willow Valley Communities’ main campuses such as the state-of-the-art Marlin and Doris Thomas Memory Center, plus two major projects in Lancaster City: Southern Market and Mosaic by Willow Valley Communities.

Swanson said he was humbled to be recognized by his peers with McKnight’s Setting the Standard Award at the Pinnacle Awards. “For 40 years, Willow Valley Communities has served thousands of residents who moved to Lancaster, PA from across the nation. I am grateful to be a part of creating an innovative and extraordinary 55+ lifestyle that they can share with their family and friends. I look forward to continuing that tradition of excellence welcoming new residents to Mosaic, Willow Valley Communities’ next generation of groundbreaking residences in Lancaster City.”

McKnight’s publisher Craig Roth said, “The Pinnacle Awards recognize senior living industry veterans who are setting the standards, driving change, providing guidance, and inspiring us all.” The winners were celebrated recently at a gala awards ceremony and banquet in Chicago.

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    Quick Facts

    Please always refer to us as Willow Valley Communities. We are a 55+ plus senior living community, not a retirement home, a nursing home, or a facility.

    • 2600 residents
    • 1400 team members
    • 210 acres

    Willow Valley Communities’ has two campuses: Manor and Lakes:

    • Manor Campus includes: Manor, Manor North, Providence Park, The Vistas, North Garden Apartments
    • Lakes Campus includes:  Lakes Manor, Spring Run, Willow Gables, Mid-Rise, Lakes Villas, SouthPointe at Lakes

    Willow Valley Communities’ supportive living communities include Meadow Ridge (Personal Care), The Glen (Personal Care and Nursing Care), Lakeside (Nursing Care), and Cedar Brook at the Glen (Memory Support).