Greenspring Receives National Award for Culture of Diversity and Inclusion

The award was presented by LeadingAge at the association’s national conference in Boston

(Springfield, Virginia) – Greenspring, an Erickson Living retirement community, has received the 2015 Hobart Jackson Cultural Diversity Award from LeadingAge, a national association representing 6,000 nonprofit aging services organizations throughout the United States.  Greenspring’s Executive Director, Ben Cornthwaite, accepted the award at the LeadingAge national conference in Boston on November 2.

Greenspring's Executive Director Ben Cornthwaite accepts the award from LeadingAge on November 2.

“We are extremely proud to receive this award from LeadingAge,” said Cornthwaite.  “As a community, we recognize that we live independently, but we live independently together, with the understanding that our actions and our behaviors affect one another.  At Greenspring, we cultivate a recognition of diversity, allowing us to create a welcoming environment for both our residents and our employees alike.”

The 2015 Hobart Jackson Cultural Diversity Award recognizes Greenspring for its culture of appreciation for diversity and inclusion.  Greenspring supports a variety of initiatives designed to improve community living through an acknowledgment of unique thoughts, cultures, and talents.  For instance, residents and staff work together on a Diversity and Inclusion Committee to inspire community awareness through events such as the annual Diversity Expo, which highlights cultural customs and traditions, as well as international clothing, cuisine, and forms of expression. 

Greenspring is also home to a specialized English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) program and U.S. citizenship preparedness program for staff.  Resident volunteer tutors assist staff members with English language and communication skills; over 300 employees have completed the program to date.  In 2013, Volunteer Fairfax presented Greenspring’s resident ESL program coordinator with an award of appreciation for her efforts.  Resident volunteers also assist staff members with preparing for the U.S. citizenship test, including a review of civics, democracy, American history, and English language skills.  In 2011, this program was recognized by the Virginia Daughters of the American Revolution.

Additionally, Greenspring is a longstanding partner with MVLE (Mount Vernon-Lee Enterprises), a neighboring organization that assists in providing support and employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities.  In 2014, MVLE presented Greenspring with the Social Responsibility Award for supporting the organization’s mission through contributions and volunteer work.

Greenspring also supports a spiritually and socially diverse culture.  An on-campus Pastoral Ministries department supports 20 different resident faith groups and a resident-driven PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) group coordinates with local PFLAG chapters to advocate for LGBT individuals.

In 2013, LeadingAge also presented Greenspring with the Excellence in the Workplace award for the community’s success in creating an environment that promotes recruitment, retention, and development of staff at all levels.

About Greenspring: Greenspring, one of 18 continuing care retirement communities managed by Erickson Living, is situated on a scenic 58-acre campus in Springfield, Virginia.  The community is home to nearly 2000 residents, many of whom reside in the community’s 1404 independent living apartment homes.  At Greenspring, over 200 resident-run and resident-driven programs promote an engaged, fulfilling lifestyle reflected in resident satisfaction levels that exceed the industry average.  Additional information about Greenspring can be found at www.ericksonliving.com.