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About Us

Our Mission

Our mission is to help Huerfano County aging adults who no longer can live independently, remain as healthy and active as possible in familiar, supportive surroundings in the vibrant community of La Veta.  We strive to help all aging adults in the County live healthier and more active lives.

 

We deliver this mission through three programs:

  • Family-style assisted living residence and services

  • Food programs including grocery shopping and delivery for adults over 60, and free food boxes for older adults and other families in the community

  • Programs to enhance the health and enjoyment of older adults in the County

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La Veta Village History

Founded in 2015, La Veta Village Inc. helps meet needs of older adults in Huerfano County.  Nearly one-third of the County’s residents are over 65, and projections are that within a few years 50% of the County’s residents will be over 60. Working with others, our goal is to help fill the gaps in programs and services for this population.

 

In the early years we obtained our nonprofit status, secured a building for our planned assisted living residence, started fundraising and initiated efforts to secure construction financing. In 2017-18, La Veta Village launched a Living Life Well program consisting of a series of 15 discussions and presentations. We delivered these programs countywide including such topics as getting a good night’s sleep, Medicare and Medicaid enrollment and eligibility, dealing with memory loss, hospice, and financial planning. La Veta Village volunteers and leaders from other organizations (Spanish Peaks Regional Health Center, Sangre de Cristo Community Care) delivered these sessions, reaching over 200 individuals. An updated version of this program launched in the latter half of 2021.


In times of crisis, La Veta Village stepped up to help older adults and their families with other essential needs. Following the 2018 Spring Fire in the County, we collected clothing and household items to donate to victims.  In April 2020, during the Covid-19 pandemic, we launched a Food Program, providing free food boxes to over 135 families in need and grocery shopping and delivery to adults over 60.

 

In June 2020 we were awarded a construction loan and grant by the Colorado Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) to renovate and convert the old cheese factory in La Veta into an assisted living residence. In late 2020, we hired H.W. Houston Construction who completed construction of the residence in late 2021, providing suites for 16 residents and one staff member.

 

Huerfano County Commissioners signed a MOU with us, contributed financially and through in-kind support, because of our social and economic impact:

  • We fill a gap in support for its aging population with the assisted living facility

  • We provides additional services and support for hundreds of the County’s aging residents

  • We help address a critical shortage of affordable housing for residents over age 65   

  • We bring over 10 new jobs to the County, roughly equivalent 10x in an urban area

  • We contribute over $550,000 in annual expenditures to the local economy

Looking forward, La Veta Village and our Huerfano County Commissioners understand that a profound demographic shift is taking place in our County with nearly 50% of our residents over age 60. We seek to be part of a movement that encourages a stronger ethic of responsibility for the well-being of this population and a renewed appreciation for their contributions, both past and present.

Our Leadership

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Kirk Kramer, Gone too soon.

 

Four years ago, I met Kirk and Kate Kramer in La Veta. We became good friends.  Kirk was a family man, a talented non-profit professional and a giver.  Soon, our La Veta Village assisted living project was gifted with endless hours devoted to development and fundraising accomplished by Kirk.  He leaves a beautiful new assisted living residence in his ancestral hometown, as a precious gift to La Veta’s aging adult community that will live on into the future.  We are so grateful he lived and we knew him.

 

Jeanne Schwarz, Founder, La Veta Village, Inc.

The family would like donations to La Veta Village in lieu of flowers.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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JEANNE SCHWARZ

Board Director & Founder

Jeanne, an RN, has lived in La Veta since 2012. Jeanne is Program Development Consultant for LVVI, guiding our senior care services planning, funding strategy, and community outreach activities. Jeanne offers LVVI her wealth of experience and success in senior care and non-profit assisted living community operations. From 1989 until 2002, Jeanne, along with two fellow nurse friends, her family, and many community supporters, formed a non-profit, and developed and operated three mid-sized assisted living homes in Douglas County. Lovely La Veta beckoned as retirement, following 10 years of a caregiving journey with husband Ted, as he courageously endured the ravages of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Passion called, however, and Jeanne is once again, guiding her adopted, supportive community toward providing housing and care for its growing elder population.

 

Jeanne Schwarz, is the co-founder of the award winning, Castle Country Assisted Living Communities in Castle Rock and Parker, Colorado. Jeanne brings expertise and commitment to the La Veta Village endeavor that will benefit Spanish Peaks seniors.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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DOROTHY CADDELL

Chairperson

Dorothy lives adjacent to Hwy 160 in greater Huerfano County. She has always had a love for elders and children. Previously, Dorothy has helped complete many community projects by raising money and bonds for a city park and a high school, just to name a few. She is currently working with Veterans in the 11th hour program provided by Sangre de Cristo Hospice Services. She feels that the need for assisted living and other services is great for aging adults in Huerfano County. She is pleased to be helping to provide a safe and completely comfortable assisted living home for the County with all the amenities needed to ‘age in place’. Dorothy’s goal is to make a difference in the lives we touch.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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ED DONOVAN

Vice Chairperson

Ed Donovan is a retired physician from the University of Cincinnati and Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. He and his wife Deb moved full-time to Huerfano County in 2000. Ed and Deb have three sons and six grandchildren. Ed was on La Veta School's Board of Education from 2013-21. He believes that providing much needed senior services, including assisted living, are key to sustaining a vibrant La Veta community. Ed is committed to helping develop what is needed to keep aging residents in the town that they love.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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EDNA SCHMIDT

Treasurer / Secretary

Edna has lived in the La Veta area since 1954. During those years, she was involved in establishing the excellently rated, La Veta Public Library, and served on various community boards. She also assisted in procuring a van to deliver Meals on Wheels in and around the community. She cashiered at San Isabel Electric Association in La Veta for 23 years. Many of her family members are involved in health care, and so it seemed natural that she would help LVVI to provide a caring home for La Veta elders. Edna manages the LVVI Business Office bill payments and receivables and is an active contributor to our volunteer and fundraising activities.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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CARL KLINKE

Director

Carl is a retired Real Estate Attorney. He assists LVVI in evaluating property acquisitions, associated contracts and leases. He guides LVVI to make responsible decisions regarding contracts, and policies. Carl and his wife, Nancy were summer resident of Hole in the Wall Ranch in La Veta 2008-2018. He and Nancy currently live in Irving, Texas.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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SARAH WRIGHT-HOFFMAN

Director

Sarah has lived in the La Veta/Cuchara area for many years and has been a community volunteer in La Veta, Walsenburg and at the Spanish Peaks Regional Health Center. She is a strong believer in the benefits of community living in a secure and thriving environment, in part based on her parents’ positive experience in such a community.
 

Sarah retired in 2005 from the Los Alamos National Laboratory; she worked at Accounts Payable where she became Team Leader then at Travel Accounting where she was also Team Leader. She has extensive experience in accounting as well as both business and personnel management.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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PAT NETTESHEIM

Director

Pat is a retired insurance agent.  She owned and operated an independent insurance agency in a rural community for 35 years.  As such she gained extensive experience in business management , personnel management and customer service.  While operating that business Pat was also actively involved in community activities from school board to youth groups,  the chamber of commerce to meals on wheels.

Pat is a people person who has lived a life of community service. If there’s a job to do Pat is your gal.  Pat and husband Dennis have called La Veta  home since 2015