Profile on Eve Anthony

            “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas.”

             This famous first line stirs up yuletide memories for many.  For Eve Anthony, the song evokes memories of dancing with a dear friend.

            Her friend was a client at the Athens Community Council on Aging, who spent a lot of time in Anthony’s office. Being in the finals stages of Alzheimer’s disease, he could not speak, but as soon as he heard the melody and lyrics of White Christmas he would begin to dance. He would then go and find Anthony so they could dance together. This is just one of the many touching experiences that Anthony has had in her ten years working at the Athens Community Council on Aging, where she is currently the Deputy Director of the facility.

            Through her role as Deputy Director, Anthony is involved with many programs including Home Delivered Meals, Project Healthy Grandparents and a support group for caregiver’s of Alzheimer’s patients. Home Delivered Meals is similar to Meals on Wheels.  Project Healthy Grandparents assists grandparents who are raising their grandchildren, connecting them to valuable resources. The caregiver’s support group is in conjunction with the Rosalyn Carter Institute for Caregiving and is the newest program. It allows family members and the caregiver to meet with a specialist, and create a plan on the best way to provide care for their loved one. Anthony notes that the facility recently began hosting lunches for the caregivers, and these events have gained a lot of popularity.

            Anthony desired to work with the elderly at a young age, a drive she credits to her grandmother.

           “I had a wonderful grandmother. She was part of every social club, church groups, garden clubs, everything,” said Anthony. “She would always take me to the meetings with her, so I loved being around older adults.”

            Anthony nurtured her passion during her days at the University of Georgia, where she majored in recreation therapy with a focus on older adults.     

            She admits that her first experience at a nursing home during college did not start off as she expected. “I can remember walking in at age 21 or 22 and just feeling overwhelmed and nervous at the beginning of the day,” said Anthony. “But by the end of the day I had done a complete 180 and knew that this was exactly what I wanted to do.”

            Through her practicum experience, Anthony decided she wanted to work primarily with clients who had Alzheimer’s disease, because she liked the idea of “not looking at about what’s wrong, but what is still there,” she said.

            So why does she make the hour long commute twice a day from Snellville to Athens to work at the center?

            It’s simple, this is her dream job. “I had done a practicum at the Adult Day Center in Winterville, where I coordinated the activities, and I loved it,” said Anthony. “It was my dream job, but I knew it was a pipe dream.” One weekend she was visiting her best friend in Athens and looking through the classified ads, when she noticed that there was a job opening for a coordinator of the Winder Adult Day Care Center.    

            Anthony applied for the job and was hired. She stayed in Winder for a year and a half, before moving to the Athens site, where she currently works. In Athens, she began as a coordinator, and over the past ten years has worked her way up. Anthony’s positions at the facility have included overseer of all day care programs and Co-Deputy Director. Now she is the sole Deputy Director of the Athens Community Council on Aging, and could not be happier.

            “The thing I love about my job is the people that I work with, said Anthony. “I am so fortunate that everyone is here for one thing, giving the clients good quality care. It’s neat to be part of an agency that truly makes a difference.”

            It is clear that Anthony’s former and current co-workers feel the same, “Eve is the person I have always turned to when a tough question or situation comes up.  She is always careful to call upon her years of experience to explore all angles of a problem and come up with a viable solution,” said Keith Adams, the Program Coordinator for the Winder Adult Day Health Center.  “Eve also always does her best to assist families in need of our services.  She organizes the grant funding for ADH [Adult Day Health Center] and will work with the families to ensure they can receive as much service as possible.”

            It is not just Anthony’s professionalism that her friends and co-workers admire.  “Eve is a pleasure to know.  She is an incredible person with a wonderful sense of humor.  She has a level of professional maturity and dedication that comes through all of her work and interactions with others,” said Melany Sattler, a former co-worker and friend of Anthony’s. “Given that, she can still be counted on to laugh and share an inappropriate moment with you. She is a lovely and balanced person.”

            When asked what inspires her, Anthony thinks awhile before answering, “I always tell my six-year-old daughter that the most important thing is to be kind, and to treat people the way they deserve to be treated,” she said. “I am also inspired by the actions of the woman in the movie The Blind Side. She stopped and she acted. People who act and impact someone’s life for the better inspire me.”

            So whether she is jamming out to her favorite George Michael song on her drive home to Snellville or coordinating a caregiver’s lunch, Anthony inspires everyone around her with her well-balanced disposition. She is someone to come to with a problem or a funny joke, and that combination is hard to beat.

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