Westminster Woods on Julington Creek Celebrates Receiving Governor’s Gold Seal Award

Community and local civic leaders marked the recognition by State of Florida leadership of excellence in quality of care

JACKSONVILLE, April 23, 2024 – Residents, team members and civic leaders marked a very special occasion at Westminster Woods on Julington Creek: Receiving Florida’s Gold Seal Award recognizing the community as one of Florida’s top providers of quality nursing care.

This prestigious award, which is awarded by a panel of experts and approved by the Governor of Florida, was given to only three communities in the greater Jacksonville area and only 12 total in the state. Westminster Woods on Julington Creek, a Life Plan Community, is one of the three. Communities recognized with the Governor’s Gold Seal must demonstrate excellence in long term care over a sustained period while promoting the stability of the profession and facilitating the physical, social, and emotional well-being of nursing center residents.

Health Services Administrator Andy Andre expressed his gratitude to the hard-working team members of the Nursing Center. “Thank you for the sweat and the tears that goes into producing great services that ultimately lead to this achievement,” said Andre. “Because of your work this entire event was possible.”

“This team has done such a great job of documenting your excellence, every detail day by day, moment by moment,” said Mark Niemeyer, Executive Director. He thanked his team for the challenging work they do every day that led to the award. “This award belongs to all of us here today,” Niemeyer said.

Joining the celebrations were St. Johns County Commissioners Roy Alaimo and Christian Whitehurst; Teresa Scott, CEO of Penney Retirement Community and a representative of the Governor’s Gold Seal Panel; and senior leadership from Westminster Communities of Florida, including Chief Operating Officer Garry Hennis, Senior Vice President of Operations Jim Polaski, and Chris Callahan, Regional Vice President of Operations.

Hennis observed that the award recognized a long period of excellence in quality care. “I commend the entire leadership team for leading the community to a new level of excellence,” said Hennis. “For years we have had very strong clinical leaders and the current team stands on their shoulders, while taking this to the highest level.”

Commissioner Whitehurst said that he and his family live in Julington Creek and know the community’s reputation, already stellar, would now be further improved. “My neighbors always say that when the time is right for them, ‘I wouldn’t mind living at Westminster Woods.’ So it seems fitting that you have received the Gold Seal Award from the Governor,” Whitehurst said.

Chaplain Leslie McCarrick offered a benediction: “We are blessed beyond measure, Lord,” she said. “Their work is their ministry and because they have given their best and continue to give of their best, our life at this community is made very rich indeed.”

Following the ceremony, the attendees enjoyed a brunch with a delectable menu provided by the Dining Services team, including a special carving station with roast beef, a smoked salmon salad, shrimp and grits, and an egg Florentine frittata.

\Westminster Woods on Julington Creek is a Life Plan Community ideally situated on more than 90 acres of woods and lakes along the half-mile wide Julington Creek, in suburban St. Johns County. We have served senior adults in Jacksonville for more than 60 years, with an emphasis on wellbeing and Lifelong Learning, and backed by a financially strong and Mission-inspired, faith-based organization.

Gold Seal
Florida Governor's Gold Seal
Recognized for quality throughout the state. We are proud to receive the 2023
Governor's Gold Seal for excellence
in quality of care.
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