A grand opening in Anchorage
The Thomas Center for Senior Leadership, a new senior housing facility in Anchorage, held its grand opening reception Nov. 22. Built on the campus of St. Mary's Episcopal Church at the corner of Lake Otis Parkway and Tudor Road, the facility was 14 years in the making, envisioned by church leaders, including the late Tay Thomas and late Carol Phillips, as a faith-based community to provide additional support for Alaskans age 62 and older who want to maintain active and vibrant lifestyles. In addition to 14 efficiency, one and two bedroom apartments, heated garages and storage spaces are available, along with a shared great room, lounge and crafts room, outdoor gardens and exercise facility. Residents receive two meals daily and there is an on-site manager and resident assistant for 24-hour assistance.
"Alaska's seniors have knowledge, experience and a unique perspective on the world that we hope to foster within the new Thomas Center community," said Rev. Michael Burke of St. Mary's Church.
Start up funds for the project were donated by Lowell Jr. and Tay Thomas. A Rasmuson Foundation grant helped pay for furniture and equipment in the common area. Residents will have the flexibility to employ individual caregivers, if needed, but the idea is that most will live independently, helping each other as needed. While the Thomas Center is a faith-based community, developers stress there is no requirement that anyone subscribe to a religious tradition or be a member of any religious organization.