Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 56

THE SPARK

Supporting
others

hen I
reflect
on my
upbringing and the
dozens of choices
I've made that have
allowed me to focus
on designing for seniors, I understand
how fortunate I am
to have a career I'm proud of and that brings
meaning beyond the task at hand. My childhood memories provide an understanding of
how I arrived at my current position in life and
continue to help guide me toward future goals.
One of my most vivid memories was when
my oldest brother and I went to visit our
grandfather in a skilled nursing home. This
visit had a twist from previous ones because
my brother noticed a resident sitting off by
herself, not talking with anyone. The staff told
us she was German and didn't speak English, so they couldn't communicate with her.
My brother, who had taken German classes
in college, approached and said "hello"
in German. Her eyes brightened and her
energy increased as the two of them started
a lively exchange. Even as a child, I realized
my brother had connected with this woman,
which she needed, and that their interaction
created instant joy for both of them.
Many years later, I never questioned my
future of becoming an architect. My father
was a Naval architect and the youngest of
my brothers also was an architect. When
it was time for me to go to college, I followed the same path. Upon graduation, I
became a licensed architect, joined a firm,
and began working on residential singlefamily homes and townhouses and retail
shopping centers. It was when I changed
firms 10 years later and started working
56

EFAmagazine.com * Fall 2020

for Moseley Architects (Fairfax, Va.) that I
became involved with my first assisted living
project. However, this wasn't the senior
living environment that I recalled from my
childhood, which often included uninviting
reception areas and limited natural light. The
project I was designing featured an entry
sequence that was welcoming with views
to the outside and large public spaces; the
overall scale of the building was designed
to resemble a large mansion on the hill, not
the traditional one-story building with long,
straight corridors.
As the years passed, I continued to refine
my skills and understand how important
these communities were to bridging seniors'
independence with great care and support.
I would visit communities during and after
construction to meet the residents and
staff and gain a better appreciation of the
importance of the industry and its positive
impact on seniors.

A few years after joining Moseley
Architects, my parents started experiencing health issues. First, my father was
diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, then
we learned that my mom had Lewy body
dementia, which not only affected her
ability to move but also created hallucinations. My father did his best to care for her,
but when he was diagnosed with prostate
cancer, my brothers and I said, "enough is
enough" and persuaded them to move to
an assisted living facility near family.
During this challenging time, I gained a
genuine appreciation of designing assisted
living communities. I realized that I was
designing for sons and daughters like myself
who needed nurturing spaces that welcome
and care for their parents. Having been in
this field for more than 20 years, I realize
that becoming a specialized senior living
architect has provided me with purpose and
fulfillment in my career. EFA

NIEN-KEN ALEC LU

Moseley Architects' newly
appointed senior living sector
leader, Dora Kay, strives to
create environments that allow
residents to find joy


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Environments for Aging - Fall 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Environments for Aging - Fall 2020

Environments for Aging - Fall 2020
Contents
EFAmagazine.com
Editorial
Show Talk
Bulletin
Photo Tour
Together again
Home sweet home
Introduction
Remodel/Renovation winners
Remodel/Renovation gallery
Design Profiles
The Spark
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Environments for Aging - Fall 2020
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Cover2
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 1
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Contents
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 3
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - EFAmagazine.com
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 5
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 6
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Editorial
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Show Talk
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 9
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Bulletin
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 11
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 12
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 13
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 14
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 15
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 16
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 17
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Photo Tour
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 19
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 20
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 21
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Together again
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 23
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 24
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 25
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 26
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 27
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Home sweet home
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 29
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 30
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 31
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 32
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 33
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Introduction
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 35
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Remodel/Renovation winners
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 37
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 38
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 39
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 40
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 41
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 42
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Remodel/Renovation gallery
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 44
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 45
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 46
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 47
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 48
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Design Profiles
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 50
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 51
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 52
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 53
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 54
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - 55
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - The Spark
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Cover3
Environments for Aging - Fall 2020 - Cover4
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