170 Years in the Making

1848 - Mrs. Lydia Beecher founds The Society for the Relief of Aged Indigent Women.

1851 - The Society for the Relief of Aged Indigent Women changes its name to The Home for Aged and Indigent Women and incorporated.

1855 - The Protestant Home for the Friendless and Foundlings is established by a group of Cincinnati ladies as a "refuge for destitute women".

1879 - Abram M. Taylor, one of the first trustees of the Widows' Home, bequeaths money to establish a home for old men. He wants to consolidate the management of the Old Men's Home and the Widows' Home; the two organizations enter into an agreement.

1881 - Mrs. Lauretta Gibson founds The Bodmann German Protestant Widows' Home.

1884 - The Protestant Home for the Friendless and Foundlings changes its name to The Hospital and Home for the Friendless.

1916 - The Bodmann German Protestant Widows' Home becomes the Bodmann Widows' Home.

1932 - The Widow's Home and the Old Men's Home are officially consolidated and incorporate as the Widow's and Old Men's Home.

1950 - The Hospital and Home for the Friendless becomes Maple Knoll Hospital and Home. (Click here for more information.)

1973 - The Maple Knoll Hospital and Home merges with the Widows' and Old Men's home under the leadership of Jerry D. Smart, president of the Widows' and Old Men's Home. Southwestern Ohio Seniors' Services, Inc. is introduced as the new corporate name for the merged organization.

1974 - The Bodmann Widows' Home is merged into Southwestern Ohio Seniors' Services, Inc.

1975 - Construction starts on $14.5 million model retirement community. Site: 54 lush, wooded acres in Springdale, previous site of Maple Knoll Hospital and Home.

1977 - Maple Knoll Village opens to seniors, providing independent living apartments and long-term nursing facilities.

1979 - Jerry D. Smart elected president of the American Association of Homes for the Aging. Maple Leaf Auxiliary founded on October 3 offers community and resident volunteer services to the Village.

1980 - The Meadows opens on June 15 and provides housing and services under the department of HUD, Section 8 rental assistance program to moderate the low-income elderly persons. Center for Older Adults opens August 4 which extends services of Maple Knoll Village to older people in the neighboring communities of Springdale, Glendale, Wyoming, Forest Park, Woodlawn and Greenhills. Re-run shop opens September 30 and profits assist the Auxiliary in their annual projects.

1981 - Eastwood Villas is built and consists of twenty six two-bedroom homes. All units are fully occupied in a few weeks, and there is a waiting list for the villas and all other accommodations at Maple Knoll Village. The first issue of the corporate newsletter, The Village Voice, is published in December.

1982 - Gerontology Institute founded with the purpose to improve the quality of long-term care by developing an education, training and research environment for residents, personnel and the community. The Village, with the University of Cincinnati College of Nursing and Health, is awarded the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant to establish Maple Knoll as a teaching nursing home, one of 11 teaching nursing homes across the country. Village Executive Council formed.

1983 - Coalitions on Aging are formed in the surrounding communities and Maple Knoll Center for Older Adults serves as the enabler in the formation of this aging network. Memorial Tree program is established and a Pet Therapy program initiated.

1984 - President Jerry D. Smart receives the American Association of Homes for the Aging highest award, the Award of Honor, "for significant contributions to the care of the aging on a national level." Art lending library established.

1986 - Village awarded Continuing Care Accreditation, one of the first accredited facilities in the nation.

1987 - New Outreach Services Building completed. The 15,000 square foot structure cost $1.5 million and houses the Gerontology Institute and the Center for Older Adults, with over 1,100 members. 492 volunteers assist in the outreach program of the Center. University of Cincinnati's Geriatric Evaluation Center opens at Maple Knoll Village and offers complete diagnosis evaluation for the older adult.

1988 - Maple Knoll Village celebrates its 140th anniversary. America's Great Friday Night Smokeless Bingo opens at the center July 8, to provide funds for operating expenses. The first Herbstfest Trustee Alumni Reunion held in October.

1989 - First Walk of Ages was held on May 6, 1989 with a four mile walk-a-thon from Maple Knoll through Glendale. Maple Knoll Management, Inc. formed on April 25th, a for profit subsidiary corporation that provides management and consulting services. First Future Fund campaign is initiated. Maple Knoll Child Center receives award from Governor Celeste for encouraging intergenerational volunteerism. The Village's first professionally printed annual report wins second place in the Cincinnati Editors' Association publications contest. The first Velma Walton lecture is held for nursing assistants. Twenty one villas begin construction next to the Center for Older Adults to be named Westminster.

1990 - Art Linkletter television show is filmed at Maple Knoll Center for Older Adults. The Walk of Ages is awarded the Innovation of the Year Award by the American Association of Homes for the Aging.

1991 - The Memorial Fund Fountain is sculpted and installed at the Bodmann entrance by artist Timothy S. Werrell. The Maple Knoll Child Center holds a reunion of its first graduating class. Maple Knoll Village is reaccredited by the Continuing Care Accreditation Commission of the American Association of Homes for the Aging. The Maple Knoll Leaf Auxiliary presents the residents with a beautiful new mini-bus with a wheel chair lift.

1992 - The Living Legacy Society is inaugurated, allowing SOSSI to be named beneficiary in a will, trust or life insurance policy. Genevieve Hoadly, former board member, endows Village with $8 million, the largest bequest in its history. The Gerontology Institute celebrates its ten year anniversary. A 40 foot Metro-liner bus is a Christmas gift to the residents; purchased with Hoadly trust funds, the super bus seats 43 passengers and permits overnight trips. Maple Knoll Village is named one of the top 15 Continuing Care Retirement Communities in the United States by New Choices magazine.

1993 - Maple Knoll Village is named one of the top 20 Continuing Care Retirement Communities in the United States by New Choicesmagazine. A $27 million tax exempt bond issue closes to finance expansion project of 80 manor homes and 60-unit Assisted Living building, complete with a Health and Wellness Center.

1994 - Construction begins on $32 million expansion project. Aggressive marketing efforts as billboards and television ads accompany construction of Assisted Living Building and 80 manor homes, known as Coventry Court.

1995 - Jerry Smart is appointed by Governor George Voinovich as a delegate to the 1995 White House Conference on Aging, Washington, D.C. The Auxiliary donates a carriage clock and Carillon to the Village. WMKV 89.3 FM, the flagship radio station of the Maple Knoll, opens in 1995 as the nations first educational public radio station to be licensed to a retirement community. The station features big band music and information regarding activities and services available to older adults. Dedication of SOSSI's $32 million expansion, including an Assisted Living building with 60 apartments, 80 manor homes of Coventry Court, the Village Center and the Manor House Community Building.

1996 - University of Cincinnati's Learning in Retirement program is initiated on the Maple Knoll Village campus. SOSSI becomes a member of the Momentum Health Alliance, an alliance of 15 non-profit long term care organizations. WMKV FM awarded Innovation of the Year by AOPHA. WMKV FM awarded Innovation of the Year by AAHSA. WMKV FM receives the Award of Merit at the Annual Gabriel Awards. Chaplain James Graham becomes Maple Knoll's first Chaplain and Director of Spiritual Services.

1997 - Sycamore Senior Adult Multi-Service Center, Inc. merges with SOSSI. Sycamore Senior Adult Multi-Service Center, Inc. includes Sycamore Senior Center, Anderson Senior Center, a home health agency and two elderly housing facilities, Mount View Terrace and Corbly Trace.

2000 - SOSSI expands into Oxford Ohio, opening a new retirement community called The Knolls of Oxford. When complete in 2004, The Knolls also will include 80 cottages, 40 assisted living apartments and 50 nursing care units.

2001 - Southwestern Ohio Seniors' Services, Inc. becomes LifeSphere.

2001 - LifeSphere helps to celebrate the Grand Opening of the brand new Sycamore Senior Center with a up to the minute facility as well as fresh programs.

2002 - LifeSphere celebrates the Grand Opening of the Life Enriching Gardens located on the campus of Maple Knoll Village. The gardens, which include a Memory Garden, Enabling Garden, and a Children's Garden, seek to improve the quality of life for those who live and work within the facility.

2002 - Maple Knoll Village proudly celebrates its 25th Anniversary of serving older adults within the Greater Cincinnati area.

2004 - James M. Formal takes over as the new President and CEO of LifeSphere. Mr. Formal sees his new position as an opportunity to position LifeSphere to be successful far into the future.

2005 - The Knolls of Oxford and Miami University enter into an affiliation that will advance interaction between the two organizations. Among the benefits of this agreement are: research and internship opportunities for students, new educational experiences, and increased intergenerational experiences for both parties.

2005 - LifeSphere Home Health Services are recognized as a National Best practice Agency and are invited to take part in The National Hospitalization Study.

2006 - In partnership with home builder Great Traditions Homes, Inc. construction begins on the New Westminster Cottages. The 22 cottages are the largest in the history of LifeSphere.

2006 - WMKV 89.3 FM signs an unprecedented agreement with FOX19 allowing WMKV to broadcast morning news. Other changes within the radio station include the revival of classic programs such as Theater of the Mind, Mystery Playhouse and The Big Broadcast.

2007 - Again with Great Traditions Homes, LifeSphere breaks ground on 56 new apartments called Kensington Place on the campus of Maple Knoll Village and 14 new villas called Redbud Trace on The Knolls of Oxford campus.

2007 - Sycamore Senior Center celebrates 30 years of serving active older adults in 31 communities across the TriState.

2007 - Thanks to a very generous donation of $1 million from resident Martin Hemsworth, the Maple Knoll Wellness Center is renovated and renamed the Ann and Martin Hemsworth Wellness Center on the campus of Maple Knoll Village.

2008 - LifeSphere becomes Maple Knoll Communities Inc.

2008 - Maple Knoll purchases a one-third (33.3%) ownership interest in Homewell Senior Care, which provides non-medical services related to the in-home care needs of the elderly and disabled individuals in Greater Cincinnati.

2009 - The Maple Leaf Auxiliary, our volunteer services, celebrates their 30th anniversary.

2009 - Maple Knoll Village forms a resident ambassador group. This group of resident's volunteers assists the marketing, development and public relations teams with events, advertisement and greeting future residents.

2010 - Thanks to a generous donation from resident Dorothy Puccini's estate, Maple Knoll was able to renovate their library and transform it into The Dorothy Puccini Library.

2010 - Maple Knoll Village and The Knolls of Oxford are honored with the prestigious award of a five-year accreditation as a Continuing Care Retirement Community issued by CARF International (Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities).

2010 - WMKV 89.3FM partners with Cincinnati's top rated TV news station, Local 12 WKRC, to bring simulcasts of the local 12 news each weekday morning and evening.

2011 - The Maple Knoll Communities Spiritual Care Department celebrates their 15th year anniversary. This coincides with a generous donation from resident Hoyt Chaloud which allowed Maple Knoll to renovate the chapel, add a sacristy and a tranquility garden in memory of Fran Chaloud.

2011 - Maple Knoll Communities continues to become more efficient by bringing in in-house therapists for our therapy departments.

2012 - WMKV 89.3FM reaches an all time high of 30,000 listeners.

2012 - The Knolls of Oxford signs their third formal affiliation with Miami University.

2012 - Maple Knoll Communities begins offering custom home accommodations where residents have choices and opportunities to design their living accommodations.

2013 - Thanks to a generous donation from residents John Hughes and Richard Neubauer, M.D., Maple Knoll Communities was able to open a new hospice center. The Richard Neubauer, M.D. and John Hughes Hospice Center is located on the third floor of Bodmann Pavilion at Maple Knoll Village.

2013 - The University of Cincinnati and Maple Knoll Village Collaboratory House is formed in an Eastwood Villa. This collaboration will bring new testing and technology, such as the Flobot Robot, to Maple Knoll's campus with the hopes of improving health care for older adults in the future.

2014 - Maple Knoll Village and The Knolls of Oxford both earn the 2014 Holleran Highest Honors in recognition of outstanding efforts in providing the highest levels of service to all residents. Maple Knoll Village and The University of Cincinnati hold a formal ribbon cutting and dedication of The Collaboratory House.

2014 - On November 6th, 2014 The Knolls of Oxford celebrated the renewal of their Affiliation agreement with Miami University. This is the third renewal with the first agreement being signed ten years ago in 2005. The agreement has been renewed every three years up until this signing. Miami University agreed to extend the Affiliation Agreement to five years, and it will be renewed in 2019.

2015 - Maple Knoll Communities and The University of Cincinnati signed a formal affiliation on April 27th, 2015.

2015 - Eight employees are inducted into Leading Age Ohio's Stars Program for their delivery of exceptional service to the older adults they serve.

2015 - Maple Knoll Communities earns the 2015 Communicators Award. Maple Knoll Village begins using Flo-Bot, a telehealth robot, in Skilled Nursing to assist physicians with patients. Maple Knoll Village hosts its first Grandparent's Day for residents, employees and family members.

2015 - Maple Knoll resident John "Jack" Hughes is one of twelve accomplished older Ohioans inducted into the Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame for 2015. Jack joined more than 400 individuals who have been inducted since 1978. Since moving to Maple Knoll in 2006, Jack has been an inspiration to older adults through biking over 100 miles a week and his generous support of worthwhile causes.

2015 - Renovations to the Eastwood and Coventry Court neighborhoods were completed with additional renovations planned for the future. Renovations included new cabinets, countertops, appliances, paint and flooring. Eastwood also experienced exterior renovations to select units increasing the curbside appeal.

2015 - The Knolls of Oxford celebrated a deficiency free survey in skilled nursing. The Knolls of Oxford was also proud to have been recognized by U.S. News and World Report as a five-star rated nursing home. This report comes from the Federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for their overall performance in health inspections, nurse staffing and quality of medical care. Only 17 percent of all nursing homes in Ohio earned an overall five-star rating and less than that earned five-star in all areas.

2015 - Maple Knoll Home Health Care became a shining star this year as it proudly received a coveted 4 out of 5 Stars from the National Home Health Ranking System by The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

2015 - Maple Knoll was awarded $10 million in tax credits to renovate existing buildings at The Meadows. The project will update 149 apartments in two buildings in The Meadows complex.

2015 - The Maple Leaf Auxiliary met their goal of providing $200,000 towards the purchase of a large 40 passenger bus for use by the Maple Knoll Village residents. Funds were raised through MKV ReRun and furniture sale, The Holiday Bazaar, raffles and other special events.

2015 - The Knolls of Oxford also participated in a Nursing Home Satisfaction Survey conducted by Ohio Department on Aging. The Knolls of Oxford's Facility Comparisons Overall Satisfaction Score improved from 88.4 in 2013 to 93.7 in 2015.

2016 - Maple Knoll Communities closes Sycamore Senior Center and forms Maple Knoll Outreach Services for Seniors. Maple Knoll Outreach Services for Seniors is a focal point in Southern Ohio for programs designed for older adults. Vital Sycamore Senior Center programs were transferred to Maple Knoll Outreach Services for Seniors and recreational and social programming previously offered at Sycamore Senior Center is now available through senior service partners in the community. Services Include: Meals on Wheels, Transportation Services, Friendly Caller Program and more.

2016 - Multiple departments throughout Maple Knoll Communities received accolades including deficiency free state surveys in Skilled Nursing at Maple Knoll Village and The Knolls of Oxford, Assisted Living at Maple Knoll Village and The Knolls of Oxford, Maple Knoll Child Center and Food Service, 5 Star rated Nursing Home status, Communicator of the Year Award and more.

2016 - As a member of Ohio Aging Services Network, Maple Knoll Communities was rated on care and delivery of service to our clients. The Knolls of Oxford ranked #1 in the state with Maple Knoll Village trailing close behind at #6.

2016 - Maple Knoll Village completed Phase II of construction on Kensington Place. Phase II consists of two villas and 10 independent living apartments. Maple Knoll Village Skilled Nursing implemented specialized patient-centered bedside rounds with their care team in February, 2016.

2016 - Maple Knoll Village began a capital campaign to upgrade the on campus Health Center located in Bodmann Pavilion. The current Health Center provides services to residents in Independent Living, Assisted Living and Skilled Nursing and has not received renovations since its construction in 1977.

- The Knolls of Oxford added four villas to the campus, three Stratford floor plans and one Ashby, which increased the number of independent living homes to 106. Miami University and The Knolls of Oxford gathered in July of 2016 to celebrate 10 years of successful affiliation. The affiliation, launched in 2005, is one of more than 100 such partnerships forged between colleges and nearby retirement centers and has helped Oxford establish a reputation as one of the more desirable inland places to retire in America.

2016 - The formal affiliation with Maple Knoll Village and The University of Cincinnati continued to gain momentum as the partnership expanded to include projects from the Colleges of Nursing, Engineering and Applied Sciences, Pharmacy, Allied Health, Medicine and DAAP.

2016 - In an effort to provide exceptional care and services, Maple Knoll Communities entered into a joint venture with Cedar Village which allows both organizations to come together to improve home health offerings in the community. Acting together as Village Home Health and Hospice, the venture was established to further both organizations' missions. Steve Wilson completes ten years on the Maple Knoll Communities Board of Directors with two of those years serving as Chairman of the Board. Steve was formally honored for his outstanding commitment, leadership and innovation in the field of aging as he was awarded the 15th Maple Knoll Communities Rock of Aging Award

- Maple Knoll Village was awarded a 5 Star Nursing Home Rating Status from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services created a Five-Star Quality Rating System to help consumers, their families, and caregivers compare nursing homes. According to The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the rating is based off of health inspections, staffing and quality measures. Maple Knoll Village was named as a 2017 Winner of Best Workplaces in Ohio. The Knolls of Oxford was selected as a TriHealth Preferred Provider.

2017 - The collaboration with The University of Cincinnati was featured on WCPO television's "Living Senior Smart" program. The program highlighted the use of sensor systems and telehealth robots to assist in the gain process. The program was recognized as a Bronze Winner in the 38th Annual Telly Awards garnishing the collaboration national attention.

2017 - The Maple Knoll Child Center continued to connect, create and guide a multigenerational community of students and residents as they celebrated their 40th year in existence.

2018 - Maple Knoll Communities, Inc. celebrates 170 years.