Diane Richardson has been active in the Frankford business community since she established the Richardson Group Senior living facilities on Bridge Street in 2004. That facility serves as a home for about 19 men in an assisted living environment. It is a very comfortable place that I visited back in April of this year to interview Diane for this story.
She was in the midst of a successful career as a para legal when in 1999 her brother had to enter an assisted facility. The experience of visiting him in that facility made her think that there had to be a better way. Over time she developed her ideas and sat down and wrote a business plan. She eventually entered that plan into a competition and it was recognized with an award. Her legal background and organizational skills were helpful in getting funding and the first property at 1750 Bridge Street was acquired and became operational with the first four residents in 2004. She expanded and added on with the acquisition of the adjacent property in 2007.
Your first impression when entering through the front door is warmth and hominess. It does not feel at all institutional. Richardson says that the each resident has different needs. Some are relatively independent while others need more help in managing medications and coordinating medical appointments, etc. All meals are served family style and the facility is staffed by a total of 7 to meet the needs of their clients 24 hours a day.
As many of half of the men are veterans which means their services may involve working with the VA. They are in the process of becoming an approved veteran’s home.
The Richardson Group was recognized by Governor Corbett this year as a finalist for the Governor’s ImPAct award in the area of Community Impact.
This award is given to a company that exemplifies the tenet of “doing well by doing good.” The winners in this category show a sustained commitment to the growth and development of its employees and the community(ies) in which it does business.
In addition to her duties running the Richardson Group, she also serves as President of the Frankford Business and Professional Association. The 60 plus membership association meets every other month for a lunch and a program on business issues. Membership in the association has been up and down over the years but now is on the upswing again under Richardson’s leadership.
The association also sponsors varies activities throughout the year in cooperation with the Frankford Community Development Corporation.
Diane Richardson is a petite dynamo who is both entrepreneur and someone who does good work. We are fortunate to have her here in Frankford.