NEWTON — Carolina Caring staff came together to celebrate the life of Dave Clarke, past president and CEO of Carolina Caring, formerly Catawba Regional Hospice, with a special birthday celebration recently to commemorate his many contributions to the organization.
Carolina Caring officials said Clarke’s leadership style built strong, resilient teams and an organizational culture that provided exceptional care. His spirit lives on today in Carolina Caring’s employees, who consistently give more than expected, they said.
At the event Carolina Caring announced it will build a memorial in Clarke’s honor to recognize his many contributions. To be located on a hill on the Carolina Caring Newton campus, the memorial will commemorate Clarke’s vision and inspire the company’s work and mission for many years to come.
Clarke devoted a large part of his career to raising the profile of hospice and palliative care, knowing that the benefits of these services are often underutilized by many who need them. By distinguishing himself as a forward-thinking executive, he successfully integrated hospice education into the local healthcare landscape while growing Catawba Regional Hospice exponentially during his tenure.
“While we are saddened by Dave’s passing, we wanted to formally celebrate his legacy of generosity and servant leadership that will continue to profoundly impact the organization and community for years to come,” said Dave Cook, Carolina Caring president and CEO.
Named the “Keystone Overlook,” the memorial will include a pavilion and walking path, and will serve as a peaceful gathering place for employees, patients and families.
“What an incredible vision Dave Clarke had, and it is an honor to see it through,” said Anne Bogen, Carolina Caring Foundation executive director. “We are looking to members in our community to partner with us to make this walking trail and pavilion come to life — to be available to our staff, patients and families in their times of joy and sorrow as a place of healing.”
Carolina Caring, founded in 1979, is an independent, community-based, nonprofit health care provider. It specializes in programs that offer relief from chronic conditions, serious illnesses, and the challenges they bring, including palliative medicine and hospice care for all ages, primary care and grief counseling. Currently, Carolina Caring serves 12 counties across western North Carolina and the Charlotte region.