Sikeston man on roster of notable Missourians

Monday, November 22, 2004

From staff and wire reports

It's not every day that you're name gets mentioned in the same breath as legendary Missourians like Harry Truman, Walt Disney and Jack Buck. Sikeston's Richard Montgomery now knows this to be a humbling experience.

That's because Montgomery, chairman of the board of Americare and Montgomery Bank, both headquartered in Sikeston, is the recipient of the Missourian Award, which recognizes outstanding and accomplished residents of the state. Since the award was first given out by the Missouri Awards Program in 1994, only 79 have received the honor.

"It's really an amazing situation to be named with such distinguished people," Montgomery said.

On Nov. 6, Montgomery and nine other 2004 honorees received their awards at the annual Missourian Awards Program in Jefferson City. By receiving the award, the 10 join a list of past recipients that includes Truman, Disney, George Washington Carver, Gen. Omar Bradley and 74 other notable Missourians. Among those receiving this year's award with Montgomery was the late Jack Buck, longtime voice of St. Louis Cardinals baseball, philanthropist and member of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Montgomery was recognized, in part, for his contributions to the field of elder-care services in Missouri. He is nationally known for his knowledge and experience in the development and acquisition of long-term care facilities, including Chaffee Nursing Center and Cape Town, Auburn Creek and The Arbors at Auburn Creek in Cape Girardeau.

His company's approach to the delivery of elder-care services in rural communities is a model for others in the industry. For instance, Americare is one of the first companies in the nation to establish assisted living facilities solely for Alzheimer's patients. Americare has four such facilities, including The Arbors at Auburn Creek.

Most recently, Americare affiliated with the University of Missouri-Columbia and opened TigerPlace, one of only four "aging in place" sites approved by the state of Missouri.

The operating philosophy that guides Montgomery's long-term care company places the needs of residents first. Established in 1981, Americare has grown to 74 skilled nursing and assisted living facilities throughout Missouri, Kansas and Tennessee. Controlled expansion and quality operations have made Montgomery and his company, Americare, one of the most trusted providers in the region, officials said.

In his acceptance speech, Montgomery recognized the many employees of his company who work at Americare's facilities. "It takes a team of dedicated people to provide the quality services we expect at Americare," he said. "Administrators, nurses, nurse aides, housekeepers -- each one touches the lives of our residents -- each one makes a difference every day. I share this award with them."

To be selected for the Missourian Award, one must be a native Missourian or, under exceptional circumstances, have spent at least 15 years of his or her life in the state. Nominees also must have made an outstanding contribution to the state or nation in civics, business, arts or politics.

Proceeds from the annual Missourian Awards Program benefit the American Heart Association.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: