Birch Haven Senior Living

Meet Birch Haven's Owner

Dale Kelm

When asked what he enjoys about working with the residents at Birch Haven Senior Living, an Assisted Living Facility in Ashland, Wisconsin, Dale replied "I can see myself in them.  I am no different than they are in fact am probably just about 30 years away from becoming a resident myself.  I enjoy talking with the residents and their families and knowing that we are providing a service for our seniors and community here in Ashland, Wisconsin and Dale Kelm Owner Birch Haven Senior Living - Ashland  WIsurrounding areas.  We have a really diverse campus here.  We have 4-separate buildings: Bear's Hollow, Timber's Edge, Falcon's Crest, and Eagle's Ridge.  Focusing on the elderly population, we also offer services for the elderly who have special needs such as: physical disabilities, mental illness, dementia, and depression and/or anxiety."

Not originally from the Ashland area, Dale has been visiting family there most of his life.  Dale grew up in Bloomer, Wisconsin, attended high school in Prairie du Chein, Wisconsin where he graduated Martin Luther Prep School.  Dale completed his Associate of the Arts Degree, UW - Superior, Mankato State University and then Moraine Park Technical College in Beaver Dam where he graduated as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) in May 2000.  He then completed a BS - Liberal Arts degree in 2003 (Excelsior College) and a MS in Training Development through UW - Stout in 2013.

Dales past career endeavors include working for Lutheran Social Services in Eau Claire, Wisconsin for 14 years where he worked as a Care Provider, Lead and then as a Manager where he directed three Group Homes for residents with developmental disabilities, and/or mental illness.  Other duties included: working at a drop-in center for people with mental illness, liaison for the Northern Center Behavioral team and serving as the Regional Training Coordinator.  

Later, Dale worked for 3 years at Mount Washington, a 54 bed assisted living in Eau Claire, Wisconsin as the Health and Personal Care Supervisor.  Dale ans his family then moved up to Ashland where Dale worked as a Medical Assistance Hub Supervisor. 

In July 2011 Dale started as an Administrator at Birch Haven and in 2014 he purchased it.  When asked how he got into the health care firld, Dale explained, "It all started for me after I worked in a group home with people that had behavioral issues.  I gave it one month and I would find a new job.  Fortunately I got to see what a positive impact care and compassion could have on them and how rewarding it truly can be."  Dale currently owns Birch Haven Senior Living, Birch Haven North (RCAC) in Washburn and in 2016, Lake Shore Assisted Living in Minocqua, WI. 

Dale also served 24 years in the United States Military with the U.S. Army Reserves.  Dale served in the infantry (mortar), as a combat medic, and then as a nurse during his enlistment in the military.  When asked why he joined the military, Dale replied "It was just something that I always knew I was going to do."  Dale served in Al Asad, Iraq from 2008-2009 where he worked at a hospital as a Ward Master on a Med Surge wing and then Intensive Care Ward.  In November of 2010, Dale retired from his military career.

When asked what is unique about Birch Haven Senior Living, Dale replied, "It's the home like atmosphere.  We cook meals right in the buildings which are set up to feel like home, not a "facility".  We also provide local medical transportation, we can handle a wide variety of needs and we work with Medical Assistance.  Our staff is dedicated to the residents and their care.  We have a GREAT team, we are part of a community, not a corporation.  We have 2 Nurses working daily and on 24-hours-per-day.  We also work with the local health care providers in the area to include the Memorial Medical in town and shop locally when we can.

When Dale is not busy caring for the senior population at Birch Haven Senior Living, he enjoys spending time with his two children Gabriel and Claire.  They love to spend time at their cabin in Gordon, WI where they enjoy checking out the bugs, frogs, and other critters.  He also enjoys hunting and fishing and any time in the outdoors.  

If you are interested in finding out more about Birch Haven Senior Living and how they can help you or your loved one, going on a tour, meeting the Administrator, Dale Kelm, or just chatting with him about the military, hunting, or fishing please call him at 715-682-2414 or e-mail, or simply stop in at 218 - 22nd Avenue W., Ashland, Wisconsin 54806.

218 - 22nd Avenue West    ~    Ashland,WI  54806    ~    715-682-2414   ~