Q: What area are you from?
A: We were both born and raised in California and in 2012 moved to Carolina Preserve in Cary upon Dennis’ retirement. He had served 16 years as president of the State University of New York at Fredonia. We’ve also lived in the states of Washington, Maryland, and Minnesota.
Q: How did you hear about Searstone and what was your main selling point for joining?
A: About five years ago, we heard about Searstone from friends who live in our community and thought we’d check it out. There was so much that appealed to us including location, size and quality of living units, access to the various amenities like the gym and the dining venues, number and diversity of the clubs and friendliness of the staff. Of course, the peace of mind that comes from living in a continuous care community was also a selling point.
Q: What are you looking forward to most about moving to the community?
A: We are excited about the possibility of moving into a brand-new facility that will provide us an opportunity to get to know 152 new neighbors who will be moving in at the same time.
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about your family?
A: We have been married for 53 years and have two adult children. Our daughter, Kara, lives in Cary and is a Senior Internal Auditor at the University of North Carolina. Our son, Joel, lives in Austin, Texas with his wife and our three grandchildren (21, 17, 14) and is a Vice President at Dimensional Fund Advisors. Most of our family members live in California or Oregon.
Q: What is the most interesting fact about yourself or what do you think people would be surprised to know?
A: Dennis’ grandfather was a candy maker, founder of Kendon Candies. His influence led to Dennis making thousands of soft caramels over the past 50 years that he gives away at the holidays. Jan has sewn and donated hundreds of quilts to children in need.
Q: What hobbies, activities or programs do you hope to get involved with?
A: We enjoy playing pickleball, following college sports, traveling, attending plays, musical events, and lectures, and playing card games. We also like being involved in different social clubs such as quilting, cycling, and volunteering. Pre-COVID days saw us every week helping others who are less fortunate, primarily through volunteer work with Urban Ministries of Durham.
We’re so glad to have members like the Hefners at Searstone. Stay connected with our Meet Your Neighbor segment each month and you’ll have new friends before you even meet!