Betty Hungerford: A Tapestry of Friendship and Professional Success


Betty Hungerford: A Tapestry of Friendship and Professional SuccessMentor. Friend. Champion. Ask those closest to Betty Hungerford, director of development for Homeland Center, and these words immediately come to mind. Whether her friends and colleagues have known her for decades or days, one thing rings true. To know Betty is to love Betty for her compassion, strength, and empathy for others. Homeland Center will pay tribute to Betty at its 155th Anniversary Celebration Event on Sunday, May 15, 2022, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., at the Hilton Harrisburg.

Kelly Lick and her late husband Ted knew Betty and her late husband Paul socially for many years. When Ted was in his end-of-life journey, he received services from Homeland Hospice. Kelly was impressed by Homeland’s support and found comfort and peace knowing Ted received the best care possible. After Ted’s death, Betty reached out to Kelly and offered her an opportunity to volunteer. This began a close personal friendship and professional relationship which has lasted more than 10 years.

“Betty took me under her wing,” Kelly says. “She knew how it felt to lose a husband and helped me begin to move forward.”

Kelly began volunteering on fundraising efforts with Betty to benefit the residents of Homeland Center and the clients and patients receiving services through its outreach efforts. Kelly wanted to personally express her gratitude to Homeland by giving back charitably to the organization. She helped support the development of a library and the purchase of a van for Homeland’s residents.

With each meeting and event, Kelly slowly began to find her footing in the circumstances of her new life. Each step of the way, Betty was there to offer her support. As the years passed, Kelly and Betty’s friendship grew deeper in admiration and respect.

“We can all learn so much from Betty,” Kelly adds. “She is always thinking of others and how she can help ease their troubles.”

Today, Kelly is supporting Homeland’s upcoming 155th Anniversary Celebration Event honoring Betty by serving on the sponsorship committee. She is incorporating the lessons she learned through Betty into a magical event to honor her friend.

Like Kelly, Carlyn Chulick, a member of Homeland’s Board of Trustees, grew to become a close friend of Betty’s when she began volunteering for Homeland. Betty recognized Carlyn’s potential for volunteer leadership and helped her take on the role of chair for development committee.

For Carlyn, her involvement with Homeland has grown because of the organization’s culture of caring practiced by leaders like Betty as well as Homeland’s dedication to new and innovative ways of supporting families in their time of need.

Carlyn is currently helping to lead the planning efforts of Homeland’s upcoming celebration event. Throughout the planning process, Carlyn has seen firsthand many busy professionals stepping up to volunteer because of their admiration for Betty.

“Betty has impacted so many lives in our community,” Carlyn says. “Personally, I have learned the importance of building lasting relationships.”

Betty, affectionately known as the “Queen B,” has created a commendable personal and professional life by building and maintaining strong relationships. Betty’s pride and love for her children and grandchildren is abundant as is her belief in her “adopted children,” a name Betty uses for the countless men and women who were friends of her children or neighbors. Betty has remained by their side as they have grown into adulthood. She is never too busy to stop to listen about their professional achievements or milestone events in their personal lives.

With a full social calendar, Betty still finds time to indulge in her love of sports. She loves attending baseball games at Yankee Stadium with her grandson who works for the organization. She is an avid college basketball fan – especially when Duke is playing – and tries to catch most football games.

Spend a few minutes with Betty and it’s easy to wonder how she keeps up her busy schedule, but there lies the secret to Betty’s success. Love what you do and surround yourself with people who are destined to bloom, and a bee will pollinate her world with purpose, compassion and a legacy that will be remembered for generations.

“When you think of Harrisburg, you think of Betty,” Kelly says. “People will remember her for years to come because of the extraordinary impact she has made on our community.”

For more information about Homeland’s 155th Anniversary Celebration Event honoring Betty Hungerford visit or call (717) 221-7885. Proceeds will benefit Homeland’s benevolent care programs, which provide financial assistance for individuals in need of care.

Homeland Director of Nursing Jennifer Tate-DeFreitas: A life steeped in service


If you need to find Homeland Director of Nursing Jennifer Tate-Defreitas, her desk isn’t always the place to look.

“I still work the floor, and I still work every shift,” she says. “It’s important as a director to know the work because nursing is hands-on. As nurses, we have to be flexible. Things can change in a matter of a minute. I don’t expect to come to work only doing one thing. I do what the job calls for.”

She adds that she enjoys being with the residents: “Any day I can get away from my desk, and I’m out there, it feels like home.”

Jennifer is one of Homeland’s many longtime employees who has been given and took advantage of professional growth and fulfillment opportunities. She brings her passion for nursing to the residents and the young staff she mentors.

She also brings a passion for service cultivated in an enormous family – her mother had 57 first cousins — devoted to community and “lessons taught through action and the word.”

Jennifer’s grandmother was a teacher by trade, “but she was a teacher in so many other ways that she didn’t realize.” Her grandmother took in some of her students and older siblings. She rose early every day to cook breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the staff who worked at the funeral home founded by Jennifer’s grandfather.

“She was always caring for people,” Jennifer remembers. “She was always in a servant position.”

In high school, Jennifer attended an international, all-girls boarding school in Columbia, Lancaster County. Her classmates came from wealthy families from across the globe — Japan, China, Peru, Colombia, Panama, Mexico.

The school also had a convent and a nursing home tended to by the nuns, which stoked Jennifer’s interest in working with seniors. Nursing came naturally, after all. Her great-aunt was a nurse, and her oldest first cousin retired as a hospital administrator. She pursued a five-year BSN program at Hampton University in Virginia, finding a nurturing and fulfilling environment at one of the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities, or HBCUs.

She returned to the Harrisburg area to work in a nursing home, rising from charge nurse to staff development instructor. When that home closed, she entered school nursing while her children were still young, but she maintained her interest in geriatrics by joining Homeland Center part-time.

In 2010, she joined Homeland full-time as assistant director of nursing, taking on various responsibilities, from wound care to nursing education, before being named Director of Nursing.

She notes that long-term care is challenging, fast-paced and incredibly rewarding, especially for patients whose families may be scattered or gone.

“You’re that last piece of family,” she says. “You can give them something irreplaceable.”

Her bachelor’s degree taught her management skills that Homeland honed. Working under the tutelage of Homeland Center President & CEO Barry Ramper II has been “on-the-job training times 1,000.” She has seen his open-door policy, 24/7 access and dedication to the job, as well as his in-depth knowledge of regulations.

“When you work with someone like that and see that it works, and it equates to quality, you begin to model yourself after that,” she says.

At Homeland, her young staffers included her daughter, Malani, and former students from her school nurse days who started as CNAs and are now in nursing. She tries to mentor them all, advising them that nursing is about more than money.

“It has to be something you want to do, that you have the innate passion and compassion for caring for others,” she says. “If you don’t, you won’t be satisfied.”

She also strives to inspire through action as well as talk.

“I can walk down the hall and take care of the call when a resident puts on their bell,” she says. “I’m not a desk person. I am a nurse first. I never make anyone feel like I’m the boss. There’s no ‘I’ in team, like they stay. It’s always a team approach. If they see you working, they’re going to follow suit.”

Homeland resident Lois Hartman: A relaxing time in Personal Care


Lois HartmanLois Hartman grew up in Philadelphia, but after moving to a slightly more rural setting, she enjoyed life amid the greenery. There was just one problem.

“In Philadelphia, we roller-skated on the streets because they were smooth,’’ she recalled. “When we got to Glenside, I couldn’t roller skate because the streets were macadam.”

Today, Lois is a Homeland resident who first arrived in May 2021. She loves her personal care suite and the freedom to do what she wants every day.

Lois grew up in the West Oak Lane neighborhood of Philadelphia until the family moved to the historic village of Glenside in Cheltenham Township. Her father was a Bell Telephone of Pennsylvania worker. Her mother stayed home with Lois and her brother and sister until the family moved to Glenside when she became a teacher.

In high school, Lois had an active social life, and while she was attending Pierce Business School in Philadelphia, she started dating a friend, Donald, from her church group.

“We were very active in church,” she says. “We did everything. We went roller skating. There were a million things that we did. We were just a group that got along.”

Lois and Donald got married in 1958, and she used her business skills to handle the paperwork for her husband’s business, a Hess gasoline station on Route 1 in Langhorne.

“It was very, very busy,” she says.

Lois and Donald had two children, a son and a daughter, but sadly, he was diagnosed with cancer after they had been married almost 20 years. It was in April, and by August, he had died. She took over the business, but it was in the days when self-service was coming to Pennsylvania gas stations. The company wanted to rebuild the old station, so she decided to give it up and sold it back.

“It was worthwhile work, but I wanted to work in a bank,” she says. She joined Girard Bank part-time, performing customer service in Warminster.

Lois HartmanShe enjoyed the work, helping people open accounts and taking loan applications. She got to know the ins and outs of the bank and was in line for a branch manager position, but love intervened again. She met her second husband, Jim, “after six years of being single.”

Jim worked hard to earn his psychology license and joined the Carbondale-Lehigh Intermediate Unit, which provides educational services for children with disabilities and learning barriers. He worked there until he retired.

Jim and Lois were very close through more than 30 years of marriage until he passed away around 2013.

“I like it very much here,” she says. “I like everything about it.” She plays bingo and goes on outings, such as a recent excursion to Gilligan’s restaurant. Her personal care suite is bright and cheery.

“I’ve been very happy here,” she says. “I can do what I want without anything bothering me. I like it very much. I like the way everything goes.”