Joanna LaFleur
CEO and Founder

Joanna created Memory Lane after her grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. She was working in the Elder Care industry and saw a need for a more client-focused, human-centric approach when it came to Dementia care.

several people sitting around a table going over a training plan

Improving Dementia Care

A Message from Our Founder

In addition to working in the Dementia care field for more than a decade, I know first-hand what it’s like to have a loved one with Dementia. When I was 20 year’s old my grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. The experience of being with my grandmother during this time opened my eyes to how much better we can do our work as caregivers, as well as the massive effect a loved one’s memory loss has on the entire family.

After over 10+ years working for different companies in the eldercare field, I couldn’t shake the discouragement I felt by the low quality of care I saw for people suffering from Dementia. To me, there was a huge gap in Dementia care. What was missing from elder care, in my view, was a client-focused, human-centric approach to care from caregivers with training in how to support someone with Dementia. When I brought my desire to improve care to colleagues at the companies I worked with, however, I was often told that I’m “too sensitive.” I knew I had to do something, which is why I founded Memory Lane Assisted Living.

It has been a vision of mine to create a place like Memory Lane ever since I watched my grandma’s experience with Dementia. I made the choice to move her from an Assisted Living Facility to a small home (like Memory Lane) and I’m so glad I did. Watching my grandma thrive in a smaller, more intimate group home setting showed me how much simple environmental changes can influence our health, especially for those living with Dementia.

I’m so proud to be leading a company filled with passionate, dependable, well-trained caregivers and staff as we shatter the status quo in the Dementia Homecare industry. We know that having a loved one diagnosed with Dementia is incredibly challenging, and that’s why I’m so blessed to be a part of a company that is here to support you. In my mind, my company is successful for one reason: we treat our clients and our staff like family.

About Joanna

portrait of Joanna

As a fiercely passionate advocate for those with dementia and their caregivers, Joanna is a truly powerful speaker and impactful trainer sharing a transformative message. After receiving a degree in Recreational Therapy from Eastern Michigan University and spending more than 13 years working with a variety of nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and home care companies, it became clear to Joanna that there is a huge societal gap in dementia care. Knowing something had to be done, Joanna opened a dementia focused home care company in 2013 and in 2016 founded Memory Lane. Memory Lane provides an innovative, client-focused, human-centric assisted living environment in three specialized 6 bedroom homes where individuals with any type of dementia (even the most challenging) in any stage, can live life to the fullest. Joanna’s strong desire to create positive change in this area can also be felt through articles, videos, and frequent corporate training and speaking engagements.

Valuable Expertise

Joanna has cared for those with Dementia for over 15 years. She has a plethora of knowledge to disperse to fellow caregivers, family members, and other professionals in the elder care industry. Joanna is happy to share her expertise on Dementia and Memory Care through articles, videos, and frequent corporate training and speaking engagements. Joanna educates on many topics such as What is Dementia? The Art of Redirection, Behavior Management, 10 Strategies for Providing Person Centered Care, Therapeutic Recreation, and Maintaining Quality of Life After a Dementia Diagnosis.

Joanna LaFleur volunteered her time for the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America’s free webinar program called Care Connection on January 17, 2019. She presented on the topic “How to Have a Meaningful and Successful Visit with Your Loved One in Long Term Care.” Ms. LaFleur was able to explain how to walk away from a visit with your person in long term care feeling more at peace and less with guilt. She was able provide communication tips and suggestions on how to help the person living with Alzheimer’s disease to feel more comfortable in their new environment. In addition, she provided tips on activities to do with your person, and strategies on creating special moments with your person.

Heather Saposnick, LMSW, Alzheimer’s Foundation of America

As a fiercely passionate advocate for those with dementia and their caregivers, Joanna is a truly powerful speaker and impactful trainer sharing a transformative message.

Dan McPherson

Joanna was one of the most engaged speakers of the day and the audience loved the fact that she provided videos that were very relatable to the topic. Joanna caught the audience’s attention at the beginning and held it throughout as she delivered a well prepared, funny presentation. It’s very apparent that she cares deeply about the elderly population and wants caregivers to feel the same passion.

Ronda Bunnell, Executive Director, MiMDA | The Michigan Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine

Joanna is as knowledgeable as she is passionate about providing a meaningful life for individuals living with different forms of dementia and their families. As a speaker, her 13 years of actual boots-on-the-ground experience with this special population is evident and allows her to fully engage and educate caregivers, both professional and family members alike. Everyone who attended Joanna's presen-tation in our community, left feeling better-informed and more confident with their newly-learned concrete tactics and practical, real-life approaches to under-standing and caring for their clients or family members with dementia.