About

Building companies and communities with creativity, civility, and longevity is what I'm all about.

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My Story

Sometimes when you go through negative events, they seem like such a horrific part of your life, but the key is to look back on the pain and say, "How do I let this motivate me for a better future?" Use it as fuel to propel you forward. In the words of my mother, "Find the power in this moment." 

-Dwayne J. Clark

Founder & CEO of Áegis Living

Tiny Check
A Picture Tells 1000 Words, But A Video...

This video gives you a glimpse of where I came from, how Áegis Living started, and the future we have planned around redefining health and wellness as we age.

Enjoy!

Twenty-four years ago, I founded my own elder care company, Aegis Living. In my several decades of proximity to the elderly, I have learned from the wisest and most simple, from the bravest and most adventuresome, from those impaired by hereditary diseases, from brilliant inventors and successful investors, and from the most loving and humble teachers, scholars, and public servants. You may not be able to predict how you die, but you can shape the way you live.

-Dwayne J. Clark

Founder & CEO of Áegis Living

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The Early Years

Raised near the wheat fields of Eastern Washington, the youngest of four children, I was raised by a loving, single mother who worked long, hard hours as a line cook. I grew up poor (very poor) with often not enough money for food. At one point, we had absolutely no money or food, so my mother stole several potatoes from the restaurant she worked at, vowing to return them later, and made potato soup, which I ate for a week.  

 

My Mother's Wisdom

Dwayne, no matter what you do, don’t ever forget where you came from and that you had to eat potato soup every day for a week. When you have employees, be there for them, and they will always be there for you.

-Colleen Clark

My Career Journey

Prior to forming Áegis Living, I was Executive Vice President of Sunrise Senior Living, and spent seven years with Leisure Care. When I started Áegis Living, my mission was to redefine an industry that had great potential but was failing in execution. I studied business models from companies known for world-class innovation, all based in Seattle: Costco, Nordstrom, Amazon, and Starbucks. With the knowledge gained from these companies, I grew Áegis Living from a dream to a company with over 2, 000 staff members and seven projects currently under development in the Seattle Area.

Industry Awards
  • Top 50 Best Places to Work in 2017 by Glassdoor, an online employee review site

  • Top 15 Places to Work with the Best Work/Life Balance in 2017 by Glassdoor

  • Best of Assisted Living Design 2015 from Senior Housing News

  • 2014 Family Business Awards Growth Award by Seattle Business Magazine

  • Best Retirement Facility by 425 Magazine (three years in a row)

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The Details

I like to think of myself as an Industry Disruptor, a Culture Curator, Artifact Collector, and Experience Creator. I'm about people, places, participation, and passion. I'm a businessman magnate, author, producer, and philanthropist.

I have an obsession with the pursuit of health. After overseeing the care of more than 60,000 Áegis residents, I have a unique awareness of aging and death which make me more curious to learn how to live the greatest life possible. It is also why I'm is on a crusade to change the mindset of aging, assisted living, and longevity. With my wife Terese, I have traveled to over 89 countries exploring different healing modalities, working with doctors and alternative health specialists and engaging in mind, body, and spirit wellness practices in order to bring back new knowledge to share. You can learn some of the secrets I've unearthed in my book 30 Summers More.

I'm also an aspiring playwright with a passion for telling stories that inspire and uplift audiences. My first play, Seven Ways to Get There, is an accurate telling of my experience in a men’s therapy group. The well-reviewed production first premiered in early 2015 at Seattle’s ACT Theatre and now is being prepared for a New York City opening in 2022.

I've delved head-first into film by starting True Productions, a production company that aims to share real-life stories through collaboration with writers, filmmakers, and playwrights. With annual donations to the Seattle International Film Festival I champions the art of authentic storytelling by providing an annual $50,000 grant in support of Seattle documentary filmmakers.

I took up sculpting recently too!​​

 

Tiny Check
My Future Focus

Today, I'm always conscious of my ability to impact people near and far, even beyond my own employees and residents, through events like the March for Civility or donating to the local Boys and Girls Club. Whether it’s an assisted living facility that raises the bar for the industry, a book about what it’s like to care for an aging parent with dementia, or a local cafe that gives back to the community, I'm committed to helping elevate people across the globe.

 

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One More Thing

I believe in preserving the past by seeking out artifacts that tell the best stories and sharing them with everyone in my life. My John F. Kennedy collection serves as a reminder of the power of civility. My Wisdom Diaries memorialize the stories of extraordinary people and share the lessons they’ve learned. My books, plays, events, and social missions are all examples of how I collect “living artifacts” and display them proudly to remind others that life is truly spectacular. And my assisted living facilities, with their beautiful architecture and innovative services and programming, are artifacts of my quest for longevity filled with moments of joy.

 

 
Industry Disruptor
As the Founder and CEO of Áegis Living, I'm Championing the Evolution of Senior Care and Innovative Wellness Solutions.

Áegis Living has more than 30 senior living facilities in the Western U.S., employs more than 3,000 staff members, and to date has served more than 60,000 residents. Áegis has been recognized for the excellence of care to seniors and employees alike, receiving a wide variety of awards, includ­ing; 

  • Top 11 Senior Housing Influencer Senior Care 2020

  • Top 50 Best Places to Work in 2017 by Glassdoor

  • Top 15 Places to Work with the Best Work/Life Balance in 2017 

  • Best of Assisted Living Design 2015 from Senior Housing News

  • 2014 Family Business Growth Award by Seattle Business Magazine

  • Best Retirement Facility by 425 Magazine (three years in a row)

  • Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award

  • Lifetime Achievement Award from Senior Services.

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Changing The Face of Assisted Living

I like to refer to Áegis as the “Four Seasons of Assisted Living.” With beautifully designed buildings, diverse and evolving programs that enhance residents’ longevity, and a devoted staff, Áegis is vastly different than other facilities in this industry. Using innovative methods, I work to inspire employees to strive for and deliver exceptional service. It’s a big mission, and it’s what sets Áegis apart. Company culture is not a buzzword for me–it is the DNA with which I built Áegis Living.

Treat Them Like Family

"Hire the right people, provide the right training and offer them the best culture to create overwhelmingly delighted employees. If you take care of your employees, your employees will take care of you."

-Colleen Clark

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Longevity Seeker
My focus is changing the perception around getting older - we are defined by our contribution, not our age.  Aging should be a celebration, not a final destination.
I pursue longevity in my work, my personal health, my mentorship, my writing, and my philanthropy. Join me as a Wellness Warrior and let's Live Long and Live Strong together.

Blogs

30 Summers More

Articles

Free Resources

Podcasts

Social Media

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Tiny Check
Culture Curator

Winterfest

Wisdom Diaries

E.P.I.C.

True Productions

30 Summers More

March for Civility

Whether it’s through writing books or plays, producing films, giving live presentations and lectures, or collecting art, it is my passion to create and share the spirit of creativity, civility, and legacy with everyone in my community.

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Philanthropist

At the heart of true leadership Is mentoring and giving back.

I grew up poor; many days with not enough money for food. At our lowest point, my mother stole potatoes from work and said something to me that has stuck with me throughout my life, “Dwayne, no matter what you do, don’t ever forget where you came from and that you had to eat potato soup every day for a week. When you have employees, be there for them, and they will always be there for you.”

 

I never forgot. Today, I support more than 70 local and global charities and have founded four of my own including The Potato Soup Foundation, The Queen Bee Café, The D1 Foundation, and the Clark Family Foundation.

The Clark Family Legacy Foundation

The Potato Soup Foundation

The D-One Foundation

Queen Bee Café

Galileo Foundation

 
 
Let's Connect on Social
@dwaynejclark