Building chief at John Knox Village retires

LEAVING WITH HONORS — John Knox Village’s Joe Rudolph, third from left, receives a send-off from his fellow executives at the retirement center in Orange City. From left are Ken Behnke, director of operations; Jerry Jaques, president of Riverwood Retirement Management Inc.; Rudolph; and Joe Trainor, executive director of JKV. Rudolph is retiring after joining the senior staff of JKV in 1991.

LEAVING WITH HONORS — John Knox Village’s Joe Rudolph, third from left, receives a send-off from his fellow executives at the retirement center in Orange City. From left are Ken Behnke, director of operations; Jerry Jaques, president of Riverwood Retirement Management Inc.; Rudolph; and Joe Trainor, executive director of JKV. Rudolph is retiring after joining the senior staff of JKV in 1991.

PHOTO COURTESY JOHN KNOX VILLAGE

After more than a quarter of a century of upgrading and expanding John Knox Village in Orange City, one of its senior executives is stepping down.

Having planned and overseen the capital growth of the retirement center since 1991, Joe Rudolph is leaving to savor his own golden years. What is next for someone who stayed busy designing and making John Knox Village what it is today?

“The next stage is spending more time with my family, doing more traveling, and playing more tennis,” Rudolph said. “I was hired on as their general contractor, which turned out to be a very pleasant surprise.”

Rudolph owned a construction business in Orange City before he took charge of JKV’s building projects, a task that became a full-time occupation.

“I supervised the construction of Majestic Oaks,” Rudolph said proudly, referring to the community’s 96,000-square-foot residential and medical complex.

Rudolph left the post of director of planning and development Jan. 1, but he noted he has agreed to serve as a consultant for JKV.

“I was going to retire in 2015,” he said, adding he stayed on to complete the development of the community’s Holly Branch, also known as Holly Villas, on the east side of the JKV campus.

Holly Villas consists of 20 duplexes, with a total of 40 dwellings. Under Rudolph’s supervision, much of Holly Villas was sold out before some of the homes were constructed.

As Rudolph retires, he leaves on the drawing board the vision of another neighborhood, this one on the village’s west side. JKV bought Pine Forest Mobile Home Park, near Trafford Avenue, and part of that property is to become Valencia Landing.

“It will be similar to the 3-bedroom/2-bath models, and it will have more of a Florida look,” Rudolph said, describing Valencia Landing. “There will be 60 homes, so there will be 30 duplexes.”

Besides his landmark — literally — accomplishments at JKV, Rudolph remembers his record of community service.

“I was president of the local Chamber of Commerce. I was on the board of the DeLand Area Chamber of Commerce. I was on the Volusia County PLDRC [Planning and Land Development Regulation Commission], the [Volusia] Growth Management Commission, and [the county] Code Enforcement Board,” he said. “It was nice to have the John Knox Village supporting my community involvement.”

At 71, Rudolph said he is looking forward to retirement.

“It’s been a rewarding experience, being able to offer the finest in retirement living in the state of Florida,” he concluded.

JKV covers 185 acres on Orange City’s east side. Orange City annexed the retirement community in 2001. Approximately 800 people make their home in JKV, and the nonprofit company is Orange City’s second-largest employer, with a payroll of 600. Florida Hospital Fish Memorial is the city’s biggest employer.

— Al Everson, al@beacononlinenews.com

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