Employee Spotlight: Dwayne Owens, Kanuga Property Manager

11.20.2019 - Kanuga Stories

Part of the allure and beauty of Kanuga is the grounds. Surrounded by mountains and forests with miles of trails, the property is often called a “thin place” by guests and employees.

The care of Kanuga’s expansive property is overseen by Property Manager Dwayne Owens. Dwayne joined Kanuga earlier this year and has spent the last several months putting his expansive knowledge to use on campus.

Sharing a Lifetime of Skills and Knowledge

Dwayne has almost twenty years of experience as a farm manager, operations manager, and grounds maintenance worker. “Before Kanuga, I managed a corporate sod production operation,” says Dwayne. “I have spent most of my life farming and managing land. The skills I learned while farming are utilized every day at Kanuga.”

While he readily admits that no two weeks are the same, he and his team always rise to the challenge. “I am most proud of the amazing staff I have put together. I have rearranged some of the veterans to new positions and have acquired new, skilled employees. Together, I have one amazing team!”

Working for the Greater Good

Every week, Dwayne and his crew are hard at work taking care of tasks both large and small. From managing the water supply and power grid to overseeing routine maintenance of 150 plus structures, no two days are alike.

The variety and opportunities to serve are part of what drew Dwayne to join Kanuga. “I liked the idea that my career could be shifted toward a non-commercial direction,” said Dwayne. “At Kanuga, my skill-set can be recognized and used for the greater good in a meaningful way.”

An Unexpected Blessing

With the holiday season approaching, Dwayne reveals a particularly magical moment he recently had on staff. “I was put in charge of Christmas at Kanuga, and I was stressed about how I was going to acquire trees and wreaths due to a recent tree shortage in our area,” says Dwayne. “There was a knock on my office door and there stood one of my fellow Kanuga team members, a true Christmas angel. She asked me to come outside to her truck. In the back sat 41 wreaths she had made—the exact number I needed to order. People can tell what a special place Kanuga is, but you will never understand until you experience it for yourself.”