Paul Oseso, the general manager at Aegis of Napa, said he enjoys coming to work every day “because I’m making a difference in peoples’ lives.”
“To me, it means so much,” said Oseso. “It gives me so much satisfaction.”
Oseso is originally from Kenya, where he began his career in the hotel industry.
His first hotel job in the U.S. was in San Francisco at the former Pan Pacific Hotel. Before moving to Napa, he also lived in Palo Alto and Santa Clara.
Aegis of Napa offers assisted living and memory care in apartment-style homes.
1. How many residents do you have at Aegis of Napa?
We have 48 apartments. In any given time, we normally have about 54 to 60 residents.
2. How did you get into senior care?
I served on the board of a similar business in Palo Alto while managing hotels and fell in love with serving the elder population.
3. What was your first job?
After high school and before going to college, I did a vocational job at the office of the President in Kenya. The position entailed clerical duties in the records office. The president then was Daniel Moi.
4. What’s the worst job you ever had?
Assistant general manager at one hotel group. Although I worked with some wonderful people, the company was in the middle of metamorphosis and the employee morale was very low.
When two elephants fight, it is the grass beneath that suffers.
5. What is the biggest challenge your business has faced?
Getting the right caliber of staff. In this industry, it is pertinent to get workers who are passionate about taking care of the elderly. We are very diligent on whom we employ and it sometimes takes a while to get the right people on board.
6. What is one thing you hope to accomplish in your lifetime that you haven’t yet?
Own a five-star hotel. I once owned two motels in San Jose. My goal then and now is to one day own a five-star hotel.
We sold the hotels as the partnership did not go well but I took the experience as a good lesson to prepare me towards achieving the aforementioned goal.
7. Who do you most admire in the business world?
Dr. Gail Wagner, a recently retired oncologist and Founder of Tiba Foundation San Francisco. She selflessly helped transform healthcare in a rural community in Kenya that continues to save thousands of lives every year.
8. Which three people would you most like to have dinner with?
Socrates, Thomas Edison and Nelson Mandela (because of) Socrates’ wisdom, Edison’s indefatigable efforts of making the light bulb and looking at failures as opportunities and Mandela’s nonchalant tactics of unifying a divided country by using sports (rugby) to bring them together.
9. What’s something people might be surprised to know about you?
I was a sprinter in college and broke the college record in 100, 200 and 400 meters in one season.
10. Do you get back to Kenya very often?
I do. I was there in October. I am going back at the end of June. My dad is 93 and my mom is 91 and they retired to their farm in the western part of Kenya, by Lake Victoria, near where Obama’s father’s family comes from. Obama’s father and my father knew each other. They both worked for the Kenyan government.