I became a Recovery Educator in April 2009, but since April 2004, I have facilitated or taught PSR classes in W.R.A.P., Self-Advocacy, Healthy Grieving, Understanding Bipolar Disorder, Ready for Change, Stress Management, Expressive Writing/Poetry, Expressive Arts, and various Pre-Vocational Classes at the DuPage County Health Department (DCHD). My classes average 5-10 students, so each gets individualized attention, and the opportunity to express their points of view. I have been able to help facilitate and also witness much growth in many people during that period of time. I have also mentored some of my peers to obtain what they needed to lead classes on their own, e.g. Basic Drawing, Theater, and Arts & Crafts. In February 2010, I was promoted to a PSR Counselor. I believe I have a special talent for sharing my knowledge and experiences so that others may learn and benefit from them.
I am an ambassador for the arts, am President of The Awakenings Project, where I have curated, organized exhibits, and written grants for this internationally recognized organization for the past 14 years. I worked full-time for nearly 20 years with Bell Laboratories, now Alcatel-Lucent, while living with and openly speaking about bipolar disorder. While working full-time, I finished my B.S. degree, majoring in Computer Science, and graduated in 1986, Magna Cum Laude, from North Central College.
I respect diversity and individual differences, and am open to learning more about all cultures. I speak German, Spanish, and am proficient in American Sign Language. I also illustrated a children’s book entitled, “Coffee, Cream and In Between.” I often document Awakenings Events with PowerPoint slides, and have been prominently featured in several videos and articles produced by various media organizations, describing The Awakenings Project.
I am an effective communicator, both individually and in groups. I have spoken publicly about Awakenings and about mental illnesses for many years. I love my job, my volunteer work for Awakenings, and I love people. I continue to do much public speaking about recovery. I believe I am a beacon of hope and encouragement for the people who receive services at DCHD, for Awakenings artists, for the general public, and I also learn a lot from everyone I come in contact with.
back to top