Employer of the Year
For over 160 years, The News-Gazette has delivered national and local news to Champaign-Urbana and its surrounding communities. It is actively involved in the community and has relationships with several local organizations, including DSC. Since 2010, the paper has hired six individuals with disabilities. As DSC’s Employment Specialist, Dick Montgomery notes, The News-Gazette team “has honored their commitment to people with disabilities by continuing to help three individuals maintain long-term work success in their business.” It is because of organizations like The News-Gazette that people with disabilities can achieve success in the workplace. Congratulations to The News-Gazette and thank you for your commitment to our community!
Public Service Award
Knights of Columbus-Rantoul Council #4450
This award is not given on an annual basis; it is only given when a group has made a significant impact on the lives of individuals or families who receive DSC’s services. The Knights of Columbus have gone above and beyond and we are happy to present them with this award. The Knights of Columbus is the world’s largest Catholic fraternal service organization. The Rantoul Council has a unique relationship with DSC. They involve people we serve in all that they do, they help us raise money for our consumers, they purchased furniture for DSC’s group home in Rantoul, and they even let DSC use their building for a couple of weeks when we had a water main break at our Developmental Training location. We feel very lucky to have a partnership with this incredible organization. Thank you for all of your hard work, Knights of Columbus Rantoul!
Special Recognition Award
This award is not given on an annual basis; it is only given when a recipient stands out above the rest. Our Group Home Manager, Essa, truly stood out above the rest. Essa has been employed as a Direct Service Professional at DSC since 1989 and in his 27 years of service, he has worked in the Residential Program the entire time. Essa’s co-workers say that he is attentive, dependable, and compassionate. Essa’s favorite part of working at DSC is the opportunity to change and affect lives. He explains, “There is nothing more gratifying than helping a consumer actualize their goal or objective and improve the quality of their life.” When he is not helping out at DSC, Essa loves to be outdoors, spend time with friends, and play soccer. Thank you Essa for all of your hard work!
Personal Achievement Award
Mr. John Decker Garret
John (who is affectionately known as Decker) is kind, respectful, and when he decides what he wants, he makes it happen! Decker started his experience at DSC in 2012 at the Clark Road Location. While working at Clark Road, Decker decided that he wanted an additional job in the community. Decker actualized this goal in February, when he secured a job at the Marketplace Mall. Decker now works at three community locations: the Marketplace Mall, Clark Road, and the Spurlock Museum. Decker is making positive change in his life and fulfilling his goal of working in the community. Congratulations to Decker for achieving his goals and for receiving the 2016 Personal Achievement Award!