For Pete Smith (Choices In Community Living) it’s all about giving 100% plus in everything you do. He did that most recently when he competed in the 5K part of this year’s Flying Pig Marathon in Cincinnati, completing his run in 2 hours, 41 minutes. He ran his race alongside one of his co-workers from Encon, Chris Evans, who completed the race in 2 hours, 39 minutes.
Pete has been at this job at Encon for 19 years, working in the shipping department, where he has earned the respect and friendship of his co-workers. It was one of his Encon co-workers who paid for his hotel and other expenses so that he could participate in the Flying Pig Marathon. Others are there to make sure he is always remembered at Christmas and on his birthday. He is a hard-working, responsible, dedicated and loyal part of the Encon team.
Pete, who is 42 years old, is an all around athlete in addition to being a stellar employee. He enjoys golf and has won state titles in Special Olympics tournaments. He has also won a state title in Special Olympics softball. He participates in swimming, basketball, track and field, bowling and soccer. He received a 2004 regional Erin Ritchey Memorial Award for his athletic achievements. He was inducted into the Developmental Disabilities Hall of Fame in 1997.
He has been a part of our Choices extended family since 1993, where he is supported by our Semi-Independent Living (SIL) team. With the support of his SIL team, his job at Encon and his own work ethic, he his living out his American dream. He owns his own home. He and SIL staff Kay Bowman have been working hard to finish some re-modeling in his home. He plans to show it off soon with an open house.
That American dream, his American dream, has been made complete not only with his home, but with his job in the community, participation and success in athletic competition, a supportive Choices family and the best of friends, including that one who ran beside him on that big day in Cincinnati.
Note: For more information about hiring employees with disabilities and what they can bring to your company/business, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask about Choices Supported Employment program.