My Story: Derrick Glass

More than 20 years ago, Derrick Glass's vocational rehabilitation counselor referred him to Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont for a vocational evaluation to assess his work skills, seek services and programs that could help him become more independent, and learn the skills necessary to become a successful employee. Derrick has been diagnosed with high-functioning autism, but he thrives in his work environment by offering outstanding customer service and valuing the contributions of the individuals he encounters.

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My Story: Sarah Pine

My name is Sarah Pine. I am a single mother of three children, a grateful recovering addict with six years clean, and I have a learning disability. I grew up in an alcoholic home and started using drugs with my mother when I was nine years old.

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My Story: Jose Luis Robledo

I found myself at my lowest point when I lost my father while still in high school. As a result, I felt the burden of needing to step up and fill my father’s shoes by taking care of my mom. Unfortunately, medical issues made this difficult for me to do. Eventually, I was told I was disabled and unable to work so I attempted to get on disability income with no success.

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My Story: Charles Jackson

I love my family. But I was failing them. I wanted some quick money, and I got mixed up in illegal drug activity. I hurt everyone I loved – including me. It cost me a lot, 26 months in federal prison. But more than that, it cost me my ability to work. When I got out, no one would hire someone with a felony record. Every job I applied for said no, even if I was the best-qualified guy.

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My Story: Charles Gourlay

Let me introduce myself, my name is Charles A. Gourlay, and I’m a computer salvage/material handler at Goodwill in Gary, IN. Shortly after birth I was diagnosed with spinal meningitis which resulted in total loss of hearing by the age of two.

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My Story: Patrice Blackstock

I became a mom at the age of 15. I hadn’t any real guidance because my mom was often sick. I got involved with the wrong crowd very early in life. I just wanted to belong, be loved and appreciated.

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My Story: Crystal Jacobs

My name is Crystal Jacobs and I was born deaf. Much of my life and the decisions I’ve made have been regulated by fear. Fear of being different, fear of failure, fear of feeling alone. Most people don’t think the divide between hearing and deaf to be that big of a deal, but it’s something I had a lot of trouble with. I’m not confident in the way I talk or sound, and this caused a lot of issues for me and how I interacted with people who can hear.

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My Story: Erin Starnes

Erin Starnes is the director of workforce development for Goodwill Industries of Tenneva (Kingsport, TN). She also worked closely with Matthew McCurry was recently featured on the My Story blog.

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My Story: Matthew McCurry

Goodwill Industries of Tenneva (Kingsport, TN) program participant and employee Matthew McCurry shares how his life has changed since being introduced to the organization.

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My Story: Patricia “Pachi” McLeod

My name is Pachi McLeod. As the Hispanic Services Manager [at Goodwill Industries of Southern Rivers (Columbus GA)], I get to provide services for the community, but I also get to support the bilingual staff at their different locations, and I get to be a kind of the bridge between the Hispanics and non-Hispanics alike.

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