Describe your current position and what led to your job.
In my current position I serve as Senior Advisor for Academic Affairs. I am responsible for overseeing NHPS’ Internship Program, in which we recruit undergraduate and graduate students to work on meaningful projects in child health promotion and give them a professional learning experience for a semester. As part of this program, I help NHPS to foster collaborative working relationships with the institutions of higher education in Delaware to work on projects of mutual benefit.
I have been with NHPS for almost seven years and helped to shape the programs that we do with community partners to help children and their families to live healthy lifestyles. Before this experience, I worked for almost 30 years with the State of Delaware in the number of leadership and management roles, most of which were with the Delaware Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families, including serving as the division director for Management Services and for Child Mental Health.
What has been the most rewarding/challenging moment in your career?
The most rewarding and challenging moments in my career have been the wonderful opportunities I have had to create organizations and programs and to shape policy to help children of all circumstances to live healthier lives. The most notable of these experiences were being a part of the leadership teams to develop the State Children’s Department and the creation of the Health and Prevention Services division for Nemours.
What is the best career advice you have received?
The best career advice I have ever received is to be myself and never “burn any bridges” because you never know when you will have to walk across them to take an important step in your life.
What would you recommend to someone interested in working in your field?
In the field of public administration, I would recommend getting as many field experiences as possible and take advantage of every opportunity to learn and grow even if they seem scary. These experiences will shape the contributions you will make to improve the quality of life for society.
What skills are necessary or what prepared you the most for your career?
The skills that prepared me the most for my career are being able to:
- Develop authentic relationships with the people that I work with both as a professional and as a volunteer in my community;
- Express myself in verbal and written forms in ways that truly communicate my ideas and values;
- Making time for people and valuing the contributions of everyone;
- Being a servant leader and leading by example, especially during times of resource scarcity;
- Having the courage to change and to be open to ideas and input that were different from my own;
- Continuously learn and grow with every opportunity;
- Being committed to lifelong learning and making a difference in the lives of others everyday.
What professional associations have aided in your professional development?
My involvement with the University of Delaware’s School of Public Policy and Administration alumni association, the United Alumni of Urban Affairs, has been one of the most helpful professional associations in my career. Being an active member for many years has helped me stay connected with opportunities to continue to grow and learn in my areas of professional interest and maintain contacts with people working in my field. The other associations that have been very helpful to me have been serving on the governing boards of my church and other nonprofit organizations dedicated to helping improve the quality of life in my community. By serving in these organizations I have met people that I might not have worked with otherwise and expanded my network of relationships that have enriched my professional and personal interests and ultimate development.
Back to Spotlight on UD Alumni