How long have you worked in drug and alcohol addiction treatment and recovery?

“I have been working in the addiction treatment field for 15 months.”

What has your experience been like?

“My experience has been great in this field. I look forward to coming to work every morning, which was something I haven’t experienced before. Seeing people change before your eyes  – and continue to grow – is very rewarding.”

What are some of your responsibilities?

“My main responsibility is client care, and making sure the clients are comfortable and accommodated to the best of my ability. Working with our administrative and clinical team, I also assist in the planning of daily activities for our clients. I always try to lead by example in showing our clients what it means to be accountable.”

What is the most important thing to keep in mind when working with people recovering from drug and alcohol addiction?

“The most important thing to keep in mind is to remember where I came from in regard to my own recovery and to always stay humble and grateful. Again, that’s why it’s so important to lead by example.”

How has going through recovery given you an advantage?

“Being in recovery is amazing. It has given me a second chance at life. I never would have thought that after what I’ve personally been through that life could have gotten better. I am actually happy today; I have a purpose in my life; and I have a passion for what I do.”

“When I first started my recovery, I had no hope and had lost everything. I saw no light at the end of the tunnel. Working in this field is very rewarding. I am able to empathize with our clients because I was once in their shoes. I have experienced drug and substance abuse treatment and understand what they are going through. Being in recovery and working with people with dual diagnosis helps build genuine, lasting relationships. Relating to my clients here in South Florida, working with them daily and watching them grow is an experience like none other.”

How is Cornerstone different from other treatment centers you’ve experienced?

“Cornerstone Recovery Center in Fort Lauderdale is a very warm, caring environment. It’s like a family atmosphere where everyone helps one another and cares for each other.  That’s why it’s so great to be a part of it. We treat our clients like people – not like numbers. Cornerstone’s commitment to our clients is like nothing I’ve seen before.”

How has Cornerstone made an impact on your life?

“Cornerstone has helped me grow as a person and given me a chance to grow in a field that I love to work in. This organization continues to teach me new things about treatment – and myself – on a daily basis. I am very grateful to Cornerstone and their staff for taking time from their busy days to teach me how to better myself in this field. Working here is like being with family, which reflects how our staff treats its staff and its clients.”

Could you tell us about your career plans?

“Overall, I want to continue to grow in this field. I am currently finishing up my college education, which is something I never thought I would have done. I have even looked into possibly enrolling in a master’s program for social work or psychology. With more education, I feel that I will be able to further myself in this field and better myself as an individual.”

How about telling us more about yourself and what you enjoy doing in your free time?

“I was born in Buffalo, New York and moved to Florida when I was four years old. I grew up in the Palm Beach Gardens/Jupiter area and went to high school at William T. Dwyer and attended Palm Beach Community College. I came to the Fort Lauderdale area when I needed a change in my life and have resided here ever since. The change was very nerve racking at first, but it was one of the best decisions I ever made, because of the many drug and alcohol addiction recovery resources here in Broward County.”

“Living in South Florida, I enjoy anything having to do with the beach. I especially love going spearfishing and fishing with friends – and any activity on a boat. I grew up appreciating the outdoors, so I love hunting and fishing. I like to travel, see different cultures and meet new people. I also enjoy reading and playing chess. And, of course, I treasure my time with my family and friends, and still visit Palm Beach every month to see my mom and brother.”