« April 2007 | Main | June 2007 »

May 31, 2007

Karen Wellert, Community Service Diva

All of my clients are outstanding people, and Karen Wellert is no exception. Yesterday, she and Gov. Janet Napolitano received awards presented by Arizona Woman magazine.

See Wellert and the governor in the picture to your left.

Napolitano was named Arizona Woman of the Year at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa in Phoenix. Wellert, president and CEO of Adultcare Assistance, was named winner of the magazine's Golden Heart of Business award.

Here's what Karen said in response to her award...

It seems that the more grateful I am, the more I have to be thankful for!

On Wednesday, May 30, I attended The Who’s Who in Business Awards luncheon at the Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa. Arizona Woman’s magazine presented and honored two women who have changed their community for the better. Gov. Janet Napolitano was awarded The Woman of The Year award and The Golden Heart of Business Award was awarded to me, yes me, I can't believe it. It is an honor to be selected, from the long list of nominees, from a group of such distinguished powerful women.

There are no better words to describe how I feel right now, other than grateful. I'm grateful that I can run a business that allows me to live and work my values. I'm able to extend a helping hand to our seniors, ensuring they are cared for with dignity, comfort and security. It’s been my great joy and mission for more than 35 years. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunities I have to provide guidance and leadership to other non-profit business through my service on several boards and advisory councils.

I'm so grateful for the tender dedication of my employees. It’s a privilege to lead the most committed caring work force in the Valley. They're very passionate about the caliber of care that we give to our clients. I'm thankful for their sweet commitment to both the business, and the spirit of what we do for our senior clients.

Thank God for our beautiful country, for my family and friends, for my freedom and good health. Yes, I have much to be grateful for. So thank you for allowing me to share my appreciation for the recognition of this Golden Heart of Business Award. I'm grateful beyond words.

Karen Wellert, CSA
President and CEO
Adultcare Assistance Homecare

2006 Arizona Woman Who's Who Top Business - Home Healthcare
2006 Ranking Arizona Magazine-Top Ten Arizona Home Care Agencies
2005 Golden Heart of Business-Finalist, Arizona Woman's Magazine
2005 Community Service Award-Northwest Valley Chamber of Commerce
2004 Business of the Year-Northwest Valley Chamber of Commerce

"Celebrating Over 10 Years of Service to Seniors"
Sun City, Sun City West, Sun City Grand, Surprise, Peoria,
Glendale, Litchfield Park and the Greater NW Valley

10404 W Coggins. Suite 108
Sun City AZ. 85351
Phone: 623-977-2223
Fax: 623-977-8764

May 18, 2007

When it's not okay to criticize presentation

Have you ever noticed society's tendency to make fun of people in the public eye who may have some form of what we refer to as a learning disability (LD)? These critiques include the way people speak, pronounce certain words, or respond on an ad lib basis, etc. If the speakers don't follow the "norm," we often see or hear the slightest suggestion of stupidity. Or dullness...

Many famous people have (or had) attention deficit and learning disorders. This includes Leonardo da Vinci, Whoopi Goldberg, Albert Einstein, Edward James Olmos, Walt Disney, Cher, William "Bill" Hewlett, and Stephen J. Cannell.

If someone shows the symptoms of--say--Tourette's Syndrome, it's clear that there are neurological issues involved. But what about the more invisible issues faced by many people? Famous or not. And those who speak, write, test, and receive information differently than the "norm"?

Let's talk about me. Early on, I tested with a fairly healthy IQ. But I could never believe that was valid because of the way my mind and body functioned. Or refused to function. I lacked perfect coordination. I had problems with lengthy verbal instruction. As a young person, I equated intelligence with great physical coordination and the ability to speak and respond quickly and clearly on any subject.

I've since learned a few things. Many intelligent people, including me, can't always articulate their thoughts well on a spontaneous basis. When I was in school, I also had a frustrating time with homework. I dreaded tests, especially those that were given verbally.

Because of issues like these, I was not an "A" student. So I chose, sometimes, to be a clown. I drew attention away from my disabilities by being lighthearted. Silly. I didn't think in terms of disabilities: I just knew I wasn't like most other people. I disliked physical education classes and participation in sports. I usually failed at eye-hand games like ping pong, tennis, and softball. It wasn't that people made fun of me: I made fun of myself.

Don't get me wrong: I also had a lot of fun in school. (I still have fun!) I was drawn toward musical and dramatic activities, school politics, and peer groups. I could memorize music and dialogue flawlessly. But forget dancing. I shouldn't say that: I could waltz well.

I was convinced that I'd never make it through college, and I didn't. (How wonderful that today there are so many technological tools to help people who process information with difficulty. And determination helps!) Later, in the workforce, I learned to always take notes when someone gave verbal commands of any length. That's still true.

I've been involved in many community organizations, and have even led some. I'm not always quick on my feet. If someone suddenly confronts me in a negative way, I need a few moments (or longer) to be able to see the issue with balance. Sometimes I need to sit quietly and analyze a discussion before I have something concrete to contribute. I often envied people whose minds and conversations go at the speed of light.

In conversations, I sometimes think ahead. My mind moves to the next subject before the speaker is finished with the current subject. And if I get in a hurry (that's one of my gifts), I might just trip over my tongue.

My life is, then, influenced by the way my brain processes information. I often think in kind of a matrix, and I often think in pictures. How have I overcome many of my challenges? That's a different story for a different time.

My point? I've seen too much ridicule of people in the public eye who have some type of learning disorder. When we listen to leaders who are in ad lib situations, we need to focus on issues, not delivery. It's healthy to disagree with what a person says, but it's not okay to criticize that person's inability to communicate like Walter Cronkite, Larry King, or Barbara Walters. I recommend we give grace to people when it comes to presentation.