REGION: 6 – Bernard Fineson
DSP Nomination Name: Chantay Richardson
Position: Developmental Assistant III
Years of Service: 24
THE NOMINEE’S FAVORITE OR MOST REWARDING PART ABOUT BEING A DSP:
Chantay Richardson says her favorite thing about being a direct support professional is that she loves working directly with people and being supportive to staff. She says she always keeps it professional. Chantay adds that she loves making a difference in a person’s everyday life and enjoys putting a smile on the face of the people she supports and her peers, as well as other staff. She says, “It’s a hard job, a balancing act –somebody has to do it.”
Tonya Flippin-Jackson, Team Treatment Leader and Chantay’s supervisor said Chantay was selected as Direct Support Professional of the Year because she stepped up to the plate and into the role of Developmental Assistant III (DA III) during a very challenging time of leadership and supervision at her worksite.
“She was able to rally and encourage colleagues and other staff during a rough patch of doubt, confusion and conflict,” Flippin-Jackson continues. “What better way to show who you are and what heights you can reach in the face of challenge and controversy.
“Chantay was able to mend working relationships between staff and encourage them in a way to refocus on the task of keeping the worksite afloat during COVID,” Flippin-Jackson says. She’s shown significant growth and maturity to lead as an extension of myself. If for any reason I am not there, I’m fully confident in Chantay’s character, judgment and ability to continue day-to-day progress of the unit and all its multifaceted dimensions, without fail.”
Flippin-Jackson says she has watched Chantay develop into the role of DAIII from direct support assistant and at every level, was able to see visceral change in her.
“She stepped up and into these roles and went above and beyond,” Flippin-Jackson adds. “Chantay is not ashamed of not knowing something and will always press to find out answers or explore other means of getting tasks done by thinking outside the box. She makes it a mission to build positive rapport with subordinate supervisors, direct care, as well as with the clinical team. As a whole, she is most definitely a team player.”
Besides building relationships amongst staff by promoting honesty, trust and encouragement, Flippin-Jackson says Chantay has developed strong connections to some of the most challenging persons in her care; bonds that are everlasting, meaningful and not easily broken.
“Chantay has played a major part in the trajectory of what the unit has become today,” she concludes.