Staff Spotlight: Dana Poplin

Having just finished college with a major in Sociology, Dana was working at a local restaurant when her friend told her about his job in Employment Services. He referred her to EBI and during her interview she liked what she heard about the people she’d be working with and the mission and values of the agency. Today, working as an Independent Living Skills Specialist, she describes her job as exceeding even the very high expectations she had after her first interview.

When asked what she likes best about her job, Dana quickly responds. “Everything!”she says, and then describes the impact her consumers have had on her life as she works with them to develop skills that increase independence. As for challenges, Dana understands the importance of being “culturally competent” with people from all communities, and she credits EBI with incorporating this goal in the work environment.

Dana recently completed EBI’s Career Advancement Training, an intensive 30 hour program designed to prepare direct support workers for supervisory roles. Dana left the training understanding what it takes to be a good supervisor, and with a strong desire to assume the responsibilities of a supervisory position at EBI. Her biggest “takeaway”from the training? How critical it is for a supervisor to be “in the trenches with the team.” In her words, “You’re only as good as your team.”

How would the consumers she works with describe her? She gets things done, isn’t judgmental, makes herself available, and greatly values being part of a helping community, through her church and her job.

A few fun facts about Dana….

  • She was born in Japan and lived there for two weeks before moving to the United States.
  • She loves to go to concerts and plays guitar, bass, drums, and piano.
  • You might see Dana at one of the many sporting events she goes to or at a poetry slam.
  • She’s been writing poems since middle school!

Thank you, Dana, for the work you do!