Tuesday, November 13, 2012

My first blog

Here I am. I sit in my home office and look south, out a round window looking at the glorious Catskill Mountains, and I am about to begin a new life. I have started a new life in a sense with the birth of my daughter exactly 3 years ago and the delightful marriage to my wife of 6 years.  But this new PROFESSIONAL life is all about a movement to improve the lives of well over 1,200,000 people in the United States who call themselves Direct Support Professionals.

Just a few days ago I resigned from a director position at a fairly large human services agency that supports people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.  It was time for me to fly. I was at this organization 10 years and trained and educated well over 2000 Direct Support Professionals (D.S.P.) over those years.  In that time, I came to realize that I had great influence in helping the incoming "entry-level" understand that the work they were about to enter, Direct Support, was and is a complex and challenging PROFESSION; please take a moment to view the website in this link to prove that being a D.S.P. is a challenging and rewarding career;

The Profession of Direct Support; A Primer 

This blog will be an ongoing look into the mind and heart of ME, a trainer and educator of Direct Support Professionals and be a diary of sorts of my new beginnings as a national/international consultant and advocate for and with Direct Support Professionals.  I am calling the blog Training Wheels because it feels like I am in need of using them, metaphorically, as I meet DSPs and realize that they are often at the very beginning stages of learning about their profession and they also are new to a field that is finally beginning to get rolling in the United States. 

I hope you enjoy the ramblings and ideas that will come as regularly as I can post and I really would LOVE an ongoing comment and conversation string.  So, here I go...I am entering into a new world of blogging and a new world of being self-employed.  



  1. John
    You are a Great guy and wish you all the luck with self employment, You have changed the way we think here in the Ky state , You have given true meaning to the DSP'S here, As we are gearing up with our training classes. I look forward to reading your blogs, keep up the good work and may God Bless you in all your efforts.
    Gail Cashion CLL Kentucky

  2. I have to say, if you are half as successful at being self employed and blogging as you are at consulting and advocating for and with DSPs, you are going to be very wealthy in many ways, sir. Good luck; you are off to a wonderful start.
    Corrinne LaFleur, DSP, New York

  3. Thank you Corrinne and Gail.....I hope to post here as much as I can and only hope to meet your expectations. You both know my passion for Direct Support and I really believe in what I am doing.....People with disabilities deserve professionals in their lives who are competent and ethical. Direct Support Professionals deserve recognition, support and development. I will be damned if DSPs continue to be disregarded and treated as second/third class para-professionals......you are NOT! Keep following and spread the word....the revolution has started.....yup, you are part of it my friends...all my love...

  4. We are so lucky to have wonderful teachers and torchbearers, John. Yes, DSPs deserve as much support and recognition- and definitely development, as the new ideas and techniques are thought of- as the people they serve, as well as the careers whose track paths they run alongside; the engines have been started, John, now keep on trucking, full speed ahead! You have many people behind YOU to support you and push you forward.