Living Well is dedicated to our staff and building a supportive work culture. With that in mind, this year we are launching a DSP Shoutout program to honor one Direct Support Professional each week of the year. We have 500 staff, and 52 weeks, so while we cannot get them all right away—we have years to keep trying! In addition to a short feature on each DSP, we will be giving them a small gift card and certificate to show our appreciation.
Brace works at our West Emerson house and is an incredible employee and all-around good guy. Mike Polski lives at the house and his brother Steve has this to say, “My family has never had a bad experience with a care provider at Living Well in 50 years, and we are so grateful for all they do.” Adding, “Brace is an unbelievable Human being. All the things he does for the folks that live there is amazing.” We agree, Steve, he really is wonderful.
Congrats, Brace! We adore you. Please take a moment to read about Brace Gotshalk, our inaugural DSP Shoutout recipient.
Name: Brace Gotshalk
Number of years with LWDS: 3
Hobbies/Interests: Reading, Climbing, Video games, Tabletop games
Education: BA in Economics
Job Experience/History: Miscellaneous jobs throughout college (temp assistant at a solar installation company, IT Help Desk at UH Hilo, Lab Manager at UH Hilo, secretary at Hawaii Island Chamber of Commerce), Target remodel team / inbound operations specialist for six months, DSP and APM at Living Well for three years.
Favorite part of the job: Spending time entertaining housemates on days where they are happy and energetic. That can mean outings or walks, or just dancing and playing games in the living room.
Favorite or craziest work story: I’m terrible with stories, but one of my favorite experiences was getting to take the housemates to Night to Shine in 2020. All four of my people served wanted to go, and it was special to get to see them celebrated so thoroughly at the event.
What is your motivation for coming to work: A sense of responsibility for the wellbeing of the people served and to the other staff at my house. I want to do my part to improve the lives of the people I work with.
What made you apply: A connection from college recommended the company and helped me get in touch with the HR team to talk about job opportunities.
What made you stay: My boss, Mary White. She did a lot to help me transition to working here and has gone above and beyond to look after my health and well-being. I want to help and support her in return.
What would you tell people interested in joining the team: It’s a demanding but rewarding field, and the people at Living Well are excellent. It’s well worth it to work here.
When not at work what do you like to do for fun: I go climbing and lifting, watch events and shows, and play video games, both alone and with friends.
Want to nominate a DSP? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to nominate a Living Well Disability Service DSP. Thank you!