Bernadette May

Bernadette May

Associate Director

1. What is your job role at Family Service Association?

My role is the Associate Director of FSA. I oversee the program supervisors of the other programs and I directly supervise the Outpatient Therapy team.

Why did you choose Family Service Association of Greater Elgin Area?

I have been at FSA for a little over 5 years. This is the best place that I have ever worked. FSA has a strong mission and values that resonate with me. FSA is true to the social work values that I embrace also. We embrace a strong family approach to treatment and we value the families that come here as well as our co-workers and colleagues in the community. I often say that FSA is a comfortably sheltered place to be because everyone that comes here is treated with dignity and respect.

If you had to give a 2-minute elevator speech on what you do every day, what would you say?

Hmmm…this is tough. I often come to work with a plan on what I am going to get done that day and it never really quite works out that way. So, I am much better on the elevator speech of what our agency does. FSA serves the community by meeting the mental health needs of youth and their families. We do this by not only engaging the family in treatment but we also work together with our community partners so that people can achieve the goals they have for themselves.

What is the best part of working in the mental health field?

I am humbled that people allow us to be a part of their lives. They share their joys, sadnesses, vulnerabilities, and successes. I am honored to be a partner in life’s journey.

What is the favorite part of your job?

I love to see the hard work of our clinicians result in good outcomes. I really enjoy meeting with my team for supervision and hearing the stories of the people they serve. I also really enjoy working together with other community members to provide a better system of care for people in need.

Who has had the most influence on your work career?

I have had a lot of influences and am not sure I can name just one. I have learned things from both my good experiences and bad. I thank my parents for my love of work, in general.

If you could meet someone, dead or alive, who would it be?

I have always been fascinated with people who think outside the box. I would love to talk with Stephen Hawking or Elon Musk. Brilliant minds with lots of ambition and a drive to make things different.

If you could pick a superpower what would it be?

I would like to be able to freeze time. There is never enough time in a day!!

Favorite Food?

Pasta. Definitely pasta. Usually with a red sauce or pesto sauce.

Weirdest thing you've ever eaten?

My brother dared me to eat a June beetle and so of course I did. You must do all dares!

What is the most interesting place that you've visited?

So, I’m probably supposed to pick a town or a country, but I’m going to say the Federal Reserve. For a project in Social Work School, we went to visit the Federal Reserve and how they manage the money of the USA was incredibly fascinating to me.

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