Dawn knows exactly how young people feel when they sit down with a counselor for the first time, because she remembers how it felt for her. Even more important, she recognizes how working with counselors helped her navigate the many challenges of adolescence and young adulthood.

That’s what led her to pursue a degree in human services. Her faith guided her to bring her professional expertise to Care to Change. When you ask her about the most satisfying aspects of her work, she points to the visible changes she sees in teens who are initially reluctant to open up. The first time they walk in, their heads hang down and they volunteer as little information as possible. After a few sessions, they’re eager to begin and talk comfortably and openly about what’s happening in their lives.

Dawn and her husband, Len, have two teenagers of their own, so she also understands how difficult it can be to raise children in today’s world. The dual perspective of remembering how it felt to be a kid and viewing those feelings through the eyes of a parent allow her to help both young people and their parents work through challenges. When she isn’t at work, you’ll find her out on the lake with the kids, appreciating the view from her back porch, feeling the breeze in her Jeep, or just basking in some retail therapy at Target.