January 12, 2020 – Judy Richmond, JVS Women to Work Coordinator, and Lori VanWormer, a former program participant stopped by the Fox2 News studios to highlight how this unique program helps transform lives.
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (December 18, 2019) – Josh Eichenhorn, chair of the Board of Trustees of JVS Human Services, has announced the appointment of Paul Blatt to the position of President and Chief Executive Officer, effective March 1, 2020. The appointment follows the earlier announcement of current CEO Leah Rosenbaum’s retirement. Blatt has been with the agency since 2008, serving as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the non-profit for the last five years. JVS Human Services is one of the leading human services agencies in metropolitan Detroit, enhancing the lives of job seekers, people with disabilities and seniors. The agency will impact the lives of more than 13,000 people across the community this year alone. Background information on Paul Blatt can be found here.
“Paul’s passion for helping people, combined with his deep knowledge of JVS and its strengths and opportunities will position the agency for a strong future,” said Eichenhorn. “His vision and collaborative approach will enhance our ability to provide life-changing opportunities to members of our community.”
As Chief Operating Officer, Blatt has been responsible for ensuring the agency’s programmatic fiscal and strategic goals were met and key needs in the metro Detroit community were being addressed. As a strong advocate for people with disabilities, unemployed workers who face challenges and the elderly living with dementia, Blatt has helped implement innovative programs including eCycle Opportunities, an electronic recycling business; and training for fulfillment centers leading to jobs in companies like Amazon and Kroger. Blatt has also worked with both Oakland County and the City of Detroit to secure successful contracts to operate the Waterford Michigan Works! Career Center and a Detroit at Work career center located at Durfee Innovation Society.
In his executive leadership role at JVS, Blatt has been responsible for the success of the 350 staff who deliver and implement the agency’s services. He also works with the Board of Trustees and staff serving as an ambassador for JVS for prospective board and committee members, funding sources and community leaders.
“For the past 11 years, I have had the honor to work with an amazing team who have made a tremendous impact on the people of our community. During this time, I have grown professionally with the guidance of our board and my mentor, current CEO Leah Rosenbaum, who is an outstanding leader,” said Blatt. “I am honored to take on the role of President and CEO of an organization which inspires hope when it is needed most.”
Blatt’s education includes a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology from Michigan State University and a Master of Public Administration Degree from Oakland University.
About JVS Human Services:
Since 1941, JVS Human Services has been a leader in the community helping individuals and businesses achieve their employment goals. The agency helps job seekers jumpstart their careers, provides enriching programs for people with disabilities and helps seniors remain active and engaged in the community. In 2018, JVS Human Services provided services to over 10,000 metro-Detroit residents and assisted more than 1,000 employers seeking job candidates for a variety of occupations and skill levels.
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (December 16, 2019) – Derek Kevra of Fox2 Detroit visited to learn about the importance of properly recycling electronics and the services provided by E-Cycle Opportunities to area businesses and residents.
December 10 – An Amazon Blog entitled, “What a catastrophic injury can’t take away,” tells how Kevin Blackburn of Trenton, who thought he would never work again, came to JVS and found a second chance.
December 9 – The Oakland Press featured the Brown Program in this article about finding joy in the holidays when a family member is living with dementia.
December 4 – The Detroit Jewish News published an article written by JOIN intern Grace Sherbin about her experience last summer working at JARC. The application for next summer’s program is now open, so this story helped get the word out about this great program.
November 28, 2019 – Trained in an innovative program at JVS Human Services, Kevin Blackburn – who in 20015 lost his hands in a powerline accident – has been working and excelling since early July at the Amazon sorting center in Brownstown Township.
October 24, 2019 – JVS Human Services is set to play a key role in job training and placement for Detroiters needing work with a new career center at the Durfee Innovation Society.
JVS on Fox2: Amid surge in online grocery shopping, Amazon and others hiring workers with special needs
Fox 2 News Anchor Roop Raj visited JVS Human Services’ simulated warehouse sorting and fulfillment center in Detroit, where we’re helping people with disabilities get good-paying jobs with Amazon and other employers.
The top story in the Sept. 3 issue of C&G Newspaper’s Southfield Sun features JVS Human Services’ new simulated shopping/fulfillment training program.
The Board of Trustees of JVS Human Services, which is based in Southfield, Mich., has announced that Leah Rosenbaum, President and Chief Executive Officer, has shared her intention to retire effective March 1, 2020. Ms. Rosenbaum has served more than half of her 40-year career in a leadership role at JVS, including six years as CEO and 18 years as Chief Operating Officer. The Executive Committee of the JVS board has established a search committee to assure a smooth transition in leadership.
“We are very proud of JVS Human Services’ excellent reputation for serving our community with heart, and we deeply appreciate Leah’s leadership and dedication to the people we serve,” said Josh Eichenhorn, chair of the JVS Human Services Board of Trustees. “In a culture of caring and respect, Leah has enhanced the agency’s efforts by melding the passion of our board, staff, community partners and funding sources. We wish her the very best in her well-deserved retirement.”
JVS is one of the leading human services agencies in metropolitan Detroit. With services to enhance the lives of job seekers, people with disabilities and seniors, the agency will impact the lives of more than 13,000 people across the community this year alone.
Delivering human services with a dedication to quality and innovation, Ms. Rosenbaum has helped the agency grow from a budget of $8 million to $26 million and a staff of over 400.
Ms. Rosenbaum has helped in many key accomplishments over the years, most notably:
- launching an innovative day program serving people living with dementia while also supporting their family care partners.
- developing person-centered services and community integration for people with disabilities.
- expanding employment initiatives to provide individualized career services to help job seekers of all ages and from all walks of life, including laid-off executives, people experiencing homelessness and women returning to work after a break.
- creating new revenue streams for the agency such as eCycle Opportunities, an electronics recycling program.
In recognition of her tireless efforts, the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit honored Ms. Rosenbaum with the Mandell L. and Madeleine H. Berman Award for Outstanding Professional Service in 2016.
“I have been blessed with a wonderful career doing what I love, the opportunity to work with people that I admire, and the privilege of serving people in our community,” said Ms. Rosenbaum. “JVS will always hold a special place in my heart. I leave feeling confident that our talented and caring staff and lay leaders will continue to passionately serve our mission, and that JVS Human Services will move forward and remain one of the best human services organizations.”
Justice Richard Bernstein, Strictly Business Honorary Chair, did an interview with Jason Carr at WDIV-Ch 4 early on Monday, June 10.
At the start of the interview, the Justice speaks about current issues in the legal system. He then addresses the important role work plays in the lives of all people, and especially in the lives of people who have disabilities.
“What JVS shows is that no matter what your struggle in life is, in many situations people’s bodies might be infirmed but their spirits have no limitations, and can truly soar if given an opportunity and given a chance. And we do that through work,” said Justice Bernstein.
Watch the full interview online.
May 29, 2019 – JVS Human Services released a Request for Proposal with the primary objective of leasing office space (approximately 10,000 sq. ft.) to house a Detroit at Work Career Center in the City of Detroit. This annually renewed lease will begin October 1, 2019 and extend over a five-year period.
All proposals are due electronically by 6/10/19 at 12 PM EST.
Michigan Supreme Court Justice Richard Bernstein Headlines JVS Human Services “Strictly Business” Event on June 13
Michigan Supreme Court Justice Richard Bernstein will headline the 22nd annual JVS Human Services Strictly Business networking, awards and fundraising event on Thursday, June 13. Bernstein, known for using his own disability to help and inspire many others, will speak to an anticipated crowd of more than 700 business and community leaders. The event will celebrate individuals who have transformed their lives through work and business leaders who support innovative employment practices. The event begins with a reception at 11 a.m. followed by a luncheon and program from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., at MotorCity Casino Hotel in Detroit, Michigan.
“Richard Bernstein’s life’s work truly exemplifies the mission of JVS Human Services in helping people of all situations to maximize their potential,” said Leah Rosenbaum, president and CEO of JVS Human Services. “He takes action to help those who need it, and his law cases often set national standards protecting the rights and safety of people with and without disabilities.”
With a commitment to justice and fairness, Bernstein began his eight-year term for the Michigan Supreme Court in January 2015 as the first blind state Supreme Court justice in the nation. Prior to serving on Michigan’s highest court, he was known for being a tireless advocate for disabled rights as an attorney, heading the public service division for The Sam Bernstein Law Firm in Farmington Hills.
In addition to Bernstein’s keynote speech, attendees will also hear from the recipients of the 2019 JVS Business Leadership and Rising Entrepreneur Awards, along with individuals whose lives have been enhanced by the work of JVS Human Services. Awards will be presented to:
- Star Trax Events which will be honored with the 2019 Business Leadership Award for innovative employment practices. With a focus on outstanding customer service, company President Geoff Kretchmer drives employee engagement through a strong company culture: employees who feel connected to each other and understand how their work contributes to the success of the company, work together towards common goals and perform better.
- Josh Gershonowicz, who will receive the 2019 Rising Entrepreneur Award, founded his creative agency, Rebuild Group, seven years ago to help clients challenge their thinking and achieve strategic growth through proprietary research and effective brand campaigns. Rebuild Group’s culture is fun, inclusive, creative and encouraging. The company moved from the suburbs to the City of Detroit in 2014 and now has a staff of more than 20 full-time employees.
- Kelly Flynn from Tapper’s Jewelry, Loukas Pallicaris from Preferred Building Services and Sonya Terry from the City of Detroit will be honored with Employee of the Year Attendees will hear the inspiring stories of these three individuals who have overcome employment obstacles with assistance from JVS Human Services programs.
April 19, 2019 — JVS Human Services released a Request for Proposal with the primary objective of leasing professional office space (7,000-10,000 sq. ft.) to house Oakland County Michigan Works – North Oakland (Clarkston, Waterford Twp., White Lake Charter Twp., or Independence Charter Twp.). This annually renewed lease will begin July 1, 2019 and extend over a five-year period.
All proposals are due electronically by 5/10/19 at 3:00 PM EST.
Cindy Kainz talks at length with Judy Richmond, JVS Women to Work coordinator, and Kristen Gross, JVS trustee and co-chair of Trade Secrets, an event to raise funds to support JVS programs for women job seekers.
Fox 2’s Sherry Margolis interviews Judy Richmond, JVS Women to Work coordinator, and Felicia Militello, past participant in the program.
Human Services is launching our partnership with Amazon to employ people with disabilities. The agency is currently recruiting individuals to work at the Brownstown sort center.
Applicants must have an open case with Michigan Rehabilitation Services (MRS). Interested candidates are encouraged to contact their MRS counselor to be referred to the Sort Center Simulation Interview at JVS in Detroit, or contact Gabrielle Sharp by email at email@example.com or phone 248.417.3094.
In the future, positions will be available in Whole Foods, Prime Now and other Amazon warehouse locations in Ann Arbor, Detroit and Troy.
More information is available online. http://bit.ly/JVSAmazonJobs
JVS Human Services to Honor Woman Business Owner and Philanthropist, Mindi Fynke, at 11th Annual Trade Secrets Fundraiser April 11 in Troy
Event benefits JVS Women to Work program, which provides career counseling, job search assistance and emotional support to unemployed women
Women in search of a fresh start and the tools it takes to successfully seek and secure employment after divorce, disability or death of a spouse, or other life circumstances will take center stage at the 11th annual JVS Human Services Trade Secrets fundraiser at 6 p.m. on April 11 at the Detroit Marriott Troy. Keynote speaker and honorary chair, Mindi Fynke, president and CEO of EHIM in Southfield, one of the largest woman-owned pharmacy benefits management companies in the country, will share her personal story of reinvention and success with the event’s expected 600 attendees.
“Mindi has a huge heart and is passionate about giving back to our community and helping others succeed,” said Leah Rosenbaum, president and CEO of JVS Human Services. “She has been an ardent supporter of JVS programs which strengthen and provide employment opportunities for the unemployed, older workers and people with disabilities.”
Through sponsorships, ticket sales and a signature raffle, the JVS Trade Secrets event raises funds for the award winning nonprofit’s Women to Work Program and other services that support women job seekers. The program has transformed the lives of more than 2,200 women throughout metropolitan Detroit for more than 30 years, with 85 percent of its graduates gaining employment or developing a plan to furthe their education. Luisa Harrington, a graduate of the Women to Work program, will share her inspiring story at the event.
This year’s Trade Secrets event co-chairs are Roz Blanck, Kristen Gross and Linda Schlesinger-Wagner. Sponsorship opportunities are available; and individual tickets are $150. Visit www.jvshumanservices.org/tradesecrets or contact Judy Strongman at (248) 233-4213 for additional information.
Trade Secrets’ Presenting Sponsor is EHIM; Platinum Sponsors include Jack and Annette Aronson, DeRoy Testamentary Foundation and Huntington Bank; and the Diamond Sponsor is Skinnytees.
Karen Trompeter, director of JVS’s Tri-County Dental Health program, recently appeared on WBRW-TV with host Nannette Griffin talking about low-cost or no-cost services for underserved populations, emergency dental assistance and our co-teacher project with Detroit Mercy to enhance the clinical experiences of dental students in their work with people with disabilities.
Watch the full interview below.
Southfield, Mich. (Jan. 2, 2019) – JVS Human Services will host a hiring blitz for direct care/engagement and job coach positions on Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019 from 2 to 6 p.m. at the JVS headquarters at 29699 Southfield Road, Southfield, Mich., 48076.
Direct care staff and job coaches for JVS plan, implement and supervise activities that promote a healthy, active and social lifestyle for people with disabilities.
“We are seeking candidates who have a passion for engaging with people on the path to employment and community inclusion,” said Debra Yamstein, vice president of Non-Vocational and Senior Adult Services at JVS Human Services.
Positions are located in either Southfield or Detroit and are full- or part-time with weekday, daytime hours. Starting pay is $10.90-$12.20 an hour. A competitive benefits package is included.
Applicants must be at least 21 with a high school diploma or equivalency. Experience serving individuals with disabilities is preferred. Applicants must also pass MVR and background checks in order to transport clients in agency vehicles.
No appointment is required to attend the event. JVS staff will be on hand to conduct interviews and offer positions on-the-spot. Interested applicants should visit www.jvsdet.org/DirectCare in advance of the event for detailed job descriptions and to complete an application.
There is help and hope for women facing difficult circumstances who need to return to the job market. JVS provides assistance to women from all social and economic backgrounds in Southeastern Michigan who must find a job following unemployment, divorce or the death or disability of a spouse or partner. In January, Springboard to Success combines computer training with JVS’s hallmark Women to Work program.
Offered at no charge to participants, the program helps women assess their vocational interests, identify work-related skills, prepare resumes, develop interviewing and networking skills and launch a job search. It also includes hands-on Microsoft Office Suite 2010 training.
Springboard to Success begins with an informational meeting at 9 a.m. on Jan. 10. The program starts on January 15 and will meet from 9 a.m. to noon on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at JVS Human Services in Southfield. For information or to register, contact Judy Richmond at firstname.lastname@example.org or (248) 233-4232, or visit www.jvsdet.org/women.
JVS Human Services will offer a 10-week training program beginning January 8 in Southfield for individuals working in career development. The Facilitating Career Development Course is based upon 12 professional competency areas outlined by the National Career Development Association (NCDA).
Led by nationally trained and certified instructor Karen Gutman, the class will offer hands-on, practical learning and interaction with colleagues from a variety of work settings.
“Participants will leave the class with relevant skills, knowledge and tools they need to assist others in planning careers and obtaining meaningful work,” said Gutman. “The course also prepares individuals to apply for nationally recognized professional credentials.”
The program is designed for people who work in any type of career development positions including career counselors, job search trainers, career resource center coordinators, career coaches, career development case manager, school counselors, employment/placement specialists or workforce development staff.
The class will meet from 6-9 p.m. on Tuesdays from Jan. 8 to Mar. 12 at JVS offices, 29699 Southfield Rd., Southfield. Tuition is $1,200 and includes all books and materials. For more information and to register, download the course flyer at http://bit.ly/FCD-Jan2019 or contact Karen Gutman at FCDGutman@jvshumanservices.org or 248-891-7484.
A certificate of completion will be awarded to students who successfully complete course requirements. Participants will then be eligible to apply for the Global Career Development Facilitator (GCDF) credential offered by the Center for Credentialing and Education and the Certified Career Services Provider (CCSP) credential offered by the National Career Development Association.
Flagstar Bank is partnering with eCycle Opportunities (ECO) to host a free electronic recycling event 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Friday, Nov. 2, at Flagstar’s Troy headquarters. The event is open to Flagstar employees and the metro Detroit community at Flagstar Bank, 5151 Corporate Drive.
In recognition of the upcoming America Recycles Day, Flagstar Bank worked with eCycle Opportunities to provide a free way for community members to safely and securely recycle electronics to protect the environment.
Electronics such as TVs, computers, peripherals, flat screen monitors, cathode ray tubes (CRT) monitors, cable boxes, DVD players, cell phones and tablets will be accepted during the event, at no cost. The standard disposal fee of $25 on TVs will be waived for the first 400 TVs (limit two per vehicle), thanks to a generous grant from ITC Global.
The event makes it easy for consumers to properly recycle—especially TVs and monitors—and builds awareness of the dangers of disposing electronics into landfills. According to Electronics Recycling Coordination Clearinghouse, Americans had around five billion pounds of CRT TVs tucked away in spare bedrooms and basements in 2015.
Recycling electronics is often difficult or costly as they frequently contain toxic substances such as lead, mercury, beryllium, and cadmium. On average, legacy TVs with bulky and heavy CRTs contain around six pounds of lead.
ECO provides services to businesses and organizations, including secure, certified repurposing or recycling of computers and other electronics, while at the same time creating jobs for individuals with disabilities and other barriers to employment.
“With Flagstar’s support in hosting this event, we’re able to help the public dispose of harmful electronic waste the right way,” said Stacey Lareau, general manager of ECO, a JVS subsidiary. “At the same time, ECO gets a boost in its mission of creating an inclusive workforce with jobs for individuals with barriers to employment.”
“We are so proud to align with ECO and bring this event to the community,” said Sonia Plata, director of the Flagstar Bank Foundation. “We especially like the job creation aspect of the program because it fits well with our diversity and inclusion initiatives—especially the goals of our employee resource group that focuses on people with disabilities.”
To learn more about what can and cannot be recycled on Nov.2, visit
www.eCycleOpps.org. For more information about Flagstar Bank community initiatives, visit flagstar.com.
The Dorothy and Peter Brown Jewish Community Adult Day Program (Brown Program) is hosting a dementia-friendly High Holiday service 11:00 a.m., Sunday, September 16 at Fleischman Residence/ Blumberg Plaza, 6710 W. Maple Rd., West Bloomfield, Mich., 48322. A luncheon will follow the service. There is no fee to attend.
“Since many find solace through High Holiday services, we designed a special program to make it easier for individuals and families to observe Yom Kippur,” explains Debra Yamstein, Brown Program director. “Often, families that are living with dementia can become isolated from their friends, co-workers and faith communities so this program provides an opportunity to remain connected to a faith community.”
The dementia-friendly service will be an intimate gathering where individuals will feel welcomed and not overwhelmed by large crowds or a long program. The abbreviated 45-minute service will focus on the most important prayers.
The service, named 2018 Program of the Year by the Association of Jewish Aging Services, also aims to help individuals with dementia tap into their memories as music and liturgy are usually among the last things to slip away.
“The memories of prayer, music and worship are settled deep in the brain and can serve as a trigger to bring someone into the present,” explains Yamstein. “Although people with dementia may not remember what they ate for breakfast, they can still remember deep-rooted experiences of their youth. For many, that includes celebrating holidays. Therefore, the opportunity to pray and connect with G-d on Yom Kippur remains important.”
To register or for more information about the Yom Kippur service call (248) 661-6390. Individuals are encouraged to pre-register with the understanding that last-minute challenges may prevent them from attending.
JVS’s electronics recycling division, eCycle Opportunities (ECO), has been awarded a $10,000 grant from ITC. ECO serves individuals and businesses by recycling their electronics in an environmentally responsible way. As part of its community-focused mission, ECO also provides jobs for people with disabilities and other barriers to employment.
The grant will allow ECO to recycle televisions and CRT monitors at no cost to the public. ECO will offer the fee-free service at a special drop-off event in the fall and will continue the offer until grant funds are depleted.
Responsible recyclers pay high fees to safely recycle televisions and CRTs, which contain harmful toxins such as lead and mercury. Those costs are usually passed along to consumers when the items are dropped off. ECO usually charges $25 for televisions, for example.
“To save money, people put these items at the curb with trash,” said Stacey Lareau, eCycle Opportunities general manager. “Unfortunately, that can expose our landfills to hazardous elements.”
The ITC grant will positively impact the community by keeping those harmful toxins out of landfills and preventing further contamination of the air, soil and water.
“ITC and JVS share a strong commitment to environmental stewardship and the communities we serve,” said Donna Zalewski, director, Local Government & Community Affairs and Philanthropy, ITC Holdings Corp. “ITC is proud to support the JVS ECO program, which not only helps keep electronics out of Michigan landfills, but creates job opportunities for the people it serves.”
“We are very excited about the grant because it gives us an opportunity to inform and educate the public while creating jobs,” said Lareau.
Those interested in learning more can visit eCycleOpps.org or call 248-233-4477.