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The MENTOR Network announced that the American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR) has chosen two Network employees for its 2019 Direct Support Professional of the Year awards for their respective states. Linda Renn, a Direct Support Professional from REM Iowa, was chosen as the Iowa Direct Support Professional of the Year. Aleia Dye, a Direct Support Professional from REM Mississippi, was chosen as the Mississippi Direct Support Professional of the Year.

Each year ANCOR, the national association representing providers of community-based services to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, selects a Direct Support Professional (DSP) from each state to be recognized as DSP of the Year for their outstanding contributions to the people they serve. Nominees for the Direct Support Professional of the Year Award are judged on their success in helping people with disabilities build social networks and engage in substantive community participation and for advocating for the individuals they support.

“On behalf of all of us at The MENTOR Network, congratulations to Linda and Aleia for this outstanding accomplishment,” said Bruce Nardella, President and CEO of The MENTOR Network. “Their dedication, and the dedication of others in direct support roles across The Network, enables the individuals we serve to live lives of meaning and promise in their communities. Thank you, Linda and Aleia, for all you do each day to help those we support to thrive.”

Linda Renn, Direct Support Professional, REM Iowa

When visiting any program where Linda is working, you will find her talking to all the individuals, singing songs, assisting with showering and working on daily living skills. She is available to other staff and supervisors when issues arise and tells everyone that they can call her for assistance or guidance at any time. Linda volunteers to take individuals to medical appointments, as she knows their behaviors well and is able to support them when behavioral challenges arise.

“During Linda’s 10 years of service, she has had a tremendously positive impact on the individuals she supports,” said Lisa Pakkebier, Executive Director of REM Iowa. “Her overall mission is one of person-centered support. Her caring and compassionate actions are always what she believes to be in the best interest of the individual.”

The 2019 Direct Support Professional of the Year awards will be presented in a ceremony in Portland, Oregon, on May 8, 2019, at ANCOR’s Annual Conference.

"Linda is a very valuable member of our team. She goes out of her way to ensure that her individuals are taken care of and their best interest is taken into consideration. When praising or thanking Linda, she will respond with "that's just how I am". She is an amazing person at work and in the Community. We are very grateful to have her as one of our direct support professionals! "
-Melinda Grimm, Program Director REM Iowa

"Linda is a dream come true in our profession. Her compassion for the individuals she serves is beyond comprehension. We are blessed to have her on our REM team. She is not only a staff she is a friend to everyone who comes in contact with. "
Shari Mann, Program Supervisor REM Iowa


"Linda is such an amazing person. She always goes above and beyond for the individuals she serves. Linda is always willing to help out and never complains. She is more than staff to her individuals, they consider family. We are so grateful to have her part of our team."
Ashley McGlothlin, Program Supervisor REM Iowa

Congratulations Linda!



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Comments (3)

Congratulations Linda on this wonerful award. I agree with everything I read and since I know and have worked with you personally I know that it is all so true. Your kindness, love and support shines forth from you in all you do and say. Thank you for being such a blessing to your clients and to everyone you meet!!
By: Jennifer Janssen on May 9th 6:30pm
Congratulations, Linda! They certainly chose the right person!
By: Todd Frank on May 10th 3:30am
Congratulations Linda! Your light shines through in all you do!
By: Phyllis McGowan on May 10th 5:56pm

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