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Workforce

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Ed Lada Excited to Propel Goodwill’s Mission Forward
New CEO eyes workforce training initiatives in emerging technologies for the jobs of tomorrow

For Immediate Release
Contact:
Mark McGaffin
P: 717-525-6205
C: 717-743-5827

HARRISBURG, Pa. (Jan. 13, 2022) – Sometimes one moment changes a life. For newly appointed Goodwill Keystone Area President and CEO Edward Lada Jr., it was attending a Goodwill awards ceremony honoring achievements of people with significant disabilities in Louisiana.

“I saw people who had every excuse or reason not to succeed and yet they had overcome and were thriving,” Lada recalled. “I witnessed pure joy in their families and friends as their loved ones earned their recognition, and the transformative impact that opportunity and success can have on a person and their family.

“In that moment, I realized there are rarely any excuses or barriers that you cannot overcome to achieve the most in life. When one overcomes and succeeds, we all succeed.”

Something fundamentally shifted for Lada that day. It changed his personal and professional relationships. He saw the potential in everyone. From that day forward, Lada was hooked on the mission of Goodwill. He knew he could take his entrepreneurial skills and business acumen and propel the Goodwill movement to a new level.

Earlier in his career at Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Louisiana while achieving his master’s degree in public administration, Lada developed a vision for Goodwill focused on modern and advanced technology and streamlined operational efficiencies. Most importantly though, he casted a vision to provide training opportunities for employees to gain skills that would be essential for the workforce of tomorrow.

Lada took that vision with him to Goodwill of Western Missouri and Eastern Kansas (MoKan) in Kansas City where he served as CEO. There he launched an initiative to train individuals in emerging technologies. To Lada, the future state of technology is what will allow people to discover their fullest potential and adapt for the future through the power of work.

“I am excited to build upon the great work Goodwill Keystone Area has done for more than 70 years and to help this organization be on the leading edge of workforce opportunities that train individuals in future technologies for the jobs of tomorrow,” Lada said. “We have an amazing opportunity to grow our tremendous legacy by leveraging technologies in an ethical and responsible way, to augment the human experience, not replace it, and to create truly integrated and inclusive work environments.”

Before joining Goodwill Keystone Area, Lada served as president and CEO of MoKan Goodwill. Here, he led an historic financial turnaround for the organization and also launched a successful initiative to train those with barriers to employment in cutting-edge technologies. Lada joined MoKan Goodwill after serving as vice president of contracts and facility management services for Goodwill of Southeastern Louisiana.

Prior to launching his Goodwill career, Lada was director of business development and operations with Jani-King, one of the nation’s largest commercial cleaning providers.

Lada holds a master’s degree in public administration and ethical leadership from Marist College and a bachelor’s degree in social sciences from Loyola University of Louisiana.

About Goodwill Keystone Area

Goodwill Keystone Area serves 22 counties in central and southeastern Pennsylvania. As a nonprofit, 75 percent of revenue is generated from the sale of donated goods in its retail stores and online auction site. This revenue directly supports Goodwill’s mission to help people with barriers to employment build skills, find jobs and grow careers. To learn more, visit yourgoodwill.org.

Image by Werner Moser from Pixabay

Solicitation of Public Comment on the Pennsylvania Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Combined State Plan for 2020—2024

[51 Pa.B. 7805]
[Saturday, December 11, 2021]


PA L&I WIOA 2022 Update Link & Information to Offer Comments From December 20, 2021 Through January 18, 2022

Some disability areas for possible commentary include:

  • OVR: District Offices, Pre Employment Transition, Services, under/un served populations (specific disabilities of groups; ESL issues (Spanish, Chinese, Russian languages, etc.), collaboration with other state agencies (PA DHS for OLTL, OMHSAS and ODP populations; PDE-Bureau of Special Education);
  • PA Career Links (including physical & programmatic accessibility, which are required under the Federal WIOA passed in 2014 with 2016 regulations put forth);
  • Home or vehicle modifications (policies, process, and waiting lists);
  • Deaf Blind Services (SSP), which are state funds only at this time (no federal funding); and
  • Movement away from sheltered workshops and segregated employment settings towards competitive employment per Federal guidance put forth earlier this year.

You can also see more from the Federal Department of Education Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) on what they are looking for from states.

RCPA will hold its next member update webinar on Friday, November 19 at 9:00 am. Please register here to participate. This update will feature a presentation by Jeffrey J. Worley, Esq. of Gibbel, Kraybill & Hess LLP entitled “Federal Vaccine Mandate — Managing Your Workforce Through the Requirements and the Exemptions.” In addition, RCPA will provide updates in each policy area.

We look forward to your participation.

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HCBS Virtual Policy Forum: “The Direct Support Workforce and COVID-19: What We Know and What We Need to Do”

Join Megan Sanders from the University of Minnesota’s Institute on Community Integration as she summarizes the results of a 12-month follow-up survey on the direct support workforce and their experiences supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities during the COVID-19.

This webinar will be held on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 from 11:00 am–11:45 am ET. 

Click here to register.

Related resources to the above DSP workforce study report:

August 11, 2021 from 1:30 pm–3:00 pm ET

This training will explore the Direct Support Professional’s (DSP) experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. Through information gathered through the National Core Indicators (NCI) Staff Stability Survey, the presentation will highlight current research on the DSP workforce gathered before and during the pandemic. Information will be presented regarding the DSP workforce nationally and its growth and importance to those needing long-term services and supports. Results from two national surveys conducted with DSPs during the pandemic will be shared, reflecting the impacts the pandemic has had on individual DSPs. Finally, the training will share the personal stories of six DSPs as they navigated the pandemic.

Following the presentation, webinar participants will have the opportunity to take part in a question and answer session, receiving feedback from CMS and the presenters.

Register here. Contact HCBS-Learning with any questions.