Rebecca Ryan serves as a job developer for many self-directed adults on the south shore of western Long Island through Independent Support Services. She supports self-directed adults in exploring, sampling and finding sustainable work in employment and volunteer positions. Rebecca works from a strengths-based perspective, identifying a person’s gifts, interests and support systems, and using this as the roadmap for finding the right work placement. In addition, she believes ongoing support for self-directed adult workers, job coaches, bosses, co-workers and families, is essential for long-term job satisfaction, social inclusion and job retention.
Rebecca has helped self-directed adults secure employment with many businesses and organizations. She has worked in partnership with New York State Adult Career and Continuing Education Services to help self-directed adults secure employment and funding for trade school. Rebecca partnered with Mercy Medical Center’s Volunteer Office to develop a program where young self-directed professionals work in volunteer clerical jobs at the hospital to learn skills and find community. She developed and conducted “Becoming a Professional at Mercy Hospital” and “The Empower Me Training” to support the young professionals and their coaches at Mercy Hospital, and continues to provide ongoing development, support, and plan future trainings there. Rebecca provides consultation services to school districts and has given numerous talks to school, parent and community groups.
Rebecca grew up on the east end of Long Island, where she worked in the family business and multiple other jobs. In 1991, Rebecca earned her BA from Manhattan College. After graduating college, she worked in various positions for non-profits, including the Ad Council, NASBA and NYSSCPAs, learning administrative and grassroots lobbying skills. Eventually she settled in the private sector, and became a sales person for the Lindenmeyr family of Paper Companies, where she learned many of the techniques she now uses to solicit businesses as a job developer. She went on to earn an MS in Mental Health Counseling from Long Island University/C.W. Post, earning the 2008 Mental Health Counseling Award. She interned at South Oaks Vocational Rehabilitation, counseling individuals during their Diagnostic Vocational Evaluation for VESID.
All of Rebecca’s work experiences and educational background have contributed to her strengths as a job developer, namely her ability to approach all kinds of businesses big and small, corporate, manufacturing trades, service-based, etc., advocating for students and self-directed adults to help them find work opportunities. She is honored to be given the opportunity to use serve on the PBS Community Foundation Board.
Rebecca lives in Babylon with her husband and 3 children.