Celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month
In celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month, Will County Executive Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant is spotlighting local leaders as part of the ongoing Will County Leadership Series. During the last week of National Hispanic Heritage Month, community leaders will be highlighted and sharing their thoughts on the importance of recognizing hispanic heritage .
County Executive Bertino-Tarrant would like to thank these leaders who have stepped forward to share their thoughts. The first leader to be featured is Lorraine Guerrero Neumayer, MSW, LCSW, Senior Trauma Therapist with the Will County Children's Advocacy Center.
1. As a local leader, why was it important for you to be involved in your community?
Leadership for me was standing up and saying YES when and where there has been a need. I don't know that many of us set out to be called a leader, we just wanted to HELP improve our community in some way. As a child who grew up experiencing various traumas, many people stood up and helped me, my siblings and my mom or I know I would just be a statistic. For example, my lunch lady became my foster mom for two years. My high school teachers and administration worked together to ensure transportation for extracurriculars and ensured there were many programs to choose from. College mentors advocated for civic engagement programs. So I wanted to be a helper, like so many were for me.
2. To future leaders, what advice would you give to help them become successful?
First, say yes to opportunities to serve when possible. It won't just help others, it will give you the experience to know how to help more people in the future, including yourself. Most of the positions I have had in my career, actually came from someone remembering my work years earlier. Work hard and be available to do whatever is asked, whether its give a presentation or directing traffic in a parking lot etc.. Also, imposter sydrome is real, if you are there, in the room, know you are there for a reason & BELONG!