Motivated to Move On

Authored by: Joel Voorman, SE Recovery Specialist


Community Support Services’ Supported Employment client Brad Rankin is a prime example of what someone can achieve with hard work and a positive attitude.

The employment department always encourages clients to work in a partnership with staff to achieve their goals. Brad was motivated to find employment, as demonstrated by his compliance and follow-through. Staff helped Brad create a resume, learn appropriate job interview techniques, search for job leads, and complete applications for different positions. Brad pondered, “Maybe if I go to work full-time, some of my symptoms won’t bother me as much.”

Brad started out at his employer, TRM Manufacturing, as a janitor. He approached the owner and asked if there was another position in the company he could try. Brad advocated for himself, noting his positive attitude and painting skills, which led to him being offered a position as an industrial painter, where he paints attachments for heavy equipment, such as Bobcats and tow motors.

“You think it’s going to be great, barely working or not working at all, but eventually you think you have to do something with your life,” Brad said.” I don’t think I could have ever worked full time without the help of CSS.”

Brad is one of the department’s most successful clients. He no longer needs cash assistance from Social Security. He worked with CSS benefits planner Michell Montgomery to learn how to keep his important health benefits and have a safety net for as long as possible in case work did not go the way he planned.

He has since moved into his own residence and purchased a vehicle. He successfully graduated from CSS Day Treatment groups. Brad is excited to celebrate his fifth anniversary of being employed at TRM in March of 2022.

Outside of work, Brad is a seasoned artist. He is an award winner in CSS’ Art of Recovery show and has sold paintings in coffee shops and consignment outlets. He credits his grandmother for teaching him the craft.

Brad hopes to continue to climb the ladder with his current employer and has hopes of learning how to become a welder and crosstrain in other areas with his employer. His 2022 goals also include expanding his art abilities by learning pottery and taking a much-needed vacation.