WES Health System

Employee Newsletter

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Special Employee Feature: Retirement of Sylvia Sligh Burrell.

We want to wish Sylvia Sligh-Burrell a very Happy Retirement! When Sylvia joined WES in July of 1992 the company was initially called 5A and 6C Community Catchment Areas before it was renamed Dr. Warren E. Smith Health Centers and later reorganized under WES Health System. Just to give everyone an idea of what was happening in 1992, Bill Clinton defeated incumbent President George H. W. Bush and became the 42nd President of the United States. The Bodyguard, starring Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston debuted in movie theaters. Los Angeles riots ensued, spurred by the acquittal of four Los Angeles Police Department officers accused of beating motorist Rodney King.
Sylvia stood by WES through many memorable moments. She stayed with WES though the financial hardship during its early years, the arrival of Mr. Dennis Cook (CEO) in 1996, the financial recovery of the organization, the company’s expansions, and many work celebrations.

There are few things Sylvia will remember most about working at WES. She will never forget the impact WES has had on people in the community, Sylvia will never forget the concern Melanie Gray showed for her wellbeing as a Muslim woman after the 9/11 attacks or the care her co-workers took when she broke her ankle in the parking lot. Sylvia also credits WES for being able to work each day in a peaceful environment. Sylvia quotes, “My health suffered no deterioration from working at WES”.

Sylvia has plenty of positive things to say about WES. However, at WES, we have many positive things to say about Sylvia. She is compassionate, and always supportive. Sylvia goes out of her way to be welcoming and to bring comfort to her co-workers.

We are incredibly grateful for her positive outlook, for her diligence, for her adapting to so many transitions she encountered at WES, and for a lifetime worth of dedication to the WES Health Family. We also owe a debt of gratitude to Sylvia’s spouse, her children, and her stepson for sharing her with us for the countless hours and days she spent working at WES.

Sylvia will be leaving her WES Family with two inspirational quotes: “I never think negative when I come to work because it would make my job hard” and “Give your job 110% of yourself”.
Sylvia, collectively we want to Congratulate you and offer our best wishes on your new journey. The WES family can’t thank you enough.

Congratulations to the 46th President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris!

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COVID-19

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Remember to protect yourself & others:

  • Wear a mask over your nose and mouth
  • Stay 6 feet away from others
  • Avoid crowds
  • Avoid poorly ventilated spaces
  • Wash your hands often
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Clean and disinfect

Covid-19 Mask:

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Tips for Working from Home Successfully:

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1. Get Dressed

It is tempting to stay in pajamas all day, but some employees are finding that on the days they give into the temptation of not getting dressed they are much slower to start working and less productive overall. The simple act of changing clothes serves as a signal it’s time to wake up and get things done.
Waking up and taking care of your appearance can go a long way toward helping you feel more energized and productive; not to mention there is always the possibility of being called into a video conference at a moment’s notice.

2. Designate a Workspace or Home Office

One of the big challenges when working remotely is keeping your work and your home lives separate. If you never fully disconnect from work, your work productivity will suffer, and your home life can take a hit also.

Designating a private workspace for yourself will help you mentally turn on your “work mode” at the beginning of the day. On the other hand, leaving your workspace will help you turn “off” at the end of the day and fully disengage.

3. Keep Clearly Defined Working Hours

Treat yourself like an employee. This means holding yourself accountable, but also recognizing when enough is enough. Be clear about when you’re working and when you’re not. You’ll get your best work done and be ready to transition back to the office if you stick with your regular hours.

4. Create Rituals to Transition into and Out of Work

Morning commutes can give your brain time to prepare for work but just because you’re not traveling doesn’t mean you shouldn’t carve out equivalent routines to help you ease into your workday. Maybe you usually read or listen to music on your commute. You can do this at home too. Or you can add in a workout or spend some time on a hobby.
You also want to give yourself something which will signal the end of your workday. Create an afterwork routine, like taking your dog for a long walk as soon as you are done working for the day or simply enjoying sometime to yourself.

5. Don’t Get Too Absorbed into Other Non-Work Activities

Distractions are one of the big challenges facing people who work from home. Whatever you’re usually thinking about doing when you get home after work is now with you. It’s easy to get distracted. But you need to be cautious of how much you let yourself get distracted.

Maybe you previously used to take a few breaks throughout the day at the office, this is fine to do at home too. Using small break times to throw in a load of laundry is OK but try not to think of your at-home work arrangement as an opportunity to finally organize your closet or anything else that takes a lot of sustained focus.

Setting timers for any breaks you take can help you get back on track quickly. You don’t want to get too engrossed and forget you’re at work altogether.

6. Communicate Often

You might find it’s best to periodically check in with your boss and your coworkers over the phone or through video chat. This will cut down on miscommunication and break up some of the social isolation which can come from working from home.

Support your boss and help convey any changes or new assignments to one another. Do the same with anyone you usually work collaboratively with throughout your workday.
You will encounter some challenges as you try work remotely. Don’t hesitate to reach out to the same people you would usually turn to for help.

7. Don’t Forget to Socialize

When most of the office suddenly started working from home, a lot of the casual social interactions you were used to having throughout the day went away. Brief social interactions help to feel less lonely and break up the monotony of work.

You can also schedule morning video call kickoffs with your team members before you begin your workday. If you usually ask your coworkers about their weekends, set some time aside to keep that up. If you usually speak to your co-workers about a specific topic, reach out. If you normally have lunch with colleagues and friends, try coordinating lunch times and Zoom or call one another.

These little interactions go a long way and can have a significant impact on your productivity.

Mental Health Tips:

1. Practice self-care and make yourself a priority.

In order to do this, it is important to:

– Eat a healthy diet – research has shown that what you eat and what don’t eat affects the way you think and feel.

– Exercise, can help decrease depression and anxiety and improve moods.

– Get enough sleep.

2.Disconnect from electronics and social media.

Consider adding an electronics-free time period to your day. Taking time to unplug and disconnect from the constant stream of emails and alerts will allow you to interact with people more frequently and will help you reduce feelings of anxiousness stirred-up by media streams.

3.Engage in activities that provide meaning.

Partake in activities which make you feel happy, productive, and challenge you creatively; whether through art, exercising, caring for a pet, or spending quality time with love ones.

4.Engage in meditation and/or mindfulness.

Relaxation exercises can improve your state-of-mind. In fact, research shows that meditation may help you feel calmer.

Thank You Staff Who Achieved Their 5, 10, 20, or 25 Years of Service Milestone in The Calendar Year 2020 :

5 years of service:

  • Ali Bashir
  • Gerard Curtis
  • Tracey M. Reese
  • Jerome Amir Upchurch
  • Tamika Lyons
  • Kyle Stambaugh
  • Katrice D. Casey
  • Carla M. Dirkson
  • Cliff M Jones
  • Gregory Cherry
  • Yacol Nelson
10 years of service:

  • Abdur-Rahman
  • Lynn Chau
  • Nyquia Lancaster
  • Elizabeth Lewis
  • Larry Johnson
  • Maria Rodriguez
  • Kyle Stanford
  • David Samson
  • Tawanda Williams
20 years of service:

  • Donna L Brown
  • Dr. Abayomi Ige
25 years of service:

  • Andrew Coleman
Welcome New Hires:

  • Alisha Adams, H.R. Business Partner
  • Perla Almonte, Mental Health Worker
  • Rasheen Braddock, Clinician
  • Robert Bridges, Behavioral Health Technician
  • Gabrielle Buggage, Mentor and Supervised Visitation Monitor
  • Omar Burgos, Mental Health Worker
  • Kimberly Burton, Behavioral Health Technician
  • Sierra Clark, Case Manager
  • Shannon Cook, Staff Accountant
  • Abosede Fateru, Clinician
  • Theresa Francis, Blended Enhanced TCM
  • Naasik Fuller, Certified Peer Specialist
  • Cornelius Furgueson, Psychologist
  • Jonathan Groom, TCM Supervisor
  • Cecelia Haney, Blended Enhanced TCM
  • Noemi Jimenez, Care Coordinator
  • Leslie Johnston, Therapeutic Visitation Monitor
  • Harry Julian, Therapist
  • Ronald McNeill, Blended Enhanced TCM
  • Talisha Perry, Program Support Specialist
  • Joshua Potts, Clinician
  • Iman Ross, Care Coordinator
  • Volha Sachko, Clinician
  • Kasey Shaw, Psychiatric Rehabilitation Specialist
  • Katherine Sisco, Housekeeper
  • Shakiera Smith, Mentor and Supervised Visitation Monitor
  • Tamika Stewart (Returning Executive), Vice President
  • Althea Stinson, Clinician
  • Ki’Shera Stringer, Therapeutic Visitation Monitor
  • Ashli Stroman, Psychiatric Rehabilitation Specialist
  • Racquel Stukes, Therapist
  • Marshell Vicks, Executive Asst
  • Imani Williams, Psychiatric Rehabilitation Specialist
  • Sonya Worthy, Clinician
  • William Wright, Behavioral Health Technician

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