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PADS Transitions: A Note from Joel Williams

Dear Friends of PADS,

Six years ago, I was honored to be offered the opportunity to serve as the Executive Director of PADS Lake County. It was an organization in a bit of a state of flux. My predecessor, Cathy Curran, whom I had known fondly, had passed away unexpectedly. The leases on the properties that PADS used for its services were not being renewed. The great recession had resulted in decreased philanthropic giving as well as government funding. But the organization was still as strong as anyone could imagine. That strength is what drew me to this job. It came from the compassion and dedication of all the people who make up PADS. The Board of Directors demonstrated unwavering belief in our mission. The staff came in every day ready to tackle seemingly insurmountable challenges. The volunteers gave countless hours of their time. Donors would part with their hard-earned income to help those with less than them. And, importantly, the people we all served were incredibly optimistic. Their challenges were a lot greater than the organization’s. It gave me the confidence and the inspiration to accept the opportunity. And it has been a wonderful opportunity, one for which I will be eternally grateful. But as with nearly everything in life, there comes a time for it to end. That time has come for me. I have tendered my resignation to the Board of Directors to pursue another opportunity. My last day at PADS will be in March. It was an incredibly difficult decision, and I will miss so many aspects of this organization. But it was simply the right time. Meghan Powell-Filler, our Deputy Executive Director, will be taking over as Interim Executive Director upon my departure. I know over the next couple of months, as my tenure wraps up, I will have plenty of opportunity to reflect on all the great things that have happened here. What I want to note, though, is that nearly all of those reflections will include one or more of the other staff members of PADS. These individuals are quite simply some of the most talented, compassionate, and incredible people I have ever known. Everything that I was able to accomplish was because of them. I walked into work each day and enjoyed their presence. I am grateful for the … I admire them … I respect them … and I care deeply about them. I know that they will ensure this organization and its vital mission will carry on long after I’m gone. I thank them for the tremendous opportunity to work together, and I look forward to seeing what more they accomplish in the future. To all those that have supported PADS in some form or fashion – whether it was volunteering, making a donation, making lunches, or whatever it may be – thank you as well. PADS is a community of so many people, all doing a little bit to help those experiencing homelessness. It will continue to be that, now with one more person joining that community of supporters in a different role. I look forward to being on that side and supporting the organization in a different way. Thank you all for the opportunity to serve. It has been an honor.

Joel Williams

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