Assisting individuals with limited opportunities to self-sufficiency in the St. Louis area since 1977.

Message from our Board President and the CEO

JD Luhning
J.D. Luhning Board President Brenda Mahr CEO

At Employment Connection, our clients face challenges that most of us will never experience.
Not having a place to call home, post-traumatic stress disorder, and the ongoing consequences of past convictions are just a few of the barriers our clients deal with on a daily basis. Working together, we share with them the tools and training they need to face those challenges and change their lives. Looking back at 2011, it would be easy to simply say it was a challenging year, but the reality for nonprofit agencies like Employment Connection is that every year is a challenge. Still, that doesn’t deter our dedicated staff and Board of Directors. As always, we remain optimistic in the face of tightening budgets and the slow economic recovery, because we know that the services and supports we provide help clients face the ongoing challenges that stand between them and the safety and security that self-sufficiency brings. With that in mind, Employment Connection constantly works to improve and expand services to meet the needs of our clients. As needs and gaps in services are identified, we continue to refine and improve our programs, and are only able to do so through the generous support of both our local partners and the St. Louis community as a whole. Our mission, “assisting individuals with limited opportunities to self-sufficiency,” continues, and it’s through your ongoing support that we’re able to continue fulfilling that mission, facing the challenges with our clients one day at a time.

Table of Contents
Who we are 2011 Programs, Goals, and Outcomes The Employment Connection Effect Program Spotlight Board of Directors Donors Staff Page 2 Page 4 Page 6 Page 8 Page 10 Page 12 Page 14 Clients of the Year How Our Programs Work New Programs for 2011 Managed Work Services Financial Report Advisory Board and Volunteers Contact Information Page 3 Page 5 Page 7 Page 9 Page 11 Page 13 Page 15


Who We Are Employment Connection has over 35 years experience inspiring St. Louis residents and reducing crime through job placements and supportive services. The agency was founded in 1977 after a study by the Young Lawyers Division of the Bar Association of Metropolitan Saint Louis (BAMSL) discovered that employed exoffenders were 66% less likely to return to incarceration. Our agency immediately began the work of reducing recidivism through employment. In 1980, Employment Connection became a full United Way member agency and expanded its service beyond ex-offenders by assisting recovering substance abusers, the homeless, high school dropouts, women on welfare, U.S. Veterans, and non-custodial fathers. The agency continues to add additional services that address the holistic needs of our clients working toward self-sufficiency. Employment Connection assists nearly 1,400 individuals who have barriers to employment every year.

Our Mission
Assisting individuals with limited opportunities to self-sufficiency.

Our Vision
To be the premier placement, retention, career development and advancement program for persons with barriers to employment, empowering them to take charge of their lives and fulfill the needs of the Saint Louis Regional business community.


Meet our Clients of the Year
Laraine Seabrook and Demarko Moody
My name is Demarko Moody, and I was referred to the Building Blocks program at Employment Connection through my Deputy Juvenile Officer, Ms. Frieson. I went through the six day training course with Mr. Covington and learned the appropriate way to dress and speak on an interview. In the training course I also learned about setting long term and short term goals. Short term goals were helpful to me because they helped me achieve my long term goals. We also talked about school and what I wanted to do after school. They helped me set short term goals for applying for scholarships and colleges. After I finished the classes, it took about 4 months for me to get a job. Now I work at Burger King as a crew member and I’ve been there for three months. I also received a scholarship from my high school and now I am majoring in Electrical Engineering at Forest Park Community College. If I hadn’t gotten into the Building Blocks Program I would probably not have a job right now because of the difficulties I had getting a job before I came here.

When Laraine Seabrook enrolled in Employment Connection’s employment readiness training program she was homeless, unemployed and struggling with addiction. A licensed Certified Nurse’s Assistant with several years of experience and a United States veteran, Larine had difficulty with securing employment on her own because of past legal issues. Laraine began the training program ready to redirect her life and eager to use the training she received. While preparing for employment, she received additional services that addressed the barriers to her gainful employment, including clothing and transportation assistance, housing, and counseling services from SLU Doctoral students. While working with Employment Connection, Laraine was still experiencing homelessness, sleeping in parks, alleys, shelters, churches and anywhere else she believed was safe. The stress of homelessness and the job search challenged Laraine’s sobriety. She credits her desire to find employment for not relapsing. Employment Connection worked with Laraine to secure a referral to an inpatient treatment center. After completing treatment and getting a hold on her addiction, she was able to secure employment. Laraine has since been back to Employment Connection to share all the great things that are happening in her life with the staff which supported and encouraged her.


2011 Programs, Goals and Outcomes
1,364 total individuals attended orientation, with the following results:
Outcome Admitted to Work Readiness Training Completed Work Readiness Training Secured Employment Achieved 1,156 988 529 Goal 1,285 1,105 420 Percent of Goal 90% 90% 126%

53% of clients completing work readiness training secured employment!
Managed Work Services Social enterprise program that provides oversight to job candidates for 90 days, giving employers the ability to assess aptitude and make informed hiring decisions. New Americans and Employment Project Mentoring program that assists legal immigrants overcome barriers, including life skills training, job skills training, and cultural adjustment. Homeless Veteran Reintegration Program Transitional reintegration to help homeless U.S. Veterans leave the streets, secure employment and reach a state of stability and self-sufficiency.

East St. Louis TANF and SNAP Program Serving families on public assistance by ensuring they receive benefits and job placement services in Illinois.

Supportive Services for Veteran Families Provides supportive services to promote housing stability for low-income U.S. Veterans and their families.

WIA Youth Services Program Training, and job placement program for out-of-school youth ages 19-21 assisting with literacy, education, life skills and employment.

Supportive Housing Programs Permanent supportive housing, case management, and job training for Disabled Heads of Households in the County and U.S. Veterans in St. Louis City.

Pathways to Responsible Fatherhood Assisting low-income fathers transition from non-custodial parents into active fathers through parenting classes, education , and relationships.

Back to Health, Back to Work Cognitive behavioral therapy program addressing depression, anxiety, PTSD, and other mental health disorders to assist clients in obtaining and retaining employment.


How our programs work
Changing lives one step at a time
Referral Network– Corrections and Probation Offices, Advisory Council Agencies, One Stop Career Center, Shelters, United Way 211, Continuum of Care and Word of Mouth

Assessment and Enrollment

Competitive Employment Program Work Readiness Training

Supportive Services
   

GED Classes Business Clothing Transportation Job Development

   

Substance Abuse Housing Financial Literacy Back to Health/ Back to Work

Individual Employment Plan

Employment Connection clients begin the process with a referral from our community partners or by word of mouth. Clients are assessed to identify employment needs and enrolled in Competitive Employment Program. This program introduces clients to the working world and begins to alter the way they think about gaining and maintaining employment. After completion, clients collaborate with their Career Specialist to create an Individual Employment Plan. This process identifies their employment needs and goals, and fosters partnership between the client and Career Specialist. When needed, clients are referred to supportive services housed at Employment Connection or partnering agencies. Clients begin their job search guided by their Career Specialist, who provides job referrals, resume and application assistance and general support. After clients have been successfully placed, Career Specialists maintain the relationship to ensure employment retention and self-sufficiency.

The Job Search

Job Placements

Client Maintains Employment and Achieves Self-Sufficiency

Follow-Up, Retention and Continued Case Management


The Employment Connection Effect
Investing in Individuals and the Community
It costs tax payers and average $21,000 to incarcerate an individual for one year in the state of Missouri, and $38,000 in Illinois. For a fraction of that cost, Employment Connection can train, assist, and place exoffenders into employment opportunities that lead to self-sufficiency and reduce recidivism. Employment Connection clients add to the community, and have invested up to an estimated $7,335,360 in earnings over the last two years.

The Cycle of Self-Sufficiency


New Programs for 2011
Expanding to Meet Community Needs
Employment Connection is constantly seeking new partnerships to fill gaps and expand services where a gap is recognized. Through collaboration with other area service providers, we were able to implement two new programs in 2011 to help individuals reach a state of self-sufficiency.

Pathways to Responsible Fatherhood
Pathways to Responsible Fatherhood assists low-income fathers in the process of transitioning from noncustodial parents into active fathers through training programs, which include workshops on healthy marriage and relationships, responsible parenting, economic stability education and legal services. Implementation of the program was made possible through partnership with the Fathers’ Support Center, St. Louis, in order to provide young parents with valuable instruction in personal development, communication, and relationship building skills that will allow fathers to work effectively with their children.

Supportive Services for Veteran Families
Supportive Services for Veteran Families provides supportive services through a partnership with St. Patrick Center, promoting housing stability for low-income U.S. Veterans and their families residing in or transitioning to permanent housing.


Program Spotlight
Back to Health, Back to Work

Back to Health, Back to Work serves unemployed individuals including homeless veterans, ex-offenders, and other clients from St. Louis City who are participating in Employment Connection’s World of Work job preparation training, who are identified as having undiagnosed or untreated behavioral health disorders. There is a strong link between unemployment and health disorders, with some studies reporting that nearly 40% of all unemployed people suffer from psychological distress. Many people come to Employment Connection to apply for free employment services without realizing they have disorders such as depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder, which are barriers to their reaching a state of self-sufficiency. The program provides identification and treatment of those behavioral health issue in a nonstigmatizing setting, helping clients of Back to Health, Back to Work resolve those issues and move on with their lives. Back to Health, Back to Work is made possible through partnership with the St. Louis Mental Health Board, St. Louis University, and the People’s Clinic, all working together to bring down barriers to self-sufficiency.


Managed Work Services
Social Enterprise at Work in the Community
The mission of Managed Work Services of St. Louis (MWSstl) is to enhance the St. Louis Metropolitan community through the creation of employment opportunities for individuals that lead to self-sufficiency and assisting area businesses in becoming more effective with recruiting and retaining employees. Managed Work Services is a St. Louis area social enterprise staffing agency, which does much more than just help people find jobs and connect companies with employment ready entry-level workers. Our profits recirculate into the community through education, literacy and training programs, transportation aid, counseling programs, career assistance , and additional supportive services that positively affect the lives of area residents. Using Managed Work Services for your hiring needs is both a prudent business and community investment. MWSstl Business Options include: •Temporary Staffing/Short term on-site support •Temporary to Direct Hire/Long term on-site support •Managed Work Sites/Full time on-site supervision The MWSstl Connection: •Between employers and skilled workers •Between profits and production •Between stability and performance •Between your bottom line and success For more information on how your business can benefit from partnering with MWSstl, contact: Jesse Lane MWSstl Site Supervisor (314) 333-5600


Board of Directors
Leading through Experience and Dedication

PRESIDENT J.D Luhning, Esq. Attorney-at-Law Pitzer Snodgrass P.C. VICE PRESIDENT Prevost V. Foushee Retired Anheuser-Busch Inc. TREASURER Arthur E. Weiss Financial Advisor Lisart LLC SECRETARY Roy Anderson, Jr. Local Sales Manager Clear Channel Communications

DIRECTORS J. Scott Clark Senior Labor Counsel Ralcorp Holdings Inc.

Steve Fiamingo, CPA MBA Candidate Olin Business School Rodney Gee Principal, Human Resources Edward Jones

Thompson Coburn LLP Walter Robinson Human Resource Consultant Al Sears Director, Fixed Income Services Buckingham Asset Management Frank A. Simmons Retired Mainline Information Systems Sandra Sneed Crew Manager McDonald’s Restaurants William Watkins President Watkins Building Group, LLC

Karen A. Davis Senior Vice President, Midwest Community Affairs Leo Ming, Jr. Manager Regions Financial Corporation Retired Vice President, Human Resources Bill B. Dorothy II, Esq. St. Louis Convention and VisiProfessor of Practice tors Commission Washington University School of Law Michael Novack Vanessa Howard Ellis, Esq. Assistant Attorney General Marti Bloodsaw-Foggie HR Consultant Strategies Group Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer Kiosite Jennifer Price, Esq. Attorney-at-Law


Financial Report
Community supporters can be assured their charitable dollars are utilized in the most effective and efficient way. As a result of this due diligence, Employment Connection meets all 20 BBB Standards of Charitable Accountability. Employment Connection works diligently to ensure that every dollar donated goes to those who need it most. Below is the summary of our financial year ending 2011 as audited by Conner Ash, P.C. The agency remains in a solid financial position by diligently appropriating its fiduciary responsibility. Please feel free to contact Employment Connection directly if you would like a complete copy of our financial statements.

Arthur E. Weiss

Arthur E. Weiss Board Treasurer Certified Public Accountant

2011 Operating Revenues*
Building Rental Income Contributions Grants and Contracts United Way of Greater St. Louis Interest and Unrealized Loss on Investments 2011 Total Revenue $ 35,600 $ 216,000 $ 2,151,200 $ 436,900 $ -29,300 1% 7% 77% 16% -1%

2011 Operating Expenses*
Competitive Employment Program Managed Work Services Building Rental Expense Management and General Fundraising 2011 Total Expenses $ 2,077,400 $ 367,200 $ 37,500 $ 188,000 $ 56,600 $ 2,726,700 76% 14% 1% 7% 2% 100%

$ 2,810,400 100%


2011 Unrestricted Net Assets

$ 3,441,300

* Rounded 00

Employment Connection Club <$100
Conner Ash Pat Brown Helena Crowder Vanessa Ellis Dollaree Glasper Harry Little Janet Luhning Minnie McRoberts David Meyer Mulligan Graphics Thomas Rhodenbaugh Walter Robinson Sandra Sneed Halbert Sullivan T & J Restaurants Rachel Tibbets Kelli Williams Stephen Zegel U.S. Department of Labor/VETS Morgan Stanley Suzanne and Frank Poggio Jennifer Price Walter Robinson Yusef Scoggin Rich Unnerstall William Watkins Boeing Employees Community Fund Edward Jones John O. Shields and Claire Shields Arthur Weiss

Visionaries Club $5000+
St. Louis Affordable Housing Commission

Directors Club $250+
David Kessel Brenda Mahr Lauren Ming Leo Ming Jr. Charles and Betsy Newman Michael Novack Maria P. and Jay O. Shields Frank A. Simmons

Emerson Charitable Trust Fox Family Foundation Jordan Foundation Pott Foundation St. Louis Philanthropic Organization

Community Builders $25,000+
Daughters of Charity Foundation

Founders Club $500+
Lutheran Foundation Rodney Gee

Wiley Smith Club $100+
David and Sarah Anderson
Martie Bloodsaw-Foggie and Vincent Foggie

Joseph Arndt Foundation JD Luhning and Aisling A. Murphy Chip and Shelda Shields Jeff Smith

Missouri Department of Corrections St. Louis Board of Aldermen/Youth at Risk St. Louis Mental Health Board United Way of Greater St. Louis

Carol Burkholder Karen Davis Jessie Day Steve Fiamingo Prevost Foushee Michael Karasick Pitzer Snodgrass

Opportunity Fund $1,000
Michael Lockette Miken Technologies Al Sears


Advisory Board
ARCHS Gail Dickson Basic Oval Miller, Sr. Bridgeway Behavioral Health Alecia Deutch Catholic Charities Housing Resource Center Jane Schoeck Center For Life Solutions, Inc. Cheryl Gardine Center For Women In Transition Sandy Sperino Christian Friends for New Americans Rev. Dr. Allen buckman Adefris Mekasha Criminal Justice Ministry Society of St. Vincent DePaul Sr. Carleen Reck Division of Workforce Development Donny Carroll Family Support Network Sue Didier Fathers Support Center Cheaster Deanes Gateway Free And Clean Shelly Wims/Karl Pickens Gateway 180 Toni Muhammad Gateway Parents Support Group Healthline Martha Sylvester Hope House Vanessa McLaughlin Humanitri Edwin Muhammad Justine Petersen Kristen Schell Loaves and Fishes Debbie Push Moorish Science Temple Of America, Inc. Bro. Todd Irons-El Neighborhood Outreach Center Linda Thompson New Beginnings Carrie Williams Oasis International Ministries Mark Akers Our Lady’s Inn Jennifer Reinbold Preferred Family Healthcare Kim Feaman Project Cope Adrienne Denson Providence Inn Angela Hamilton Queen of Peace Margo Adams Rape And Violence End Now (RAVEN) Janeen McGee Salvation Army Rehabilitation Center Alan James Soaring Spirit Ministries Janis Frick Timothy Evangelical Lutheran Church Rev. Bill Wilson St. Louis Community Release Center John Young Transfiguration Lutheran Church Donnell Jackson United States Probation and Parole Quincy Fountain Jo Cooper Urban League James Smith Women’s Safe House LaDonna Howard Youth Empowerment Services (YES) Joseph Prophet Eddie Stallings YWCA Crystal Small

The following volunteers donated a total 3,844 hours At Employment Connection this year, giving of their time and talents to help others. You are all very much appreciated!
Avi Allen Jafra Allen Chardrey Austin Bob Bell Nathan Bolden Linda Bond Giarra Boyce Jasmine Burt Darlene Carr Lucille Clark Rachael Cubb Jesceener Curry Janice Dansberry Anthony Deanes Kevin Dent Harold Fields Chiquita Fisher Breanna Fulton Jackie Furlow Leon Gardner Shelton Green Jerrell Hawkins Delores Herron Cortez Johnson Eugenia Kilbert Joseph King Crystal Lancaster Kenneth Legrone Dom Lupo Keith McCrady Maurice Murray Caley Palmer Natasha Porter Doris Rogers Sandra Savage Brenda Smith Erica Tate William Taylor Rebekah Titsworth Brenda Smith Joseph Stroud Jeremy Stubbs Charles Sutherland Ramone Triplett Roger Walsh Bennett Wills

Stephanie Bennett Tiffany Lecke

Darron Collins-Bey Uriyah Reed


Our Dedicated Staff
Administration Brenda Mahr Chief Executive Officer 34 years David Kessel Chief Operating Officer 16 years Nathaniel Dempsey Executive Assistant 6 years Jonathan Walz Development Associate 2 years Accounting Services Sarah Robinson Sr. Manger, Accounting Services 9 years Nora Davis Accountant 9 years Managed Work Services Jessie Lane Site Supervisor 9 years Krystal Bryant Site Supervisor II 3 Years Client & Training Services Peggy McKinney Manager, Client Services 9 years Dollaree Glasper Client Services Specialist 8 years Housing Services Yusef Scoggin Manager, Housing Services 2 years Supportive Housing Program Harry Little Housing Specialist -SHP 9 years Meredith McDuffie Housing Specialist -SHP 1st year Erick Abernathy Housing Specialist –SHP 1st year Supportive Services for Veteran Families Andre Alexander Housing Specialist –SSVF 1st year Saffiyah Muhammad Housing Specialist –SSVF 1st year Stephanie Shaw Housing Specialist –SSVF 1st year Custodial Staff Oscar Selfe Custodian 5 years Steve Willkins Custodian 1st year Competitive Employment Program Eugene Fowler Senior Manager, Career Services 8years Steven Hoven Manager, Career Services 8years Ex-Offenders, Veterans, Youth and Adults Minnie McRoberts Career Specialist 34 years Tamara Williams Career Specialist 12 years Preston Vanderford Career Specialist 3 years Michael McCoy Manager, Career Specialist 4 years Veronica Travis Career Specialist 4 years New Americans Pat Brown Career Specialist 28 years Back to Health/Back to Work Steve Zegel Licensed Clinical Social Worker 4 years Illinois TANF & SNAP Brian Crues Career Specialist 8 years


Main service location

2838 Market Street Saint Louis, Missouri 63103 Hours of Service Monday-Friday 8:00am-5:00pm Telephone 314-333-JOBS (5627) Satellite Office

Department of Human Services 225 N. 9th Street East Saint Louis, Illinois 62201 Hours of Service Monday-Friday 8:00am-5:00pm Telephone 618.875.8665
Employment Connection Saint Louis