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  • Trinity Services, Inc. Breaks Ground on Permanent Supportive Housing Development in Northlake

    Jan 18, 2018

    NORTHLAKE, IL — Trinity Services, Inc. officially broke ground on Trinity Park Vista, a permanent supportive housing development in Northlake, on Jan. 16.

    The state-of-the-art apartment building will offer three floors and a total of 16 units for residents with disabilities, who will be offered subsidized rent.

    Primarily, residents will live independently and have the option to receive support from Trinity Services staff members. Support may include assistance finding employment, help managing finances or occasional counseling services.

    Three three-bedroom units will each provide space for one care provider and two people with developmental disabilities to live. These are known as shared living settings — environments in which care providers share their lives with the people they support.

    The apartment building, which is planned for 1 E. Lakewood Terrace in Northlake, will be within walking distance of local businesses, providing job opportunities and convenience for future residents.

    The modern, upscale building is being designed by Worn Jerabek Wiltse Architects, P.C., developed by Brush Hill Development, financed by the Illinois Housing Development Authority and constructed by Synergy Construction Group.

    IHDA chose the apartment building’s location in Northlake based on assessed need for permanent supportive housing in the state of Illinois.

    Representatives from all organizations involved with the development, as well as from the City of Northlake, were present at the groundbreaking ceremony.

    Northlake Mayor Jeffrey Sherwin has been recognized by IHDA for his support of these types of residences. During the groundbreaking, Trinity Services President and CEO Thane Dykstra, Ph.D., also recognized Sherwin and all who were involved in the development for their enthusiasm about welcoming people with disabilities to the community.

    Once constructed, Trinity Park Vista will become Trinity Services’ fifth permanent supportive housing development. Trinity provides services at similar developments in Villa Park, Lombard, Lockport and Sandwich, Illinois.

    Through permanent supportive housing, dozens of people have been able to experience stronger independence and empowerment by having living space they can call their own.

    Trinity Services, Inc. is a 68-year-old, nonsectarian, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping children and adults with developmental disabilities and mental illness flourish and live full and abundant lives. Trinity serves more than 3,500 people in more than 30 communities in northeast, central and southwest Illinois. To learn more, visit


    Trinity Park Vista GroundbreakingRepresentatives from Trinity Services, Inc.; the City of Northlake; Worn Jerabek Wiltse Architects, P.C.; Brush Hill Development; the Illinois Housing Development Authority; and Synergy Construction Group celebrate the groundbreaking of Trinity Park Vista Jan. 16 in Northlake.

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  • Tina Fogarty Named Chief Operating Officer of Trinity Services, Inc.

    Jan 12, 2018

    NEW LENOX, IL — Trinity Services, Inc. announces today the appointment of Tina Fogarty to the position of Chief Operating Officer (COO).

    Fogarty joined Trinity Services in 2016 as the Director of Specialized Residential Services and quickly became a valued member of the executive leadership team. She was appointed to the position of COO by President and CEO Thane Dykstra, Ph.D.

    Fogarty has more than 25 years of experience in the human services field, 22 of which were spent at Neumann Family Services. As Neumann’s Vice President of Programs and Services, Fogarty worked to develop, implement and lead a wide range of residential, adult learning, employment, clinical and case management programs.

    Fogarty has extensive experience working with people who have a dual diagnosis of a developmental disability and a mental illness. She also served young adults with a dual diagnosis who were transitioning to community-integrated living arrangements, also known as group homes, after receiving services from the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.

    Since coming to Trinity Services, Fogarty’s vast knowledge base in the fields of developmental disabilities and mental illness, as well as her strong leadership skills have greatly benefited the organization.

    In her role as COO, Fogarty will work alongside Dykstra and all members of the Trinity Services team to ensure the organization is effectively carrying out its mission of helping people with developmental disabilities and mental illness flourish and live full and abundant lives.

    “Tina has quickly become a valued member of the executive team, and her interpersonal style and personality have perfectly matched Trinity’s organizational culture,” Dykstra said.

    Fogarty has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from North Central College and a master’s degree in gerontology from Roosevelt University.

    Fogarty can be reached at (815) 485-6197 or

    Trinity Services, Inc. is a 68-year-old, nonsectarian, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping children and adults with developmental disabilities and mental illness flourish and live full and abundant lives. Trinity serves more than 3,500 people in more than 30 communities in northeast, central and southwest Illinois. To learn more, visit

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  • A Positive Relationship to the Self: Attention

    Jan 17, 2018

    As mentioned last week, attention is the ability to attend to or concentrate on a single object, thought or activity. Therefore, when we are paying attention, we are:

    • Consciously perceiving
    • Present in the moment
    • Alert to what we take in, and
    • Managing our intake mechanisms.

    Attention is the key to self-control, learning, productivity, planning and organizing. Many individuals, including scientists, philosophers and educators, think that it is harder to pay attention today. We are becoming victims of our inability to sit still, a nation of people with attention deficit disorder. My own thought regarding this inability to sit still is that it emanates from a sense of hollowness, an existential pain, that some experience more than others. They are unable to be alone with themselves.

    In addition, many people fear boredom, obviously making them more easily distractible than others. Still others actually seek distractions, resulting in the inability to delve deeply into anything. For instance, one study found that workers switch tasks every three minutes.

    Unfortunately, our current, highly technological society offers employees innumerable opportunities to be distracted. They can:

    • Waste time surfing the web
    • Spend excessive time constantly checking emails
    • Misuse computers by playing games and/or making purchases
    • Become dependent on or addicted to their smartphones, which offer immediate access to the internet and forms of communication, such as
    • Phone calls at almost any location
    • Text messaging
    • Instant messaging
    • Social networking.                                                      .     

    Of course, email and other instant forms of communication have made it much easier and quicker to touch base with team members and clients. However, it has also prompted many more instances of misunderstandings that in some cases might be called “email wars.” This occurs for reasons such as mistakes in terminology, inclusion of unverified information, and words “spoken” outside the context of tone of voice and other elements of nonverbal expression. With important communication, nothing beats being in the same room, looking each other in the eye.

    The problem of inattention even affects highly educated professionals. Another study indicated that, on average, doctors listen to patients for only 18 seconds before they interrupt them. We have literally lost our patience. Long before the tech explosion, Mahatma Gandhi stated, “There is much more to life than increasing its speed.”

    When everything is said and done, attention requires diligence and sustained effort—in other words, discipline. That, of course, seems self-evident. The question is, “What attention-honing strategies must one practice with discipline?” Daniel Goleman offers some good advice in his book, Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence. Among other things, he suggests practicing:

    • Mindfulness – Taking time daily to focus on an object, a mantra or one’s breath can strengthen the ability to pay attention. The mind naturally wanders in the process, but the practitioner patiently brings his/her thoughts back to the chosen point of focus, slowly lengthening the attention span.
    • Memorization – Memorizing passages of written material, sets of numbers or lists of concepts also requires focus. Breaking the items into manageable chunks and stringing them together exercises one’s “mental attention muscle.”
    • A focus on the positive – Research has shown that people who focus on the positive actually expand their span of attention. Positive psychologist Barbara Fredrickson notes that positivity allows the mind to “see” more, reducing its tendency to flit from one thought to another.
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  • Workplace Harmony and a Positive Relationship to the Self

    Jan 10, 2018

    Let’s consider some of the relationships that make up our lives and networks for a few minutes. I have often stated the importance of our answer to the question, “How do we want to be together?” While there are many possible replies, our responses as leaders clearly play themselves out in the harmony and productivity of the workplace. Virtually every important function at Trinity, every strategic goal is accomplished through relationships.

    We all engage in many different relationships. There are:

    • Personal, friendship-based relationships – attachments based on affection and/or respect
    • Spiritual relationships – ecclesiastical or sacred and God-related affiliations
    • Sports/athletic relationships – various levels of competitive associations
    • Romantic/sexual relationships – the most visible and talked about connections
    • Transactional relationships – occurring because of the “exchange” function, a characteristic of most organizations
    • Family relationships.    

    However, two important relationships don’t appear in the list: the relationship to self, and the service or commonweal relationship (for a purpose greater than oneself, for the general welfare). Both have a great stake in the discussion of harmony.

    First, it is very difficult to be in harmony with others if you are not in harmony with yourself. Said another way, we could ask the question, “How do you want to relate to and/or feel about yourself?” For instance, are you joyful, embarrassed, content, dissatisfied, relaxed, agitated or unhappy?

    Peter McWilliams wrote an informative book in the early 1990s called Do It: Let’s Get Off Our Buts. In it, he invents the word “selfing” and defines the concept as “doing for one’s Self in the larger sense of Self—as in True Self, or ‘to thine own self be true.’ It means fulfilling our inherent dreams, goals and aspirations. It means living our life ‘on purpose.’” It’s the opposite of being selfish—excessively consumed with your own welfare. It’s the opposite of the constant need to gather stuff. It’s the opposite of trying to impress others and to be what others want us to be. Selfing also differs from selfish in that the person who achieves a goal invites others to share in the benefits resulting from that achievement.

    There is absolutely no doubt that our behavior influences others—especially in leadership activities. Leaders inspire their teams with the desire to succeed or “infect” them with dis-ease, based on their comfort with who they are and their perspective on the outer world. That is why we must always ask ourselves the question, “What must I change about myself so that they can change?”

    The ability to answer the question requires an understanding of the dynamics of personal harmony. Obviously, we could discuss a broad range of topics, so I have arbitrarily selected three dimensions of harmony, which I will cover in more detail in the next three weeks:

    • Attention – the ability to attend to or concentrate on a single object, thought or activity
    • Attitude – a disposition, feeling or position taken regarding a person, thing, concept or event
    • Organization – the ability to organize one’s thoughts, belongings, tasks, goals and actions.

    These three elements are essential to a stable sense of self that allows the leader to act and choose to change with comfort when the situation demands it. That stability and comfort can transform a team’s culture, focus and achievement level over time, creating a workplace characterized by true harmony.

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