About Us

Message from the Director

Progressive Employment Concepts’ mission is to provide opportunities for people with developmental disabilities which promote dignity, respect, and inclusion so that all our lives and communities are enriched. Looking back over the years since our inception this mission has led us down many wonderful paths with people. From finding employment for people, some have now worked for the same employer 12 plus years, to assisting people in taking community college classes, to others who have made a dramatic impact in their communities through their diligent volunteer work still others have surpassed all expectations and started their own businesses. Each day we are grateful for the opportunity to be a part of people’s lives as they strive for, what many take for granted, the right to live a life of value and dignity. To live a life of ordinary successes and failures and to contribute in the ways that make sense for each person. We hope that while you visit our site you will think of ways you can resist the constraints that threaten to restrict, alienate and disenfranchise thousands of individuals with developmental disabilities and instead support communities where all are valued and included.

History

October 16, 1995
Progressive Employment Concepts began serving individuals in Sacramento and Placer County out of our Citrus Heights, California office
October 16, 2000
Progressive Employment Concepts opened its doors in Crescent City serving Del Norte County  
September 2002
Community and Employment Services began in Davis, California serving Yolo County
April 2005
Community Employment Links in Eureka, California came on board serving Humboldt County. 
January 1, 2016
Crescent City and Eureka begin operating under a new non-profit organization, Community & Employment Links
 
We currently support 110 people as they continue to improve their lives.

Staff Bios

Executive Director - Carole Watilo
It is my great pleasure to be the Executive Director of Progressive Employment Concepts and its outlying offices that do business under the names Community & Employment Services and Community Employment Links. The creation of this agency and its evolution over the years is one of my proudest accomplishments. Our agency holds a zero-exclusion policy and as such we have worked with people who have very high support needs both academically as well as physically. Our philosophy of inclusion and meaningful participation for ALL is the cornerstone of everything we do. About my back-ground. I hold a Bachelor of Arts degree in Child Development and a Master of Arts Degree in Education with an emphasis in Special Education from Sacramento State University. I have worked in this field since 1984, beginning my career as a residential and classroom aide for children with autism in a non-public residential school. From 1987- present I have worked with adults with developmental disabilities in a variety of capacities. I have provided direct services as an ILS Instructor, SLS support person, and employment support specialist. Prior to my professional work with people with disabilities I grew up around folks living in care homes that my sister worked for. I am also the aunt to 5 individuals with developmental disabilities. My husband and I have 3 amazing daughters.

Community & Employment Service’s - Director of Outlying Area's - Sharon Perry
I started with CES April 4th, as Service Coordinator and fit right in.  I already knew many of the consumers we work with, being in the field for twenty years. Many of the CES consumer’s I had met through Summer House Respite Program, so it was an easy transition.  CES has many wonderful people that I am able to work and learn with on a daily basis. 
I worked for UCP for about a year and that’s when I was phoned by Summer House and asked if I would be interested in being on their on-call list.  I was then introduced to Summer House life in Woodland and that’s where I stayed for the next twenty year’s.  My first day @ Summer House I was to be trained by our very own Jamie Elliott, to my surprise, I had met Jamie during our senior year in high school.  Jamie was an exchange student from New York.  In a million years I wouldn’t of thought I would ever see her again.  I had many wonderful experience and developed many great relationships through Summer House.  After twenty year’s with Summer House I felt it was time for a change and to focus on family and relationships.  
I am also involved with Supported Life Institute; I help with two conferences a year.  The folks I work with are pass staff of Summer House.  Ron Mainini, Andy and Dana Faletti are wonderful people to work with; I love working the conference’s every year.  This is where I met Carole Watilo, many years ago.  Recently, I was hired as a Yolo People First Advisor.  What a great opportunity.  
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