St. Coletta of Wisconsin Resident Celebrates 20 Years of Service to The Fireside
Posted On: May 10, 2012

Jefferson, WI. - The curtain closes and the crowd rises to their feet to give the actors a standing ovation. To the patrons of The Fireside in Fort Atkinson, this is just the end to another successful night but behind the scenes the staff is working hard to clean up and prepare for the next show.

One of those staff members is Tom Eufinger, dish room worker and resident at St. Coletta of Wisconsin. Tom recently celebrated 20 years of service at The Fireside, an accomplishment that is amazing in its own disposition, but for Tom who has special needs; this celebration is even more incredible. Tom started with The Fireside in 1992 and works 2 times a week in the dish room storing clean dishes and separating dirty dishes that need to be run through the commercial dish machine. Audiences for the Fireside average between 400 and 700 people a night so it is imperative Tom stays on task and provides consistent work throughout his shift. Mike Scott, Executive Chef of The Fireside, speaks very highly of Tom saying, “You can always tell when Tom is working because he is very meticulous in his work”. Having been there for 20 years, Tom has come to be known for his hearty laugh, cheerful dispositions, sense of humor and outstanding work ethic. 

Throughout the past 30 years, St. Coletta of Wisconsin and The Fireside have maintained a wonderful partnership allowing placement of individuals with disabilities to become active members of the community. Through a job placement program called Access, developed by St. Coletta in the 1990’s, hundreds of people have found employment at a number of local businesses and this number continues to grow. Erika Boettcher, Job Developer/Case Manager for the Access program explains, “This type of achievement is exactly what the Access program strives to help all clients accomplish. There is no greater satisfaction than seeing the pride on Tom’s face in achieving a feat as great as this.” The relationship between Access and The Fireside was even recognized by CARF, a human service provider accreditation organization, an as exceptional example of how to build creative partnerships in support of employment opportunities for persons with disabilities. “The Access program does a great job recognizing and understanding the needs of the workers and helping us support them,” says Mike Scott, “we are pleased that this program has helped us form a strong connection with the all types of people in the community”.

The Access Community Employment Program assists qualified participants in achieving their highest level of success in choosing, obtaining, maintaining, and/or advancing in a competitive career breaking down the barriers that can keep people with disabilities to enjoy successful career. In addition, it is not only the clientele who receive benefits, but the employers who partner with the Access Program. Such benefits include incentives offered through the government for those employers who are interested in hiring Access participants in an attempt to diversify their workforce. Such incentives include: tax credits, 50% savings on wages paid to the participant for the first 90 days of their employment, four weeks of cost free labor from participant while the employer receives a “sneak peek” of the client’s capabilities before committing to a hiring decision and many other cost-saving initiatives. To learn more about the benefits and opportunities offered through this program, contact Erika Boettcher at #920-674-8225.