Born and raised on Long Island, NY, David received his Bachelors degree from the University of Oregon and his Masters in Social Work from the University of Washington. He has worked in developmental disabilities programs in King County since 1978, becoming the executive director of EES in 1986. David has a high regard and affinity for the people working in this field. "I get great personal satisfaction from seeing that the work we do impacts the lives of so many people – both those who come to us for service and their co-workers who are positively affected by working relationships."
Karyn Lynch, Program
Karyn originates from Boston and began her career in the field of disability as a Special Education teacher. She has taught in Virginia, Massachusetts and San Francisco.
She has been involved in different capacities with Supported Employment since the 1980s and joined the EES team in 1993. Having a brother with a disability inspired Karyn to work with people and their families, helping each reach their employment goals. "I get very energized by the collective talents of my co-workers. I feel fortunate to be able to work with such a dynamic and dedicated group of people."
On staff at EES since 1991, Elmer serves as the Senior Employment Coordinator. Although born in Fresno, California, he called many places home – from Boston to Japan – during his father’s military career. Elmer attended the University of Washington, and joined EES during a period of his life when he was seeking a career change that offered personal rewards. He’s found those rewards in assisting EES participants maximize their professional and personal potential.
Tom Jacobs, Employment
Tom, who is a native of Seattle, earned a NROTC scholarship to the University of Washington and was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Naval Service in 1978. He received his Bachelors degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Business Organization.
Tom has worked as an employment coordinator for EES since 1996. He chose supported employment as a career because he was intrigued by the challenge of finding meaningful and rewarding work for individuals with developmental disabilities. Tom believes the basis of a healthy community is including everyone as valued and productive members. “Each of us has unique gifts that can enhance the lives of others.”
An Employment Coordinator for EES, Steve is a dedicated caregiver, a trait which he figures runs in his family’s genes. He became interested in social work while traveling in England where he worked in a hospital for six months. Upon returning to Seattle, Steve worked in a drug and alcohol rehab center for teens before going into long term nursing care as a CNA. He was studying to become a nurse when he began employment at an independent living agency, and after five years there he joined EES in 1999.
He especially enjoys the "eclectic mix" of co-workers at EES who stimulate interesting communication and new ways of thinking, all of which help to inspire his daily interaction with EES participants.
Winnie, who joined EES in 2000, has a six-year-old son with autism. As a parent who has faced special needs issues ranging from education and medical care to employment and family support, Winnie is devoted to building a bridge between EES and Asian families with special needs.
Fluent in several Asian languages and familiar with their cultures, she is a well-known activist in the Asian community. She is involved in the Parent to Parent support group of the Arc of King County and is also a community guide at the Department of Developmental Disabilities.
Laura grew up in and around the greater Seattle area. She is a graduate of the University of Washington with a degree in Anthropology, a minor in Music and extensive coursework in the field of education with an emphasis in Special Ed.
Before coming on board with Eastside Employment Services, she worked as a Group Program Coordinator with Camp Fire USA (a Youth Enrichment Program), where she worked to achieve the mission of “building caring, confident youth and future leaders.” She enjoys continuing this mission through EES and their various programs such as School To Work. In her spare time, Laura pursues her passion of music by singing and playing guitar with a band called Shades of Red.
Caitlin is a Washington native and currently lives in Renton. She joined the EES team in 2008. She is a University of Washington graduate where she received a B.A. in psychology. Since she graduated she has been in the social work field. She was a Program Supervisor for a boy’s group home before coming to EES.
Her favorite part of being an employment coordinator is watching her clients grow and become independent on the job. She enjoys traveling, walking her dog, reading, and attending UW and Seattle sporting events.
Chelsea is a Washington state native and currently lives in Seattle. Throughout her life, Chelsea has had the privilege of being surrounded by teachers, many of them family members, with classrooms ranging from Special Education to Montessori. Being surrounded by these wonderful role models has been a constant inspiration and a reminder to always keep learning. Coming from a background in Customer Service and Theatre, working with the DD community had never occurred to Chelsea as something that might fit; her mother-in-law, Greta, saw things differently. During one of their very first conversations, Greta said, “You would make a GREAT job coach.”
In 2010, Chelsea was between jobs and wanted to try something different, something that would be a daily challenge and would really make a difference in people’s lives. She took Greta’s advice and now works as an Employment Coordinator for EES and is currently working with the Seattle Children’s Project SEARCH program. She absolutely loves her job, the people she works for and with and, for the first time in her life, adores going to work. In her spare time, Chelsea is the Artistic Director of her own theatre production company, Copious Love Productions; she writes and directs her own original works in the greater Seattle area.
Office Manager/Public Relations Coordinator
Danielle, who joined EES in 1998, functions as both the office manager and public relations coordinator for EES. Her teammate and assistant is Liza, her German shepherd service dog whose keen hearing helps compensate for Danielle’s auditory loss.
Danielle has a 30-year background in the publishing field, including working as a newspaper reporter/editor and as the editor of an international magazine for women pilots. Because of her own disability, she’s found that EES is the perfect environment in which to work, and she appreciates the greater insight she’s gained into disability issues.