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Disability Employment Month Profile: Joe Mandella

Disability Employment Month Profile: Joe Mandella

Categories: Advocacy, Employment, Featured News

Joe Mandella enjoys his work. Joe Mandella loves his job. One of 51 nominees for the NYSID 2020 William B. Joslin Outstanding Performance Award, Joe currently works as a commercial cleaner for AHRC Nassau in Freeport and through AHRC’s NYSID contracts — the Department of Labor in Hicksville.

“Being nominated for this award makes me feel special and very happy that my supervisors know I am doing my best,” said Joe.

Always early and rarely taking time off, Joe has worked with AHRC for the past 24 years. “When the going gets tough, Joe gets going” is how AHRC’s team leader, Jose Portillo describes Joe’s work. As soon as Joe finishes his work, he is ready to support his co-workers.

During this difficult and unprecedented time of COVID-19, Joe has overcome many challenges. The most significant being his inability to visit his wife in a nursing home. This was part of Joe’s daily routine and he desperately missed it. Talking on the phone was just not the same. But as with most challenges, Joe’s determination won out. As soon as he realized that she had a window in her room and they could see and talk to each other with the window slightly cracked, Joe was back to visiting his wife daily.

When Joe finally returned to work, he found more changes to his daily routine. Wearing a mask was an adjustment but this was a challenge Joe overcame. He understood now more than ever he was making a difference with his work.

“I like my job because I feel I am helping to keep people safe by doing a good job cleaning,” shared Joe.