2022 Goodwill Achiever of the Year: Chris Leon

Before Chris came to Goodwill he was not his fun, bubbly self that he had been in high school. Missing the school environment along with cutbacks to social services during the pandemic did not help Chris’ mindset. He needed the structure that he once knew back in his life. That’s when his family found Goodwill.

An acquaintance of the Leon family had been attending the Goodwill day service program and they decided to give it a chance. In the initial months when Chris first came to Goodwill he had a hard time trusting staff and had trouble integrating with his peers.

Over the past year, with structure and employment opportunities his attitude and demeanor have changed dramatically. The difference is night and day. Chris has adapted and thrived in this environment he now enjoys and it shows. The staff at Goodwill have dedicated time to building trust and a true relationship with Chris.

Every day Chris arrives to work with a big smile. He is excited to show up daily and earn a paycheck. In March of 2022, Chris moved into a group home for the first time. He now feels more independent in his very own “apartment”. Chris is constantly striving to be the best version of himself and wants to motivate others around him to do the same.

His mother, Pat Leon is one of his biggest cheerleaders in life, “We decided Chris may need the structure that he knew back in high school, and got him to Goodwill. This was not only a good decision but pretty much a miracle. Chris is back to the kid I knew the first 21 years of his life.”