OUTdrive Episode 71 with David Kramer
From a young age, we are taught that there are “no limits” to what we can accomplish. For individuals with disabilities, those mantras would be difficult to believe, much less accomplish, without the proper resources from Center for Human Services. CHS provides exceptional services and support for nearly 5,000 individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities across 39 Missouri counties. In this episode of OUTdrive, Cliff sits down with the Center’s CEO, David Kramer, and discusses how his team continues to encourage each individual they serve to live “Life Without Limitations.”
Following a nationwide search earlier this year, David was named CEO of CHS, headquartered in Sedalia. David previously served as the Chief Operating Officer at Emmaus Homes in St. Louis. Prior to that, he was a director for Life Skills, an Easter Seals affiliate in Missouri. David began his career as a direct care worker at a Department of Mental Health state facility. David received a degree in psychology from St. Louis University and went on to earn his MBA from Washington University in St. Louis.
The founding mission of CHS in 1955 centered around the establishment of programs and services that change the way the community defines and views people with disabilities. While the mission hasn’t changed, the need has grown exponentially. Tune into this episode of OUTdrive to learn more about how you can support the CHS services in your community.
- 4:30 – David reflects on the life events that steered his path to Sedalia as the CEO of Center for Human Services.
- 8:15 – David describes his unique upbringing in an All-American-style neighborhood with close access to the city in suburban St. Louis
- 10:15 – Cliff and David discuss David’s decision to pursue a degree in psychology and how that specific coursework can be infused in both of their career paths.
- 12:20 – A look into David’s short-lived college athletics career as a rugby player for St. Louis University.
- 14:45 – How David’s background led him to working with individuals with disabilities.
- 17:40 – An explanation of the ongoing struggle to balance resources and the unmet needs at CHS and organizations like it.
- 23:00 – How the mission of CHS has contributed to the growth of the organization in counties across the state.
- 24:45 – David explains his current role as CEO and the transition from working directly with individuals to the administration side of CHS.
- 27:15 – Current innovation and industry trends that assist in the services that CHS provides.
- 33:30 – The steps David and his team are taking to help increase awareness of CHS and marketing their mission in Missouri.
- 36:30 – A few of the things David enjoys about living in rural America.