Goodwill's switchboard operator/receptionist Lisa SmithMeet Lisa Smith

Background Information
Sixteen years ago, I was a professional vocalist on my way to landing a recording contract. However, my life took a dramatic turn when I was rear-ended by a drunk driver. The near-fatal wreck left me paralyzed from the waist down. I spent months in the hospital healing and learning how to walk again. I came out walking, but was left with permanent paralysis to the limbs on my right side.

Turning to Goodwill
I was ready to go back to work, but knew I would need some extra help because of my new circumstances. Research led me to Goodwill’s former OfficeTECH program. I got training on software packages, word processing, proofreading, customer service and more. After completing the program, I went to transitional employment working as a part-time file clerk and front desk relief for Goodwill. When the transitional employment phase was over, I secured a job as a phone operator for a telecommunications company. After working for the telecommunications company for about two years, I received a call from a Goodwill VP who offered me a job as the agency’s switchboard operator/receptionist. I immediately turned in the proper notice to my employer!

At Goodwill, I have the opportunity to help people. What’s even better is that I can actually meet the people in person. I am proud that they refer to me as the “Voice of Goodwill.” It is my pleasure to answer the questions of the people who call Goodwill. I love my job because I can honestly say I work for a company that makes a positive impact on the lives of people just like me. I have worked at Goodwill since 1996, and have been sharing my Goodwill testimony ever since. I share it at Goodwill graduations, in the break room while having lunch with buddies and on the phone with people who ask about Goodwill’s services. Goodwill impacted my life and I share my story because I want everyone to know that Goodwill helps people.