2022 Achiever of the Year: Neise Atterberry




When people with disabilities come through Goodwill's doors, they are looking for a chance, like most of us, they are eager to work, succeed, and lead fuller lives. We understand that disabilities don't define people, that is at the core of our philosophy. Our work with people with disabilities is always through a lens of capability. Goodwill South Florida makes that possible by providing vocational rehabilitation, training, and employment services. 

Neise Atterberry is 46 years old and was born is New York. She is a high school graduate who suffers from an intellectual disability. She is friendly and polite; with an eagerness to learn and push beyond her boundaries. She began attending Goodwill's Adult Day Training 23 years ago. At the time, the following functional barriers were observed: difficulty performing multi-stepped tasks, illiteracy, minimum mathematical skills, sensitivity to criticism, and difficulty concentrating. Neise required consistent prompting to redirect her attention back to her task. Usually, she was able to regain her focus, but at times, she would become sensitive to constructive criticism and start crying. She needed extensive one on one counseling to assist in calming her down. 

With the assistance of the rehabilitation team, she learned how to focus and prioritize in order to complete higher-level tasks. Her ability to accept corrective feedback has increased while her cycles of frustration have dramatically decreased. She consistently demonstrates enthusiasm for learning new things and trying to better at her job. 

In 2022, Neise was given the opportunity to train as a helper at Goodwill's Donated Goods department. This job requires specific abilities; sorting, handling, and organizing items received. Neise exceeded expectations. In July 2022, she became a permanent employee at our Donated Goods department. She has never been absent to work! This is a testament to her passion and dedication.