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Servant Leadership Snapshot

Devereux’s talented and hard-working team members lead to serve, while inspiring others to learn and grow. Our “Servant Leadership Snapshot” series shines a light on exemplary servant leaders across our organization who empower all those around them to be their best selves. Look below to read features written by these compassionate collaborators as they help their teams, programs, departments and centers reach even greater heights through Servant Leadership.


Renee Williams, Speech Language Pathologist

Renee WilliamsCenter/office location: Devereux Pennsylvania’s Center for Autism Research and Education Services (CARES) - Downingtown

Length of service: July 2013

How do you embed an inclusive, Servant Leadership mindset into your daily processes?

As a speech language pathologist, I focus on communication and social skills with my students. It is important that I take advantage of every opportunity to listen to what they are attempting to communicate, and help them pass their message on to others. My goal is to help all of my students become skilled communicators to advocate for their wants and needs, and also, help others, including my colleagues, parents and others in the community to listen and watch for all of the ways the students are communicating.

How do you inspire others to embrace Servant Leadership practices?

As a member of Devereux Pennsylvania CARES’ social committee, we implemented a peer-to-peer recognition system that provides us an opportunity to give shoutouts to others who are demonstrating Servant Leadership principles at our school. Each month, I distribute an email with those shoutouts so everyone on campus can see what it means to be a servant leader at CARES. I believe all of my colleagues should be praised and honored for their hard work, and this recognition could inspire others to embrace best practices and act as a servant leader as well.

Share an example or story of how you demonstrated compassion or delivered quality customer service at your center.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been difficult for many professionals, students and families. Although virtual instruction with our students with autism was a challenge, I also found many benefits as we worked closely with families. This gave me an opportunity to listen to parents and incorporate their ideas into instruction more consistently. For example, I would reach out to the parents of a student the evening before their session to find out what details to include in the student’s session the next day. I was able to ask the student questions about his weekend and he could tell me about the activities he enjoyed.