David May joined Toward Maximum Independence (TMI) more than 20 years ago and feels that his employment with us was meant to be! In the summer of 1981, when TMI was first getting started with services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, he inquired about a position assisting the deaf and hard of hearing. TMI wasn't established to provide those services at the time. David went on to be a college Adjunct Instructor of Life Skills for disabled students for eleven years at the ARC Arrow Center. He worked at ARC with TMI Division Manager Brent Ramsey, who has now been with TMI for nearly 25 years. Little did they know when they first met that they would both go on to work with TMI for many years to come.
(David with TMI supporters at TMI Day at Petco Park)
By 1998, TMI's services had grown. David came on board to assist our deaf and hard of hearing clients in our Community Living Services program. In 2000, TMI expanded our Employment Solutions program to the deaf and hard of hearing population. David then transferred to TMI’s Supported Employment (SE) program. As a Division Manager, David took a lead role and was soon promoted to Senior Division Manager. His favorite part of working at TMI is the monthly Management meeting, the SE Division Manager meeting and the All Staff meeting.
It gives David great satisfaction to work with his clients to keep them patient and positive even when the going gets tough. He encourages his clients to get along with others at work and to improve communication with employers and co-workers by using technology, such as writing a note with a cell phone. David believes communication is the key to making a difference in the lives of our clients.
(David with TMI's client Don at our holiday party)
In his free time, David enjoys going to events for the deaf and hard of hearing, as well as reading magazines and books. He also enjoys researching the history of his family tree and considers himself a novice genealogist.
David admires former Presidents George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, who he feels were highly innovative for humanity and in their service for the people. On April 8th, 1864, Lincoln signed the charter for Gallaudet University, the first university in the world dedicated to educating individuals who are deaf and hard of hearing. David graduated from Gallaudet University in 1975.
Words David lives by: “With everything you hear, some stories are premature. You need to wait for a few days. You will hear and collect more stories. You will find them incorrect or fact.”
May the truth prevail, David! Congratulations on 20 years with TMI!
Toward Maximum Independence (TMI) has been transforming the lives of children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities since 1981 and the deaf and hard of hearing since 2000. Like all of us, our clients are born with hopes, dreams and the drive to contribute to society. TMI strives to help our clients to realize their hopes and dreams by providing employment, community living and family support programs throughout San Diego, Riverside and Imperial Counties.