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New Toward Maximum Independence Division Manager Loves Transforming Lives!


Lydia Rodriguez
Lydia Rodriguez

The experience and enthusiasm new Employment Solutions Division Manager Lydia Rodriguez brings to our Toward Maximum Independence (TMI) El Centro office will undoubtedly assist with transforming the lives of our clients with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Lydia took a moment to share with us what inspires her and more!


Q. What interested you about working at TMI?

A. The care, support and empowerment that TMI provides to individuals.

Q. What experience do you have that will help you in your position?

A. I have 12 years of experience providing management services to benefit individuals with developmental disabilities by empowering and enhancing their lives.


Q. What are your hopes for the future of individuals with developmental disabilities?

A. My hopes are for people to recognize that we can all assist individuals with disabilities to pursue their dreams and sustain their independence.


Q. How does working at TMI make you feel? A. I love working at TMI! There is nothing more exciting than working here and knowing that I am motivating individuals to achieve their life goals.


Q. What is your favorite part about working at TMI?

A. The enthusiasm that I feel when helping our clients to enhance their confidence and skills.


Lydia's son Andrew and her daughter Briseis
Lydia's son Andrew and her daughter Briseis

Q. What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

A. I enjoy being active in my children’s lives and having adventures with them. We are a big sports family. We enjoy football, basketball, baseball, UFC, and boxing. I love to travel! I also enjoy the outdoors, hiking, beach days, cookouts, and gardening.


Q. Who do you admire and why?

A. My children! My son Andrew’s positive and adventurous personality, Adrian’s generosity, fearlessness, and creative personality, and my daughter Briseis’s kind soul. I admire them dearly. They encourage me to be strong, patient, compassionate, mindful, appreciative, joyful, successful, blessed, and thankful for the person I have become because of them.


Lydia's son Adrian
Lydia's son Adrian

Q. What is a quote that is meaningful to you?

A. “ Before you talk about an individual remember that they are loved by someone.”

-Adrian Duarte (my son)


We love that! Thank you for sharing with us. We are truly fortunate to have you on board helping us to transform lives!


The TMI employment programs for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Imperial County include: Community Integration Services (CIS) / Integrated Work and Tailored Day Services (TDS). Our innovative programs seek to assist our clients with finding employment if they desire and/or help them integrate into the community by volunteering at local businesses. We assist our clients with being contributing members of society. Programs are funded by San Diego Regional Center.

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. In 2020, we launched Disabled Veteran Employment Services. TMI strives to help our clients to realize their hopes and dreams by providing Employment Solutions, Community Living and Family Support Services throughout San Diego, Riverside and Imperial Counties. To stay connected with us, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Together we can share acceptance and awareness, ultimately contributing to further inclusion.