Better Lives: JBM’s 2022 Fair Chance Graduation Celebration

When Emily Caton began working at JBM through our Fair Chance Program, she’d committed to creating a better life for herself, but she wasn’t sure where to start. In her first weeks of employment, she began meeting with Allison Steele, our Better Lives Coach, who helped equip her with the skills she needed for a successful transformation, freeing her of the drugs and toxic relationships that had landed her in a halfway house. Knowing that she couldn’t walk her new path alone, Emily found support and mentorship from other Fair Chance team members who had shared similar experiences. She also received encouragement from managers and other leaders who regularly checked in with her.

Second chance employee shares her story

Emily Caton shares her story during JBM’s recent graduation event for Fair Chance employees along with Allison Steele, JBM’s Better Lives Coach, and Brian Frawley, Shift Supervisor.

In the weeks that followed, Emily continued progressing through JBM’s Cultivate Program, which helps our Fair Chance team members navigate and overcome barriers and challenges associated with re-entry. From bad relationships to homelessness, limited technical skills to poor money management practices, the program encourages team members to develop goals and build healthy habits one step at a time.

On Saturday, April 9, Emily was one of 11 JBM team members recognized during a special ceremony for Cultivate graduates. Before a crowd of JBM leaders, employees and a personal guest invited on behalf of each graduate, their achievements were celebrated during a special dinner and awards presentation. Graduates shared their stories of grit and determination, along with their gratitude for the guest who had provided healthy support for them throughout their reentry process.

JBM Packaging’s Fair Chance Program graduation

JBM leadership, employees and personal guests of Fair Chance graduates gathered on April 9 to celebrate the incredible achievements of JBM Cultivate and Elevate graduates.

Donna Phillips, one of JBM’s earliest Fair Chance team members who has been a loyal employee for the past four years, provided the keynote speech where she shared her story in overcoming addiction after a terrible car accident. By serving as a mentor to many of the graduates, Phillips has played a key role in supporting new and existing Fair Chance team members on their journey to a better life.

Cultivating a Path to Personal Growth

A six- to nine-month program, our Cultivate curriculum is unique to each Fair Chance team member and based on their specific needs. Through trust and open communication, team members work one-on-one with our Better Lives Coach to identify triggers and develop healthy supports, coping skills and habits that facilitate personal growth and development one step at a time.

JBM Packaging’s Cultivate Program graduates

Congratulations to our 2022 Cultivate Program graduates! Pictured from left: Emily Caton, Trish Clark, Kristina Stegman, Brittany Lawson, Bryan Prater, Trinity Cornell, Andrew Lutz, Lindsey Watzek, Nikki Keeton, Donny Compton. (Not pictured: Kathy Bowling)

By creating a plan of action for possible scenarios that could result in backwards behavior (e.g. running into an old friend or ex), the team members identify areas where they have influence and equip themselves with the tools they need to move forward.

In addition to forming healthy personal and relationship habits, team members also have the opportunity to meet with external consultants, such as JBM’s Financial Peace Coach. This teaches them practical skills for saving and investing money, to assist them with achieving larger goals, such as purchasing a reliable vehicle through JBM’s Roadmap to Wheels Program or securing independent housing to call their own.

Elevating Team Members into Leadership

The Fair Chance Graduation event also celebrated six graduates of our Elevate Leadership Academy. Open to JBM leaders, the Elevate curriculum introduces strengths-based leadership, helps leaders to understand and utilize their strengths to lead and develop high performing teams. In addition, leaders are taught how to recognize the profound impact that trauma has within our JBM community in order to respond in a way that promotes resilience and healing.

“Fair Chance Program team member shares her story

Donna Phillips, one of JBM’s most tenured Fair Chance team members, shares her story as the keynote presentation.

2021-22 Elevate Leadership Academy graduates have completed a curriculum of strengths-based leadership and trauma-response training.

Congratulations to the following graduates of the 2021-22 Elevate Leadership Academy:

Tim Aregood

Justin Weaver

Shelly Bellar

Brian Frawley

Bryan Greer

Emily Caton

Better Solutions, Better Lives, Better World

In its second year, our Fair Chance Graduation offers an opportunity to celebrate our purpose, which is grounded in the belief that better solutions lead to better lives, which, in turn, create a better world. By gathering individuals from around our company and celebrating the successes of our Fair Chance team members, we help reinforce the WHY of our business.

Emily Caton receives a check for $1,000 toward a vehicle made possible through our Roadmap to Wheels program.

Howard Schultz, the former barista turned Starbucks CEO put it best: “When you’re surrounded by people who share a passionate commitment around a common purpose, anything is possible.”

To learn more about our Fair Chance Program and how it can work for your business, please reach out. We’d love to talk and share some of our learnings with you.