“Every person who comes in contact with Sarah is a better person for it.” This phrase, one of many used by those who nominated Sarah Durham, best exemplifies the impact that this year’s Heroes & Champions Award winner in the Supervisor/Manager category has had with the organization. Working out of the Capitol Hill office, Sarah makes providing leadership seem effortless, offering a mix of compassion, intelligence and a commitment to team work to her role.
Coming to Sound immediately out of graduate school, Sarah has been with the organization since 2003, beginning her career in Adult Services.
“I stayed in that position for a decade, and I loved it! Even in the chaos…when there weren’t caseloads and a level of care, everything came your way,” she says, smiling. “I loved the ability to go from helping somebody to figure out where they were going to get food that day, to talking to the next person about making long term changes in their lives.”
She earned a supervisory role after 10 years and has been serving Sound in that capacity ever since. In January 2020, just as the pandemic hit, she became a Clinic Manager at the Capitol Hill office.
Sarah’s compassion for service runs throughout her work, both as a clinician, and as a supervisor.
“The team here at Sound, every single team I’ve worked with, been a part of, or supervised, they’re always made up of people who give a damn,” she notes. “They are made up of a lot of people who come from a lot of different places and come here for a lot of different reasons. And they are all here to live our mission and to make our community a better place. I like it when people bring up problems and point out flaws. That shows their investment to me.”
When she was asked how she felt about being nominated, her response was classic Sarah: “Being nominated for Heroes & Champions by my peers is both heartening and awkward, honestly. It’s nice to think that your colleagues see something in what you do that is worthy of some sort of recognition. That feels good. And it’s awkward because when I look around, I don’t see that I’m doing anything all of my colleagues aren’t doing every day. They are just as committed as me.”