The appreciation I had to even be considered for this award had me… astonished, and then to be selected as the recipient has me… GOBSMACKED
A big THANK YOU to all my clients for providing me the opportunity to work with you. I would not have been honored with this award without YOU. My level of awe and gratitude to be considered for this award is impossible to express. I am still trying to wrap my head around it. What I am able to wrap my head around is this:
There Is No “I” in “Team”!
Twenty-five years ago, I made the decision to attend Jane Addams College of Social Work for my MSW and to become an LCSW. Now, all these years later, I am so honored to be awarded the title: Social Worker of the Year for 2022, by the National Association of Social Workers – Illinois Chapter. Looking back over these years, I am both humbled and flabbergasted to see this day. I am so appreciative of what I have learned. I think of my mentors (Karen Bradley, Frances Cook, Sally Goren, Bryn Jessup, Denise Pilz, Rachel Resnick, Beth Schiff, Barb Schiltz, to name some of the early oh-so-impactful-and-wise few) who seemed to know what I was capable of before I did; I think of my Associates who have joined my practice and embody the same passion and commitment to our clients; and most importantly, I think of what I continue to learn from my clients as the most valuable experience I get to have on a daily basis.
The International Federation of Social Workers put it like this: “Principles of social justice, human rights, collective responsibilities and respect for diversities are central to our work….[S]ocial work engages people and structures to address life challenges and enhance wellbeing.” Susan Adler, who nominated me, who is a previous winner, who believed I am worthy of the honor, wrote “Lynn’s refusal to accept a dead-end, her perseverance on behalf of worthy and dignified clients, her passion for progress, her joy in solutions, and her relationships, professionally and personally, make it clear: Lynn Zakeri does not simply practice social work; Lynn Zakeri truly is a social worker.” I stand by this, and gratefully thank her for this opportunity. Reading the letters written in support of my nomination was perhaps one of the most meaningful experiences I have ever had.
Thank you to NASW-Illinois, to my most supportive family (both personal and professional), and to all those who helped shape me and my career.
OUR TEAM: LYNN ZAKERI & Associates, LCSW Clinical Services, PLLC. https://lynnzakeri.com
(Video link here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QMg0JLpPpmk )