At Progressive Employment Concepts and Community & Employment Services our mission, in collaboration with the people we serve, is to develop and discover opportunities which promote dignity, respect, inclusion, and meaningful contributions so all our lives and communities are enriched.

Looking back over the years since our inception this mission has led us down many wonderful paths with people, some now have worked for the same employer 12 plus years, to assisting people in taking community college classes, to others who have made a dramatic impact in their communities through their diligent volunteer work still others have surpassed all expectations and started their own businesses.

Each day we are grateful for the opportunity to be a part of people’s lives as they strive for, what many take for granted, the right to live a life of value and dignity. To live with a life with ordinary successes and failures and to contribute in the ways that make sense for each person. We hope that while you visit our site you will think of ways you can resist the constraints that threaten to restrict, alienate and disenfranchise thousands of individuals with developmental disabilities and instead support communities where all are valued and included.

Thank you for helping us make this possible.

Carole Watilo

Founder, President, and Executive Director, Progressive Employment Concepts

We believe all people have the right to live a life with value and dignity – Progressive Employment Concepts

Our Mission

At Progressive Employment Concepts and Community & Employment Services our mission, in collaboration with the people we serve, is to develop and discover opportunities which promote dignity, respect, inclusion, and meaningful contributions so all our lives and communities are enriched.

Our Vision

  • We envision communities as welcoming and supportive.

  • We believe that all people have a right and responsibility to make choices affecting their lives.

  • With choice come risks. We support people’s right to risk as there is potential for learning in each choice we make.

  • We believe all people deserve respectful individualized support so they can reach for and attain their goals.

  • We do not believe that people need to be “fixed”, as they are not broken.

  • We do not believe that people need to “get ready” for work, volunteer, or community engagement.

  • We believe the right to live a life of value, dignity and equal access is a birthright.

  • We believe that each individual’s contribution no matter how large or small is valuable and worthwhile.

  • We believe that to exclude one is to exclude all.

  • We believe businesses and communities profit from inclusion.

  • We believe all people have the right to find valued places to put their talents to use.

  • We believe in the right to earn a living wage.

  • We believe that for individuals to be seen and valued for themselves we must reject the historical practices of grouping people by arbitrary labels.

  • We believe that great communities welcome the opportunity to learn from diversity and value the unique, individual gifts that each member brings.

Our Values


…to learn, experience and grow in all aspects of community life without regard to the level of support needed

We have a mindset of abundance. The opportunities individuals wish to explore are not restricted by artificial parameters. We will uncover opportunities which offer meaning and growth.


Full participation and membership within the community at large. The act of welcoming meaningful and active participation of all people.

Individual’s schedules reflect the rich variety of their communities, talents and interests, they reject  isolation to disability specific environments. Community is everywhere—it’s not a destination we visit and then leave.


What we do, how we do it, and with whom we do it

We are person-centered—individuals make informed decisions on what they do, how they do it and who they do it with-we respect people’s choice, we provide information in ways which support people in being informed of their options and consequences of their decisions. We respect the dignity in risk and the right to choice for all those we support.


…to our communities, to our field, to our agency

Support people to present their best self, help them to reveal their unseen gifts to the world. Presume competence in those we support, in each other and in our communities.


Respect presumes equity and equality

Our language and actions reflect respect for each individual’s worth.  Person first, respectful, don’t talk about someone—talk with them. Be a person who cares, ask what is needed, take time to listen, then support—don’t tell, direct, or act on or for the person. Provide what individuals need to be successful.


…are core to the human experience, relationships should be mutually beneficial

Relationships matter. Be a teammate who makes everyone around you better. Collaborate. Treat all individuals you interact with in your day with respect. Support mutually beneficial relationships.


We desire to be a leader in the work we do

All individuals within the organization exercise their ability to influence change both within the agency and externally. If it’s working, let’s keep doing it. If it’s not working, help create a solution. Bring innovation to the table. Be adaptable.

We Need Your Support Today!