Happy Retirement, Ed Gargala
Ed Gargala, Residential Services Director
Ed Gargala, who has been a cornerstone on the Wyndham Lawn Campus, will be retiring from New Directions Youth & Family Services, July 2, 2021. A licensed clinical social worker, Ed has accrued a combined 38 years with Wyndham Lawn / New Directions. Ed’s career also includes serving as a psychiatric social worker at the former Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinic and Residential Director at Gateway.
At age 22, Ed began working as a Child Care Worker at Wyndham Lawn’s Hodge Cottage, which was home to 14 boys. Ed admits that it was a tough job at first, but the kids warmed up to him and he learned the ins-and-outs of the job from his coworkers.
When Ed started, Jim Coder and Marcia Kramarczyk were also new employees; Ed states they were a big reason that he decided to stay.
Ed tells that Jim in particular encouraged Ed through some of the harder aspects of beginning a new position, for which Ed is extremely grateful, to this day. The advice served him well, as Ed would go on to become a supervisor, social worker, program supervisor, Residential Services Director, as well as mentor, advocate, and friend.
Ed would like to thank Jim, Marcia, and all of the people who guided and supported him through the years. There were many nights where staff would go out for wings and share their experiences, knowledge, and funny stories with one another, and these nights are some of his fondest memories. Pondering his work experience, Ed said, “it made me a better person”.
All who know Ed know he is always working hard and finding solutions. “Find something that you love to do”, is Ed’s advice to young people looking for a workplace that is truly fulfilling, like he found at Wyndham Lawn. Ed encourages new Youth Counselors to learn from their mistakes and persevere, because every experience with the kids is a valuable and educational opportunity.
After retirement, Ed plans to stay active and spend plenty of time with his family! He loves hiking, biking, kayaking, and all manner of sports that he can learn with his children and wife, who is also retired. Ed admits that he’s sure he’ll spend plenty of days relaxing on the couch – certainly well deserved after years of diligently supporting children and staff.
Ed, thank you for your service, ethic, and dedication to our mission, children, coworkers, and programs. The relationships you’ve forged within the agency and community all benefit the children and families we serve. You’ve made a positive impact at Wyndham Lawn and across New Directions. We wish you all the best!
All of us at New Directions