WARSAW — Earlier this month, Mayor Wood and President of the St. Joseph County Chamber of Commerce, Jeff Rhea, joined Lighthouse Autism Center for a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate an exciting new change in ownership for the center.
Founders of Lighthouse Autism Center, Gregg and Sandy Maggioli, revealed a new employee stock ownership program where Lighthouse employees will now own a stake in the company they work for.
Executive Director, Gregg Maggioli, believes this is a pivotal moment for the organization, and one that will positively impact the employees as well as the families that are served by Lighthouse.
“We continue to innovate with the goal of improving outcomes by delivering the best therapy. The number one factor in achieving best outcomes for the children we serve is recruiting the best staff. We believe that making every Lighthouse staff member an owner is a game changer by allowing us to hire the very best.”
While nothing has changed regarding day-to-day operations, there is a fundamental shift in the structure and culture of this organization. Employees will not only share in profits, but will be given ownership of the company they work for – at absolutely no cost to them. Gregg and Sandy believe Lighthouse employees are the most important asset of the company and they hope that through this change in ownership, Lighthouse employees will feel that way too.
Longtime employee, Senior Program Manager Katie Meyer, began her career as a therapist when Lighthouse opened in 2012. She was promoted to a Senior Therapist and decided to return to went back to school to obtain a Master’s Degree in ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) Therapy. She is now a Senior Program Manager who oversees the Plymouth and Warsaw locations and is excited for the change in ownership.
“I have always felt like the staff and senior leadership of Lighthouse have had my back, and the decision to offer an ESOP confirms that. Investment in the staff shows who Lighthouse places as one of its top priorities: its people. With great people comes great therapy, and at the end of the day, that’s why we are here.”
It is a program that will apply to those like Katie who have been there many years, as well as to people like Hannah DeMara who was celebrated as Lighthouse Autism Center’s 100th employee.
Lighthouse Autism Center opened in 2012 when Gregg and Sandy Maggioli, parents of a child with autism, sought to bring quality ABA Therapy to children with autism. In just four years, they have opened in four locations, with centers in Plymouth, Warsaw and two centers in Mishawaka. Lighthouse serves over 65 families in the area and continues to seek opportunities to bring its mission of quality ABA therapy to communities in Northern Indiana.