GIldersleeve has more than 30 years of senior operations and management experience in social services. He began his career in 1990 as a Certified Substance Abuse Counselor with Lutheran Social Services and continued to gain experience before becoming the Executive Director of A Safe Haven in 1998, where he worked until 2014. In the executive director role, he was responsible for the design, implementation and management of programs for 16 facilities that served 1500 men, women and children. Under his direction, A Safe Haven provided substance abuse services, workforce development programs, short and long - term aftercare, and other services to support independent living. He increased A Safe Haven’s revenues from $1.5 million to $11.5 million, designed programs that lead to a 200% increase in client populations, and collaborated with the Cook County Jail to reduce recidivism and overcrowding. Since 2015, Gildersleeve has served as President and CEO of Phoenix Recovery Support Services, a men’s sober living facility in Chicago. He holds a B.S. in social work from Trinity College and University and is certified as an addictions counselor, recovery specialist and HIV educator.