Simone Wilson-Pace, Program Coordinator
Ms. Pace has more than 20 years of experience in the field of Social Work as a practitioner, educator, speaker and panelist. She has created processes, assessment techniques and curriculum utilizing her training to promote the well being of teens, their families and other individuals within under-served and underprivileged communities. Pace has worked within the Chicago Public School system and the Cook County jail system, and her experience in culturally diverse and multidisciplinary environments has allowed her to witness the negative impact that a lack of mental health and social services has on inner city urban communities. As Program Coordinator at LifeHouse Group, Pace is responsible for the overall design of the program and implementation of services for residents. Pace holds an undergraduate degree and master’s degree in Clinical Social Work from Governors State University, and she is currently completing her Doctorate in Higher Education specialization Educator Trauma at Aurora University.
Reeci Brunson, Case Manager
In her role as Case Manager, Ms. Brunson participates in the intake process for each resident, assisting with the initial assessment of risk and needs that makes the LifeHouse Group program unique. She helps LifeHouse residents collect key documents, pursue appropriate educational and job training programs, schedule necessary medical appointments and treatment programs, and she works closely with family contacts. Brunson, a native of Illinois, attended Homewood Flossmoor High School in Flossmoor, IL, Paul Quinn College in Dallas, TX, and spent more than 25 years working in the travel industry. Brunson earned a certificate in Theology from Mirror of Life in 2017, and she uses her experience to counsel residents on spirituality and other aspects of their re-entry to their communities.
Michael Piontek, Shift Captain Supervisor
In his role as Shift Captain Supervisor, Piontek manages the company’s shift captains daily tasks, security, transportation as they ensure that the day-to-day operations of LifeHouse Group run smoothly and in accordance with the facility’s rules and regulations. Mike Piontek and his team act as a liaison between the residents and senior management in instances where issues need to be resolved. Mike Piontek joined LifeHouse Group after a successful 14-year career in business management and franchise ownership, and he enjoys using his skills in human relations and problem solving in his role at the company.
Cedric Frison, Re-entry Coordinator
As re-entry coordinator for LifeHouse Group, Mr. Frison is responsible for first contact intake and assessment, establishing cardinal rules and culture, and setting behavioral expectations with all new clients. He also utilizes his background in violence prevention to lead holistically themed re-entry circles and de-escalation training. Mr. Frison is a Certfied Alcohol and Drug Counselor and is passionate about helping residents to overcome addictions and identify triggers. Given his life experiences, he also stresses the importance of obtaining an education with residents and aims to meet residents at their current stage of life.
Previously, Mr. Frison worked with the Institute for Non-Violence Chicago as an Outreach Specialist for the READI Chicago Anti-Violence initiative. To improve outcomes, he specialized in applying Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and served as a community activist and male mentor. Born in Greenwood Mississippi and raised on Chicago’s west side in the Austin Community, Mr. Frison admits to having a traumatic past with gang violence, drug abuse, family dysfunction and prison stints. However, he now uses his ‘transformed platform’ to speak out on the dangers of drugs and is certified in Restorative Justice and Overdose Prevention. Cedric also works as a Substance abuse Recovery Coach (Illinois Certification Board cert). His affiliation with. As a returning citizen himself, he has been affiliated with the National Alliance for the Empowerment of the Formerly Incarcerated (N.A.E.F.I.) for several years, and is an Above and Beyond alumni.