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Headshot of Keith Bourkney

Keith Bourkney

Position: Executive Director
Email: kbourkney@employu.org

As a native of Buffalo, New York and a die-hard Bills fan, I relocated to Florida in 2001 where I joined a lifelong friend in assisting him in running a marketing company in Orlando, Florida. In 2009 we opened an office in Casselberry, which happened to be located next to a Vocational Rehabilitation Office. I met some of the VR Counselors and learned about the services they provide. They informed me that they had clients who may be a good fit for our business, so I made the decision to contract our company as a Voc Rehab Vendor where I could receive workers through on-the-job training. Over the next couple of years, we employed several people who were referred from VR. What stood out to me was that they showed a great appreciation for the opportunity to work with us. They were loyal and they would do their best every day. I appreciated working with them and once I learned that there was an opportunity to help people with disabilities with employment on a full-time basis, I made the decision to open employU.  

Once I started receiving referrals and started working with the individuals, I realized that this was what I was meant to do. I quickly became passionate and driven to build employU to become a great company. Within a year I was able to recruit an amazing staff, including my wife, and started developing systems and processes that would result in high levels of activity for our customers. We worked in the rural areas first, where our services were most needed and found success quickly. Since 2012 we have brought our methods to over 40 counties in the State of Florida with multiple services and have helped thousands of people embark on new careers. Early on, we made the decision to never turn down a new referral and instead grow to the demand. We’ll continue to expand, and we will also continue to discover ways that we can improve and help our customers better. 

Keith Bourkney

Executive Director

As a native of Buffalo, New York and a die-hard...

Sheila Novak

Position: Employment Specialist Job Coach
Email: snovak@employu.org

Sheila Novak

Employment Specialist Job Coach

Erika Lazaro

Position: Transition Instructor
Email: elazaro@employu.org

Erika Lazaro

Transition Instructor

Tito Velez

Position: Admin Assistant
Email: tvelez@employu.org

Tito Velez

Admin Assistant

Jon Ingraham

Position: Transition Instructor
Email: jingraham@employu.org

Jon Ingraham

Transition Instructor

Joni Short

Position: Transition Instructor
Email: jshort@employu.org

Joni Short

Transition Instructor

Headshot of Heather Beamenderfer

Heather Beamenderfer

Position: Transition Coordinator
Email: hbeamenderfer@employu.org

Heather Beamenderfer

Transition Coordinator

Stevette Thomas

Position: Employment Specialist
Email: sthomas@employu.org

Hello!  My name is Stevette Thomas and I am a native Floridian born in Rockledge, Florida.  I am a graduate of the University of South Florida where I earned my Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology.  I began my career as a substance abuse counselor for Goodwill where I worked with clients to help them complete a case plan that would help them overcome their addiction and become productive and healthy members of society.  I continued my career at Brevard Health Alliance where I was the resource case manager.  This involved advocating for clients who had no insurance but needed very specialized care to remain healthy.  This would involve contacting physicians on behalf of the client and getting the physician to donate their time or work out an acceptable payment plan that the client could afford.  I then worked for the Department of Children and Families as a case manager.  This involved working with families who had to complete a case plan to reunite with their children.  I set up job interviews, parenting classes, and used any other resources to reunite the family.  This led me to employU as I found that working with Youth is my forte.  At employU, I am a Job Coach in Brevard County.  I work with many clients in helping them find on-the-job trainings in areas that they have an interest in.  I also will go out and find a specific job site for a client if they know they have an interest in an area of employment.  I check in on my clients at least once a week during on-the-job trainings to make sure they are happy and successful.  When I am not working, I like to spend time with my family and do yoga.

Stevette Thomas

Employment Specialist

Hello!  My name is Stevette Thomas and I am a...

Barbara Markowski

Position: Employment Specialist
Email: barkowski@employu.org

Barbara Markowski

Employment Specialist

Lindsay Daniels

Position: Vocational Evaluator
Email: ldaniels@employu.org

Lindsay Daniels

Vocational Evaluator