GET TO KNOW US
Founder + CEO
Domenica Personti has been a powerhouse in the State of Delaware working in the behavioral health field for over twenty years. Born and raised in Wilmington, Delaware, Domenica has worked in a multitude of treatment environments. From corrections, to MAT programs, to community based outreach services, to facilities that boast a yoga studio and spa, state-of-the-art fitness services, farm-to-table meals, and the scenic surroundings, she has done it all. But Domenica doesn’t show up to her job to relax. She spends her days with working with individuals who are sick and suffering from the disease of addiction. She does everything she can to help them obtain the tools they need to help them regain a lost sense of self after the damage of addiction.
“I introduce myself to anyone that walks through the door,” Domenica says. “It helps keep me grounded and reminds me why I’m there. Hearing them share their stories, how they got here and what we’re doing that’s working — it’s always important, and it helps us improve.”
Domenica is in recovery herself, which helps her relate to what her patients are going through. Nearly two decades ago, while working as a peer counselor in an corrections based treatment program, Domenica began helping out the staff and inmates, acting as a sort of “junior counselor.” She caught the eye of a supervisor, who helped her apply for a scholarship that largely funded her undergraduate education and helped her get her first job in the field.
“I just fell in love with it,” Domenica says. “The fulfillment of giving the gift back is like nothing else.”
Domenica worked in corrections facilities and health clinics, where the intensity of the experience eventually took its toll. In the first three months of 2005, she lost four patients to violence and overdoses. She recognized that the work was starting to affect her mental well-being. Domenica went back to school for an MBA, but before she graduated she was offered a job designing and implementing a community based recovery program in Wilmington. After many years working in the field in many different modalities of mental health and addiction treatment she was well aware of the gaps in service. This began to drive her passion to create something to address those gaps.
“When I think about what keeps me whole and grounded I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt it is a solid spiritual program, a great support circle, and a life of service. For me that is what we have to provide people if we want them to get, and stay well. After treatment, what we offer and provide them is critical.”
At IMPACT Life, Domenica has designed a program that sets up the clients up for success. In addition to vocational career services, there are wellness programs and training for basic life skills, like how to balance a checkbook, communicate with other people, and have fun while staying sober. There will also be recovery residences.
“We focus a lot on recovery from addiction, but for me, it’s about overall wellness,” Domenica says. “My investment is looking at the whole picture: if we don’t help people get and maintain employment, get old charges pardoned and expunged, assist them in navigating social services, and simple things like knowing how to communicate effectively, the recovery eventually collapses.”
The program Domenica has developed, and the life she’s led, are supported by the three consistent pillars. If you have ever heard her speak you have definitely heard her talk about them. Connection, Compassion, and Kinship. They lead to services delivered with dignity and respect and in turn people are open to change.
“Those of us in recovery, we’re constantly cranking that gift out,” Domenica says. “We’re saying, ‘We’re an example of how this can work.’ It’s about reassurance and compassion and empathy. You have to help people through their process that’s how people get well. We have to work to install hope that recovery is possible, and then we have to prove it. That’s on us.”
Brad is inspired by the work of Delaware native and renowned civil rights attorney, Bryan Stevenson, and has adopted Stevenson's "power in proximity" approach. Stevenson said, "if you are willing to get closer to the people who are suffering, you will find the power to change the world." Brad has dedicated over 10 years working inside correctional facilities and reentry centers, helping thousands of individuals prepare for their reentry into the community. Additionally, Brad has immersed himself in disenfranchised communities in Delaware and North Carolina, assisting with efforts to enhance access to essential resources and supports such as shelter, mental health services, and peer mentorship.
In addition to Stevenson's influence and the mentorship of many great individuals that support him, Brad's biggest inspiration is his sister, Jordyn, who tragically passed away in 2009 at the age of 18 in a drunk driving accident. After her passing, Brad led an awareness campaign over the course of several years, speaking to thousands of Delaware teens about drunk driving and making smart decisions. While his professional career has evolved since then, it is no coincidence that his work has been tied to helping individuals with second chances and achieving their goals. As the Executive Director of Impact Life, Brad brings this experience, purpose, and passion to the work of helping individuals in recovery.
Director of Support Services
Leslie Palladino is the Director of Recovery Services at Impact Life. Leslie grew up in Claymont, Delaware and is in long term recovery. Leslie has worked in the field for almost 10 years and has experience in harm reduction, clinical services, and mobile outreach. Leslie has a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services and is a certified HIV and HVC tester as well as a DOSE trainer for the state of Delaware. Leslie would like to expand Impact Life’s services statewide and create a supervised injection site within the Tristate area. She would also like to create a pilot program that integrates animal rescue with reentry components. One quirky fact is that she is a taco enthusiast.
Director of People Operations
Farm Educator + Operations Supervisor
Adam believes in a personal approach to recovery that varies from person to person and he has had the privilege of experiencing the miracle of recovery with numerous clients, friends, and family members. Adam is very excited to be working with Impact Life, an organization that values a team approach in assisting individuals in building a foundation of recovery. Over the years Adam has worked hard and has dedicated himself to building a life that consists of raising three children with his wife, following a strict exercise regimen, and rooting for the Philadelphia sports teams. Adam is a recently devoted Disney fan, with his favorite character being Gaston from Beauty and the Beast.
Certified Peer Recovery Specialist
Recovery Support Services Supervisor
Prevention and Wellness Educator
Peer Support Specialist
Fun fact: Alan enjoys riding motorcycles, great food,, going to the batting cages to hit a few balls and spending time with his family , his daughter, and 2 grandsons, and getting back to all the things he once enjoyed doing.
Peer Support Specialist
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
LPC, Vice President for Community Health and Engagement in the Office of Health Equity, Christiana Care
Photographer, David Heitur Photography
Founder, Face the Facts recovery advocacy group
Juvenile Probation at the Delaware Division of Children and Family Services
Business Manager, Union Park Buick GMC
Owner, State Street Tattoo Gallery and Co-Owner, Trademark Tattoo