Donald J. Sebek, M.Ed.
Don has been the Executive Director of the agency for almost 42 years, starting in that position in May of 1972. He received his Masters of Arts in Education (Guidance & Counseling) from Loyola University in Chicago in 1968. Prior to Bremen, he served as a Probation Officer at the Juvenile Court of Cook County for 2 years followed by 3 years as a Counselor in High School Dist. 228.
Joy Rihani, MSW, M.Ed., LCSW, CADC
Joy is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor. Her education has always had social work as her main focus, beginning at Bradley University where she received a Bachelor of Science in Social Work. Joy continued her education at the University of Illinois at Chicago where she earned a Master of Social Work with a concentration in schools.
Joy has been working at Bremen since 2004! Being that her concentration was in schools, she left Bremen full time to work in a local school district. But because Bremen meant so much to her, she continued to work part-time as a social worker and as the summer program director. When the opportunity to come back to Bremen full-time opened up, although a difficult decision, it was an easy one to make. Bremen provides more than just mental health treatment to the children it serves. Bremen provides a feeling of safety and love with a strong sense of family. Joy has never witnessed an establishment that brings such a feeling of warmth and protection to our young people as does Bremen. There is no doubt that no matter who walks in to this agency, if they have open arms, they will feel the strength of the “Bremen Family.” For Joy, family is a priority, and in turn does not feel like she is going to work every day, but a second home and helping her family get through rough times.
Samantha Greenwald, M.A.
Samantha received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from The Ohio State University in 2013; Go Buckeyes! She went on to receive her Master’s in Clinical Counseling from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in 2015. Samantha is currently in the process of becoming a licensed counselor.
Samantha’s real passion is working with adolescents, transitioning into adulthood. She believes it is important to provide these individuals with tools that can be successfully used throughout their adulthood. Samantha looks forward to learning even more at BYS and getting as involved with the community as possible.
Juanita Jenkins, MSW
Juanita is a Social Worker and a licensed Child Welfare Specialist through the Department of Children & Family Services. She received both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in social Work from Governors State University. After completing her internship at Bremen Youth Services in 2008, she was offered a position with the agency providing social services at BYS’s satellite office located in Robbins, Illinois, an extremely impoverished community.
Juanita has a deep passion for working with children and older youth who are struggling with multi-issues that has impacted them in a negative way. Juanita’s favorite modes of therapies that she incorporates into her counseling sessions are Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Mindfulness Therapy, and Motivational Therapy. Over the years Juanita has worked with children who have experienced poverty, abuse, bullying, gang life, foster care, neglect, and a host of other issues.
Bremen Youth Services has provided Juanita the unique opportunity to not only grow as a social service professional, but also exposed her to a wide range of clinical experiences and trainings enhancing her skills, talents, and abilities with working with children and their families. Bremen Youth Services has been a blessing in Juanita’s life, because it has allowed her to be a blessing to others.
John Kummerer, MSW, CADC
John was a successful business owner for over 20 years before choosing a new path in life. He always had a passion for helping others through difficult times, so he returned to college in the 1990’s to pursue an education and a new career in the helping professions.
John continued his education at Governors State University where he earned a Master of Social Work degree. During this time John focused a lot of his education and research on the treatment of substance abuse disorders, anger management, and the treatment of anxiety disorders.
At present John is a counselor at Bremen Youth Services where he works with troubled young people and their families. He is a certified drug and alcohol counselor (CADC), and specializes in treating young people who are abusing substances. He also runs the S.T.E.P. (Systematic Training for Effective Parenting) Group here at Bremen which helps parents learn new techniques to help them raise happier and more cooperative children. John is very proud to be part of the Bremen Family where he has learned to grow as a professional, as a person, and as a father.
Susan Ryan-Michalak, M.A., LCPC, NCC
Susan received her undergrad in Early Childhood Education with an endorsement in Special Education, from De Paul University in Chicago. From there, she taught as a cadre in Bridgeport for a year and a half, in various grades from Pre-K through Grade 8. Following that, in 2001 she became a Cross – Categorical Special Education Teacher in First Grade.
Bremen is unique to her because it is like a home for children and staff. She feels the workers are amazing and professional. They are all here because they care; this is evident. Susan feels like it is a big family, including Hope the dog, who is lovable and makes children happier. Children feel like it is a safe place to go and have great memories, becoming stronger and happier. The summer camp and other programs and groups are remarkable. The atmosphere can make anyone feel relaxed. Bremen will be in the hearts of children forever, along with the help and strength they received while getting better. Bremen has made a lot of people smile and feel better.
Jorge Fernald, M.D.
Board of Directors
Bobby Matz—Vice President
Advisory Board Members
Honorable Michael Stuttley