Neumann excited to help Alabama’s children reach their maximum potential
There are few things that bring new Children’s Rehabilitation Service Maternal and Child Health Coordinator Stacey
Neumann more joy than having a positive impact on the families she serves.
Throughout her career, Neumann has been motivated to improve the health and well-being of Alabamians and said she is excited for this new opportunity and approach.
Neumann, who earned a master’s in social work from the University of Alabama, began her career with a pair of internships through the Alabama Department of Public Health. ADPH was impressed with her work and brought her on full time. She began in the county health department, moved to the area level, and eventually made her way to the state office in Montgomery.
For 17 years, Neumann continued to work with ADPH where she also met current CRS Director and ADRS Assistant Commissioner Cathy Caldwell. Several months after Caldwell came on board with CRS, Neumann learned of an opening to fill the vacancy of Lolita McLean who had retired in early 2019. Neumann said she had always admired and respected Caldwell and was told she might be a good fit for the position.
Neumann said she was excited to take on a new challenge, interviewed, and was soon added to the ADRS family.
Neumann, who had been working with the WIC program for 10 years, said she was eager to dive into her new role.
“I just felt like with the work that they were doing, it was something that I could really contribute to and that I would be reaching people again,” she said. “I just felt like I was coming back to something that would allow me to help make a difference.”
Her role as vendor management director with WIC for the last several years at ADPH required more of a supervisory role to enforce rules and regulations. Neumann said she felt like she was getting removed from the reason she pursued a career in social work.
It became clear during her interview with CRS that the department would be a great fit when she asked members of the panel to describe their work environment.
“Every single one of them said, ‘We’re family,’” she said. “I knew that was exactly where I needed to be.”
The initial phase of working with CRS has been a very uplifting and educational experience, Neumann said.
“From the day that I walked in the door, it has been such a nice, pleasant work environment where people are really passionate about helping children with special health care needs,” she said. “You don’t realize the challenges that individuals and families face until you work in that environment.”
The positive energy she receives from families who face huge challenges has been inspiring, Neumann said. People like Tuscaloosa Parent Advocate Vera Spinks and Susan Colburn of the state office have provided a wealth of knowledge along with constant encouragement.
Neumann’s primary responsibility is to manage the Title V block grant for children and youth with special health care needs along with work on the Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Networks (CoIIN) Project and other CRS grants.
She said her goal is to learn more about the services offered by CRS and spend time in clinics to see how they operate. This will al-so allow her to ensure the data they report for the Title V Block Grant is accurate and clearly reflects all the good work done at CRS.
When Neumann is not helping people through her work, she enjoys traveling the country and going abroad. She recently returned from a trip to Alaska where she viewed the Northern Lights and said she hopes to continue to explore. She also enjoys traveling to north Alabama to spend time with her adorable niece and 5-year-old great nephew.