About Us

Teamwork Associates creates a trusted partnership with children and families, empowering all to achieve their most meaningful life. For us, it’s all about relationships. We pride ourselves on listening, learning and collaborating. We know that you know what’s best. We’ll stand beside you and connect you to tools and resources that will support your goals and dreams.

We believe in a community where everyone is valued and empowered to participate.We work for a world that is just and inclusive. We see that our community will be stronger when each member of the community is given the opportunity to thrive and contribute to a better world.

We value relationships built on trust, deep listening, collaborative approaches, creative solutions, resourcefulness, reliability, kindness, patience and a sense of playfulness and humor.

Wendy Hecht

Founder and Director

With four decades in the field of social services, Wendy pairs a breadth and depth of experience with a strong belief that every person has great worth. She’s an ardent advocate and unequivocal support person for all families that cross the Teamwork path. Wendy is always advocating for justice and inclusion. Through her long career, Wendy has been a direct care provider in homes and workplaces, job coach, case manager, social worker and director at an independent living center. She has intentionally kept Teamwork Associates small so that she can better support her staff and personally know the story of each person with whom the agency works. “It’s an honor for us to be a trusted member of a person’s care team. I feel very lucky every day to lead this agency.” Wendy enjoys her spare time with her husband, children, and grandchildren. She’s also passionate about greyhound dog rescue and loves to cook, travel and stay active.

What’s your favorite thing about your job? “The people. We get to meet wonderful people of all stripes.”

Melissa Warren

Case Manager

Melissa strives to be open-minded in her support of others and seeks to provide the highest quality of care for her clients. She values good communication and is an active listener. Melissa has a Bachelor’s degree in psychology and has worked with children and adults with disabilities in their homes, school and work settings since 1999. She is eager to learn and has been grateful for opportunities to gain more understanding and knowledge around disability-related topics. She loves being a part of Teamwork Associates and adds “I am a better person because of the amazing individuals I work with. We have a high standard of work, and it pushes me to do my best.” In her free time, Melissa enjoys spending time with her daughter, volunteering as a Girl Scout troop leader, and relaxing with family on Long Lake in northern Wisconsin.

If you were an animal, what animal would you be? “I would choose to be an elephant because they are strong, smart, and sensitive. They bond and travel as herds, caring for each other’s babies, which demonstrates their value of community and family.”

Beth Hougen

Case Manager

Beth wants to remind families that they are creating wonderful lives for their children and that she’s there to support them in that endeavor. For 14 years, she’s provided case management and support for people with disabilities. It all started when Beth was in high school. Her father asked her to support a peer with a disability in being more independent. Beth jumped at the chance and sees her job today as helping people pursue happiness. She’s eager to build relationships with families and focus on positive outcomes. In her spare time, Beth loves to be outside playing golf, camping, cross-country skiing, or playing Kubb, a Norwegian lawn game, “the game of my ancestors,” she says.

What’s your favorite spot in Dane County? “Rowan Creek in Poynette. One of my favorite hikes is there. You see marshland, boardwalks, deciduous forest and evergreens. It’s lovely.”

Duan Jallow

Case Manager

“My driving force every day is to affect change,” says Duan. She loves watching families and teams navigate through difficult times and get to a place of stability and happiness. With degrees in communication and social work, Duan was an elementary and middle school teacher and has worked in the field of social services for five years. She’s also a guardian for three people with disabilities. Her approach to her work is to spend time and get to know clients in different settings to understand their strengths, frustrations, and needs. She strives to build community as she builds capacity in families. Duan loves the Teamwork staff: “It’s awesome to be on a team with so many creative, resourceful people. It empowers you.”

How do you spend time with your family? As a family we love to spend time at home cooking and watching movies together. We also love to take road trips. It has been a joy to watch our kids grow.”

Lynnea Nielsen

Case Manager

For two decades, Lynnea has enjoyed working with people with disabilities. She’s learned just as much as she has taught. “I’m not the expert in anyone’s life, and people have a lot to teach me. That is a great beginning point when I work with my clients,” she says. Lynnea is eager for her clients to get the highest quality services and plan for a successful future. She is adamant that all people be treated with dignity and respect. Lynnea is proud that she’s been involved in the Arts for All choir, a creative arts organization for people with disabilities, for  over 20 years. In her free time, she reads, goes bird watching, hikes with her family, and is actively involved in her son’s scout troop.

If you could have a superpower, what would it be? “Talking with animals! Animals are one of my favorite things in the world. We have three cats, a dog, and several crested geckos. And I love to be outside scouting for all the wildlife I can find.”

Angie Wyse Reeser

Case Manager

Angie’s biggest wish for her clients is for a full empowered life. She’s a deep listener and strives to help people take the lead in their lives and make empowered choices. With a Bachelor’s degree in psychology, she’s been working with people with disabilities since 1997 in vocational, residential and case management settings. Angie acknowledges all families are different, and she builds her practice on honoring those differences and working together to find strengths. “I go into it thinking that we are a team. I work together with clients and families and together we make plans,” she says. In her free time, Angie will be outdoors reading a book, walking her dog, baking, listening to music or just hanging out with her family.

What do you like about Madison? “I really like Downtown and around the Capitol, whether its the farmer’s market or sitting under the trees and the stars listening to music at Concerts on the Square.”

Kathy Nissley

Case Manager

Kathy has worked with people with disabilities since 1997 in a variety of ways — from direct support provider to advocate to residential coordinator, and now, children’s case manager. Her goal is to walk alongside families and to help them thrive so children can focus on making friends, learning, and just being kids! In addition to offering great resources for families, Kathy focuses on being a good listener and helps parents envision a positive future for their children.

What do you like to do outside of work? Outside of work, I enjoy cooking, taking walks with friends, and listening to a good audiobook. I love to spend time outside, no matter the season, because “there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing!”

James Inman

Case Manager

After a decade and a half of influencing the lives of at-risk youth and adults with disabilities in Michigan and Ohio, James has found a new home at Teamwork Associates where he is excited to shift his focus to children with disabilities. James is excited to use his experience and Bachelor’s degree in sociology to enrich the lives of children and to help them be as happy and healthy as possible. His pride and hope lies in, “Being able to enrich the lives of the people I serve and help them get the services they need to thrive.James believes that Teamwork Associates is the best place to carry out his mission as the family-like team supports not just their clients, but their team members as well. When not at Teamwork Associates, James pursues time with his wife and his family in Ohio and Michigan in addition to being a movie buff.

What’s one thing on your bucket list? To sit and have a lengthy conversation with Bill Maher. I find him to be a fascinating person.

Susan Cesnik

Case Manager

The desire to have a positive impact on those around her led Sue to follow in the steps of her social worker parents. Sue has spent the past twenty years working with adults with disabilities, prior to making her foray into primarily serving children. In addition to looking forward to serving children and families with Teamwork Associates, Sue is excited to glean from the energy and intelligence possessed by her coworkers. She explains that her hope for her clients lies in them gaining as much independence as possible and being, “able to be part of their community – a community that is supportive and non judgemental.” When not serving others at Teamwork Associates, Sue enjoys preparing desserts at a local Italian restaurant, being active outdoors, and knitting.

Where would you travel and why? I hope to make it to Alaska some day.  I love exploring nature, spending time in the mountains and just taking it all in

Panghoua Yang

Case Manager

Looking to fulfill a need personally experienced throughout her youth, Panghoua Yang has spent the past five years providing help, knowledge, and resources to children, ages 1-14. Working to serve and empower both families and children in the area, Panghoua seeks to share the same help and support provided through her strong family background to parents and children who lack the right resources. In her desire to advocate for families, Panghoua is currently pursuing a Masters in Social Work at UW Madison. Her ultimate desire in her education and work is to help her clients to acquire, “…the strength/power to advocate for their own children and services.” She hopes that her clients will have the confidence to engage the system through the collaborative and inclusive process utilized when she works with clients.

Where would you travel and why? I would love to travel to my home country, Thailand. My family immigrated to the US in 1993 and I personally have not gone back. I would love to visit my family roots and learn more about my culture plus all the good food Thailand has to offer.

Sarah Payton

Case Manager

Combining considerable personal and professional experience, Sarah Payton seeks to serve those with disabilities with a full understanding of how a disability affects the entire family in the long-term. She hopes to serve her clients with empathy that comes from a personal understanding of life with people with disabilities. She is excited to work with Teamwork Associates where “Everyone brings a different experience which allows people to find better solutions and help each other collaborate to come up with ideas.” Through this, she hopes to help clients to connect with the resources found in the community, resulting in the ability to live fully within the community. When not connecting clients with resources, Sarah loves to go to flea markets around Wisconsin and take daylong paddleboard trips.

 

What’s one thing on your bucket list? I would love to go to Hawaii especially to go snorkeling and experience a luau.

Shannel Trudeau-Yancey

Case Manager

Shannel has worked in the field of vocational rehabilitation since 1997 during which time she has been in charge of spear-heading brand new programs, training service providers, and working directly with individuals with disabilities. Shannel has also developed and coordinated customized employment which has led to the development of micro-enterprise businesses. She chose to work with Teamwork Associates because she feels it instills the values and ethics of person-centered, solution-focused, thoughtful planning, and fun in its work environment. Shannel and her husband live in Verona with their two cats and a puppy. Their college-aged daughter remains close by, which they love for lots of family time.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work? Outside of work, I am a musician, yoga and meditation teacher, and I love to dance, explore the natural world any chance I can, love travel, animals, hiking, baking and cooking, reading and learning, and laughing until I snort.

Jacob Salwolke

Case Manager

Jacob earned his MSW from Clarke University in 2015. His work background is diverse and multifaceted with experience in AODA and treatment, crisis work, and residential case management for elders with disabilities. Jacob particularly enjoys watching children and families grow together to overcome barriers and helping them through that process. He believes that communication is key in his work. Outside of work he really enjoys time spent with his family at cook-outs and game nights, as well as outdoors; backpack camping, canoeing/kayaking, fishing, and hunting. He and his girlfriend enjoy taking nightly walks to watch the sunset.

What do you want families that you work with to know? That I am a very practical, kind, and patient person. I like to set and work towards practical and attainable goals with heavy influence on a person-centered approach. That I will work my hardest to ensure that children and families are able to meet and exceed their goals and more.

Board of Directors

Mary Ursem, President
Fred Swanson, Vice President
Julie Nichols-Younes, Secretary
Nicole Jagdfeld, Member
Leanne Cordisco, Member
Casey Thompson, Member

Jacob Salwolke

Case Manager

Jacob earned his MSW from Clarke University in 2015. His work background is diverse and multifaceted with experience in AODA and treatment, crisis work, and residential case management for elders with disabilities. Jacob particularly enjoys watching children and families grow together to overcome barriers and helping them through that process. He believes that communication is key in his work. Outside of work he really enjoys time spent with his family at cook-outs and game nights, as well as outdoors; backpack camping, canoeing/kayaking, fishing, and hunting. He and his girlfriend enjoy taking nightly walks to watch the sunset.

What do you want families that you work with to know? That I am a very practical, kind, and patient person. I like to set and work towards practical and attainable goals with heavy influence on a person-centered approach. That I will work my hardest to ensure that children and families are able to meet and exceed their goals and more.

Board of Directors

Mary Ursem, President
Fred Swanson, Vice President
Carmella Smith, Treasurer
Julie Nichols-Younes, Secretary
Nicole Jagdfeld, Member
Leanne Cordisco, Member
Casey Thompson, Member

Questions?