We offer a variety of dynamic, healing and helpful programming for our clients and for the community. Please join us at any time!
Good Samaritan Awards Banquet
Each year Pastoral Counseling Services proudly hosts the Annual Good Samaritan Awards Banquet. This unique celebration brings together six distinct segments of the community and honors an individual in each category who has "gone above and beyond" what is expected.
Proceeds from the Good Samaritan Awards Banquet will:
The wellness of our friends and neighbors is the core of what keeps our community positive and productive.
Our 2012 Good Samaritan Award Honorees
Business & Industry
David L. Nixon graduated cum laude from Wesleyan University in 1953, as president of his class and football co-captain. After volunteer service in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, he attended on the G.I. Bill and VA disability benefits, the University of Michigan Law School, attaining his LLB in 1958, where he also served as President of his class, and was a member of the Barristers Honor Society.
He served as New Boston Town Moderator for 27 years, as a Representative to the New Hampshire House of Representatives, 1969-70 (Outstanding First Year Legislator in 1969), and then two terms in the New Hampshire State Senate, as Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and as President of the Senate during 1973-74. He also served as a Delegate to the 1984 New Hampshire Constitutional Convention, and the 1976 Republican National Convention. He became a Democrat in 1986, and served in the Legislature, again, during 2010-11, where he filed legislation to assist citizens and consumers in New Hampshire, in respect to the legal and judicial process.
He has also served as President of the New Hampshire Bar Association, the Manchester Bar Association, the New England Bar Association, and the International Society of Barristers. He is a member of the American Association for Justice, the New Hampshire Association for Justice, the Inner Circle of Advocates, the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, and the American Trial Lawyers Association. He has been voted by New Hampshire lawyers as one of the best lawyers in America, and one of New Hampshire’s best lawyers, for more than 20 years. He serves as Secretary of the Joe Yukica/New Hampshire Chapter, National Football Foundation, which awarded him its Distinguished Citizen Award in 2000. He was nominated by the Governor of New Hampshire to serve as the first Chair of the New Hampshire Executive Branch Ethics Committee. A former law partner of the late Governor John W. King (who later was Chief Justice of the New Hampshire Supreme Court), Attorney Nixon has been admitted to practice before the New Hampshire Supreme Court, the United States District Court for New Hampshire, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court. He has also been certified as a Civil Trial Advocate by the National Board Of Trial Advocacy.
He is a Life Member of the American Legion and Disabled American Veterans, has served as Commander of Sweeney Post No. 2, American Legion, and is presently Judge Advocate of that Post. He was honored by the Hillsborough County Law Enforcement Association for serving as its Scholarship Chair for forty years. For many years, Attorney Nixon has served as a volunteer DOVE attorney, representing, pro bono, abused women and children seeking protective orders in the Courts, for which he was recently honored by the New Hampshire Coalition Against Sexual And Domestic Violence. His trial experience involves personal injury matters of all kinds, including automobile collisions, medical malpractice, product liability cases, and general trial law.
Sergeant Brian O’Keefe grew up in Lowell, MA, a culturally diverse environment in an old mill city, similar to Manchester. His father was a police officer in Lowell, MA since 1979 and my mother still works at the same restaurant since 1982. Brian learned the importance of education at a young age as he watched his father achieve a Bachelor’s Degree from UMASS-Lowell while working the midnight shift. Through his parents’ everyday practice of morals, values, character and mutual respect, Brian also credits his upbringing with the basic life skills he relies on today.
In 1996, Brian joined the Manchester Police Department and immediately became involved in the Police Athletic League (MPAL). Initially, Sergeant O’Keefe was instrumental in the Boxing program, before immersing himself in the preparations for the new facility. When the Michael Briggs Community Center opened in 2004, Brian was appointed as the first ever PAL Coordinator, a role he fulfilled until 2009. He also served as the department liaison for Special Olympics New Hampshire Torch Run from 1998 to 2010, and initiated the original race committee for the Foot Race for the Fallen, a road race dedicated to our fallen brother officers.
Since 2007, Sergeant O’Keefe also serves on the Manchester Police SWAT team, and currently is the Assistant Team Leader of the Negotiation Team a Crisis Negotiator. In his spare time, Brian continues to support various non-profit organizations. He serves as the Executive Director for the MPAL Board of Directors as well as on the Board of Directors and as a trustee for the National Police Athletic League. Brian also serves on the MPAL golf tournament committee and MPAL Stovepipe Hockey Tournament.
Although he credits community leaders, role models and colleagues for their assistance in his accomplishments, Brian is most grateful for the support of his wife of 15 years, Michele, and their four children, Kaleigh, Emily, Jack and Ella.
Media & the Arts
Jody Reese is Manager and Publisher of Hippo Press where he has run the company since its inception in 2000. Hippo Press publishes state's largest weekly paper, which reaches an audience of 200,000 people in southern New Hampshire, and a seasonal weekly along New Hampshire and Maine's seacoast. Hippo Press also operates a full-service commercial printing center.
Jody teaches a ten-week business course for entrepreneurs at the Amoskeag Business Incubator in Manchester. The goal of the course is to improve the business climate in southern New Hampshire and to foster new business.
Jody continues to be very active in the community. He is the past president of the Queen City Rotary Club and current chair of its Fellowship Committee. Jody is on the board of directors for Manchester Crimeline, Inc. and has volunteered with the Boy Scouts of America.
He and his wife Amy live in Manchester with their two children, Jane and Jake.
Medicine & Healing
When it comes to serving children with disabilities and special needs and their families, Easter Seals NH’s Director of Medical Rehabilitation Ann Smith’s philosophy was simple and effective: “Do what you need to do.” And that is exactly what Ann did through her family-friendly, family-first approach and she always inspired her staff of therapists and other childhood specialists and professionals to do the same.
Ann passed away unexpectedly on January 30, 2012. She leaves behind a 32-year legacy at Easter Seals NH and throughout the state that exemplifies her commitment to making the community a better place for all children. Although her loss is devastating to the professionals in her fields as well as the families she has served, her memory is everything from inspiring to comforting . . . and more.
Ann Smith was a pioneer in early childhood services. She devoted her career and much of her life to ensuring quality services for young children and families. Whether it was as a teacher in a classroom, an early interventionist meeting the needs of young children in their homes, as a director overseeing children's programs or as a state-wide advocate for changes to better serve our children and families in most need, Ann was a driving force to ensure the availability, accessibility, and quality of supports and services for all. Ann helped raise awareness within the greater community about early childhood development and the importance of supporting families with young children.
Ann always stressed the importance of the family because families know their children best and have the best ability to foster change in their child’s life. Ann completely understood the issues families deal with when they have a child with special needs because these children are often invisible and overlooked by the community at large. These families celebrate the arrival of their baby, but this little person is more challenging because their needs are greater that what was expected… and the family is thrust into a search to fix, to heal, to make progress and to help that little baby become as independent as they can be.
Ann led the way so this assistance was possible for families and children. She accomplished this as a teacher and then as an organizer and director of programs that opened up a world of hope to families dealing with these difficult issues. Her commitment to these families was always visible, always strong, and always made a difference.
Sister Jacqueline Verville has taught at all levels of education for 52 1/2 years. When she retired in 2009, Sister Jacqueline took 25 days to refresh herself with a transition program in New Jersey. While there, the thought of a dream resurfaced. Back in the early 70's, she had hopes of opening a learning center, but soon that dream dissipated, since she was very much involved with the International Reading Association as President of first Rockhill Reading, later on as President of the North Country Reading Council and finally as President of Granite State Reading Council. In addition Sister Jacqueline was teaching at first in elementary schools, then college while at the same time finishing a Master's Degree at Rivier College. She completed her dissertation and graduated from Boston University in 1985 with a dual concentration.
In October of 2009, Sister Jacqueline began rethinking about her dream of opening a learning center. She called together a former education commission that had been organized by Sr. Betty Roy, a Sister of Holy Cross, and added a few more members and met monthly with that group. From March of 2010 until May of that year, the group met at the West Side Library with our first 25 adults, until we opened Holy Cross Family Learning Center on October 4, 2010 with 48 adults. In June of 2012, not quite two years since the official opening, the Center ended the year with 114 adults from 18 countries.
Diane M. Larochelle is the Executive Director of Nikki’s Dream for Wellness and Education, a local non-profit affiliated with the Center for Expressive Art Therapy and Education (C.R.E.A.T.E!). In her current position, Diane manages the day-to-day operations for the organization dedicated to ensuring emotional, physical, mental and spiritual wellness of the citizens of New Hampshire. Diane has dedicated her energy to the formation of this group and volunteers most of her time to the organization. Diane is pursuing a Master’s Degree in Expressive Art Therapy at Lesley University in Cambridge, MA.
Diane is active in the community through her work at Nikki’s Dream and through her service on various committees in the area. She currently serves as the Art Chairperson for the annual Inspired Recovery event held each year during Recovery Month in September. Diane is a certified presenter of the Darkness to Light Child Sexual Abuse Prevention program and a peer facilitator for the recovery-based Women’s Leadership Training Institute. In 2009, the Child Advocacy Center of Rockingham County honored Diane for her work on ending child sexual abuse with a Champion for Children Award.
Diane was born and raised in Manchester. She attended Wheelock College in Boston and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education and a minor in Women’s Studies. Formerly of the YWCA New Hampshire, Diane is a passionate advocate of women’s rights. While at the YWCA New Hampshire she served at the Criminal Justice Advocate, the Education and Outreach Coordinator and the Co-Chair of the Greater Manchester Council on Domestic and Sexual Violence.
When she is not volunteering for Nikki’s Dream for Wellness and Education, Diane spends her time painting, reading, playing Scrabble, and going to the movies. She lives in Manchester with her two roommates and a menagerie of birds, a snake, an iguana, and a chinchilla.
Our 2012 Good Samaritan Award Honorees
The 2012 Good Samaritan Award Banquet: (From Left) PCS Center Director David Reynolds with our 2012 Good Samaritan Award Honorees: Steve Smith (husband of the late Ann Smith), Atty. David Nixon, Jody Reese, Diane Larochelle, Sister Jacqueline Verville, Sgt. Brian O’Keefe.
4th Annual Conference on Spirituality and Psychotherapy
Dr. Doug Stephens to facilitate fall conference, The Fragile Pact: Couples in Treatment
PCS is proud to announce our 4th Annual Psychotherapy and Spirituality Seminar for Behavioral Health and Religious Professionals on Friday, May 17, 2013. Combining Bowen Family Systems Theory, Communication Theory, and Emotionally Focused Theory, Dr. Stephens will present an integrative and active model for application to couples in conflict.
Combined Psychotherapist and Clergy Seminar 8:45am-12:00pm
This presentation will focus on successful models to enhance abilities to engage couples in conflict and create and sustain interactional change. As of 4/17, all qualified participants will receive 3 Category I CEUs. Download our conference brochure which includes conference objectives, speaker information and registration information. Registration fees are as follows:
About the Speaker
With over 37 years of experience, Dr. Doug Stephens brings an impressive and diverse knowledge of psychotherapy to PCS. Currently, Dr. Stephens serves as the Training Coordinator at PCS as well as the Executive Director at the Adirondack Samaritan Counseling Center in Hudson Falls, NY. He was also recently accepted the role of Adjunct Consultant for the Samaritan Institute, Inc. based in Denver, CO.
The seminar will be held at the Puritan Conference Center, 245 Hooksett Road, Manchester, NH.
To register or request additional information, please contact Lindsay Goff by emailing email@example.com or calling (603) 627-2702, ext. 110.