Lois has a passion for making a positive difference in the lives of caregivers, and REST Companions who discover the joy of connecting one-on-one with care receivers. Her experience spans more than 30 years, working as a respite worker, respite program manager and respite worker trainer.
Lois is the author of the REST (Respite Education & Support Tools) program, an evidence-based respite-training program that delivers education and support to those offering a break for caregivers. As director and master trainer, she has seen the REST program expand to 29 states since its inception in 2012. Since the early 1980s, Lois has enjoyed a rewarding career with Marklund, which serves individuals with profound developmental disabilities.
As the director of children’s services, and, more recently as director of government relations and community support, Lois has worked collaboratively with state agencies and not-for-profit organizations to expand the Lifespan Respite program in Illinois. Lois has conducted numerous workshops for the Illinois Respite Coalition, Improvement thru Curriculum Awareness and Networking (ICAN), and Illinois Healthcare Association, ARCH, NY State Caregiving and Respite Coalition. In addition, she volunteers her time, having served as board president of the Illinois Respite Coalition, a member of ARCH, the national respite coalition, and as a member of numerous other respite organizations.