Gabriel “Gabby” Maier – Wisconsin Direct Support Professional of the Year

Gabby provides exceptional support and services to clients. She forms sincere friendships and relationships, and strives to keep clients engaged and part of their communities. Prior to COVID restrictions, she encouraged client involvement by having them join bowling leagues, go out to eat, and go shopping. Gabby and her clients would host and participate in community barbeques, dances, and holiday gatherings. With COVID-19 restrictions, Gabby has ensured those she serves maintain regular contact with their friends and families with phone calls or use of her own cell phone for video calls. Gabby works tirelessly to ensure her clients maintain healthy relationships outside of their home.

In the last year, Gabby has supported two individuals during their end-of-life stages. One of them was diagnosed with an invasive tumor that required a significant amount of planning and seeking treatment options for the best outcome. Gabby was involved in all aspects of his care with the family including attending several medical appointments and procedures, many of which were over an hour away from his home. When the decision was made it wouldn’t be safe to complete the two surgeries to remove the tumor, his family decided to create a care plan of comfort during his last days. Gabby was right by his side every day with every attempt to do just as the doctor ordered! She ensured daily activities, including exercising and sensory items were in place, from music and dancing, activities with his friends, and making sure he had his favorite food. Gabby made sure he was living his life to the fullest during his last days.

As the months passed by, and as expected, the tumor continued to be problematic and his health continued to decline. Gabby reached out for palliative care to assure the best comfort was being offered. Each day, Gabby was by his side until the day he passed. His family and team were so thankful that Gabby was there.

Click here to watch Gabby’s interview with Milwaukee Fox6 News.