SAM JOSEPH:
 
SAM JOSEPH




 
 
 
 
 
Executive Director of Covenant House Michigan in Detroit, a faith-based nonprofit organization that provides hope to homeless, runaway, and at-risk youth ages 13–22. Within the first three years under Joseph’s leadership, Covenant House expanded to include a street outreach program, a second community service center, a job development center, and a crisis center. Detroit Public Schools authorized Covenant House to open three charter schools to better serve the needs of homeless and other at-risk youth who lack a high school diploma. Before joining Covenant House in 1997, Joseph was administrator of mental health services for the Catholic Medical Center of Brooklyn and Queens in Jamaica, N.Y. There, he developed and managed psychiatric inpatient and outpatient services for four hospitals and three long-term facilities, including programs that provided services to HIV-infected infants, adolescents, and pregnant women. Joseph also established and administered a specialized 168-bed program for mentally ill homeless adults, which became a model for the state of New York. His administrative experience dates to 1973 and includes 16 years of service to emotionally troubled young people. He has been an adjunct lecturer for post-graduate students in mental health administration at the New School for Social Research and a visiting scholar at Columbia University, both in New York City. Joseph received his bachelor’s degree from Loyola College; his Licentiate in Philosophy (LPH) in rational psychology and natural law from the College of the Jesuits in India; a master’s in fine arts communications (mass media) from Columbia University; and a post-graduate certificate in mental health administration from the New School for Social Research.


WHERE BORN: "India."

MOST INFLUENTIAL PERSONS: "Some of my college teachers back in India. These were people who inspired me about social work and education. In the Indian culture, next to parents, teachers are the most prominent people in your life so they had a great influence on me."

LAST BOOK READ: "I’m more of a travelogue person. I recently read about Cambodia. I love to read and travel.”

WORDS THAT DESCRIBE ME: "Striving to be a better person."

WHERE MY FIELD/INDUSTRY IS HEADED:  “We’re in the field of homeless youth. I don’t see any improvement in youth homelessness unless we give them the tools to be independent, primarily with education and employment. I’m working very hard to make sure they’re given those tools so they don’t turn into adult homeless people.”

FAVORITE TECHNOLOGICAL GADGET: “It’s not so much a gadget, but the bicycle. It’s so helpful and keeps me fit during my travels. It’s very imaginative and creative.”

FAVORITE PLACE: “I love Laos and an old Buddhist monastery in Luang Prabang.”

FAVORITE HOBBIES: “I travel to places where you learn more from others. I call them educational excursions.”

FAVORITE FOOD: “Thai food.”

MY HIDDEN TALENT: “I need at least an hour or more every day to be alone and meditate. It helps me to recollect, review, and plan. It’s very critical for me, and I do it every day.”

HOW I WANT TO BE REMEMBERED: “I want people to know that I care about the homeless children. Children should never be homeless. They are God’s children, and we should strive to give them love, hope, and home.”


At the annual awards reception in May 2015, one Leader & Innovator from the previous 12 months will be selected as the Leader & Innovator of the Year.