‘Go-to guy’ Helenbrook honored for 20 years at UConnectCare

Dec 23, 2023 | UConnectCare

By Mike Pettinella

For two decades, Jeff Helenbrook has been the go-to guy when it comes to maintenance, repairs and related responsibilities at UConnectCare (formerly Genesee/Orleans Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse).

Helenbrook was honored for his 20 years of employment at the nonprofit agency this week — receiving a standing ovation from his fellow employees at a reception at Terry Hills Restaurant.

He and 10 other employees were recognized with longevity awards by UConnectCare Chief Executive Officer John Bennett.

“Jeff started with the agency on a part-time, temporary basis after his antique store was hit by a semi and destroyed,” Bennett said. “He came to work at Atwater (Community Residence) and was only going to stay on until he got the insurance money.”

As it turned out, the settlement took about eight years so Helenbrook stayed on at the agency, keeping the buildings, according to Bennett, “in tip-top shape.” Helenbrook’s job title today is facilities director.

An antique car buff, Helenbrook received the original catalogs of the 1930 Franklin and 1936 Pierce Arrow, two of the several vintage autos that he owns.

Others recognized at the luncheon:

15 years – MaryLou Szewczyk, counselor; Peter Whyman, residential tech.

5 years – Allison Parry-Gurak, director of Residential Services; Barb Bowman, counselor; Jocelynn Congdon, grant/data coordinator; Judy Pratt, counselor; Lauren Swimline, intake coordinator; Nicole Anderson, counselor; Sheila Rolle Smith, case manager; Trisha Allen, Reentry Project director.