RICK GUTTERSOHN, LLMSW
Rick Guttersohn is a social worker, grief & loss educator, and nonprofit leadership consultant who is passionate about equipping mission-minded individuals and organizations to increase their impact.
Formerly, Rick was the executive director of a grief support organization in Metro Detroit that provides peer based support programs to adults and children after the death of a loved one. During this time, he helped the organization overcome some significant programming, financial and operational challenges. He implemented several key strategic changes that led to a 93% operating budget increase, a new facility, and new and expanded programs that touched over 100 lives each week!
Rick received his MSW from Wayne State University with a concentration in social work leadership, and his BSW from Spring Arbor University. He completed a two year ministry internship leading small groups and serving people in recovery. Prior to social work, Rick spent ten years in retail management and sales before changing career paths and dedicating his life to serving those who are hurting and in need of hope. Rick married his wife Cheryl in 2012. In 2019, they adopted a baby boy named Jaxson and 2020, Rick transitioned into a new role - full time daddy!
BEHIND THE IMAGE
Rick’s passion to bring hope to the hurting was fueled with his personal journey with finding hope and purpose in the midst of pain and hardship. Rick battled depression and shame as a teen and young adult which eventually turned into a serious struggle with suicidal thoughts at age 26. Through the support of others and a renewed faith, Rick began on a journey of healing and self-discovery that led to a decision to pursue social work and help others with similar struggles.
In 2014, Rick’s family was rocked by grief, when both he and his wife both lost their mothers. Shortly afterwards, they discovered fertility challenges that meant they’d likely not be able to conceive a child together. Rick found hope by committing to his own grief work and investing the healing he found into the lives of others who had experienced loss.
Rick attributes much of his career success to finding meaning and purpose with his past painful experiences. His desire to bring these healing and recovery principles to leaders in addition to those who are grieving is fueled by the ‘BEHIND THE IMAGE’ leadership philosophy he developed while being responsible for others in the midst of his own struggles and grief.