When callers talk to Admission Specialist Jay Timmerman, they’re speaking with a man who’s been in their shoes. And they’re telling their very personal concerns to someone who wants the process to feel less intimidating. “Co-workers, patients and their family members tell me that my ability to make people laugh–even during a nerve-wracking phone conversation– is appreciated” says Jay, who joined the La Hacienda Admissions team in summer 2021. “We’re doing a serious thing, but it doesn’t mean you can’t find humor in it. You want to assure people that things will be fine, and they don’t need to be in panic mode.” “At the end of the day, I want to be someone who helps people when they most need it.”
Coming to a Couple of Realizations
Jay holds a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology with a minor in psychology from the University of Texas at Dallas. He worked as a nurse’s aide in a forensic psychology clinic but didn’t want to go the full clinical or the full legal route, so he moved on to work at the state hospital in Kerrville. There he “fell in love with the hands-on aspect of patient care.” He also found it was time to acknowledge his alcohol addiction and enter recovery. After getting sober and starting over, he “coasted” until recognizing what to do next. “Finding recovery had a massive effect on me. Recovery gave me a life I had been seeking without direction for so long. It finally dawned on me that I should apply to work at an addiction treatment center.”
Back to His Hill Country Roots
Born and raised in San Antonio, Jay returned to his roots when he accepted the position with La Hacienda. He says it was an easy decision. “I applied at several treatment centers, but when I came onto the La Hacienda campus for the interview, I got amazing vibes. I could tell that the people working here wanted to work here. They’re here for the right reasons. And I like that many of them are also in recovery.” Jay feels his return to the area was also ordained by a higher power. “I came back to the Hill Country, but that was God’s hand.” Noting that he had come back before to work at the state hospital, he adds, “God put me in Kerrville before I knew I needed to be in Kerrville.” He says having an educational and professional background in psychology helps him to verbally address and guide prospective patients or their family members, especially when co-occurring issues are involved, as to how La Hacienda could be a good fit to address both.
A Love of Seafood and a Fear of Heights
Jay and his partner, Amanda, have a daughter and a son. He’s a homebody and prefers home cooking—his own. “I don’t do it from recipes, I cook from feelings.” His favorite is seafood, especially sushi, but he also loves a thick-cut steak or pork chops. He likes to write, read—his favorite author is H. P. Lovecraft–and assist with the startup of Amanda’s home business. Jay claims a fear of heights but adds that since college he’s confronted it by skydiving or riding extreme rollercoasters—anything with a quick drop. “I always skydive in tandem,” he adds. “I don’t trust myself that much.”