Heartland House Employee Spotlight – Rich Sangillo
Rich Sangillo is a new member of our team, having joined us in August 2022. In a short time on staff, Rich has leveraged his professional background and patient demeanor to make a highly favorable impression at the House.
Born in Trenton, New Jersey, Rich grew up in Pennsylvania where he attended Temple University (he’s one of two Temple graduates at Heartland House) and worked for 25 years as a special education teacher.
Despite his professional success, Rich struggled with Substance Use Disorder for several years and eventually found himself in a detox facility in Carlsbad, California. While there, he was offered the opportunity to go for treatment at Heartland House. His time as a client at the House was, as Rich says, a life-changing experience: “My life had become unmanageable. At Heartland House, I learned about myself and the changes that I needed to make to achieve long-term sobriety. As a client I felt very understood and cared for, and in gratitude I worked to make the most of every day”.
Rich’s willingness to change and grow was readily apparent to the Heartland House staff, who he credits with helping him begin to realize his own potential: “I think Robert knew more about me than I knew about myself and when he felt that I had proven my commitment to my sobriety, he graciously offered me a position utilizing my teaching and communication skills to help other men with theirs”.
When asked about what spurred his decision to work in the recovery world at Heartland House, Rich replied, “I am extremely grateful for what was given to me here and I want to give the gifts that I received to others that come here. My position aligns perfectly with what I do well professionally and with my personality. I am extremely grateful for this position and extremely happy with it.
Rich is aspiring to develop as a recovery professional and has begun working toward a master’s degree in addiction counseling. In Rich, the House has found another fine addition to our crew.