Wendy Howard, MSW, PhD
Child welfare work began Wendy’s social work career and end of life care became the passion for the last half of her life. The two most valuable working environments for her were Head Start and Hospice. Both organizations placed the family as the unit of care and the resident professionals worked together as interdisciplinary team members honoring the values and culture of the people they were serving. Wendy’s professional training emphasized the psychosocial dimension of individuals within their social and cultural environment. Her years of working with the terminally ill and bereaved adults and children opened up the importance of spiritual care. The death of an ex-spouse, a suicidal death of a nephew and a murder of a friend created the tragic circumstances for Wendy to do her own personal grief work, allowing her to become a true partner in the life journey of others. She has learned from her patients and clients, has suffered and worked with her own spiritual pain, and has companioned others in times of deep struggle and pain. Wendy is currently is a yoga teacher. She assists with life reviews for Hospice patients, teaches advanced care planning workshops, volunteers with a local hospice and provides pastoral care services in her UU Fellowship. Her life is supported with a meditation practice, being a member of a circle of trust, practicing yoga and her long term marriage partner.
When not volunteering, Wendy is an active grandmother of three (ages 17, 3, and 6 months). Spending time with her adult children is important. She continues taking Spanish classes and loves to travel to foreign countries where she lives with families when possible. Wendy is an avid reader and she enjoys cooking, hiking and nature.