“I’m finally on the right path and happy with where I am in life.”
Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana‘s eCommerce Department Lead Tierney Vance’s path to Goodwill was not easy. She grew up in Richmond, Indiana, with her mother and father, who would end up getting a divorce when she was young. Her mother remarried when she was only seven years old. Both her mother and stepfather worked to provide for her and her younger sister, leaving little time for them to be together as a family.
In her teenage years, Tierney experimented with pills and alcohol, eventually experiencing the criminal justice system more than once. She quit high school towards the end of her junior year, returning to earn credits online and through night school to graduate.
Tierney’s next chapter in her journey would be troubled with a relationship lasting over a decade, and it came with grave consequences. Because of this, Tierney became addicted to heroin and later, cocaine. Her addiction led her to being incarcerated for more than seven years.
While incarcerated, time provided an opportunity for her to look inward and reflect on herself and her goals. Tierney began the work of discovering her own self-worth. In prison, she obtained a cosmetology license and completed an apprenticeship with the Department of Labor.
In 2020, Tierney was able to join the Craine House work release program and started employment at Goodwill as a shipping associate at the eCommerce warehouse. During her tenure, she attended intensive outpatient programs and individual therapy sessions. Through therapy, Tierney could work on herself, heal past trauma and prepare herself for reentry into her community.
After her release in September 2021, Tierney decided that returning to her hometown was not an option. She wanted to move, but the only neighborhood available to her was affected by heavy drug use. Her new neighborhood was a barrier and trigger for her, bringing up negative thoughts and memories. However, her co-workers at Goodwill eCommerce became her support system and were happy to offer understanding and help her work through this barrier.
“I have a savings account with money in it, and I actually have good credit,” said Tierney.
In March 2022, Tierney joined the Leadership eCommerce team as the eBooks Department lead. Shortly after, she bought the newest model car she had ever owned. Ten months later, she was promoted to the eCommerce Shipping Department Lead.
Tierney worked with a Goodwill Mission Coach, a life and career coach who helps Goodwill's employees and students attain financial and educational success and set goals. Her mission coach assisted her with entering a local home-buying program, which allowed her to move into a new home.
All of Tierney’s experiences helped her realize what she wanted to do with her life. She wanted to help others who struggle with the same challenges that she faced. Through multiple courses, training and tests, she was able to become a Certified Addictions Peer Recovery Coach (CAPRC). She promotes mental health and self-worth amongst her co-workers and is always willing to listen when someone is struggling with anything. She also quit smoking during her time at Goodwill eCommerce, another victory worth celebrating.
The path forward continues to fall into place for Tierney Vance, something she never thought was possible.
“I want the world to see that we do recover, because I am living proof.”
Are you or someone you know looking for a career? Visit goodwillindy.org/careers to apply.