Patty Brightman retires from DVSAS staff manager

After 18 years of service to San Juan County’s Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services Patty Brightman will be stepping down as staff manager.

She has been an integral part of the team from the organizations humble beginnings May of 1997, when she attended one of DVSAS first awareness trainings, facilitated by then Executive Director Pat Reveles and Jan Osborn. The class amounted to 40 hours for more than several weeks. She was officially hired toward the end of that training. Her first task was coordinating 25 volunteers. This included traveling to the other islands in order to facilitate trainings. She also worked on their newsletter and assisted with monthly meetings. As the organization grew, her title evolved from volunteer coordinator to community advocate. As an advocate she has assisted many survivors through their darkest hours. In September 2013, Jan Osborn retired as legal advocate, and Patty stepped up to fill that void as well.

“It was an honor working with Jan, I learned so much from her,” Patty said.

I first met Patty as a board member of DVSAS, and have worked with her many times since, as a fellow Soroptimist and volunteer for DVSAS. The two of us drove down to Portland one very stormy January weekend, to attend a human trafficking conference. The conference was so intense and emotionally draining we returned back to our hotel room each night with barely enough energy to move, yet trying to make ourselves laugh. It was life changing, and we both vowed to make a difference. I can honestly say it has been an honor working with her. She taught me the power of gentle strength. I can speak for the DVSAS staff as well as clients she has stood beside, when I say thank you Patty, for all you have done for the survivors of domestic abuse and sexual assault, and for all you have done for this community.

– By Heather Spaulding, Special to the Journal