Recipient of the 2023 Volunteer Leadership Award
For more than a dozen years, Bernie Dyme, AM ’79, recipient of the 2023 Volunteer Leadership Award, has devoted his time, talents, and energy supporting and embodying the values of the University of Chicago Crown Family School of Social Work. He has been a role model, mentor, and educator, setting a high standard for volunteer commitment, philanthropy, and social change advocacy.
Just two years after finishing his degree, Bernie co-founded Perspectives Ltd, an organization committed to delivering the highest quality workplace resource programs, where he now serves as President and CEO. With a compassion-built and outcome-focused approach, Perspectives provides a robust employee assistance program (EAP), counseling and psychotherapy services, and dynamic workforce strategy and development. The goal is to help individuals, teams, and organizations thrive by supporting their mental and emotional health. Using the clinical and systems training he received from the Crown Family School, Bernie envisioned and created a business that develops and provides a wide range of consulting and training, including Employee Assistance Programs (EAP), WorkLife Programs, HR-related issues, organizational development, Crisis Management, Workplace Incident Management for HR & Supervisors, and Humanitarian Assistance.
Throughout his career, Bernie has continued the Crown Family School’s tradition of making direct impact in the community. Colleagues have noted his wide range of skills as a civic leader, clinician, and educator. Bernie is known as a tireless volunteer, as a member of numerous professional and civic groups, including the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), Society of Human Resource Professionals (SHRM), the City Club of Chicago, and the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. His expertise has been sought as a member of the Workplace Task Force of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention, as President of the Board of the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, as founding co-chair of Allies of Innocence, a Chicago initiative that provides trauma counseling to victims of violence and their families, and as board director and school board chair at his temple.
Beyond these activities, Bernie has served with distinction as a volunteer at the Crown Family School, making impact in the trajectory of student careers and the School’s influence and stature. As a committed educator, he has served as a lecturer for students in the School’s Professional Development Program, and also has served as a guest speaker for students in the School’s health and administration classes. In addition, he has been an involved advisor in the Crown Family School Alumni Association STAMP (mentoring) program.
Bernie’s contributions as a Crown Family School volunteer started in 2009 when he began his tenure on the Advisory Council. He served as a member of the scholarship campaign planning committee in 2015 as well as a fundraising and career development volunteer. Since 2017, Bernie has served as President of the Council during a period of significant strategic growth and activity within the University community, the Chicago community – especially on the South Side, at the national level, and on the global stage.
His volunteer contributions were remarkable during the pandemic when he generously offered the services of his firm to provide counseling and free resources to students as they navigated COVID-19 challenges. His efforts continue to distinguish the Crown Family School and its commitment to advance a more just society.