From left to right: Lindsey Bressi, Jean Nieves Palma, Diana Copley and Angela Fulgieri at Lighthouse Ministries.

Even in the safest workplaces, it’s inevitable that injuries occur. Getting injured workers back to their jobs following an injury is a challenge for most companies.

Headquartered in Brandon, ReEmployAbility Inc. is the largest national provider of specialty return-to-work and transitional employment programs. ReEmployability’s innovative transition to work program, Transition2Work, matches injured workers with nonprofit organizations in need of resources. The injured employees remain productive by performing light-duty work and have an avenue for earning their regular income and benefits until they recover.

CEO Debra Livingston began her career working as an insurance claims adjuster and founded ReEmployAbility in 2003 based on a passion for helping injured workers return to work.

“I was always passionate about helping people get back to work. And then, as we started placing injured workers in nonprofits, workers were giving us feedback and saying, ‘This has changed my life,’” Livingston said.

This year, ReEmployAbility has placed Transition2Work participants with nonprofit organizations in all 50 states. As of the first half of 2023, more than 5,000 participants in Transition2Work have collectively volunteered for over 1.1 million hours to support almost 2,000 organizations.

The company is having a meaningful impact across the country and right here locally.

ReEmployAbility assists many local nonprofits, including Metropolitan Ministries, Habitat for Humanity, ECHO and Lighthouse Ministries.

Jean Nieves Palma (JP) began working at the Lighthouse Ministries Brandon Thrift Store in February through the Transition2Work program after being injured at his job with Tesla.

“They offered this modified duty, which is a blessing. It was an amazing option to have. It has been fantastic to work while I have my injury limitations,” JP said.

Diana Copley, Lighthouse Ministries Brandon Thrift Store operations manager, is thankful for the partnership with ReEmployAbility.

“We have a close relationship with ReEmployAbility. The volunteers we receive from them have become such an important part of our team. They are a huge help. It really makes a difference,” Copley said.

On top of helping local nonprofits, injured community members and companies, ReEmployAbility was No. 10 in the 2023 Tampa Bay Times Top Workplaces (Small Category).

One of the foundations of ReEmployAbility is the belief that giving back helps individuals, as well as the community. Livingston shared that one of the full-circle benefits of starting Transition2Work is that it benefits everyone involved.

“Our employees are also impacted by the fact that they are helping people every day,” Livingston said.

For more information about ReEmployability, visit

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