top of page

The Share Your Story Project

What you have to say matters!

Jesse's Story.png

Jesse S., who resides in Lexington County and has autism, navigates the complexities of communication challenges and strives for independence. Jesse relies on incontinence products to manage bladder and bowel issues, finding confidence and comfort in their use. Early battles with chronic constipation and the overwhelming sensory input from noisy restrooms contributed to a sense of social isolation and a diminished self-esteem. An especially demoralizing incident in middle school involving an ill-fitting adult pull-up, coupled with a resource teacher's negative comments about the use of incontinence products, severely impacted Jesse's emotional health and ability to connect with others.

These formative experiences have led to apprehension about entering the workforce, spurred by concerns over losing Medicaid and SSI benefits and the potential stigma associated with wearing protective products. Efforts to secure appropriate incontinence supplies have often been met with frustration due to receiving products that failed to meet Jesse's needs, further intensifying feelings of isolation. Jesse faces daily hurdles, including managing sensory overload and the necessity of advocating for open communication about restroom needs, which influence personal relationships and the pursuit of independence.

As the first Patient Care Advocate for Aeroflow Urology, Jesse is sharing their journey to advocate for improved support for individuals with disabilities. Jesse has contended with the denial of their autism diagnosis and incorrect assumptions attributing their condition to inadequate parenting, struggling against an educational system that frequently failed to comprehend their needs. Attempts to engage with the Lexington School District One school board to address these challenges were impeded by communication barriers and policies preventing the identification of specific staff members. Nonetheless, the positive influence of participating in a Social Skills Strategies lab class at River Bluff High School has highlighted the value of specialized support programs, prompting Jesse to champion their expansion.

Jesse advocates for early, comprehensive medical and social support to facilitate systemic changes in how educational accommodations are provided to students with autism. They emphasize the critical need for a respectful, understanding, and inclusive approach in educational settings.

To learn more about Jesse's story, visit:


Teresa Villa's journey is a compelling narrative of resilience, determination, and unwavering commitment to excellence and service within the legal field. Starting with dreams of becoming a paralegal, Teresa embarked on a remarkable path that led her to earn certifications in Colorado and South Carolina. Not only did she achieve her professional goals, but along with her daughters, she also became a Certified South Carolina Notary Public, providing vital notarization services to the community and government entities.

Her relocation from Pueblo, Colorado, to Gaffney, Cherokee County, South Carolina, marks a significant chapter in her life, reflecting both her dedication to professional growth and her commitment to family values. Teresa's journey is one of overcoming obstacles and pursuing excellence, from achieving an Administrative Law Paralegal certification to becoming a certified paralegal student and an American Notary and Mobile Notary Public.

Facing both physical and mental disabilities, Teresa's story takes a deeper dive into her relentless fight against adversity. Despite enduring homelessness, loss, and discrimination, her spirit remained unbroken. Her eight-year battle with the Social Security Administration, coupled with her determination to live and never give up, serves as an inspiration to many.


Teresa's faith and inner strength have been her guiding lights, helping her navigate through life's challenges with grace and fortitude. Her proactive approach in handling her disability case, her dedication to understanding the intricacies of the Social Security Administration, and her vision to bring positive change to the SSA through legal software and innovation showcase her commitment to making a difference.

Her nomination for POWER magazine as a Bronze member underscores her significant contributions to the paralegal community and the notary world. Teresa Villa's story is not just about overcoming personal challenges; it's about transforming those challenges into opportunities to serve and inspire others.

Her dedication to research, understanding the complexities of disability cases, and her innovative approach to addressing systemic flaws are commendable. Teresa's vision for Villa Professional Services, aimed at improving the experience for individuals navigating the disability application process, reflects her commitment to empathy, respect, and efficiency.

Teresa Villa's narrative is a testament to the power of perseverance, the importance of faith, and the impact of innovative thinking in overcoming life's obstacles and making a positive impact in the world. Her story serves as a beacon of hope and inspiration for anyone facing challenges, proving that with determination, compassion, and innovation, significant obstacles can be overcome, and lasting change can be achieved.

For those interested in learning more about Teresa's extraordinary journey and her vision for the future, read the full story here.

bottom of page