Power 9® People

By guruscottyMay 1, 2024No Comments


An ongoing series about people improving their well-being

Fort Worth is the largest certified Blue Zones Community® in the country. Each month we talk to a different member of our community and find out how they experience well-being in their neighborhood. This month’s featured guest is Danielle Spencer, CWWS, Senior Wellness Administrator at GM Financial. Born and raised in Plano, Spencer now lives in Weatherford on a five-acre “ranch-ette” with her daughters Hannah and Morgan, their three horses, and a mini-donkey. Spencer found her sense of purpose in helping others through creating prevention and wellness opportunities and is also trained in Mental Health First Aid.

Q: You are an Air Force veteran – thank you for your service. What did you do during your tour?

A: I spent a little over eight years in the Air Force. The first five were in Germany at Spangdahlem Air Base, then at Scott AFB outside of St. Louis. In the military I was focused on health services and patient evacuation. I saw many people who were injured, which led to my eventual passion for preventative medicine after I separated.

Q: Tell us about your career in worksite wellness.

A: As I transitioned out of the Air Force in 2014, my passion shifted to keep people out of diagnostic medicine and focus on preventative medicine. What better place to make an impact than work, where we spend most of our time! I obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Health and Wellness with an emphasis on Worksite Wellness from McKendree University, then came home to Texas for an internship with Southwest Airlines.

Q: What do you do as a Senior Wellness Administrator?

A: First and foremost, I ensure that our team members have the tools in their toolbox needed to navigate their wellness journey, regardless of where they are on the journey. I manage multiple wellness initiatives, including our global Wellness Champion Network and globally incentivized wellness platform. I also help plan our GM Financial on-site clinics in Arlington and San Antonio. I provide health education through newsletters, Lunch ‘n’ Learns, on-site trainings, and coordinate on-site services such as mobile mammography, biometric screenings, vaccination events, and even mobile dentistry.

Q: What have you learned from your experience in corporate wellness?

A: Wellness is a spectrum –– physical, emotional, career, social, spiritual, and financial wellness. In my position, I have learned that it’s imperative that I provide tools for every aspect of that spectrum.  However, especially since the COVID-19 pandemic, a majority of my time is spent in mental health resources and being sure that our team members have the best access to those resources, no matter where they are in their wellness journey.

Q: What do you like best about where you work right now?

A: GM Financial’s culture is a very tight-knit family. This company really cares about and takes care of team members and their family members. My clients are all of our 8,000+ team members and their families across US, Canada, and Latin America.

Q: May is National Mental Health Month, and you’ve been formally trained to be a Mental Health First Aider. Tell us about the training’s impact.

A: I discovered Mental Health First Aid, a national program which is provided through Texas Health, a few years ago. I thought collaborating with Texas Health and the training they offer could make a positive impact on our team members. Mental health is a high priority for employers and a very common request from team members. Our collaboration so far has trained more than 200 GM Financial team members who’ve become certified Mental Health First Aiders. It gives the trained employees another mental health tool in their toolbox for their daily interactions, not only with peers and family members, but also our customers.

Q: What’s the most important thing that you do for physical and mental health with GM Financial?

A: Of all the resources that we offer, being able to interact on a daily basis with our team members, hear their stories and feedback, and learn what is working and what we can make better is by far the most important aspect of my job. The number of team members who reach out to thank me for the many tools that have impacted their wellness journey in a positive manner makes this not just a job but truly my passion in life.

Q: As a woman who is a veteran, you’re also volunteering to help other veterans in their transition back to civilian life.

A: After a rough transition out of the military myself, I connected with Cover6Outdoors to assist with their female veteran trips. Their mission of reintroducing elusive camaraderie in the veteran community resonated so heavily with my experience and has been an imperative aspect of my own mental health journey.

Q: What can you share about your experience with Mental Health First Aid training?

A: Mental Health First Aid training provides practical and purposeful guidance for mental health scenarios that impact our team members on a daily basis. I often hear from participants that the direction and lessons taught in MHFA training empower them to feel confident in supporting a mental health crisis, giving them the tools to potentially save a life.


For more information about Mental Health First Aid training and to register for an upcoming session, visit https://info.bluezonesproject.com/mhfa

For more information about Cover6Outdoors, visit https://www.cover6outdoors.org/