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Mary Wilcox-Perry / JAMIE GERMANO staff photographer
Henrietta resident Mary Wilcox-Perry started her own business in April 2011 after working in her field for 20 years. She is an accredited disability representative and owns her on firm on White Spruce Blvd. Her job is to represent people who are disabled in trying to obtain social security disability benefits.
“It was a challenge for me to see if I could,” Wilcox-Perry said about starting her own business. She had been toying with the idea for many years, and finally decided she didn’t want to regret not doing it.
Besides her fascination with medicine and social work, Wilcox-Perry really wants to help people.
“I’m born to this business. I really feel like I’ve hit my niche, that this is my calling,” she said.
Wilcox-Perry goes before administrative law judges to fight for her clients. She also writes applications and appeals, and attends hearings.
While she enjoys this process, her favorite part of the job is seeing the relief that clients feel after a case is successfully completed.
“My greatest feeling is when I win a case,” she said. “There is nothing better than telling a client ‘we won.’”
Outside of work, Wilcox-Perry participates in the Rochester American Diabetes Association’s Tour de Cure.
She chose to become involved in this organization because she herself is diabetic, as are many other people she knows.
“It personally has touched almost every member of my family except for my children,” she said, adding that she hopes they can be spared the disease’s hardships.
Wilcox-Perry has lived in the Rochester area for about 30 years “(The area) has just about anything that I need,” she said, which includes lots of outdoor spaces that she and her family regularly enjoy.
Personal: Age 56, of Henrietta, married with two sons.
Occupation: Accredited Disability Representative; owner of Mary Perry, Accredited Disability Representative
Community activities: Active with Rochester American Diabetes Association’s Tour de Cure, chair of the awards committee for the National Association of Disability Representatives for past eight years, active member of Pinnacle Lutheran Church.
My favorite thing to do in Rochester: Hiking and biking.
Biggest challenge I’ve overcome and how I did it: I have two. personal poverty and morbid obesity. (Yes, I admit it! No surgery either.) Both were met the same way:
- Set a goal.
- Make a plan.
- Make a plan on how to stick to your plan – this is an important step. 4) Execute it. Sometimes, I’ve had to reassess because of obstacles, but then I follow the same formula for the obstacles. Then when I reach my goals, I set new ones.
One thing I’ve always wanted to do but never have: There are only things that I haven’t gotten to yet, but my life if far from over – I’ll get to them (e.g. speak Spanish, lose my fear of heights, travel each continent.)
If I could change one thing about myself it would be: There are so many! (but thankfully, none that are SO awful!)
The talent I would most like to have: To make people laugh, more! I love to see people laugh.
The one thing I can’t live without: My spiritual relationship with God.
My favorite movie: I don’t have just one. I’m currently intrigued with the concepts of the recent movie In Time. Can you imagine what it might be like to be reasonably certain that you will be alive for any very specific amount of time?
One of my favorite sayings is: What goes around comes around.
A person who has inspired me: Actually there are two, my sons. One has an uncanny ability to read people and situations and then readily apply them to everyday life. He just seems to learn from other people’s experiences and mistakes. My older son, who is challenged by of a number of medical problems, never gives up. His perseverance and determination just seem to allow him to rise above any of life’s obstacles.
Written by: Jesse Hanus