Ep. 79 “Navigating Passion and Purpose” w/ Leah Yaw

by | Aug 22, 2022 | Podcasts, The Virtuous Heros

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 About this Episode

In this week’s episode, Chris speaks with Leah Yaw, Senior Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer for Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health. Leah talks about navigating both passion and purpose. Watch to learn how to best integrate both into your career or your life as a whole!

Leah Yaw is lucky and happy to be in a job that combines both her passion and purpose-filled work. She has always been an individual who strives to help people. She wants to help those that are marginalized or don’t have the resources to help them grow and succeed. Because of this, she has found fulfillment in her job at Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health. At this organization, she helps people of all ages with mental issues and intellectual disabilities.

Her passion became apparent when she told a heartfelt story of the impact her work has on others. She even gave our listeners insight into the importance of managing overzealousness and its connection to burnout. With her job, she leads a meaningful life following her passion while doing work that she finds purpose driven.

Leah also explained that one’s career does not necessarily need to intertwine both passion and purpose. She shared some advice that she gave her son who is gearing up for college. Leah advises choosing a career you’re passionate about, whether that be financial services, teaching, psychology, engineering, or whatever it may be. If that job is not necessarily purpose driven she urges individuals to find what they care about in the world. Whether it be animals, environmental protection, gender equality, or quality education, Leah encourages individuals to pursue that purpose-filled work. People can do this by volunteering or even becoming board members for an organization that supports the cause.

Now Leah joins us on Virtuous Heroes Podcast to talk with us. Her advice will help leaders and young professionals find the right path filled with both passion and purpose.


As Senior Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer, Leah Yaw is responsible for developing, communicating, executing and sustaining strategic initiatives. These initiatives are across the organization that are aligned with Devereux’s mission and core values. In Yaw’s External Affairs role, she manages all fundraising, crisis management, and public policy and advocacy. She also manages internal and external communications, brand management and strategic marketing across the organization.

Yaw joined Devereux in 2009 in the role of Vice President of Development and Communications. In 2012, she was promoted to Senior Vice President of External Affairs. In 2018, she was promoted to her current position.
Prior to joining Devereux, Yaw was the Vice President of Strategic Advancement for KidsPeace. KidsPeace is a national nonprofit organization serving children with behavioral health needs. She began her career serving the public relations and crisis communications needs of both for- and nonprofit corporations.

Yaw holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Writing and Public Policy, Summa Cum Laude, from the Honors College of the University of Pittsburgh. She also holds a Master of Science in Communication Theory, Summa Cum Laude, from the Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania. She serves on the board of trustees for organizations such as Devereux Community Behavioral Health of Okeechobee and Treasure Coast. Others include the Advancement Committee for The Swain School and the Centennial Planning Committee for Vision 2020. Yaw is also a trustee for the Public Policy Advisory Committee for the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities.



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