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Social Empowerment Center tops the field of Bulldog businesses by Maria Torres (ABJ ’14) or the first time in the five-year history of the Bulldog 100, a female business leader’s operation headlined the list of fastest growing companies in 2014 – and she happened to be an alumna of the School of Social Work. Rachelle D. Hutchinson (MSW ’00) and her husband Edward, who also graduated from the University of Georgia, were honored in late January at the Marriott Marquis in Atlanta for their work at the Social Empowerment Center (SEC). The Hutchinsons might not play football at their SEC, but they do fight for something else. The couple founded the Center in Lawrenceville, Ga., in 2002 with the intention of providing mental health services to children in the area. As the company’s reputation spread however, its services expanded as well. Before Hutchinson knew it, she 14
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was providing care to eight counties and dabbling in adult services. Now, the Social Empowerment Center is one of only a handful of mental health providers that caters to adults. “I’m a social worker, not a numbers person,” Hutchinson says. “I go into work wanting to be the best for my employees, for our clients – not for the bottom line. If you go into it with a good intention, then the results are bound to be good.” And the results have been better than just “good.” Hutchinson’s business has experienced exponential growth since 2010, when its final profits stood at $325,000. Just two years later, the SEC’s bottom line skyrocketed to $2.8 million. Hutchinson expects 2013’s numbers will further eclipse last year’s number, coming in around $3.2 million.
University of Georgia School of Social Work