“It seemed like Saratoga was embedded in my heart. It was my fresh start,” said Michael Lewis, Porter at Saratoga Family Residence. “I left my past behind me.”

Michael came to Saratoga through The Fortune Society—an organization that supports and assists individuals with successful reentry from incarceration. He began his career at HFH 12 years ago, a period which he regards as the beginning of a new chapter in his life.

“When I came here, they turned my life around,” said Michael. “For me, working motivates me to keep striving. I don’t look back at the past; I just look to the future. I feel good about it.”

As a Porter, Michael holds a multitude of responsibilities, from tending to the garden to ensuring the overall cleanliness and safety of Saratoga’s premises. Regardless of the task at hand, his dedication and dependability are unwavering.

“He takes initiative,” said Rhaleek Hatcher, Buildings Operations Supervisor at Saratoga and Michael’s supervisor who has worked with Michael for the last six years. “When things are tough, he is the guy to turn to. He makes sure everything is safe and secure and sanitized for all the children and  all of the clients.”

“He is somebody to look up to [and] to take notes from—and I still do to this day. He is literally superman—one of a kind,” said Lawrence Norftil, Director of Facilities at Saratoga, who Michael trained nine years ago. “The motivation and the energy that he has is unbelievable. When people come to start working, I stick them with him because he knows this facility like the back of his hand.”

Apart from his exceptional work ethic and mentorship, Michael is known for his infectious optimistic attitude.

“He is a down to earth, spiritual person. Every time you see him, he always gives you a good vibe. He is always happy when he comes in,” said Rhaleek.

“He is very personable with everyone. I’ve never heard him say a harsh word about or to anyone.” said Mike Fahy, Administrator at Saratoga who hired Michael. “You can’t stop the guy. It doesn’t matter what the weather is outside. One day I am sitting in my office and it’s pretty windy out, and I look outside, and he is raking leaves. He rakes them into one pile and then the wind blows them. It doesn’t bother him—he just goes and rakes them back.”

You have to see him when he dresses up,” Mike added. “He’s always looking dapper when he is leaving work. He has got it all going.”

Outside of work, Michael enjoys spending as much time as possible with his 18-year-old daughter—they enjoy going to the movies, shopping, and eating at Applebee’s. He is also an avid sports fan, especially of the Kansas City Chiefs who he correctly predicted would win the 2024 Super Bowl.

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