About Total Living Concept

Total Living Concept (TLC) became a Washington Not-for-Profit organization on July 26, 1982. In the beginning, TLC only operated group homes, which provided congregated living options for people with developmental disabilities.

Through the process of constant self-evaluation and listening to the people being supported, TLC gradually moved away from congregated housing options to providing individualized support enabling each person to live in their own home. The state refers to this as Supported Living.

Many people choose to reduce their living expenses by sharing their homes with housemates who do not receive services from TLC, but rather are members of our general community. TLC is very proud to support people to live where they want, with whom they want, for as long as they want, according to their own personal lifestyle choices.

The individuals that request our services live throughout the south King County area.

Overview of Total Living Concept


One may wonder how TLC can provide such individualized support without unusually high rates. The fact is the average cost of TLC’s support remains below the combined average for the rest of the agencies providing Supported Living in King County. We do this by extensive and creative use of other community supports. For example, TLC assists over one half of the people to whom we provide support in obtaining Housing and Urban Development Section 8 Housing vouchers. This allows people to more reasonably meet housing costs in this area. In some cases, additional living space is secured for a housemate that is able to provide overnight emergency support, thus reducing staff costs. We also assist people in locating and using lower cost transportation options, obtaining food stamps, and participating in a wide variety of other groups and organizations open to all citizens.


TLC currently supports 28 people through our Supported Living contract with the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services’ Aging and Disability Services Administration. We also support 32+ people through our Community Guides program. This program assists people who are eligible to receive services from the Division of Developmental Disabilities but are not currently receiving any services. The aim of the program is to assist people to seek out and use community options to meet some of their most important needs and life goals, which typically include work and other opportunities to make a contribution to their local communities.

We employ over 120 staff. Only 3.15 positions are administrative staff positions.

TLC maintains a very lean management structure in order to direct a majority of our resources directly to the people we support. Our annual payroll is approximately 3.5 million dollars. Nearly all of our staff members live in the South King County area.

When considering the number of people we serve (61), the number of staff members we employ (112) and the family members and friends of our staff and people we support, TLC’s network extends to over 1000 people concerned with issues facing the disability community.

The Board

Our Board of Directors consists of volunteer community members who have a wide variety of backgrounds and interests in the field of developmental disabilities. Their responsibilities include:

  • Policy Administration: Establishes and/or continues the legal or corporate existence of the organization; ensures the legal requirements are met for conducting business as a not-for-profit, 501 (c) (3); adopts by-laws and ensures the organization operates within them; adopts policies which determine the purpose, guiding principles, functions, activities, and direction of the organization.
  • Evaluation: Together with employees of the organization, regularly evaluates and reviews services and supports and maintains standards of performance; and monitors the activities of the organization.
  • Personnel: Hires and reviews the performance of the Executive Director; approves policies which address the management of personnel.
  • Board Development: 4. Board development: Participates in the identification, recruitment, selection and orientation of board members.
  • Finance: Approves and monitors the corporate finances of the organization; authorizes and approves the annual financial statements; takes responsibility for all expenditures dealing with building improvements or purchases of additional land or buildings.
Board of Directors

Jerry Kessinger, President

Steve Schain, Treasurer

Michelle Lehosky, Secretary

William Morris

Ray Jensen

Aaron Johannes