Women You Should Know: Janelle Stoneking

3 mins read

Empowered by Ladyboss Lifestyle

Janelle Stoneking

Training and Development Specialist, ABLE Inc.

Janelle Stoneking, Training and Development Specialist for ABLE Inc., has a natural gift for recognizing and celebrating people and their unique narratives. Whether it’s through her work, art, or community initiatives, Stoneking’s passion for listening, learning, and helping others has inspired her to pursue a more connected, compassionate world.

“There are so many different chapters in my life,” Stoneking said. “When I think back, I can see how they all intertwine to create the story of who I am now.”

Now, Janelle Stoneking is a woman whose life has been defined by her dedication to understanding other people’s personal stories and using them to empower individuals and communities.

The Art of Passion

A lifetime dedicated to understanding people’s stories and creating connections.

A Transformational Profession

Although she entered college with plans to teach kindergarten, Stoneking never stepped foot in a classroom as a teacher. Instead, she took a job at ABLE Inc. 25 years ago and has remained with the company, dedicating her life to supporting people with disabilities. ABLE Inc. provides day-to-day support for people with intellectual disabilities.

Stoneking has held various positions with the company, and she currently serves as the agency’s training and development specialist. Stoneking focuses on behavioral health and trauma, where she trains employees to support people’s journeys, discover who they are, and find solutions for them to succeed.

“Positive relationships have the power to transform lives,” Stoneking said. “I am so fortunate for the opportunity to witness the impact of these relationships every day. By helping one individual, you can transform so many people, families, and communities. It’s such a beautiful thing to be a part of.”

“Sunday Morning” by Janelle Stoneking

“The piece is a depiction of my father reading the Sunday paper and pointing out his favorite comics. We must search out the things that bring color in a world of negativity.” – Janelle Stoneking

-Janelle Stoneking

“Tomorrow” by Janelle Stoneking

“This piece depicts the journey of finding oneself through the most difficult times. It is about the hope tomorrow might bring when the heaviness of today is what is felt.”

– Janelle Stoneking
JJanelle Stoneking with her husband and three children. Photos Courtesy of Shutter Rose Photography by Dakota Olson

Embracing Passion

Stoneking’s passion for people extends beyond her work. “Most people don’t know this, but I became a foster parent in my early twenties when a family member needed placement,” Stoneking said. “That experience holds an important place in my journey, and it taught me to recognize the beauty in life, even amidst pain.”

Janelle and her husband Bobby are now parents of three children, and she hopes that they learn to recognize the passion and beauty in life as well. “As mothers, we want our children to understand that life doesn’t require them to be experts at anything, but rather to dedicate themselves to being explorers of where their passions lead. I want my children to find great joy in discovering new things and pursuing their dreams because that’s what truly matters in life.”

An Accidental Artist

Stoneking heeds her own advice and finds happiness in expressing herself through mixed media art. “I actually became an artist by accident,” she said. “I had no idea what to do with my energy, and I’ve always been intrigued by creativity, so I thought ‘why not tell stories and express my feelings through the beauty of art?’”

So, with no prior experience or training, Stoneking embarked on her creative journey. As time passed, her confidence and abilities began to grow, and something that started off as an accident had become a passion. It’s a passion that she’s become quite skilled at, winning awards and selling pieces in addition to the work she donates to various nonprofit organizations.

“Life is a journey of choices and moments, and each of these moments has the potential to become a story that we can share through art,” she said. “These stories reflect our experiences, our struggles, and our triumphs, and they have the power to inspire, heal, and bring us together.”

Bridging Divides

As part of her journey, Stoneking is currently working to help open the Southwest Art Gallery and Science Center in Dickinson, ND. This permanent art gallery will enable those with a love of art and science to share their creativity. Her dedication to community building has provided Stoneking with additional opportunities for growth and development, such as her recent selection for the ND Change Network cohort.

With the group’s support, Stoneking has coordinated “Illumination Stations” at Dickinson High School. These lock-in experiences provide an opportunity for students to engage in activities related to the arts, sciences, music, and mental health.

“Life is full of big emotions that we often don’t have the capacity to handle,” Stoneking said. “Artistic expression is a universal language that allows us to communicate beyond words and connect with one another on a deeper level. Illumination Stations are designed to provide an environment where students feel safe to express themselves.”

Continued Connections

In a world that can sometimes feel divided, Stoneking and her passions remind us of our shared humanity and the power of connection.

“No matter how different we are, it is possible to come together as a human family. Life is about nurturing one another’s spirits and helping each other grow into confident and compassionate individuals. It is about sharing our experiences and wisdom, while also discovering our own unique paths. By doing so, we have the power to create inclusive, diverse, and welcoming communities.”

Stoneking’s unwavering dedication to empowering individuals and recognizing the power of collective action makes her a true force for good—in any community she touches.

Connect with Janelle

Email: [email protected]
Facebook: /JanelleStonekingArtist