Kelly has been a key member of UCAN’s leadership for most of her time with us. She has been the leader of our Josephine County office. Click here to learn more about Kelly’s contribution to UCAN and our communities.
UCAN originally brought Kelly on to oversee our RSVP program. She soon added oversight of UCAN’s AmeriCorps and VISTA programs to her responsibilities. Upon taking over as COO, Kelly also began administering UCAN’s homeless program, as well as our energy assistance and weatherization programs.
Kelly has played a pivotal role in growing UCAN’s presence in Josephine County. When UCAN began operating in the County, we superseded an agency that had been part of County governance. As Kelly says, it was important that UCAN “rebuild local relationships and restore trust for those who depended on the agency for services.” Kelly worked hard to make that happen, fostering many collaborations, and hosting such partnerships as the Josephine County Homeless Task Force.
Kelly has been a major proponent for ensuring local folks coming to us obtain everything we can offer so they can succeed. Not only has she continually promoted “wrapping services” within UCAN, she has promoted integrating services between UCAN and its many partner agencies. She’s also focused on finding ways to embed new technologies to streamline processes and provide better service delivery.
While at UCAN, Kelly’s programs have distributed record amounts of assistance to local folks. Her programs have received national awards, including one for an innovative veteran service program. But most important to Kelly are the people she has met along the way. As she says, she has learned from all of them.
As just one example, she and her staff worked with an individual who had been homeless for ten years, who had slept in the snow, who had trouble communicating when he first connected with UCAN. At first, he wasn’t allowed to pay his own rental bill, and was instead assigned a payee to do so. We were able to get benefits for him, to get him rent assistance. As his life stabilized, he took over paying his bills. Nobody who met him when he first left the streets would have thought he could live independently, but he was able to do so. As Kelly says, he was one of many people who taught her that people are amazingly resilient when given the chance to succeed.