Providing What Our Community Deserves
In July 2022, I graciously and proudly welcomed the opportunity to step into the interim CEO role for our organization and guide our mission of eliminating barriers to success for students and families. Since 2014, CISM’s dedicated specialists have supported nearly 9,000 students while working directly inside over 20 schools across Memphis and surrounding counties.
With more than two decades of diverse experience working for transformational change in the nonprofit and education sectors, the decision to join CISM in 2020 as Chief Programs Officer was an easy one because the Communities In Schools model is proven and the impact over time is undeniable. The national CIS network is America’s largest and most effective dropout prevention organization. We know that our approach works because it’s backed by over 40 years of experience and rigorous research in thousands of schools across the country.
As an independent affiliate operating exclusively in the greater Memphis area and focusing specifically on addressing the needs of local students and schools, CISM has been living up to our name and fulfilling our mission by bringing community resources into schools to help address specific points of challenge for students in their personal lives, such as food, bedding, school supplies, clothing, transportation passes, and much more. This has helped increase daily student attendance, improve behaviors, and support stronger school climates.
Yet, in order for young people and their families to experience true impact and transformation, we are always working to extend charitable acts and essential services into opportunities for empowerment. This means equipping youth with the capacity and power to create possibilities for themselves and become self-sufficient during their foundational years and throughout adulthood. As society and the needs of our community evolve, we also recognize the importance and urgency of preparing students not only to be prepared for higher education, but to be workforce-ready when they graduate high school. CISM has been at the forefront of this trend with innovative partnerships that create viable career pathways for students through access to coaching, certifications, counseling, internship opportunities, on-the-job training, and more while they’re in high school.
Achieving our goals by 2025
With the support of generous businesses and organizations who, like us, see our youth as the key to a stronger future, we are steadily moving closer to achieving our goals by 2025, which include:
Relationships, not programs, change the trajectory of life for at-risk students, which is why our programs are people-focused.
To truly be transformative, we will always strive for multigenerational impact that directly, powerfully, and rapidly improves circumstances for entire families and communities with long-lasting influence. I emphasize the word rapidly because our community deserves immediate results.
We love Memphis and are grateful for the chance to make it better. Most importantly, we will always be #AllinforKids.
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