As part of our strategic plan, we reorganized the structure of some of our programs this year. We combined our three respite programs into one big umbrella and found that we needed someone to lead the department. The search began and Katie Corrigan was selected as our new Director of Respite Services.
Katie grew up in St. Charles County and had heard wonderful things about Community Living. Her daughter also worked as a DSP while she was in school and said her experience as an employee matched our reputation in the community. When Katie saw the new role, she knew she needed to apply. “I jumped at the opportunity!” she said.
Katie earned her Bachelor’s degree in psychology and loved the world of mental health education, but knew fairly early in her career that social work was a better fit for her. “I began working for the Saint Louis Crisis Nursery as I started my Masters in Social Work Program and worked there for over 20 years in many capacities including direct care, volunteer management, supervision, community engagement, program development, liaison to the state and funders for contracts and licensing, and quality management.” She also has 9 years of experience working in Foster Care and Adoption where she licensed and supported families that foster and adopt. The cause is near to her heart as she adopted her four oldest children from foster care.
“I am very impressed with each of our three respite programs and look forward to helping the managers grow them even more.”
Katie says “I believe all of these positions have given me a foundation of program development and many years of multi-level supervision that I think will be very helpful in my role.” She’s been in her position for a few months and says she’s really enjoyed getting to know how each program benefits the individuals we serve. “I am very much a client-centered worker and so I enjoy each task and can relate it back to our individuals receiving the best possible care.”
Katie oversees Community Living’s Respite Center, Respite Care Home, and In-Home Respite programs which each operate differently to meet the needs of different groups of people. The Respite Center is a weekend-only program serving children with significant behavioral challenges. The Respite Care Home is a home-like, fully accessible facility open 24/7 to children and adults who stay for a few hours, days, or even a week or more. The In-Home Respite program is a unique program that uses independent contractors to provide respite in an individual’s own home. Community Living helps connect families and providers and handles payment reimbursement. “I am very impressed with each of our three respite programs and look forward to helping the managers grow them even more,” Katie said.
When she isn’t working, Katie spends time with her family. She and her husband have been married for 24 years and are parents to six kids ranging in age from 10-27. Their two daughters and oldest two sons were adopted from foster care and the couple has two biological sons as well. After the loss of her oldest son last year, the family welcomed a new dog named Buddy and she says “he has been healing for all of us!” The family is very active in their Parish at Sts. Joachim and Ann. After losing her best friend to cancer two years ago, Katie helped to found an organization in her honor to spread joy and kindness. She’s also involved many service ministries, is an avid resale and sale shopper, and loves to decorate. Her office in Community Living’s administrative building is, of course, decorated to the nines.