When did you start working at Call of Freedom? And what is your personal and professional journey that led you here?
I started working at Call of Freedom in May of 2023.
I have worked with 2 different organizations for most of my adult life. I worked at LifeScape out of college, as a Service Coordinator for adults with disabilities. From there, I was an officer with the Sioux Falls PD. I started on patrol and then was promoted to develop the Mental Health Community Resource Officer position, where I worked for 3 years. In this role, I worked with individuals with a severe mental illness, who were also having significant police contact or criminal activity.
My goal was to help them get connected to appropriate mental health resources in the community in the hopes this would decrease their contact with law enforcement and the criminal justice system. I was also on the Crisis Negotiation Unit as a certified crisis and hostage negotiator. My husband is also a police officer and within the past year I came to the realization that both of us dedicating our lives to this career was taking away from the mom that I wanted to be to our 4 daughters.
After being invited to participate in the ‘Here I Am’ Leadership class at Embrace Church, I found my faith life improving and trusted that God had a different plan for me. This new plan brought me back to Call To Freedom, an organization I had worked with through my work with the PD.
What is your position at CTF & why is it important to the mission?
I am the Community Outreach Coordinator with Call To Freedom, which is a new position. I also currently do some adult case management and will be taking on some youth case management as well. The Community Outreach Coordinator position is valuable to the organization, and the community, because it helps break down the silos of each organization and resources in the community so we can collaboratively work together to help the individuals achieve their goals.
Why do you believe in the mission of call to freedom?
Individuals come to us when they are at their most vulnerable and trust us to help them put the pieces of their lives back together. As a team, we can walk alongside these individuals as they become whole again and restore their faith, self-confidence, and stability.
What is a moment that sticks out to you from your time working here or why do you feel like it’s meaningful?
I have not been with the organization for a super long time, but one moment that sticks out is being able to help a client make a police report after she had tried to numerous times. Afterwards, she said she felt so empowered and heard.
What is a fun fact about yourself?
1) a bucket list goal of mine is to go to Africe to hike Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania and go on an African Safari. 2) I despise any sweet sauces on meat – this goes for BBQ sauce, marinades, chicken wing sauce, etc 3) best concert I’ve ever been to is Bruce Springsteen and the artist I saw the most in concert was Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers (7 times) 4) I delivered a baby on the shoulder of I-229 South, just south of the Benson Rd exit, after I was the first responder to arrive on scene.