Debra joined the Meta House Board of Directors in 2009 and has served in a variety of positions, including Treasurer and Chair-Elect. Debra was an important part in guiding the agency through a monumental change in leadership when its Executive Director of nearly 30 years retired. In 2012, Meta House faced its toughest financial year in decades. By leveraging her personal and professional networks, Debra’s efforts yielded a tremendous impact, resulting in more than $100,000 dollars in sponsorships and donations. Also during this time, she single-handedly created a new way for Meta House’s stakeholders to engage with the agency. In conjunction with agency staff and the Board of Directors, Debra led the development of twice-annual ExecConnect events, programs offering insight into the agency’s strategic vision and current financial status. To date, Debra has personally hosted all six of the agency’s ExecConnect events at the law firm she works at. By the end of 2012, and in large part because of Debra’s leadership, Meta House was able to close more than half the gap left by fund reductions.
Today, Debra is still an active member of the Board of Directors, which she will chair starting in 2015. Her passionate advocacy and support makes it possible for Meta House to continue to offer Milwaukee women an opportunity to overcome drug and alcohol addiction and empower them to reclaim their lives and rebuild their families.
For Debra’s years of volunteer service, and in honor of her hard work with Meta House, he is awarded the November Wisconsin Heroes Award.