Kathy K. Carr, Executive Director
Kathy Kooken Carr was named executive director of the SECU Family House on the Richard J. Reynolds III & Marie M. Reynolds Campus in March 2010.
A native of Winston-Salem and with medical professionals in her family, Kathy has felt particularly called to the Family House’s vision of caring for caregivers, and is honored to be Executive Director. She has often joked that she was “the warm body in the room” back in 2003 when the steering committee started work in the community to open an adult hospitality house. Now, she can’t imagine being anywhere else- the authentic gratitude of the Family House guests energizes her on a daily basis! Well, okay, occasionally you might also find her walking at Topsail Beach with her husband David, taking phone calls from one of her adult children, feeling powerful during a pilates session, missing a ball on the tennis court; and okay maybe every night enjoying the loving attentions of her Goldendoodle, Nellie!
Melissa Thompson, CHA, Director of House Operations
When asked what her super power is Melissa will reply, “hugging” and “driving in winter weather”. Her personality shines as much here in Winston-Salem as it did in her hometown of Stafford, NY. In 2010, she transitioned from managing hotels to managing a non-profit “hotel”. Why the change? When her first son was born, he was transferred to UNC Hospital for care. She wished that she had known about the Ronald McDonald House, because the time that she spent on the road could have been spent closer to her son, who passed away after four short days. When Melissa heard about the opportunity at the Family House, she knew that she could put her heart into making the Family House a loving home. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, and volunteering with her church. Melissa began attending Salem College in spring 2012 part-time to finish up a degree she had set aside 25 years earlier and graduated spring 2017 earning her BA in Communications with a minor in Not-for-Profit Management.
Tracy Geiger, Development Director
Having lived in Upstate New York and Orlando, Florida, Tracy considers herself a half back and 7 years later considers Winston Salem “home”! The Family House introduced their first major fundraiser called “Men Who Cook” in March 2015, and Tracy looks forward to growing that event along with meeting all the new contacts that came out to support our cause. When not promoting awareness and looking for ways to bring additional contributions and support to the Family House, she travels to Hilton Head and the Bluffton area of SC to visit family and friends, one of her favorite week-end get always. She and hubby Rich are adjusting to their empty nest and visiting sons in Raleigh and Atlanta, now that both have finished college and on their own ! She is new to yoga and enjoying the challenge and calming affect the classes provide!
Lisa Northrop, CAVNC, Director of Community Relations
Volunteering since she was a Brownie in Girl Scouts, Lisa always knew she would work in the non-profit sector. Perfect timing and the pro humanitate culture of Wake Forest University allowed her to transition from a student intern at the Ronald McDonald House to a position at the Family House. Five years later, she helps volunteers create the homelike environment that makes guests feel at ease at the Family House. She is still a volunteer at heart, serving with the Piedmont Environmental Alliance and the Ardmore Gateway Garden.
Ainsley Darnell, Community Relations and Development Coordinator
First joining the Family House as an Episcopal Service Corps intern, Ainsley was delighted to be asked to come on full time in June of 2016. Often with iced coffee in hand, she works each day to find inventive ways to share the story of the Family House and the people it serves. Between snatching ginger cookies from the kitchen and swapping stories with guests, she can’t imagine a lovelier place to work.
Lori Flinchum, Finance Manager
Lori was born and has lived in the Winston-Salem area all her life. A graduate of High Point University, she has been in the accounting field in both public accounting and private industry. Married to her high school sweetheart, Paul, for 30+ years, they have two adult children, a daughter and a son. Lori is actively involved at their church, serving on the Finance Committee and teaching Sunday School. She has previously been involved in the Autism Society of Forsyth County (her son has autism) and served as a Parent Advocate for the Autism Society of North Carolina. Lori enjoys reading, shopping excursions with her daughter and going for walks with her husband and son.
Becky Wright, Educational Services Manager
Becky is a native of Winston Salem, where she and her husband, Wayne, still live. Becky and Wayne are parents of three grown children, and a four-year-old toy poodle, Evie, who thinks she is head of the household! Before joining the Family House, Becky worked for Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center School of Medicine as an education specialist. There, Becky managed testing events for students which included their ability to communicate with patients. This experience, combined with her experience as an informal caregiver for her mother during a lengthy illness, provided Becky with a passion to facilitate understanding and communication between patients, their families and those in the health care professions. Becky is passionate about the educational services program at the Family House and is delighted to be in a position where she can make a contribution in this area.
Lindley Curtis, Support Services Coordinator
Lindley has coordinated support services for guests since 2016. With experience in ministry and social work, she has worked in churches and non-profit settings with caregivers and older adults. Lindley started volunteering at the Family House after moving to Winston-Salem, and she instantly realized what a special place it is. Originally from Boone, Lindley loves the mountains, arts and crafts, and playing with her husband, two young children, and Boxer dog.
Mattie Steele, Social Work Intern
Mattie is excited to be completing her social work internship at the Family House. She will be working in the Support Services department with Lindley. Mattie is getting her Master’s in Social Work from UNC Chapel Hill. She has just moved to the Winston-Salem area and is originally from Wilkes County, NC. Mattie enjoys reading, spending time with her husband, Panther’s football, and dogs of any kind. She loves talking with and listening to people so feel free to say hello!