CASA Staff

 Executive Director   

Kimberly Stephens, CASA Executive Director

   

Kimberly Stephens was born in Dallas, TX, and grew up living and traveling all over the North America. Her family pastored and evangelized, ministering in 11 states and 2 countries. Mrs. Stephens and her husband have continued that legacy, serving as children’s pastors, youth pastors, crusade leaders, and associate pastors in North Carolina, Tennessee, Maryland, Kentucky, New York, Maine, West Virginia, Florida, and most recently Texas. A licensed educator, Mrs. Stephens also dedicated the past 15 years to serving in instructional and administrative positions with local public schools, higher education agencies, and faith-based education ministries. She holds a Master’s Degree and completed the doctoral coursework to earn a Doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction in 2016. Mrs. Stephens is currently in the final stages of publishing a dissertation, focused on illuminating the parent-engagement pathways utilized by immigrant parents to support their children’s learning and success.

Working with at-risk populations has dominated her professional experience, as well as engaging with the legal system by serving as a school-based foster care advocate, and a legal representative and content expert for school districts navigating due process related to special education services.

Kimberly and her husband, Eric, are proud parents to four children: Grayson, Bryce, Emilia, and Eliana. The family settled in Conroe, Texas in 2017, appointed as associate pastors at Conroe First Assembly of God. After their arrival in Texas, Kimberly made the decision to transition into the social work field and continue a lifelong passion for working with families in crisis. Kimberly gained valuable experience and in depth knowledge of the foster care system and CPS legal system by working as a conservatorship caseworker in Liberty/Chambers Counties.

Mrs. Stephens is inspired by the ‘CASA Way’: An uncompromising belief that we will achieve what others think is impossible, and that each of us is an essential part of the solution.  This is a mission that she has strived to live out everyday as a minister, educator, researcher, administrator, caseworker, and now as the Executive Director for CASA Liberty/Chambers Counties. “Every child deserves the opportunity to unlock the potential for greatnes inside of himself. Every child deserves to be surrounded and supported by adults who refuse to settle for giving anything less than their best to make sure he gets a chance to rise above the impossible. “

PROGRAM STAFF

Cori Davila, Advocate Coordinator and Fostering Futures Coordinator

Cori Davila is an Advocate Coordinator who also coordinates our Fostering Futures program. She began as a fierce volunteer Advocate and was heavily involved with Fostering Futures the minute she signed on as a volunteer. We are so excited to have Cori’s passion and experience boosting our Fostering Futures program and are excited for her vision for Fostering Futures.

Cori has always been lead to work with children. She started working as an early childhood learning teacher as soon as she graduated from high school, while studying for a degree in Social Work. After graduating from Lee College she worked as a certified Pre-k teacher and tutored the 4th through 8th grades, after school while attending University of Houston, Clear Lake. Cori began working as a tutor for low-income high school students under the No Child Left Behind Act, before joining the CASA Family in 2015. She is happily married to her high school sweetheart and considers all the kids she works with as part of her family.

Gracie Sellers, Administrative Assistant

Gracie was an advocate with CASA before taking a couple years off to fight and win a tough battle with breast cancer.  She attributes the cure to God and many praying friends. She has been cancer free for two years.

She is the Mother of 3 daughters and the very proud grandmother of 5 grandchildren ranging in age from 1 to 19.

Gracie and her husband have been married 24 years and reside in Dayton. After traveling around the country with his job for several years, they decided it was time to be home so he retired and they enjoy just being home and having friends and family over for bbq’s and fish fries.

When the opportunity to return to CASA as the Admin Assistant, Gracie jumped in with both feet.  She loves greeting special Advocates when they come in to the office and talking with people about the great things our Volunteers are doing and what a great need we are trying to fill.  When talking to and listening to her, it is easy to hear the passion she has for CASA’s role in helping the children in CPS’s system.

Most days when you walk into the office the first thing you see will be Gracie’s smiling face and she will be sure to make you feel welcome.

Karen Foyil, Advocate Coordinator

Karen began as an advocate with CASA for two years, where she found another passion in the Collaborative Family Engagement program, and began working with Kathy Dagle in this arena. She has now taken on the roll of being an Advocate Coordinator for CASA.

Karen worked for many years in the Public School System, five years with the Head Start Early Childhood Program, and has been heavily involved in ministry for over 25 years. She has been a children’s pastor, youth pastor and with women’s ministry. Currently, she is a teacher and a member of the Board of Directors for House of Destiny, a non-profit substance abuse recovery program for women. She is the founder of Breath of Life Ministries, a ministry for women and families, and works closely with Heart of a Woman Ministries Intl.  Karen is also pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Biblical Counseling with Westcoast Bible College and Seminary.

“My passion and desire to work with children and families was wrapped up in one beautiful package when I found CASA”.

Karen and her husband Kenneth reside in Saratoga, Texas, and together have 5 children, 11 grandchildren and counting….All of which are their pride and joy.

Karen Kernohan, Advocate Coordinator       

Karen was an outstanding fierce Advocate for three years before joining the CASA Team. She previously worked in an Elementary school for 12 years, then went into retail, becoming a manager for Sears for nine years.

Karen was born in Houston, Texas. Her father was in the insurance industry, and the family moved to Puerto Rico for four years, then Alabama for seven years before moving back to Texas.

Karen has a very supportive husband, three great children, and two wonderful grandchildren. She loves spending time with her grandchildren and family, and enjoys being outside, working in the yard or sitting on a beach.

Karen states, “I have always wanted to do some form of social work and then I heard about the CASA program. I knew right then that this was what I wanted to do. I have been a volunteer for about three years. When the opportunity to work for CASA and become and Advocate Coordinator was offered to me, I was so excited.”

Kathy Dagle, Collaborative Family Engagement Coordinator

Kathy Dagle became involved with CASA Liberty/Chambers Counties in February 2011 as a volunteer Advocate; she joined the CASA staff in 2012 as an Advocate Coordinator, before moving to the position of Senior Advocate Coordinator.

Kathy received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Education from Lamar University and was a teacher of junior high Science for six years. She then transferred to the alternative program for Gulf Coast Education Consortium, where she taught all levels of Science. After earning her Master’s Degree in Education from Stephen F. Austin University, Kathy became the principal of GCEC and remained in that position until her retirement in 2010.

Kathy currently resides in Liberty, Texas with her husband of 39 years, David. They are the proud parents of three sons and nine grandchildren.

Nancy Pigford, Advocate Coordinator

Nancy Pigford, is the mother of four children, the grandmother of eleven grandchildren (including four foster grandchildren) and the great-grandmother of a granddaughter. She was a very busy, stay at home Mom until her youngest was 12 years old. Nancy then owned and operated a popular country store in the Tarkington area for sixteen years. After selling the store she learned to quilt and became a CASA volunteer, her two passions, after her family.

Nancy gained valuable experience as a volunteer Advocate for three years prior to joining the CASA of Liberty/Chamber Counties staff as an Advocate Coordinator.

Monica Croft, Advocate Coordinator

I became an advocate in February of 2018. The more I found out about CASA the more I wanted to move forward and be more involved. July of 2018 I got the chance of a life time and now I’m an Advocate Coordinator.  I absolutely love my job and the people I work with. Children are our future, children are amazing little people whom deserve a chance. Before CASA, I worked for our school district back home Nixon/Smiley for 5 years, then I wanted more so I became a CNA/Office Coordinator for a home health company for about 4 years.  I’ve lived in Dayton for about 4 years.  Love the country.

I have 3 boys, 1 step son, 1 step daughter, 1 grandson and 4 granddaughters.  I have been with my amazing husband Benjy for about 8 years and married 5 of those 8.  He is our rock.  He supports me in all I do.

Terry Patterson, Program Director

Terry Patterson joined CASA as the Administrative Assistant after 18 years of staying home and raising her children. Terry resides in Dayton and is enjoying the small town life again. She has two grown children and two grandchildren, and is a member of Crosby Church. Terry has always had a special place in her heart for children. She spent many hours volunteering at her children’s schools and was a member of the P.T.O board of directors.

After raising her children, Terry attended Lee College and received an Associate’s Degree in Health Information.

After eight months of enjoying learning about CASA as the Administrative Assistant and helping facilitate the office running efficiently, Terry was promoted to Advocate Coordinator. Terry is excited to be able to be more involved in helping not only the children, but also to work with the parents to see if she could help to reunite them with their children.

OUTREACH STAFF

Ashton White, Outreach Specialist

Ashton White joined the CASA of Liberty/Chambers Counties team in August 2017 as the Resource Development Coordinator. She is also one of our fierce Advocates that volunteers for CASA on her spare time.

Ashton graduated from Le Tourneau University in 2011 with a B.S. in Early Childhood Education. In 2013 she graduated from Le Tourneau University with a Master’s Degree in Education Administration and Curriculum & Instruction. She also is a state certified teacher and taught in the school system for six years before joining CASA.

Ashton grew up in Mont Belvieu and graduated from Barbers Hill High School in 2004. She is married to Clint and they have a two-year old daughter who is the love of their life.

Ashton states, ” I have always been for the child since being in Education, but CASA has opened a whole new opportunity for me to now work for the child.”

Kristal Smith, Recruitment & Community Awareness Coordinator

Kristal Smith has joined CASA as the Recruitment and Community Awareness Coordinator. After working in the oil and gas industry for over ten years she decided to become a stay at home mom in 2017. It’s something God laid on her heart to pursue; her only regret is she didn’t do it sooner. She has attended several mission trips to Mexico with her church family where they built homes for families in need. In attending these missions’ trips they visited orphanages where she learned working with children is her first passion. She also meet a friend while attending these missions trips who was a CASA advocate and fell in love with CASA’s mission. She knew then she wanted to become a volunteer and help give a child a chance, by giving them a voice.

Kristal is married to Clayton Smith and together they have three sons. On the weekends they enjoy spending time with family and friends, taking their boys to sports activities, or going to the movies.

Kristal states, “Coming on board and joining the team at CASA is truly a blessing and honor. I love working with children and they deserve to be loved and fought for. Becoming an advocate I can ensure their voice is heard and their hearts are healed.”

Sandra Tilton, Training Coordinator

Sandra Tilton began with CASA Liberty/Chambers Counties in January, 2017 as Training Coordinator. She has served in various capacities at churches in the Mont Belvieu area such as Ladies Coordinator, Small Group Leader and Teacher, Children Director, and Sunday School teacher.

Sandra started a nonprofit academy for children from ages 6 months – 5 years old. She served as the Director from 2008-2015. She received the Barbers Hill Distinguished Alumni in 2015. She retired from education after 30 years in education as an administrator and teacher.

Sandra graduated from Lamar University in 1969 with a BS in Home Economics. In 1984 she graduated from University of Houston/Clear Lake with a Masters in Mid-Management. She earned certification as an elementary teacher along the way and completed 18 hours above her Masters with a Superintendant Certification as well.

Sandra was born in Arkansas and moved to the Mont Belvieu area as a child. She is married to Chris and they have three daughters, nine grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.

Her favorite volunteer endeavors were leading Ladies Retreats for several years and mentoring in BHISD.

Sandra states, “Being part of this organization has been so refreshing because everyone is working for children who need a chance to have a better life. I have never met so many people who are willing to give of their time and talents to help children. It has been an honor to work with and train such dedicated people.”