Tag: james barragan

UWATX President Debbie Bresette Retires After 12 Years

This article was written by James Barragan of the Austin American-Statesman and published on November 1, 2015. After 12 years with the United Way for Greater Austin, eight of them as its president, Debbie Bresette officially stepped down from the organization Thursday. “She’ll be missed,” said Kay Garza, the Vice President of the Navigation Center at the United Way for Greater Austin, who has worked with Bresette for 12 years. “She’s been the heart and soul of this organization and someone who truly cares about working poor families.” During Bresette’s tenure, the group placed an emphasis on helping disadvantaged youths and families. Through its early childhood development programs, the group put 500 area children from disadvantaged backgrounds into pre-K programs and started an initiative at low-income middle schools to prevent kids from dropping out. Much of the emphasis on disadvantaged youths came from Bresette’s own family experience. She has biracial grandchildren. Because of that, she says, they may not be given the same opportunities as other kids. But instead, Bresette tries to focus on the positives that kids like her grandchildren bring to the table, such as different cultures and experiences. “That gives them the ability to have a really open mind,” she said. “If we invest in them, no matter what they look like or where they come from, they have the opportunity of being the Einsteins of the future, of saving us, of saving our planet.” Bresette’s tenure was also marked by the push for new ideas at […]

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