“People are often amazed when they hear how many years I worked at a CASA program—I’m not,” says Allie Chang Ray. “The time flew by, and every day I was there, I woke up with purpose and the fervent desire to advocate for more children in foster care.”
Allie served as director of development and then executive director of CASA of St. Louis County, Missouri, from 1999 to 2012. During her tenure in these roles, she grew the organization significantly, created an operational reserve that was 75 percent of the annual operating budget, and merged the CASA program with the volunteer GAL program that was the CASA affiliate in a geographically contiguous court jurisdiction.
Today, Allie is an adjunct professor and a consultant on advocacy, leadership and collaboration. She says her experiences in Theta’s Alpha Mu Chapter at the University of Missouri contributed to her success working at the CASA program and her accomplishments in her current role. “As a Theta, I had the opportunity to work with a cross-section of women who held the same values as me. While our experiences and perspectives were different, we had an encouraging environment that allowed us to be ourselves and use our strengths in the best ways possible to advance whatever we were working on at the time.”
Nominated for National CASA/GAL’s Kappa Alpha Theta Program Director of the Year Award in 2011, Allie is a commissioner on the Missouri Child Abuse and Neglect Review Board and has served on Alpha Mu’s facility corporation and advisory boards.
“Both my Theta and CASA program experiences showed me that when you build a strong team, you can accomplish more and do better.”