Jennifer Davis retired from her position as executive director of the Hannah Pregnancy Resource Center Friday after 14 years with the organization.
“This has never felt like a job, ever,” Davis said. “Our environment is a very loving environment … I’m going to miss it.”
Many of Davis’ colleagues gathered at a retirement celebration held for her Friday at the Hannah PRC offices.
“She has become more than just my boss. She’s my sister,” said Paula Williams, who will take over the executive director position. “It’s not like any other place I’ve ever worked. We’re all sisters here and Jenn’s a huge part of it.”
Davis will continue to serve on the Hannah PRC Board of Directors. Since Hannah PRC is a SHARE Foundation partner agency, she said she will still be in close contact with her colleagues at the organization.
“Jenn and I have basically been sisters and teammates since 2011. We share our passion for the lives of babies,” said Kathy Love, nurse manager at Hannah PRC. “My total love and respect and admiration for Jennifer. We’re going to greatly miss her here but feel she’s just moving to a position in support of us and handing over the reins to Paula.”
Under Davis’ leadership, Hannah PRC has expanded services in several ways. Last year, when the organization was selected as a recipient of a Violence Intervention Plan grant from the SHARE Foundation, Hannah PRC began offering parenting classes covering topics from dealing with a pregnancy and potential complications to toddler care and on.
The Center also began holding annual Teen Prevention Weeks in public schools in Union County. Students learned from Hannah Center employees and other SHARE Foundation agencies about abstinence from sex, drugs and influences that could be harmful to children.
“Watching her is like you see who you want to be. It’s like this beacon of hope,” said Sarah Wray, resource development coordinator for Hannah PRC. “She is able to connect with people on such a level – she will bend down and I’ve seen her counsel girls who were absolutely broken. … She is just so special and amazing.”
Hannah PRC also began ministering to men at the Union County Jail recently. In addition to parenting classes, inmates at the jail worked with Hannah PRC officials, including Davis, to develop re-entry plans for when they leave the jail.
“It’s humbling to work with her because she is really God focused with this ministry,” said Hannah PRC Board member Elizabeth Pratt. “She keeps the people of Union County in her heart, especially the pregnant women and those in the jail ministry.”
Davis will serve as the coordinator for resource development at the SHARE Foundation. She said she is excited to take on her new role, though she will miss the Hannah Center.
“Serving on the Board of Directors, I’ll still be very involved with the Hannah Center, that was the only way I could’ve done it,” Davis said. “It’s been amazing. … I’ve really had an opportunity to understand what the pro-life movement is by seeing it first hand and actually talking to women who find themselves with an unplanned pregnancy, so its taught me to have a lot of compassion and see different perspectives and I think that’s helped us all do a better job here.”
Davis will start at the SHARE Foundation this Wednesday. To learn more about Hannah PRC and the services they offer, visit hannahprc.com.
Caitlan Butler can be reached at 870-862-6611 or firstname.lastname@example.org.