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May 24, 2018

New Executive Director of St. Vincent’s House Seeks to Build Healthy, Resilient Communities

The board of St. Vincent’s House, Galveston, a social service agency of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas, announced today that it has named Lisa Barrera-Odom as the new executive director following an extensive regional search.

“Lisa has an excellent reputation in the local health and social services community, which is made up of our collaborative agencies,” said Bonnie Farmer, president of the board of St. Vincent’s House. “We wanted someone with demonstrated leadership qualities and someone who understood our mission and vision to obey the call of Christ by being his helping hands.”

Odom said she was drawn to the position because of the positive impact she could have at a community level. “I believe in team work and building healthy, resilient communities. And, I believe God takes you nowhere by accident,” she said. “I am overly excited to be a part of the St. Vincent’s team and blessed to be a part of the Episcopal family.” 

As an institution of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas for more than 60 years, St. Vincent’s House provides healthcare in clinics staffed by UTMBmedical students and faculty doctors. St. Vincent’s House served more than 15,500 individuals in 2017 through clinics and additional services to enhance the physical, mental and spiritual well-being of its clients in Galveston County.

Odom, a La Marque native, holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s in cross cultural studies from the University of Houston, Clear Lake. She has 24 years of experience in supervisory and administrative positions directly related to the work of St. Vincent’s. She served as program director for a decade during her tenure with Gulf Coast Centerin Galveston, a community mental health, intellectual and developmental disability center for Galveston and Brazoria Counties. Odom’s experience includes case management, and work with health access programs and mental health initiatives in Galveston County, making her aware of the significant impact of St. Vincent’s House within the community. 

“Lisa brings years of experience and contacts with other agencies and organizations in Galveston County that provide resosurces for those whome we are committed to serve,” Farmer said. “Our goal is to enable families and individuals to achieve self-sustainability, which is attainable through coordinated access to multiple services and disciplines such as housing, physical and mental health, child welfare and workforce service. We are confident that Lisa will help guide us in that mission.”

The Rt. Rev. Jeff Fisher, bishop suffragan in the Diocese of Texas has served as chair of St. Vincent’s House for six years. Following the appointment of Odom, that role now will pass to the Rt. Rev. Héctor Monterroso, bishop assistant.  

“Lisa’s energy and joy contribute to her exceptional work ethic,” Bishop Fisher said. “She is not afraid to accept a challenge or take on a new endeavor and she views her new position as a ministry, not simply a job,” he added. 

Odom begins her work on June 4. “I am excited to get started,” Odom said. “I look forward to building collaborative partnerships and working hard to build and strengthen healthy, resilient and vibrant communities in Galveston County.”

 “Lisa’s enthusiasm and her supportive leadership with Bishop Monterroso assure the continuing and renewed ministry of St. Vincent’s House,” Bishop Fisher said.