Anchor House searching for new executive director

She’s back.

Deb Bedwell returned to Anchor House Family Assistance Center and Pantry in Seymour on March 11 to fill in as executive director until April 5 while the organization’s board of directors searches for a new leader.

Bedwell’s last day was July 16, 2018, after serving as executive director for 17 years. Stephanie Masters-Wheeler, who had served as program manager since April 2018, was hired to replace Bedwell.

She recently resigned, and the leadership change and job qualifications were announced on Anchor House’s Facebook page.

Bedwell said she is not privy to why Masters-Wheeler left. The other staff members are still there.

“We want to look at the future,” Bedwell said. “I’m excited about being able to give them four weeks to be able to help them over this and through this. I know that we have an amazing person out there will come forward and will lead. I think this is just a fantastic organization, and that (person) will hop in and move this down the road into the future to whatever lays next for this group to do to help the folks in our community.”

The executive director oversees the non-for-profit organization that allows seven homeless families with children to live in apartments for up to 60 days until employment is gained, money is saved and housing is in place. The facility at 250 S. Vine St. also serves people through a food pantry twice a week.

“I just think that this position offers the right person an opportunity to make change in the lives of many,” Bedwell said. “That’s through residential triage housing and connecting them with all of the services to help them become stable and get stable while they are here because not everybody needs long-term help. Some just need a boost and a little bit of time to get off that fast track and to be able to settle down and know they are safe and secure and they have a roof over their heads.”

Bedwell said she agreed to work weekdays at Anchor House after receiving an OK from her part-time employer, Automotive Equipment Specialist Inc. in Seymour, and her family.

“I’m going to be here four weeks until April 5. Then I will go back to my other life, my retirement world,” she said, smiling. “I’m grateful to Keith and Sherry Maynard that they allowed me to be able to do this and that my husband said it was OK … because I have created a life outside of here. I am just pausing that for right now, and everyone seems to be OK with that pause.”

Bedwell said the new executive director should be able to multitask, be creative, have passion and work tirelessly.

“I just know that there is an amazing person out there that’s got lots of energy and is willing to step up and be a voice for those that can’t speak for themselves,” she said. “We are a safe haven in the storm for those that need us that come our way, and you’re reaching out to grab those that are close by that are in need that didn’t have a place to be. That’s what Anchor House does.”

Bedwell already has had people reach out to her asking about the position.

“If you have an interest and you’re thinking about it, don’t miss the opportunity because you could be the person that they are looking for,” she said. “If you think this is something you’re going to be interested in and you have the drive to do this, oh please apply because this is a wonderful organization. We’ve got a good program here, and we need an amazing leader, and I know he or she is out there.”

Bedwell said she has told the board she is willing to help the new executive director once he or she gets started.

“I am anxious to meet whoever this new person is going to be to help them get settled and get on with things,” Bedwell said. “This is too busy of a place not to have a key person in leadership at that desk. We’ve got an amazing group here, and you just can’t afford to skip a beat.”

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Anchor House Family Assistance Center and Pantry in Seymour is seeking an executive director.


-Solid organization, personnel and managerial skills, preferably with experience managing a not-for-profit organization that includes a volunteer program and requires fundraising to operate.

-Strong written and oral communication skills accompanied with strong interpersonal skills.

-Ability to work well in a culturally diverse environment.

-Computer competence in word processing, spreadsheets and database processes.

-College degree preferred or sufficient combination of education and experience.

-Ability to lift 30 pounds, have a valid driver’s license, bondable, able to pass Office of Family and Children and Indiana state background checks.

-Flexibility to work weekend and evening hours as needed.

General responsibilities

-Report to and operate under the general direction of the board of directors.

-Drive continuous improvement in shelter and pantry operations.

-Uphold all shelter and pantry policies. Work as a team to communicate, model and enforce policies with all staff, volunteers and clients. Create and modify policies as needed.

-Treat clients, volunteers, donors, staff and other stakeholders with the utmost respect at all times.

-Lead the effort to address homelessness in Jackson County in conjunction with other community partners.

How to apply

Email your résumé and salary requirements to [email protected]. Compensation will depend on qualifications.