Harbor House & the Sexual Assault Center of NWGA Enter Partnership
Contact: Gail Garland
Harbor House and the Sexual Assault Center of NWGA (SAC) will enter into an agreement on Feb. 16 in which Kim Davis, current executive director of the SAC, will become the joint executive director of both entities, announced the Boards of Directors of both organizations today.
After 19-and-a-half years with Harbor House, current Executive Director Gail Garland is moving to Cobb Co. due to her husband’s new job, which gave the Harbor House Board an opportunity to step back and think strategically about the right next step for the organization.
“We realized that this provided an opportunity to evaluate all options in regards to how Harbor House can best serve the community and its victims going forward,” said Scott Wood, president of the Harbor House Board of Directors. “As part of this process, we approached the SAC about how our two organizations together could enhance the services we provide. We were very impressed by Kim’s strong leadership of the SAC throughout her 13 years of service. This seemed like a natural fit for Harbor House moving forward.”
Chip Hood, president of the SAC Board of Directors, agreed and explained that, for the time being, both organizations will continue to operate independently while sharing an executive director. “Harbor House has always been an important community partner for the SAC, and we look forward to the opportunity to collaborate even more under this new leadership structure,” said Hood. “We see this as a very positive move for our community because the two organizations already serve many of the same victims. Additionally, both provide critical educational programs and resources to the community as a whole. It is a win-win.”
Wood added that the two boards will be exploring the possibility of co-location due to synergies in serving common victims. “We have studied other communities such as Athens/Clarke Co. that have their Children’s Advocacy Center and Sexual Assault Center located together, and there are many benefits to the individuals being served,” he explained.
As she wraps up her time at Harbor House, Garland says she knows she is leaving the organization in great hands. “Kim and I have collaborated for years,” she said. “She truly values the work of our center and will provide our amazing staff with support and encouragement. Our Board of Directors is as strong as ever and the leadership they will continue to provide during this transition will be second to none.”
Davis said she is ready for the challenge. “I know that I have big shoes to fill, but I am honored and looking forward to the opportunity to serve both organizations in this capacity,” she said. “Harbor House and the SAC have always worked well together, and this new enhanced partnership will enable us to serve our community and our clients even better.”