According to a press release, a new executive director has been named to lead Harold’s House – East Texas Alliance for Children, the non-profit Child Advocacy Center serving child victims of physical, sexual abuse and neglect in Angelina, Nacogdoches and Sabine counties.

Executive Director Shawn Dunn, of Lufkin, said she joins the staff with a vision for growing services to victims, upgrading technical infrastructure and expanding the center’s fundraising efforts.

“I’m thrilled to have been selected as new executive director for Harold’s House, where I can administratively support the mission of helping children and their families recover from the trauma of abuse,” Dunn said. “Since its inception in 2003, Harold’s House has been growing and providing much-needed services. My vision includes expanding services to include in-house counseling for victims and upgrading case-tracking reporting software and medical records software. As a non-profit organization, our lifeline is fundraising, and I would like to add another fundraiser in the spring months, in addition to our wildly successful purse bingos in Nacogdoches and Lufkin.”

Board Chairman Sid Munlin said the board held an extensive search and interview process, and was thrilled to bring Dunn on board to drive the organization’s mission forward.

“We believe she is the perfect candidate to continue Harold’s House tradition of outstanding leadership.  She will be managing a dedicated group of team members who are equally passionate about the work they do on behalf of child victims and affected families,” he said.”

Dunn expressed her appreciation for the work of outgoing Executive Director Deanna Wallace.

“The structure set into place through her vision and leadership has facilitated a seamless transition. Deanna has given me some great ideas to run with, to improve services for victims and their families,” she said.

Dunn attributes her six years’ service as a volunteer with Court-Appointed Special Advocates for insight into the important work of dealing with victims of abuse. She holds a Master’s in Criminal Justice and has 16 years’ experience in civil service at both state and federal levels. She previously worked as a federal background investigator for U.S. Investigations Services, Inc., and as district director for Texas Rep. James White. Dunn has served on the executive boards for The Junior League of Lufkin and Museum of East Texas, volunteered at her church and participated as a mentor with the HOSTs reading program. She enjoys reading, oil painting, and flying with her husband, Mark. She and her husband have been married for 28 years and have two children, Alyssa, 25, and Mason, 22.

Harold’s House uses a multidisciplinary team approach in partnership with law enforcement, Child Protective Services, medical and mental health professionals, family crisis advocates, court officials, and others. Services to children and families include forensic interviews, forensic medical exams, advocacy support, court accompaniment, and counseling referrals. Community education services include healthy parenting classes, body safety training for children and child sexual abuse prevention training for adults. Harold’s House is one of more than 70 CACs in Texas. The center is affiliated with Child Advocacy Centers, Inc., of Austin, and the National Children’s Alliance. For more information follow Harold’s House on social media, visit www.haroldshouse.org