About Women's Resource Agency
The Women’s Resource Agency (WRA) opened its doors as a 501c3 in 1977 and has served women and teenage girls in El Paso County, Colorado for nearly 40 years. The mission of WRA is to empower women and girls to attain and maintain self-sufficiency and economic independence. At WRA, women and teen girls find the support, training and resources they need to seek employment and to become economically self-sufficient.
For the first 25 years, WRA focused on training and placing qualified women into the workforce after completing the programs offered. In 1998, WRA added the InterCept program for at-risk girls where “whole person theory” is applied as girls learn about consequences of behaviors, motivate to stay in school and find a place in their community. In 2004, WRA added an additional component to its original training and placement service called Dress for Success. Through Dress for Success, WRA provided professional clothing for interviews and 5 outfits for employment once hired. In 2012, WRA separated from Dress for Success and began its own Suit Up For Success program. This new model allowed WRA to continue its great services to women while also starting Style It Forward a social enterprise training women to start their own businesses.
The need for an organization that provides free services to women was a necessity in the 1970’s and in today’s economic climate of income inequality and unemployment, the need is greater than ever. For girls, although teen pregnancy is declining, girls in Colorado continue to experiment with drugs, suffer from anger issues and depression, be a victim of assault and one out of three girls drops out of school. WRA has a long history of collaborating with numerous community organizations, such as the domestic violence shelter and veterans organizations. In addition, WRA works with government entities including Department of Human Services and the Division of Criminal Justice.
Women's Resource Agency relies on community support and involvement to fulfill our mission of helping women of all ages attain and maintain self-sufficiency. We appreciate your support in fulfilling this important goal. We are proud to be a partner with Pikes Peak United Way to work together to build a better community!
Melissa Marts - Executive Director
Melissa has an established history of community engagement. From her early roots as a special education teacher who rallied for the first unified soccer team with her students to her work on local and healthy food access to her job coaching with Women’s Resource Agency women, Melissa appreciates having been a part of such great changes that improve the quality of life for women and girls in Colorado Springs. Melissa has a Masters in Special Education and spent the last ten years cultivating her leadership in the non-profit sector.
“It is the best reward ever to witness the transition of a friend from defeat to success. The Women's Resource Agency plays a critical role in these life experiences daily.”
Kyleah Daily - Programs Director
Kyleah graduated from the University of New Mexico with a degree in Nursing. She has been an advocate with TESSA and CASA and her passion is supporting and encouraging women and teens to be self-sufficient.
Emily Kindley – Program Administrator
Emily has a BA in Business with emphasis in Accounting. She has worked 9 years in retail and is excited to take on volunteer management & administration of Women's Resource Agency.
- Joan Lucas, Board President
- Sarah Ryals, Vice President
- Natalee Rosanne, Treasurer
- Else Drescher, Secretary
- Lisa Bigelow
- Ryan Garner
- Stefanie Legan
- Jane Peck
- James Proby
- Christine Randono
- Suzanne Tulien
- Kim Worth
Board members passionate about the work of the Women's Resource Agency guide the organization to reach its fullest potential. We currently have a board of directors consisting of 11-13 active members. Each represents different segments of our community and brings gifts of time, talent and resources. The four officers of the Board are president, vice-president, treasurer, and secretary. Each board member serves on one or more standing committees : Executive Committee, Finance Committee, Programs Committee, Governance Committee and Resource Development Commitee.
"I believe in WRA's mission to coach women to become financially independent and help at-risk girls to become successful members of our community."
Lisa Bigelow is retired from a 30-year career in local government. She retired as the Budget Manager for the City of Colorado Springs. She received her bachelor's degree from Miami University, Oxford, Ohio and her Master's degree in Public Administration from UCCS.
As a newly appointed board member, Lisa is amazed at the passion of the Board members, staff and volunteers and is excited to be a part of an organization that helps women and at-risk girls in our community.