Bobbie Ownby began work with Life Bridges in 1976. Joining her at the agency was her husband, Don. Immediately this dedicated team began using their skills to better the lives of the clients of the agency by serving as house parents at Group Home 2 for several years.
Bobbie set a standard of excellence that others would follow. She worked tirelessly to see that the individuals who were provided services through Life Bridges were well cared for. She focused on attractive homes and furnishings, nutritious meals, and nice clothing for residents.
Bobbie Ownby’s dedication was rewarded by the agency and she was promoted to the position of residential coordinator.
Diana Jackson, chief of operations at Life Bridge, fondly remembers her untiring pursuit of excellence to the agency.
“Bobbie was a very special person at the agency. As residential coordinator, she expertly trained members of our staff, many of whom still work at the agency. We were blessed to have her. She worked for almost 20 years before declining health dictated she retire in 1998.”
While at the agency, Bobbie and her husband also provided family-based services for individuals in the Life Bridges program. This is foster care for people with disabilities.
The Bobbie Ownby Entrance is in the Comprehensive Developmental Center on the Main Campus of Life Bridges and provides a constant reminder to the staff of this unique individual’s contribution to people with intellectual and physical challenges.
Her daughter Tammy McSpadden, granddaughter, and husband, Don, continue to serve on the staff of Life Bridges.
Martha Whaley Sermons began serving Life Bridges in 1979. She worked in the Comprehensive Developmental Center and was totally dedicated to helping the clients of the agency be all they could be.
Gifted with a strong resolve and dedication, it was important to Sermons that all individuals with intellectual disabilities were allowed to participate in all aspects of the community.
“She was a happy person. Her personality was infectuous. Being around her made everyone also smile and feel her joy in life as she helped our clients overcome limitations and barriers,” recalls Diana Jackson.
“I’m certain Martha believed she and our clients could achieve any goals they wanted to. She was a joy to be around. She loved to have fun and to plan outings and parties for people at Life Bridges.
“Martha Whaley Sermons passed away in 2011 but the entrance named in her honor in the Comprehensive Developmental Center reminds all of us at the agency that there are no barriers to what we can achieve with hard work and dedication.”