Providing Help. Creating Hope.

About Catholic Charites of Jackson, Lenawee & Hillsdale Counties

About Our Organization

At Catholic Charities of Jackson, Lenawee and Hillsdale Counties, our goal is to make our counties healthier, more compassionate communities by empowering individuals with the capacity and the desire to improve their quality of life.

Since 1958, we’ve led the battle against the issues that plague so many in our neighborhoods. We provide an array of human services, regardless of faith or ability to pay, welcoming everyone with open arms and open hearts.

For more information, call us today at (517) 782-2551.

Our Mission

Jesus commanded us to love our neighbor. At Catholic Charities, we carry out that command by providing help and creating hope for individuals and families who come to us for support.

The mission of Catholic Charities of Jackson, Lenawee and Hillsdale Counties is the work of the Catholic Church, to share the love of Christ by performing the corporal and spiritual works of mercy.

Our goal is to give our clients the skills and confidence to lift themselves out of negative situations and become productive members of our community.

Administrative Staff

Sue Lewis, Executive Director

Kristen Gottschalk, Executive Assistant
(517) 263-2191

Connie Varner, Human Resources Director
(517) 263-2191

Tracey Ventola, Child Welfare Director
(517) 295-3334

Debra Wright, LMSW, Manager of Out-Patient Substance Use Disorder Services (Jackson)
(517) 782-2551, ext. 407

Layla Wood, MA, LPC, Manager of Out-Patient Substance Use Disorder Services (Lenawee)
(517) 263-2191, ext. 110

Peter Kuhl, LLMSW, Manager of Prison-Based Substance Use Disorder Services
(517) 782-2551, ext. 409

Lisa Veenstra, LMSW, Clinical Director
(517) 263-2191

Jamie Lee, MA, LPC, Children’s Advocacy Center of South Central Michigan, Program Director
(517) 768-1907

Bea Cuthbertson, Director of Development
(517) 879-0599

Kristen Gottschalk, Transportation Coordinator, Jackson County
(517) 783-6102

Amelia Balinski, Roadmap to Graduation Coordinator
(517) 263-2191

Board of Directors

Daniel Bishop, President

Eric Bauer, Vice-President

Brian Cytlak, Treasurer

Angie Atkin, Secretary

Aimee Godfrey, Bishop’s Liaison

Deacon Todd Dahlberg

Christopher Finch

Deacon Patrick Gorczyca

Jerard Jarzynka

Jean Kaisler

Neysa Stacey

Annual Reports

Our 2022 Annual Report is here! Click HERE for your downloadable copy!

Our full list of 2022 donors can be found here: Full Donor List for 2022.

View Past Annual Reports

At Catholic Charities, our Annual Report is one way we connect with our donors each year. 


Becoming a donor is easy. Any amount can make a difference in the lives of those who come to our door each day in need of help.

Our History

Lenawee County Site History

In 1958, a group of people representing St. Mary’s and St. Joseph’s parishes in Adrian approached the late Cardinal Edward Mooney of the Archdiocese of Detroit to explain the need for a counseling agency to serve families in Lenawee County. The Rev. Wilbur Suedkamp, secretary of Catholic Charities for the Archdiocese, appointed the Rev. Robert V. Monticello, assistant secretary for charities, to lead a steering committee of local citizens. Meetings for the steering committee were held bi-monthly, and Father Monticello became the director of the new agency, which was formally opened on Nov. 17, 1958.

Operating funds for the agency were provided by the Archdiocesan Development Fund of the Archdiocese of Detroit, and office furnishings were obtained with the assistance of Ford Motor Company and several Adrian businesses. In 1960, the agency became a member of the Lenawee County United Way.

Diocesan boundaries were changed in 1971, and Catholic Social Services became a part of the Diocese of Lansing. In 2003, the agency’s name was changed to reflect our connection to a much larger network of Catholic Charities in the diocese, the state, and the country. Catholic Charities of Lenawee continues to provide counseling services, which are the basis of our beginning, with the addition of programs that serve youth, individuals, and families in need. With the support of our contributors, we are able to improve the quality of life for our neighbors in the community, fulfilling our mission of charity.

On July 1, 2010, Catholic Charities of Lenawee merged with Catholic Charities of Jackson County to become Catholic Charities of Jackson, Lenawee and Hillsdale Counties.

Jackson County Site History

Catholic Charities of Jackson County has a long history of providing help and creating hope for the most vulnerable citizens in Jackson County.

The agency, originally called Catholic Social Services, was founded in 1966 and had several programs to meet a wide range of needs in the community.

These programs included, but were not limited to:

  • Counseling services for individuals, couples, families, and groups
  • Community services such as the Personal Needs / Linen Closet, Parent Support & Training / Community Coaching Programs, the Respite Care Program, and the Retired Senior and Volunteer Program (RSVP)

The Merger of Our Locations

Collaboration between the two agencies began in 2009 when we started sharing staff and resources, including an executive director. We took this opportunity to carefully evaluate the impact this important decision would have on the agency.

This partnership reaffirmed that merging the two agencies would allow for more effective utilization of resources, staff, and programs. With encouragement from the Most Rev. Bishop Earl Boyea, Diocese of Lansing, on July 1, 2010, Catholic Charities of Lenawee merged with Catholic Charities of Jackson County to become Catholic Charities of Jackson, Lenawee and Hillsdale Counties.

As a result, we now have a more cost-effective means of operating the organization, meaning more of your donated dollars will go toward providing life-changing services for our community.