The 10-year executive director of PADS Lake County, Cathy Curran, 61, died Wednesday after falling ill at her agency’s North Chicago office.
Through her work for PADS and the Lake County Coalition for the Homeless, Cathy became active in CCH’s statewide network. In 2011, CCH began to organize service providers in nine downstate communities, from Aurora to Springfield.
A resident of Highland Park, Cathy was a quiet yet effective advocate for homeless people.
“In a recent meeting, Cathy told me that she wanted PADS Lake County to become even more of a leader on homeless issues,” said statewide organizer Jim Picchetti. “She wanted to educate people on how homelessness really affected Lake County residents by hearing from formerly homeless staff and clients. She also wanted to help create a strong and unified voice to impact decisions in Springfield regarding homelessness.”
Working with CCH’s statewide network, Cathy and her staff met with state legislators in Lake County and traveled to Springfield. Twice last year, in November 2011 and again last May, CCH mobilized providers and homeless clients to stop a $4.7 million, 52% cutback in state funding to shelters across Illinois.
“Cathy was a great partner and a dedicated leader for Lake County. She will be greatly missed,” Jim said.
For more about Cathy’s life and work, read the touching profile in the Lake County News-Sun.