Gina Parr, CSL's Oak Grove Site Manager, Retires.
Gina Parr started as CSL’s Oak Grove Site Manager in October 2015. During her tenure, she has provided great service to her neighbors in Oak Grove, Eastern Jackson County, and Lafayette County. Among many accomplishments, her leadership has helped Oak Grove recover from two traumatic events during her tenure. In 2017, an EF-3 tornado ripped through Oak Grove and Eastern Jackson County. During the event, Gina and her husband, Rick, lost their home. Despite their loss, she was focused on one thing – helping her neighbors recover. If anyone asked her how she was doing, she’d say, “I’m blessed.” She felt blessed to escape with her life, as she and Rick made it to their basement moments before the tornado hit. Her calling was to help others who’d lost so much. In the aftermath of the tornado, more than $60,000 in donations poured into our CSL-Oak Grove office, and every dollar was used by Gina and her volunteer staff to help the community recover. Thanks to her support, families in Oak Grove were able to rebuild their homes and their lives.
In 2020-2021, Gina helped her community respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and economic crisis. She was able to move CSL-Oak Grove operations to drive-thru or digital to help keep people safe. Her office helped people from all over the region. As food pantries and emergency relief operations closed, people from counties surrounding Oak Grove came to Gina’s office for assistance. She worked with the City of Oak Grove to administer $25,000 in CARES Act assistance to help families remain stably housed.
In March, Gina and Rick accepted the Oak Grove Chamber of Commerce Non-Profit Organization of the Year award for CSL-Oak Grove’s great work during the COVID-19 crisis. “Community Services League of Oak Grove came through for their neighbors, bringing countless children, families and seniors the hope of another meal and a brighter future in the midst of the pandemic.” CSL-Oak Grove, through Gina and Rick’s leadership, served 2,024 households in 2020, distributing 45,050 pounds of food and household goods valued at $72,981 and 37,542 total meals. By comparison, 1,244 households were served in 2019.
When Gina started, CSL also got Rick Parr as a full-time volunteer. The two of them, both retired from Blue Cross Blue Shield, made for a fantastic team. Today, Gina and Rick retire from their work at CSL. Our entire community wishes them well in the future, as they have plans for travel and relaxing.
Thank you, Gina!