Senior Leadership Staff
Leah Morken- PhD, LP
Leah Morken, Ph.D., LP, is a Licensed Psychologist and serves as the Clinical Director of Family & Children’s Center. She earned her Doctorate in Psychology from Walden University. Leah provides clinical leadership to programs across the agency in addition to providing direct services. She works with clients of all ages and specializes in psychological testing, working with children ages 0-5, and play therapy with children during the therapeutic process. In addition, Leah provides parents with Child-Parent Psychotherapy, Parent-Child Interaction Therapy, and works with individuals on the autism spectrum.
Director of Programs, Wisconsin
Mary Jacobson joined FCC at the beginning of 2018 and brings with her a vast knowledge of the social service industry. Mary has a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Wisconsin La Crosse and a Master’s in Servant Leadership from Viterbo University. She has most recently served as the Asst. Executive Director of Catholic Charities. Mary serves on a variety of boards and committees including the La Crosse Collaborative to End Homelessness and the Balance of State Continuum of Care.
Director of Development
Jamie Korn joined Family & Children’s Center in February of 2017, bringing significant experience from the nonprofit sector in development, marketing and campaign management. She has over 10 years experience from the private sector in sales and operational management. Jamie oversees all functions of the development office at Family & Children’s Center including but not limited to public relations, marketing support, events, grants, donor cultivation and major gifts. Her leadership in the department drives FCC’s mission forward by strengthening community connections and promoting programming. Korn holds a bachelor of science in organizational management from Viterbo University.
Major Gifts Officer
Ellen Hongerholt, M.A., has joined Family & Children’s Center as the Major Gifts Officer. She has more than 30 years to the field of financial development/fundraising and public relations, primarily in the area of capital campaign consulting/management for non-profits and municipalities. Over the past 25 years she has completed 42 capital campaigns in the tri-state region, successfully assisting cities and organizations in raising approximately $70M through her business Crescendo Fundraising Professionals, LLC.
Ellen gained her master’s degree in Philanthropy and Development from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota and has her undergraduate degree in Mass Communications with a public relations emphasis and sociology minor from Winona State University.
She states her goal is to assist current and new donors' in advancing the vital mission of Family & Children's Center throughout western Wisconsin and southeastern Minnesota.
Chief Financial Officer
Ann McDonald joins Family & Children’s Center with almost 25 years of experience in the accounting profession. She started her career working in public accounting. For the past 18 years, she has worked in financial leadership roles at local non-profit human service agencies and for the last 7 years at Chileda as its CFO. Ann has been responsible for all day-to-day activities in the Finance department. In addition, she has learned the various compliance rules in the related areas for both MN and WI and was a member of the WI DCF Rate Setting workgroup. Ann graduated from Winona State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and 2 minors in English and Business Law. She has held an active CPA license in WI since 1998.
Director of Human Resources
Rich Petro offers 30 years of experience in the human resources arena, having led the function for much larger companies and local businesses as well. He has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, Ill., and graduate-level education in industrial and organizational psychology from Illinois State University, Normal, Ill. Rich Petro is actively involved in the local community where he has served on the La Crosse Area Senior Human Resources Management Roundtable, the La Crosse City Vision Action Committee and on steering and advisory committees for the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse. He has also volunteered with the United Cerebral Palsy of SW Wisconsin, the Muscular Dystrophy Association and Family & Children’s Center. He is co-author of “Practical Lessons in Leadership—A Guidebook for Aspiring and Experienced Leaders.”
Director of Programs, Minnesota
Vanessa Southworth joined Family & Children’s Center in 1999 as Program Assistant in the Alternative Education Program. Since that time, she has worked with many agency programs, serving as Directors’ Assistant, Coordinator of programs and staff development, Associate Director, and Director of Wisconsin Programs. She left in 2018 to become the Executive Director of Coulee Region RSVP. In 2019 Vanessa returned to Family & Children’s Center as Director of Minnesota Programs. Vanessa holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master of Business Administration, both from Viterbo University.
Tita Yutuc, LCSW
Tita Yutuc serves as President and CEO of Family & Children’s Center, beginning in 2015. Tita brings extensive experience in human services, including more than 16 years in senior leadership roles. She most recently served as chief operations officer at SOS Children’s Village Illinois. SOS is a child welfare organization that provides foster care services, a shelter and intensive community-based outreach program across four sites in and around Chicago. Additionally, she also has more than 25 years in the nonprofit world. With a master’s degree in social work from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, Tita has provided strategic direction and oversight for a variety of children, youth and family services.