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Mary Guiberson M.A.

Ms. Guiberson is currently a Program Manager for The Compass Housing Alliance’s [CHA], for Hammond House Overnight Emergency Shelter for Women, in Seattle. Mary has held multiple positions with-in CHA, for the past 9-years. She is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, domestic violence, years of trauma and has overcome her struggles with a 20-plus year addiction. Additionally, she survived years of being in and out of the judicial system.  Ms. Guiberson first got to know CHA while staying at Cascade Women’s transitional housing program, over 12 years ago. She spent 18 months in the program; healing learning about herself—through that experience Mary realized she deserved a better life. Thus, with support from those around her, a conscious choice was made to go back to school!

Mary never questioned her choice to go back to school, and in 2003, Ms. Guiberson earned her Associate of Arts degree from Seattle Central Community College, with an additional certificate in Chemical Dependency. During that time she spent a year volunteering for a New Beginnings and two years working for the Washington State Alcohol/Drug Helpline; where she was a trainer and consultant to staff at Domestic Violence Shelters, as well as, Drug/Alcohol Treatment Centers. In addition, Mary sat on the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence Board of Directors as the representative for the Women in Recovery Caucus, and she played a powerful role in integrating the issues of domestic violence and chemical dependency.

In 2005, Mary went on to graduate from Evergreen State College with a Bachelor of Arts degree.  In June 2007 she graduated from Seattle University with a Masters in Arts in Organizational System Renewal and Design. She sat as a Board member on a number of local nonprofit organizations serving women, and served on the National Transitional Housing Steering Committee for the National Network to End Domestic Violence—often traveling to different States, to share her-story.  Some of her local achievements include working with Thrivers Action Group to achieve their 501C(3) status. Mary was TAG’s first BOD President and is currently the BOD Secretary. In addition to TAG, she is a co-founder and member of the BOD for Triple Play Connections [TPC].  Mary is also TPC Conference Coordinator. In both roles, Mary is working with others, to bring practioners from Chemical Dependency, Mental Health, Domestic Violence (both perpetrator and victim) and Sexual Assault, to the table for collaboration.

Why I joined TAG: TAG allowed me to turn my life of pain and trauma into a lesson for others; as well as supporting system change. And I believe that when you share in-story, you are able to reach others on collective level, people relate to story. And, it is a great opportunity to be part of a Supportive Community

Personal Area of Focus and Future Goals in Relation to Domestic Violence

To be part of growing Thrivers Action Group into a viable non-profit

Work with women who are effected by sexual and/or domestic abuse who end up in the streets, prisons and jails

Aspire to work with a Coalition – local and/or national

Educating communities, organizations and systems on domestic violence

Write a book of memoirs or my life’s story

Design & Consult programs working with women who experience abuse