In 2000, upon moving back to her hometown, Janet’s life mission centered on improving the lives of persons with disabilities and their families. Her son, now age 20, has epilepsy and developmental disabilities. As a parent, she found that resources were limited to support families, and although there were services available, there was one group or agency to connect all the dots. With that as a goal, she worked with other interested parents and professionals to start what is now known as FIRST. In 2003, the organization was funded by the Department of Education as a Community Parent Resource Center. FIRST has increased programming over the years to include early intervention services, parent coaching, and support around community resources and services with a variety of funding sources.
Janet and her husband, Woody, have 2 sons. Her eldest, Rush and his wife Caroline, live in Asheville, and Austin live in his own home with support of FIRST’s supported living program, My FIRST Key. Janet loves her job but also loves sitting on the beach or looking at the mountains when she can!