Chaucie’s Place interim director doing double duty as search continues


By Mark Ambrogi

Melissa Peregrin is doing double duty.



Peregrin, a Westfield resident, is serving as interim executive director at Chaucie’s Place. She also is continuing to serve as the Carmel-based nonprofit’s Prevention and Education Coordinator for the Lifelines Youth Suicide Prevention. She has been in that position since April.

“I have an incredible team behind me that is supporting me 100 percent,” Peregrin said. “I’m getting additional help from them, which is making this go very smoothly. I’m a list maker and a multi-tasker, so to this point I have been doing a fairly good job of doing both. But I get so much support from the staff and team here.”

Former executive director Toby Stark, who resigned after six years, has been helping with the transition. Stark plans to continue consulting until she finds a new position.

“I would love the opportunity to be considered for the permanent executive director’s position,” Peregrin said. “The mission of what we do is something that I’m really passionate about. I have children of my own and I believe very strongly in what we’re doing.”

Peregrin said the board of directors is weeding through candidates. It is taking applications through Nov. 30.

“They’re just going to take the time finding the right candidate,” Peregrin said.

Peregrin worked at Carmel-based Merciful H.E.L.P. Center, which has a food pantry assisting those in Hamilton County. The nonprofit also collects furniture as donations and delivers to those in need.

“With Melissa serving as the interim executive director, the board now has the latitude to conduct a very through and thoughtful executive search,” stated Richard F. Taylor III, the board president.

In partnership with Hedges & Associates, a strategic nonprofit consulting firm, Chaucie’s Place Board of Directors has developed an executive search committee.

“The board is fully committed to Chaucie’s Place, the mission, and the staff,” Taylor said. “The search process will be thoughtful and strategic and will be the beginning of the next chapter for the organization.  The board expects the search process to be complete no later than February 2017.  We are reviewing an impressive pool of candidates and are excited to begin the first round of interviews beginning the week of Dec. 5.”

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