Former Colorado Springs Mayor Mary Lou Makepeace is becoming interim director of Inside Out Youth Services as Executive Director Mary Malia - lauded for her great success with the organization - prepares to return to her home state of Maine.
"I've got family that called and said they need my help," Malia said Tuesday. "And I've got to go.
"We've got some positive funding opportunities coming our way. It's been good work. It's been an intensive two years. Of course there's things I'll miss."
Makepeace expressed excitement over the interim appointment and praised Malia for her work.
"I know the board and kids all adored her," Makepeace said. "I'm very impressed with the work done by Mary and the board to move Inside Out forward, and I'm excited. It's a great organization, and I plan for us to continue the momentum."
Inside Out is the local support agency for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and identity-questioning youths ages 13 to 22.
Under Malia's leadership, the organization moved into a bigger space at 223 N. Wahsatch Ave. and obtained a Tony Grampsas Youth Services grant of $126,000 over three years to beef up services. (The grant is named for the late longtime state senator and representative.)
Malia also launched an Inside Out support group, SAME, for Stress Anxiety Managing Emotions, focusing on post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse and developing coping skills.
Makepeace brings a wealth of experience and a history of working with much of the community helped by Inside Out. After serving as a Colorado Springs city councilwoman and the city's first female mayor, she became executive director of The Gay and Lesbian Fund of Colorado, awarding more than $2 million a year to nonprofits statewide.
She was inducted into the Colorado Women's Hall of Fame in 2009. Makepeace has a bachelor's degree in journalism and political science from the University of North Dakota and a master's degree in public administration from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, where she has taught political science in recent years.