The Father McKenna Center
"This has been one of our key relationships…."
The Father McKenna Center was established in 1983 as a ministry of St. Aloysius Parish in Washington, D.C. to carry on the legacy of Fr. Horace B. McKenna, SJ (1899-1982), considered by many people as Washington’s “priest to the poor.” When the Archdiocese of Washington in 2012 merged St. Aloysius with another parish,the Board of Advisors to the ministry, with the support of Gonzaga College High School,wanted the Center’s vital community work to continue. The Center went through the process of writing bylaws and articles of incorporation, the board of advisors became a board of directors, and the Center morphed into a stand-alone 501c3 nonprofit. Today, the Center serves men experiencing homelessness and families facing food insecurity in the nation’s capital in the Jesuit tradition, offering a Day Program for 110 homeless men each day and a Food Pantry serving 15 to 20 families daily.
What was lost in the transition from a ministry to a nonprofit was the accounting support from the Archdiocese, and Your Part-Time Controller was brought in to create the new systems. “YPTC has been here from the beginning of this organization. They set up our chart of accounts and it’s been stable ever since,” says Executive Director Kimberly Cox. “This has been one of our key relationships.”
Cox is especially appreciative of YPTC Associate Jenn Hrebik. “She’s a delight to work with. I have every confidence in her abilities and so does our board. My background is a Ph.D. in economics so I’m not afraid of numbers and I can see how good her work is. She’s very patient and an excellent teacher. I have learned a lot from her as we go through the numbers each month.”
Cox also appreciates the support network that’s available. “I really value that when I pose a question, she can bounce it off her colleagues. The fact that she’s part of a larger group of YPTC’s brain trust means that we benefit from the experience of all of YPTC’s folks who are working with nonprofits,” she says. “I can’t think of doing it any other way.
“For us, YPTC has been a lifeline. In the four years that I’ve been here our four audits have all been clean and on time, due to Jenn’s work, the structure she set up, the support that YPTC provides, and how she works with our bookkeeper to maintain it,” she adds.
“It’s obvious to me that she cares about our organization and she cares about our clients. I’m sure it makes a difference and it makes her work life better, too. I’ve also spent time with Jenn’s supervisor, Hatsy Cutshall, and that’s given me even more confidence in YPTC and their approach. I couldn’t be happier.”