Kris Albright has been with The Open Door longer than any other employee. During her tenure Kris has stepped in to help wherever needed – including Interim Executive Director for a brief period! Kris serves in many roles, but she is known best for taking care of, and nurturing, our team.
After being a stay-at-home mom, Kris began working at The Open Door part- time. She wrote thank you notes and performed general office work for 20 hours per week. At that time, The Open Door was known as the Eagan and Lakeville Resource Center. With a background in finance and a law degree, Kris is a natural fit as Finance Manager of The Open Door. Kris holds that position still today but is well known for taking care of fellow staffers, volunteers and helping to keep everything together.
Like many of us, Kris’s day-to-day routine has been affected by COVID-19 “Because I have at-risk people in my family, I work mostly from home, so I’m not able to be around the staff, volunteers and clients as much as I would like.” Working from home does allow Kris to work without interruptions; except for her beagle, Baylee.
As TOD’s Finance Manager, Kris processes all donations received. Over the past six months she has been in awe of the generosity of our donors. “Our donations have skyrocketed, that support continues today. People are very willing and those who are able are supporting their neighbors who need food.”
With COVID-19, Kris’s biggest concern is making sure The Open Door can continue to serve people the way we have been. “I worry about people being hungry and being unable to feed them.”
Kris’s favorite thing about TOD is the respect and love the clients receive from staff and volunteers. “Since I’ve been here, the clients have always been treated with kindness and respect, and even a bit of love, by the volunteers. The love and the caring are amazing to see.”
In non-COVID times, Kris would like all our staff to have more interactions and time spent with our clients. “If I could change one thing, it would be a greater ability for the (administrative) staff to interact with clients and get to know them better. Those of us who work away from the Pantry or Mobile, don’t receive the benefit of that daily reminder of why we do what we do.”
Kris has appreciated the impact TOD can have for clients. One of her favorite memories is when: “A woman came to TOD looking for food. Her car was inoperable, so she had to take the bus. It was a two mile walk from her bus stop to her job. She was exhausted and there was little food in the home. She went to an appointment at The Pantry and received food. The next day she attended National Night Out at TOD, along with her two children. They ate food, her children played games, and she fell asleep in a chair under the tree in the front yard. I could see she felt safe because she knew her children were fed and were being taken care of – she could relax. I feel that moment epitomizes the care and the love people feel when they come to The Open Door.”
For fun, Kris and her husband, David, like to go on walks and spend time with their family, especially their beagle Baylee. Kris refers to herself and David as “the neighborhood grandparents.” They enjoy spending time with the neighborhood kids.
The Open Door is thankful to have Kris and her ability to help keep everyone and everything together! We don’t know where we’d be without her!