Lisa Skelton, the new director of United Cerebral Palsy of West Alabama, is seen here at Cafe J in downtown Tuscaloosa on Sunday afternoon.
By Matt Hawk Staff Writer Published: Monday, November 17, 2008 at 3:30 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, November 16, 2008 at 11:15 p.m.
Lisa Skelton, newly appointed director of United Cerebral Palsy of West Alabama, likes to keep busy whether at home or work — even at a party held in her honor.
Sunday afternoon Skelton was at the front door of the newly opened
Cafe J restaurant on University Boulevard next to Jester's Flowers, a stack of menus in hand, seating guests at her
own meet and greet.
"I can't just be sitting there," Skelton
"I need to be doing something."
Skelton has had plenty to do since formally assuming the post of executive director of UCP of West Alabama late last month.
replaced Toni Franklin, who retired from UCP
after seven years to spend more time with family.
Skelton found herself quickly immersed in the organization's annual Fright Factory fundraiser, which UCP Development Director Brenda Ewart said had the highest attendance ever this year.
"It's been fast and busy, but very good," Skelton
A resident of Tuscaloosa, Skelton, spent 16 years as director of residential life for the University of Alabama before accepting a position as associate dean of students at Samford University in Birmingham.
Dissatisfied with the long daily commute, Skelton began looking for work closer to home.
A neighbor, who happened to serve on the UCP of West Alabama's board of directors, informed her of the opening with the organization.
intends to draw from her
background in higher education to help promote public awareness of cerebral palsy and of the work organizations like UCP does.
"I feel like my new role is going to make sure the community knows about United Cerebral Palsy
, what the needs are and how the community can plug in," she
more material goals is the expansion of UCP of West Alabama's
existing facilities at 100 UCP Parkway in Northport.
"We have outgrown our facilities and the space to expand is right next door," Skelton