Kim Parsons is the new executive director of the Family Justice Center of Georgetown and Horry Counties, taking over for Vicki Bourus who retired on May 31. Parsons has been with the center since 2017, initially as a counselor.
She then transitioned as the Program Director of the Horry County location before assuming the role of Deputy Director of the center. As Deputy Director she worked closely with Bourus to prepare for a smooth transition from her retirement.
Parsons brings a lot of experience to the table. She received her master’s degree from Radford University in Virginia and has worked in the mental health field for 20 years in different capacities.
She has obtained her licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor as well as a Certified Incident Debriefer. Prior to moving to South Carolina five years ago, she was the Program Director at a local community mental health agency in the children’s department as well as the director of an inpatient program for patients suffering with addiction and mental health disorders.
Parsons is excited to start in her new role at the Family Justice Center, which is a non-profit agency that provides domestic violence services.
“The Family Justice Center has been one of the most rewarding and work experiences I’ve ever had,” she said. “The team of employees that work here are the best. We support each other and you can see someone going above and beyond every day.”
The FJC currently has a shelter in Georgetown County but is looking to open one in Horry as well.
“What we’re finding is about 65 percent of our clients are coming from Horry County,” she said. “That is creating some issues for clients that have jobs or have kids in school, so we are actively looking for space in the Myrtle Beach area to build a shelter.”
One of Parson’s goals as the executive director is to expand housing for clients that need help.
“The biggest ongoing goal is to have the shelter built in Horry and another built here in Georgetown,” she said. “We want those shelters to be bigger than the one we have now, which can only accommodate nine people.”
Parsons finds there is a big need for those types of programs in the area.
“We served over 1300 people last year in both counties,” she said. “Horry County has ranked first or second in the state for rates of domestic violence. South Carolina as a whole over the past two years has ranked number one. The state has recently moved to number six, but we are still in the top ten. It’s a huge problem in the state as well as our local counties.”
The FTC accepts donations through its website, www.fjcgtownhorry.org/.