• Executive Director

    Scott parks

    Scott is currently a teacher at Saraland Elementary School as a teacher of students with multiple disabilities and serves as a co-sponsor of Project Outreach Saraland Elementary. Scott founded Project Outreach at Spanish Fort High School in 2007 and helped found Project Outreach Gulf Coast in 2014.  In addition, Scott is the co creator of Apples for Autism and the Pawtism Project, which are initiatives that help serve students using technology and service dogs. He also works as Director of Youth Ministry at Grace Community Church. He currently lives in Saraland, Alabama with his wife Annie and their five children who are all members of Project Outreach chapters.  

Meet our board

As Project Outreach Gulf Coast moved forward as an organization, the need to be run and governed by a board was important. Our board members bring both heart-passion and head-knowledge to the group as they seek to plan, lead, and oversee all things Project Outreach Gulf Coast. We are so thankful to have each of them serving our organization.   

  • Julie thompson

    Julie is a mother of a 19 year old son who has multiple disabilities as well as intractable epilepsy. She has degrees in English and Psychology and worked in the life and health insurance industry until her son was born. Since that time she has taught reading comprehension and academic skills advancement in a college setting and has been a frequent classroom speaker in Purdue University's undergraduate Special Education program. She has volunteered extensively as a Children's Ministry program coordinator at her church and served on her church's Leadership council. She has also served as a vocalist and a drummer in various praise ensembles. She relocated to Spanish Fort with her family in 2012, and currently resides there with her husband Scott, and their three children.  

  • Lauren Cunningham

    Lauren and her husband, Drake Perry, have grown up in the Mobile/ Baldwin County area. She currently works as the student employment coordinator for the University of South Alabama's post-secondary program for students with Intellectual Disabilities, PASSAGE USA. Lauren has previously worked as a special education teacher at Saraland High School for several years. While at Saraland, she assisted with the charter of Project Outreach Saraland High School and was the lead sponsor. Lauren has been very involved in the special needs community by volunteering and working at various camps for children and adults with disabilities since 2012. She is so excited to serve Project Outreach in a new capacity and serve on its board! 

  • Brigette HEdge

    Born in Chicago and raised in Indiana, Bridette a midwestern girl who made my way to beautiful south Alabama by way of San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Arkansas. She spent 15 years working in major state universities, took a year off for sailing, then spent another 15 years in all manners of real estate. This past summer I became a Project Manager at Uniti Fiber. When she asked if I would like to join POGC, I was honored. While watching my sister raise her autistic son from baby to handsome teen, I was impressed by how naturally she and her family integrated him into all aspects of their lives, never leaving him out. I saw this same attitude in the heart and soul of POGC. I hope to help them continue that worthy effort.  She currently lives in Daphne with her daughter.  

  • Cathleen delagarza

    Cathleen is from Spanish Fort, Alabama and is married to Jack DeLaGarza. They have three sons, Ryan (15), Jackson (12), and Joseph (9). She previously served in the United States Air Force as a F-15C pilot and currently works at Southern Light (Telecommunications Company) as Director of Service Delivery. Cathleen is excited about Project Outreach Gulf Coast and its goals in reaching as many children and schools as possible.

  • Dana Handmacher

    Dana Handmacher is a community volunteer, parent advocate, and the mother of 4 children. Her oldest son, William, is 15 years old and has Autism. A graduate of the University of Georgia, Dana earned a degree in Social Work and a Master's in Elementary Education. Dana and her husband Nathan Handmacher were instrumental in the development of Woody's Song School and are continued supporters of Woody's Song and The Learning Tree, Inc. Dana currently is the President of the USA Regional Autism Network Constituency Board and a board member of Project Outreach Gulf Coast. Dana is originally from Mobile and currently resides with her family in Fairhope.