1-800-585-2686 (24/7/365) info@merrymanhouse.org

Our Team

The Merryman House Domestic Violence Center was founded in 1978 as Women Aware, Inc. The agency is named for our founder, Merryman Kemp.  Since its inception, Merryman House has extended its arms to serve victims of domestic violence. Each year, nearly 1,000 women, men, and children seek refuge, comfort and healing through our 24-hour crisis line, emergency shelter, outreach offices and comprehensive programs. Our staff is dedicated to helping these survivors to escape violence, find safety and move forward with their lives. For more than 40 years, Merryman House has worked to Save, Build and change lives through our Core Values of Advocacy, Empowerment and Transformation through Compassion, Dignity and Courage.

“There is reward in life for goodness. Goodness makes the world a better place. We are appreciative of every donation we receive from our community, but we are also very blessed by the positive changes we continue to see in our community’s perspective of domestic violence. Acts of kindness and goodness have a ripple effect, like throwing a pebble in a pond. You may never know the impact one simple act of kindness can have in making our world a better place.”


Merryman Kemp

Founder, Merryman House

Our Leadership Team

Mary E. Foley, PsyD

Executive Director

“Why?” is such a powerful question. It forces us to stop and reflect. It provides us a chance to explain our position or, in this case, our purpose and intent behind something. I have chosen to serve victims of crime for the duration of my career because I am one. 

Vivian Brown

Vivian Brown

Director of Safety & Operations

I wanted to join an organization that supported a cause I believe in. I believe I can make a difference in survivors’ lives by managing the emergency shelter, nutrition services, and offering encouragement and emotional support when needed. 

Colette Buford

Director of Finance

I choose to work at the Merryman House because I believe in helping others. Although I do not usually interact with our clients, I know that by managing our budgets and funding, I enable my coworkers to perform the work they were meant to do: Save, Build, and Change the lives of those affected by domestic violence.

Stephanie Hook

Director of Housing & Stabilization

I work at The Merryman House because I have someone very close to me that is a survivor of domestic violence. I have witnessed firsthand the effects of domestic violence on individuals. I invest each day in Saving, Building and Changing lives because EVERYONE deserves a life free from domestic violence.

Michelle Gantt

Michelle Gantt

Director of Advocacy & Resiliency

Having a profession which helps others is one of the best reasons in the world to get up in the morning.  I chose to work at Merryman House because I believe in its mission to Save, Build, and Change the lives of those who have had their voices and their sense of self-determination taken from them through domestic violence.

Kayla Myers

Director of Community Engagement

If you have the opportunity to make your job doing work that matters, take the opportunity.  Despite the heaviness of domestic violence and its effects, the Merryman House and everyone here makes it a positive and uplifting place to be for survivors and staff alike.

Brianna Weitlauf

Director of Grants & Compliance

I invest in the Merryman House’s mission of Saving, Building and Changing Lives because I have witnessed the devastating effects of domestic violence in the lives of those close to me. 

Executive Assistant, Kelly Cosby

Kelly Cosby

Office Manager

When I hired on to Merryman House, I was looking for a job that had meaning and helped others out. I knew I could find a job with my qualifications, but I was looking for more than a job to go to.

Our Coordinator Team

Tina Hollowell

Facilities Maintenance Coordinator

I came to the Merryman House because I had a desire to make a difference in the lives of families that had been through the trauma and hopelessness of domestic violence. 

Jayna Burkey

Advocacy & Resiliency Coordinator

When I was asked about this position at the Marshall County Resiliency Center, something in my heart stirred. 

Jade Townsley

Jade Townsley

Housing Coordinator

I am committed to the mission of the Merryman House because I have a passion for helping others. It is an important milestone for individuals to have a safe home to call their own. I have the privilege of assisting our clients in finding and sustaining housing.

Jade Townsley

Jeremy Morgan

Grants & Compliance Coordinator

Jade Townsley

Kris Denson

Nutrition Services Coordinator

Jade Townsley

Elizabeth Wilson

Murray Transitional Housing Program Coordinator

Contact Us

Whether you are a survivor in need of support or a donor looking to join our mission, there is a place for you here!

Client Portal Login 

Hotline Chat 

PO Box 98
Paducah, KY 42002


Phone: 800-585-2686

TTY: 270-226-1149

Hotline is answered 24/7/365.

Translation services are provided as needed. All services are free and confidential.

GuideStar Gold Seal of Transparency 2023

Merryman House provides services for survivors of intimate partner violence without regard to race, color, national origin, ethnic origin, religion, creed, age, physical or mental disability, veteran status, uniformed services, political belief, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy or other health status, social or economic status, non-violent criminal history, citizenship, immigration status, marital status, or language spoken.

Services provided in part or fully by federal, state, and local funds. This project is also funded in whole or in part under a contract with the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services, and the Kentucky Coalition Against Domestic Violence, contract #C-05199666, subcontracted with the Merryman House, subcontract #21H. Additionally, support comes from Grant #H-00141 awarded through the Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet by the U.S. Department of Justice. The content expressed in this publication are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet or the U.S. Department of Justice.


© 2024 Merryman House. All Rights Reserved.