For this week’s Woman Wednesday, AY About You sits down with Elizabeth Pulley, executive director of the Children’s Advocacy Centers of Arkansas.
Pulley has held this position for more than three years.
“We work as a state chapter for 17 centers statewide by providing funding, public policy efforts, training and tech assistance, and program enhancement,” Pulley explains. “I love my job and the people I work with. Our 17 centers provide free direct services to child abuse victims and their families. It is a great honor to work on behalf of child abuse victims in our state.”
Pulley grew up in Benton and earned a bachelor’s degree in communication sciences and disorders from Baylor University. Afterwards, she pursued a master’s degree in human service counseling from Regent University. She has lived in west Little Rock for more than 14 years with her husband Matt and two children, Maddy Kate (15) and Tyler (13).
“Both my children are involved in sports and activities with their school, Pulaski Academy, so we attend games, are involved in parent groups and love cheering on the Bruins,” Pulley says. “I work out every morning and have been working out with the same friend for 11 years! We do boot camps, run, go to the gym but love being outdoors.”
Pulley is also an adjunct professor for Northwest Arkansas Community College, and teaches online child abuse or social work classes. Additionally, she is the vice president of Brookhill Children’s Fund board.
“We help send children, through scholarship, to Brookhill Ranch Camp in Hot Springs. I was a camper at Brookhill and also worked as a counselor there in high school and college.”
Before her current career and involvement in the community, Pulley worked in higher education 13 years with building programs and program improvement. She also worked as an independent consultant on grants, program improvements, growth and development planning, and supported startup businesses with social media campaigns.
Pulley tells us the things that she values as a woman. “Having strong integrity by being honest and admitting mistakes. I am a faith based person who believes in valuing one another, creating transparency and building trust among staff in the workplace. Relationships– I value supportive relationships. Everyone needs people and community to laugh with, cry with and talk through challenges. I work with 17 Children’s Advocacy Centers across the state and we have worked together to create an environment of support as they help child abuse victims daily. Our quarterly meetings have turned into team building, networking and a safe place to share challenges and victories. We have learned to value and trust one another and with that we have grown as a team, helped more children and created deeper relationships. Relationship building has been key. You must be compassionate – loving people through challenging and hard times. A strong woman is not always the loudest in the room but can be the one with the deepest compassion for others.”
We asked Pulley what challenges she has faced as a woman in her line of work. “As a leader in a nonprofit and a mother of 2 children, the challenge is juggling both. I strive to be the best person that God has created me to be as a mom and as a professional. Doing both at the same time is a challenge but it is very rewarding,” she says.
Pulley shares advice with the women and girls who might read this article.
“Facing challenges with integrity is something for young women to learn and what I am still learning as an adult,” she says. “When an eagle anticipates a storm coming, they fly to the highest point to observe what is happening– then they soar with confidence right into the storm. I want to teach my daughter and others how to face challenges with confidence.”