Terry Stigdon joins Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption Board of Trustees

Posted on September 1, 2023

Foundation committed to finding permanent homes for the more than 140,000 children waiting in North America’s foster care systems

Columbus, Ohio — The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, a national nonprofit public charity, today welcomed Terry Stigdon as a member of its board of trustees, serving a three-year term.

Stigdon is the Chief Executive Officer of the Indiana Region of the American Red Cross. She previously led the Indiana Department of Child Services (DCS). Under her leadership, the Indiana DCS saw the number of children in foster care decrease by 50% while federal safety measures improved. Before her appointment to DCS, Terry served as a pediatric nurse and nurse leader for 20 years. While at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health, Stigdon held various leadership positions, including serving as the Director for the Emergency Medicine and Trauma Center, Trauma Program, Car Passenger Safety Program and Inpatient Behavioral Health.

“My life’s work has been dedicated to helping children,” said Stigdon. “I am honored to contribute the synergy of my child welfare experience and my passion for growing stronger communities to benefit the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption’s mission.”

“We are fortunate to have Terry joining our board. It’s so important to have the voices of people who have done this work on the front lines of child welfare. Terry’s expertise will help advance the Foundation’s strategic priorities, programs and advocacy for policies and practices that improve the systems with which children and families are involved,” said Rita Soronen, President & CEO of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption.

Through its signature program, Wendy’s Wonderful Kids®, the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption provides funding to adoption agencies to support the hiring of recruiters who implement an evidence-based, child-focused recruitment model. A rigorous, five-year evaluation revealed that the model is up to three times more effective at serving children who have been in foster care the longest, including teenagers, children with special needs and siblings. To date, more than 500 Wendy’s Wonderful Kids recruiters have found forever families for more than 13,000 children in foster care across the United States and Canada.

Stigdon earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Indianapolis and a master’s degree in nursing leadership and management from Western Governors University Indiana.

About the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption

The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption is a national nonprofit public charity dedicated to finding permanent homes for the more than 140,000 children waiting in North America’s foster care systems. Created by Wendy’s® founder Dave Thomas who was adopted, the Foundation implements evidence-based, results-driven national service programs, foster care adoption awareness campaigns and innovative grantmaking. To learn more, visit davethomasfoundation.org.

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