La Crosse furniture bank for needy grows into hiring director

The Exchange

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) — TheExchange, a La Crosse furniture bank that helps families and individuals transitioning out of homelessness and poverty, has hired Julie McDermid as its first executive director.

Julie Mcdermid

McDermid

McDermid, who had been project manager of the Coulee Collaborative to End Homelessness for about five years, is a “bold leader,” said Chuck Berendes, president of Shelter Development, the nonprofit that operates theExchange.
Berendes described McDermid as “the proven advocate for marginalized individuals and the community collaborator that theExchange has been looking for to leverage its full growth potential to better address the fundamental home needs of our La Crosse area neighbors.”
TheExchange, which has been a volunteer-run service since its inception in 2016, connects newly housed and in need community members with donated household goods and furniture . It has grown from serving a few families and individuals to helping nearly 500 households a year, Berendes said.
The growth brought theExchange to the point where it needed to evolve to a sustainable leadership model, Berendes said.
More information about theExchange is on its website, and information about Shelter Development is on its website.