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May 18, 2022
Lazarus House Appoints Carmen Vega as New Executive Director
Carmen Vega
Carmen Vega

January 31, 2022 — Lazarus House Ministries, a Lawrence-based nonprofit which provides emergency shelter and related services to help break the cycle of poverty, last week announced it appointed Carmen Vega as its new executive director.

Vega succeeds Jeff Hassel, who resigned as executive director of Lazarus House Ministries in September. Rick Crowley, board president, had been serving as interim executive director since then.

“We are thrilled that Carmen, who has been serving most recently as program director of Capernaum Place, has accepted the call to continue her service and leadership at Lazarus House Ministries as executive director,” said Crowley. Capernaum Place is a 20-unit property in Lawrence operated by Lazarus House which provides transitional housing

Crowley added, “Her most recent thoughtful response and action plan to navigate the Covid Crisis at the Shelter and within the ministry showed her ability to quickly address and adapt as things were rapidly changing – always with our guests at the forefront.”

Vega joined Lazarus House in 2018 after previously serving with Family Services of the Merrimack Valley, Lawrence Public schools, and the Essex County Sheriffs Department.

She earned a bachelor’s degree from Mt. Washington College and a master’s degree from Cambridge College.

“My mom taught me that my word was worth more than money because people could then trust me and rely on me. I think my lived experience has provided a solid foundation to serve families and individuals struggling with food insecurity, poverty, and homelessness with compassion,” Vega said.

Lazarus House said Vega was instrumental in helping to develop a three-year strategic plan that she will carry forward in her new role.

““I am thrilled and ready to take on this challenge,” said Vega. “I look forward to working with the board, our dedicated team of directors, and the staff team I already love and trust to carry out the Strategic Plan, and continue to meet our Guests’ changing needs now and in the future.

Established in 1983, Lazarus House today operates with 50 full- and part-time staff and a team of 5,000 volunteers. In addition to providing food, shelter, and clothing, Lazarus House advocates for the people it serves.

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