New SOS Executive Director to begin in March 2024

SOS announced Thursday, Nov. 16 that Mickey Edwards will be the organization’s next Executive...
SOS announced Thursday, Nov. 16 that Mickey Edwards will be the organization’s next Executive Director.(SOS, Inc.)
Published: Nov. 16, 2023 at 4:37 PM CST
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EMPORIA, Kan. (WIBW) - SOS, Inc. has named its next Executive Director.

SOS, Inc. officials said Mickey Edwards will be the organization’s next Executive Director. Edwards is the third Executive Director in the nearly 50-year history of SOS and is stepping into this role following the retirement of current Executive Director Connie Cahoone.

“SOS is an agency that has held a special place in my heart for many years,” said Edwards. “Under the first two executive directors, Susan Moran and Connie, I watched SOS become is one of the flagship agencies in our state for serving individuals affected by violence.”

SOS, Inc. officials said Edwards is not new to SOS. In fall 1996, Edwards became a court-appointed special advocate (CASA) for SOS CASA of the Flint Hills, and two years later she took on the role of SOS CASA Director. Edwards stayed with SOS until 2015 when she moved on to the state director position for the Kansas CASA Association. In 2019, she came back to the local community when she was hired to lead United Way of the Flint Hills in November 2019.

“I am eager to be back at SOS, joining the staff members who work so hard to empower and advocate for others,” said Edwards. “I’m grateful for the opportunity and look forward to being back at the agency that gave me my first career start and lit the fire of my passion for service to others.”

Though she’s from southern Louisiana, SOS, Inc. officials said Edwards has lived most of her life in Kansas.

“While I still have a deep connection and lots of family in the New Orleans area, I am proud to call myself a Kansas girl,” said Edwards.

She is married to Tracy Edwards, Certified Financial Planner and owner of Ameriprise Financial Services, and the couple has three grown sons and two daughters-in-law.

“Mickey is going to be fabulous in this role, and I will retire knowing that SOS is in excellent hands,” said Cahoone. “I have no doubt that she will do great things, and I’m truly excited to see what the future holds for SOS.”

SOS Board of Directors member Tyler Curtis explained this transition is important for organizational health.

“The smooth transition of executive leadership is vital to organizational health and sustainability,” said Curtis. “Connie and the hiring team did a fantastic job of planning, promoting, and executing this search. The process led to SOS hiring a talented, dedicated, and proven leader to serve as the agency’s third executive director. I’m grateful for Connie and her leadership and excited to work with Mickey.”

SOS, Inc. officials said the SOS Board of Directors was supported in the search for the new Executive Director by a committee of individuals from the community with human resources and other relevant experience. This committee provided recommendations based on interviews conducted, and the Board of Directors used those recommendations to select the best candidate for SOS.

SOS, Inc. officials said Board President Rochelle Rowley expressed her gratitude to those who took part in the hiring process.

“I want to thank the many individuals involved in the hiring process and especially thank the board for their diligence and care towards hiring the next executive director. Mickey Edwards has a proven track record in non-profit management and a skill set that will serve SOS well in its mission and strategic plan.”

Edwards is expected to start in March 2024.

SOS officials noted the SOS Executive Director is responsible for the organization’s overall finance and administration and guide SOS’s four programs: Crisis Services, CASA of the Flint Hills, the SOS Child Visitation and Exchange Center, and the SOS Child Advocacy Center, which provide services throughout Chase, Coffey, Lyon, Morris, and Osage counties. SOS works to empower and advocate for those who have experienced sexual and domestic violence, stalking, human trafficking, child abuse and neglect.