What’s it like combating an entrenched problem like homelessness during a pandemic?  What skills and mindset make the difference in good times and bad? How does one get selected Prescott Woman of the Year?
Find out from Coalition for Compassion and Justice Executive Director, Jessi Hans.  In 2018, Jessi and her team set the bold (Crazy?) intention to end homelessness in Prescott.  Since Covid, they have redoubled their efforts to house every member of the Prescott community and connect their clients to the services that will help get them back on their feet and back to their lives.  We talk with Jessi about the Housing First philosophy, leading her team with authenticity and transparency, the value of partnerships, and how to stay human when things get tough.
  • After 16 years in the human services field, Jessi Hans has an understanding of how addiction, trauma, mental illness, and systemic barriers can put people out on the street.
  • Jessi takes a collaborative approach to problem-solving, bringing together people and organizations with the gifts and skillsets to make meaningful progress on difficult problems.  She also works consciously to shift the narrative around people experiencing homelessness to help everyone see what she sees: human beings, citizens, neighbors, members of the community.
  • Born and raised in Iowa, Jessi earned her B.F.A. at Northwest Missouri State University and she’s lived in Arizona since 2005. She has a wife and three young children. Jessi enjoys quality time with her family, traveling, reading, creating art, and singing.
  • Jessi was recently named Women of the Year by Prescott Area Leadership.
When we asked her the uncomfortable question of why she was chosen for this honor, she told us she thought the award honored her role more than her actions. We think she might be being too humble, but we’ll let you decide why you think Jessi deserves the win.