Respond - Shelter - Educate
to end sexual and domestic violence in West Texas
The mission of Crisis Center of West Texas is to respond, shelter, and educate to end domestic and sexual violence in West Texas.
Crisis Center of West Texas embraces the belief that all individuals should have equal access to political, legal, economic, and civil rights. We strive to create a community that embraces diversity, recognizes oppression, promotes empowerment, and supports the right of all individuals to self-determination. We eagerly work for the day when domestic and sexual violence are part of history rather than a part of our daily lives.
1980 - Rape Crisis Task Force
In August 1980, Lt. Bianca Brister of the Odessa Police Department formed a task force to address the needs of survivors of rape.
1981 - Call to Action
At a meeting held in January of 1981 at Odessa College, Lt. Brister and Kay Maley Schanzer presented the need for a Rape Crisis Center in Odessa. The dynamic duo pointed out the importance of volunteers, who could respond to the needs of victims as well as to promote sexual assault awareness and personal safety programs. By the end of May 1981, Brister and Schanzer had recruited 78 people, including Lorraine Bonner (now Perryman), the Director of Public Information for ECISD and future mayor of Odessa, and Margaret Burton, city council member and later director of Meals on Wheels. These women and other civic leaders formed the Odessa Task Force to establish a Rape Crisis Center.
1981 - First Board of Directors Elected
By October of 1981, the Task Force had collected more than $22,000. The first Board of Directors was elected to then set the policy and direction of the Center. Bill Duff served as the first President of the nine-member board. The City of Odessa donated space at the Red Cross building on the corner of 3rd and Lee. The city provided office furniture and agreed to pay for utilities. ECISD, El Paso Products, and The City of Odessa provided office supplies. Lt. Brister and Kay Schanzer acquired volunteers, money, housing, and supplies to open the center in less than one year and without grant money.
1982 - Nonprofit Established
The Odessa Rape Crisis Center was incorporated on November 5, 1981. The federal government granted a 501c3 not-for-profit tax designation in January 1982.
1988 - Services Expand
The organization expanded to provide services to Andrews, Crane, Ector, Gaines, Loving, Reeves, Ward, and Winkler counties.
1991 - United Way of Odessa
The center became a member of The United Way of Odessa in 1991. To this day, CCWTX is a proud member agency of both the United Way of Odessa and the United Way of Andrews.
2000 - Expansion of Crisis Services
In the summer of 2000, a task force was formed to investigate the need for a comprehensive crisis intervention unit as a part of the Rape Crisis Center. At that time, the only victims of violent crime receiving crisis intervention services were the victims of child sexual abuse and sexual assault. By unanimous vote, the board approved development and implementation of a crisis intervention unit in Ector County.
2001 - Angel House
The organization obtained a building in Odessa suitable to be utilized as a family violence shelter on June 1, 2001. With the help of more than 60 volunteers working over 2,000 hours and with generous contributions from the community, Angel House opened on September 6, 2001. The first resident entered the doors two hours after the ribbon cutting at the dedication ceremony.
2004 - The Crisis Center
The expansion of services served as a catalyst to change the name of the organization. The Odessa Rape Crisis Center adopted the name The Crisis Center as a local “dba-doing business as” entity in 2004.
2008 - A Strategic Plan
In May 2008, The Crisis Center Board adopted a five-year Strategic Plan to bring The Crisis Center’s mission into clearer focus and to establish guidelines for the accomplishment of these forward reaching goals for the 30th anniversary of the agency. These goals include an expanded the Angel House facility, a seamless counseling service, a transitional housing complex, and an expanded and comprehensive community education awareness and prevention program.
2013 - Service Area Expanded
In 2013, the service area expanded again to include all nine counties the agency serves today: Andrews, Ector, Crane, Gaines, Loving, Pecos, Reeves, Ward, and Winkler.
2014 - A New Mission
In 2014, the mission of the agency became to respond, shelter, and educate to end domestic and sexual violence in West Texas. This change focused the agency on striving for excellence in the provision of services related to sexual assault and domestic violence throughout the 9-county service area. The administrative offices were moved to free space offered by the City of Odessa and all education programs began using only evidence-based curricula and degreed professionals were hired for every department, from educators to case managers and counselors.
2016 - reStart
In 2016, the agency added reStart, a Batterer Intervention and Prevention Program to its services. The program uses evidence-based curriculum as part of a 24-week program serving adults who perpetrated abuse in a relationship.
2016 - A New Shelter
In 2016, the agency launched a $5,000,000 capital campaign for a new state-of-the-art shelter in Odessa. The campaign was set in motion by a $1,000,000 donation from the Wood Family Foundation.
2017 - Crisis Center of West Texas
The name was officially changed to Crisis Center of West Texas with the Secretary of State in July 2017.
2017 - Breaking Ground
After completing the capital campaign, Crisis Center of West Texas broke ground on the new, 16,000 sq. ft. shelter in December 2017.
2019 - Louise Wood Angel House
On April 24, 2019 the first clients moved in to the new Louise Wood Angel House, the 61-bed state of the art shelter named for the late Louise Wood, a local scholar, philanthropist, and activist.