Cathy Rager – Prevention Specialist
My name is Cathy Rager. I’m a current resident of Downers Grove and have lived and worked here for over 30 years while raising a family of four with my husband, Steve. Having lived within the township most of my life, I greatly appreciate the agencies, businesses, institutions, families and others who make this a great place to live!
I worked in grocery retail as a manager for many years before beginning my career at the township in 2003 in Youth Services as a Prevention Specialist (on a grant through the Illinois Department of Human Services). Prevention Specialists teach community youth and families about drug abuse with the best practices in prevention.
As a prevention specialist, I worked with teachers, parents and students in a local middle school teaching a “model” curriculum, while utilizing community meetings and marketing campaigns to raise awareness on drug abuse. Through the promotion of the free Illinois Youth Survey (taken every 2 years) within the township, I was more able to focus community outreach implementation based on the specific needs of our students and families.
I’m also very proud to have been a part of the groundbreaking Township Peer Jury program (a Governor’s Hometown Award winner) for almost 14 years- until the program ended and the legacy was continued through the Village of Downers Grove. I learned how balanced and restorative justice can resolve issues and help families and students to succeed.
Currently, I’m at the other end of the age spectrum working as the Senior Services Coordinator for Downers Grove Township. As a “senior” myself, I have empathy for this age group and the challenges facing them in the aging process. Seniors are the fastest growing demographic in the township and county. I feel uniquely qualified to raise awareness and share important information with our senior community through my previous experience and connections in the community.
Understanding needs is a vital part of this position. Our Senior Advisory Committee (SAC) is a council of township seniors who represent all parts of our community. Additionally, our township agencies, police and fire personnel lend insight into what’s happening locally and often host township programs and activities. This collaborative support is what makes these programs work! One example is our Annual Car Care Clinic that the Westmont Fire Department hosts. However, all agencies are represented as volunteer workers during this shared event.
In addition, to our Annual Car Care Clinic and AARP Smart Driver Class, I host the Vintage Times senior topic series on DGTV, help create and produce the Banner News, procure speakers and host the Senior Survival Skills Series, provide information and referrals to the public, assist with Benefit Access and RTA applications, work with the Westmont Fire Department to create and maintain the Pocket Pal brochure, attend Senior Fairs and register Dial-A-Ride participants for our cost efficient township shared-ride program. I enjoy serving the public and always look for ways to improve our services through networking, collaboration and outreach to ALL of our seniors!
Phone: (630) 719-6686