Gratitude from Chrysalis Staff

“I’m thankful that I get to be a part of the music program at Chrysalis. I love teaching girls about music and encouraging their endeavors to learn an instrument (or two!), to have the courage to sing in front of a crowd, or to write and compose their own music. I’m thankful that I’ve been able to see how music impacts students’ lives in a positive way. I’m also thankful for my work as the case manager at the Cottage. We have an incredible group of girls here and our smaller community feels very warm and almost like a family. Lastly, I’m thankful to live in a place where I can spend my weekends outside doing the things I love.” – Michelle

“I’m grateful to be teaching this group of girls and watching them grow and mature not only in their academic skills, but in so many other ways as well. It is not only a responsibility I take seriously, but a joy and a privilege I cherish. I am thankful for fellow teachers who passionately desire to help kids and do odd and often thankless tasks to show that love and care. I have the perfect teaching job in so many ways: small class size, encouraging support, and positive one on one with girls and staff. What a blessing!” – Darla

“I’m thankful to be a part of a program that believes in girls and helps facilitate lasting change in families. I’m thankful that running is a part of my daily work responsibilities. I’m thankful for the table fellowship around meal time on campus. I’m thankful for co-workers who have become good friends. I’m thankful for collaboration with other professionals and programs. I’m thankful to live in beautiful northwest Montana where I truly feel like myself.” – Carrie

“I am grateful for the team of therapists I get to work with, and how we collaborate to take care of the girls whose parents have entrusted them to our care. And I’m grateful for our mountains!” – Haley


“I am thankful for being a part of a dedicated team who are helping families to heal and to witness young women discover their true selves. I feel honored to take care of many of the girls’ needs so they feel loved and cared for. I am grateful that I get to do it in such a beautiful place!” – Leslie

“I am so thankful to have the opportunity every day to spend time with the passionate and smart young women at Chrysalis. I am thankful to have a job that allows me to teach young women about how to be confident playing in the woods and mountains of Montana. I am so thankful to walk down the road by our house and see the gorgeous Whitefish Mountain Range covered in snow. I am thankful to live and work in Montana!”– Ashton

“I am so thankful for Chrysalis and the blessing it has been in my life! I am thankful for the caring staff. I am thankful for the opportunity to meet incredible students and their families from around the country. I am thankful for the beautiful setting in which we have the privilege to work.” – Vicki

“I am thankful for the magic and healing of human connection that surrounds me every day at Chrysalis. I am grateful for the resilience of the human spirit, and our capacity to appreciate joy and wonder that is always surrounding us if we will but look about. I am grateful for the amazing people who work at Chrysalis and have dedicated themselves to helping girls and their families to heal. I am thankful for the trust parents have placed in our amazing team. I am especially thankful to our co-founder, Kenny Pannell, who has imagined, created, lived and breathed “Chrysalis” over the last fifteen years by my side. I am grateful for our fabulous, supportive partners at InnerChange. I am thankful for all of my relatives and family, including those extended Chrysalis family members.” – Mary


“I’ve always thought that Thanksgiving is arguably the best holiday of them all. No gifts to buy during an overly commercialized shopping frenzy. No crowds to fight through in every place where people gather. No confusion about what the holiday is really about. No shock and regret when the January credit card statements arrive. And, no extra weight to carry around for months since I always display great restraint when it comes to holiday eating at Thanksgiving. (I think this might be where people insert smiling little faces to suggest intended humor.)

At this time of year, I always feel enormous gratitude for my parents and grandparents, who joined together and sacrificed to make my life truly meaningful in every possible way. Their great expectations helped me realize who I was in the context of my own, what values were necessary to shape a healthy life and lifestyle, and what I might become in terms of the larger community of which I am a part. I love and appreciate them for those critical inputs.

At the other end of the family spectrum are my children, who are bright, beautiful, and full of promise. I’m so grateful that they are healthy, hard-working, kind, and generous of spirit. I couldn’t be more proud of them than I am.

I also feel grateful for all the good people who have collaborated with us for the past 15 years to make our little school a winning place to live and work. I hear from our former students and their parents almost every week, and the message is always one of thanksgiving. We have facilitated great change in the lives of so many fine young people, and the futures that they’ve embraced are full and rich because of the powerful investments made by our remarkable staff. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

And lastly, I would be entirely remiss if I didn’t acknowledge the reservoir of gratitude that I feel for my beautiful Mary, whose devotion to this place, these people, and her family, make all the struggle and strain of our chosen life totally worthwhile. She’s the best. She’s my favorite person in the world. And I thank God everyday for her presence and partnership in my life.

We are truly blessed!  Happy Thanksgiving to one and all,” Kenny



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