Growing up in her small hometown of Sardis, MS, Katrina McKinney Kimble learned about effective communication, purposeful leadership, and collaborative engagement. She watched her parents, Grady and Maggie McKinney, raise their nine children, serve in the church, and support the community. Katrina’s motto is “Be Well, Not Perfect.” She believes everyone should be and do well where they live, work, play, and worship.
Katrina is a speaker, trainer, facilitator, consultant, and mental wellness advocate. As the Program Manager at the Alzheimer’s Association, she leads the educational programs to promote awareness, resources, and information about dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. With passion, purpose, and perseverance, Katrina strives to elevate and celebrate the voices of our community.
Katrina earned a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Human Resources Management from The University of Memphis. She received a Health Minister Certificate from Wesley Theological Seminary’s Heal the Sick Program and a Wellness Advocate Certificate from Samaritan Wellness Center. Recently, Katrina’s work was acknowledged by Spirit Magazine in the Inaugural 50 Over 50 Making A Difference (MAD) Lady Award, the Community Leader Award for Women’s Health from Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated – Phi Lambda Omega Chapter, and the Health Impact Award from The National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc. – Memphis Chapter. She is an active member of Dress for Success Memphis – Professional Women’s Group (PWG) and volunteers as the Program Manager. Katrina is a proud mom of two sons and “Nana” to her grandchildren. She enjoys serving at Brown M. B. Church in various ministries and spending time with family and friends.
How long have you been doing what you do? In 1991, I started working in a grassroots advocacy group to reduce health disparities for women and girls. After serving on different planning committees and boards, I started working in the non-profit industry in 2012.
What services does your organization/agency/business provide? At the Alzheimer’s Association, our vision is a world without Alzheimer’s disease. The Alzheimer’s Association leads the way to end Alzheimer’s and all other dementia — by accelerating global research, driving risk reduction and early detection, and maximizing quality care and support. Some of the services we offer:
- 24/7 Helpline 1-800-272-3900: We have care consultants available via our 24/7 Helpline to provide reliable information in more than 200 languages. Through this free service, specialists and master’s-level clinicians offer confidential support and information to people living with dementia, caregivers, families, and the community.
- Free Education (ALZ.ORG): Our website will give you access to tools and resources to help those living with the disease and their caregivers. Find dementia and aging-related resources that connect individuals with local programs and services at alz.org.
- Local Office: We are in the community providing educational programs, information, resources, and support. If you would like us to conduct an educational program at your organization, church, or civic group, please email me at email@example.com or 901-424-3425.
What made you decide to do what you do/choose your field? While growing up in rural Mississippi, I saw my parents, siblings, and church help the community. We, the people of the community, helped each. When my grandmother was diagnosed with dementia, I witnessed how her children cared for her. Several years ago, my mom was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. With the COVID pandemic, for those battling dementia and their caregivers, the gap in access to healthcare, resources, or support services was dramatic.
What are some of the most gratifying parts of what you do? Each day, I have an opportunity to educate the community, empower those with the disease and equip caregivers with resources to make informed decisions. I am so motivated if I can reduce stress or connect one person to a resource/service. It’s my great joy knowing that I am making a difference and improving the quality of life for others.
What are some of the most disheartening things about what you do? First, it would be knowing there is no cure for the disease. We have significantly improved quality healthcare through research and clinical trials but have not found a cure. Second, I meet individuals that are in denial about the disease and don’t believe it exists. I have experienced how heartbreaking to watch your loved one disappear before your eyes.
Do you have any events coming up? Yes, each month, we offer virtual educational programs. For Black History Month, we hosted two webinars entitled “Black Dementia Minds.” We are preparing for our Community Forum and the Annual Women Luncheon. Throughout the month, we provide free educational programs in the community with in-person or virtual options. Some of our collaborative partners have been SRVS Memphis, Dress for Success Memphis, Caregivers Respite, the Baptist Ministerial Association, and many others. If you would like us to conduct an educational program at your organization, church, or civic group, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you have any needs that would help you better do what you do? Yes, we need volunteers and donors. At the Alzheimer’s Association, we love going into the community to provide an educational program for any group, organization, or congregation. We want to break the stigma and shame of Alzheimer’s and Dementia.
We need volunteers to become Community Educators to help promote awareness and provide educational programs. We provide all the training and support that a person would need to become an effective Community Educator. Also, we are gearing up for our annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s. We want to encourage families, organizations, and congregations to form a team and help raise funds to end Alzheimer’s Disease. We have several volunteer opportunities available. If you want to learn more, please email me directly at email@example.com.
What main point(s) do you want the readers to take away from this article? First, More than 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s Disease. Over 11 million American provide unpaid care for individuals with Alzheimer’s or other dementia. Second, we can’t give up hope. We want our community to be informed and educated about warning signs. Through our educational programs, we can break down barriers and remove the stigmas. People need to know that they are not alone and that there is joy in the journey. In a famous quote by Rosalynn Carter, “There are only four kinds of people in the world: those who have been caregivers, those who are currently caregivers, those who will be caregivers, and those who will need caregivers.”
How can people get in touch with you?
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Office Phone: 901-424-3425
- Website: Tennessee (alz.org)
- Facebook: (20+) Alzheimer’s Association Tennessee Chapter | Facebook
- LinkedIn: Alzheimer’s Association Tennessee Chapter: My Company | LinkedIn
- LinkedIn: Katrina McKinney Kimble