Late 70’s – A group of women gathered to discuss creating a center for women in crisis and transition.  One of the women was Texas Wesleyan College English professor Karen Perkins, who became the Founder and Executive Director of The Women’s Center.

May 18, 1979   The Fort Worth Women’s Center opened its doors in donated space at 1203 Lake Street with three initial services:

  • Information and Referral Helpline to aid women in finding financial services and/or counseling services to help them address their crisis.
  • Education in the form of programs, workshops and seminars to teach practical life skills
  • Employment to help women find jobs and rise out of poverty.

1980    The City of Fort Worth asked The Women’s Center to assume the fledgling Rape Crisis program.

1983    First United Way grant is awarded for $33,000.

1983   Play It Safe!(TM), a child sexual abuse prevention program, is created to teach children ages 4-18 how to reduce their risk of abuse.

1986    Lake Street offices flood and the Center moves to 1723 Hemphill.

1987    Opened full-service satellite office in Arlington.

1989    First Annual “Men Who Love Women” benefit event.

1997    First Annual “Victory Over Violence” Walk/Run.

2004    Karen Perkins retires after 25 years as Executive Director; Laura Hilgart becomes President/CEO.

             Capital Campaign begins to build a larger facility.

2009    February 28 – staff moves into the new Women’s Center building:  26,246 square feet on 2.5 acres.

             September 14 – Grand Opening for donors and the public.

2010    The Center changes its Mission Statement to better articulate its long standing work:

             Inspiring, teaching and empowering  women and families to overcome violence, crisis and poverty

2011    The Women’s Center continues serving over 95,000 women, men and children in Rape Crisis and Victim Services, Counseling and Employment.