Why a New York Nun Fought the Power

Fifty years ago Sister Paulette LoMonaco, a young nun from Queens, went to work for a small social services agency called Good Shepherd Services, serving as a house mother at a group home for teenage girls in crisis near Union Square. Within a decade she was running the organization, building it into a one-stop services provider with a budget of almost $100 million.

She worked with the city to shape its pilot after-school program, and was also a force behind transfer high schools, which offered adult dropout students a second chance. She also had a hand in reshaping the city’s foster care system, shifting the emphasis from removing children from troubled homes to propping up those families to keep them together.

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