Parent Mentors

Loreena Hegenbart

North Central Region

Counties Served: Carroll, Boone, Marion, Baxter, Fulton, Sharp, Izard, Stone, Independence, Cleburne, Van Buren, Conway, Searcy, White, Faulkner, Newton
(870) 897.4175

Loreena has extensive knowledge and first-hand experience working with a wide spectrum of physical and mental disabilities. Having been affected by disabilities through a sibling and one of her own children, her passion for obtaining the most inclusive education possible and improving her loved one’s quality of life quickly became a career for advocacy work with families and children with disabilities.

She is a board member of the Arkansas Empowering Families with DeafBlindness (AEFDB) and is a recipient of the “Starfish Award” from the Care Coordinating Council Members. She is also a committee member of Project Sparkle, a workshop project of CAYSI.

Loreena is well versed in military life and is TCFEF’s Military Liaison.  She coordinates the outreach efforts to this population through active participation in the nationwide Military Family Support Online Discussion Group.  This group helps military families find Parent Training and Information Centers and provides other supports as the families’ transition from state to state.

She enjoys “RV-ing” to visit family, especially the grandchildren, friends, and touring beautiful places throughout America.

Tracy Risley

Northwest Arkansas/River Valley Region

Counties Served: Benton, Washington, Madison, Crawford, Franklin, Johnson, Pope, Sebastian, Logan, Yell, Scott, Polk, Montgomery
(870) 897.4174

Tracy has more than 20 years of experience as a public school special education teacher.  She has worked as an elementary resource and self-contained special education teacher as well as an early childhood instruction specialist.  During those years, Tracy facilitated the transition of children 0 to 3 years old into preschool as well as the transition of hundreds of children from early childhood services into the public school kindergarten.  She has been with TCFEF since March of 2016. 

In addition to her role as a Parent Mentor, Tracy also serves as Curriculum/training Coordinator as well as Early Intervention Coordinator.  She is responsible for the creation and development of TCFEF presentations, workshops, as well as TCFEF created materials & parent resources.  Tracy acts as the TCFEF representative on state level boards and local committees to coordinate outreach to families of children birth – 3 in need of early intervention services.  

Tracy has extensive knowledge and experience working with children with a wide range of disabilities and their families but has a passion for individuals on the autism spectrum. She has worked with speech-language pathologists, occupational and physical therapists and has an insight into the special characteristics of this population, including sensory processing issues.  She holds a Master’s Degree in Special Education; Learning & Instruction from The University of Missouri, Columbia.

Tracy is the TCFEF representative on the State Professional Development Grant (SPDG) Core Management team where she functions as the Family & Community Liaison.  This provides her with additional insight into the state’s work on Response to Intervention (RTI).  She is excited for her work on the new SPDG grant which will assist State educational agencies in reforming and improving their systems for personnel preparation and professional development to improve results for students with disabilities.

Karen Lutrick

Southwest Region

Counties Served:  Garland, Hot Springs, Clark, Pike, Howard, Sevier, Little River, Hempstead, Nevada, Ouachita, Union, Columbia, Lafayette, Jefferson, Grant, Bradley, Cleveland, Dallas, Calhoun, Miller
(501) 398.1667

Karen Lutrick has advocated for children and adults with disabilities for more than 20 years as an educational advocate and resource provider.  Karen enjoys sharing information and empowering individuals to achieve equality.  She is parent to three adult children, the youngest an individual with a disability.

Katy Cravens

Delta Region

Counties Served: Cross, Woodruff, St. Francis, Monroe, Lee, Phillips, Desha, Chicot, Ashley, Drew, Lincoln, Arkansas
(870) 253.8777

Katy hails from Southeast Arkansas and has lived and worked in the Delta region for more than a decade. Previously she served as the Delta Region Liaison for the Arkansas Autism Resource and Outreach Center where she was involved with outreach efforts and parent support groups.

Katy is a member of the Arkansas Parent Advisory Council (PAC), Kiwanis Club, and serves on the Family Advisory Council of the Excel By Eight Project.  Through personal experience with her own loved ones being affected by disabilities and chronic health conditions, Katy has learned a great deal about available services and how to assist others in their journey.

She and her husband have two children and enjoy working on their family farm in Phillips County. She is a big believer in the power of Faith and loves learning and growing.

Central Region

Counties Served: Saline, Pulaski, Lonoke, Prairie, Perry
(870) 897-4254

Teresa Hendrix

Northeast Region

Counties Served: Randolph, Clay, Greene, Lawrence, Craighead, Mississippi, Poinsett, Jackson, Crittenden
(870) 897-4254

Teresa is a newly retired special educator. She spent the last 35 years in education as both a special education teacher and administrator. Teresa has a passion for special education that began as a small child visiting a Lions’ Club nursery school for the blind in Memphis, TN. Having a close family member with a visual disability has allowed Teresa to see the unique challenges facing families and students with disabilities.  

Teresa has worn many hats over her years in public school teaching general education, special education and acting as special education supervisor for the Trumann School District and Jonesboro Public Schools. Teresa is also well-versed in high school transition, having worked for Arkansas Transition Services for several years.

Her years in special education allowed her the opportunity to provide many different services. Teresa loved her students and enjoyed developing lasting relationships with families.