Mary Lou Goeke has held the position of Executive Director of United Way of Santa Cruz County from 1992 to the present. She is responsible for overall management and administration for the organization including strategic planning, new program development, financial oversight, liaison with funded community agencies, the business community, and government partners. She founded and staffs the Community Assessment Project, the internationally recognized, second oldest community progress report in the United States. From 1981 to 1992, she held positions of increasing responsibility with Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, the San Francisco Bay Area's largest private human services and community development agency. Initially hired as Director of Aging Services in the San Francisco County branch agency, she then became Director of Parish and Community Services in that agency and then Executive Director of the San Francisco County agency. She then held the position of General Director and CEO of the three county agencies, which includes San Francisco, Marin and San Mateo counties. In addition, as General Director she held two other related positions: Archdiocesan Director, Catholic Relief Services and Archdiocesan Director, Campaign for Human Development.
Prior to working for Catholic Charities, she served from 1979 to 1981 with the American Society for Aging as Policy and Legislation Coordinator. Before that, she worked from 1975 to 1979 for the State of Missouri Department of Aging, starting as a Field Representative and being promoted to the position of Director of Planning, Research and Evaluation.