House Managers

House Managers

Maxwell Shockley

Maxwell Shockley is the Hope Center manager, where he leads a gifted and collaborative team. He aspires for all youth at O’Connell to feel heard, enjoyed, and accepted, while serving them with guidance, teaching, and care.

Maxwell earned a Bachelor in Economics from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He has helped run youth ministries, explored stand-up comedy and puppetry, and completed master’s level coursework in spirituality and comedy. Maxwell has also worked in retail, founding a successful overstock furniture store emphasizing e-commerce and social media marketing.

In joining OCS Maxwell has returned to his focus on counseling and teaching, working to build an atmosphere of stability and joy for the Hope Center. Outside of work, Maxwell’s time is spent reading, drinking tea, taking care of his house, spending time with loved ones, and pursuing his interests in alternative therapy and positive psychology.

Cheryl “Dawn” Barnes

Dawn Barnes is the house manager of O’Connell House 1. After her own two children reached school age, Dawn began work as a paraprofessional in a high school. She discovered that she had an affinity for working with older kids who needed extra support and guidance. Dawn also began working with the high needs population, including a child with Rett Syndrome, teaching her the importance of patience, love, compassion and kindness. Dawn’s family also fostered and then adopted a 16-year-old high needs autistic boy, transitioning him into an adult group placement at age 21.

Her commitment to the growth and development of struggling youth led to her decision to join O’Connell Children’s Shelter. Dawn focuses each day not only on preparing the youth in House 1 for life outside foster care, but also ensuring that they know without a shadow of a doubt that they are loved and cared about.

Head shot of Dawn

Stevin Hays

Stevin Hays is the O’Connell House 2 manager. He finds that connecting with youth and seeing them grow and mature while at OCS is especially rewarding given that he grew up with a similar background. He comes to OCS with customer service and landscaping experience and EMT training.  

Important to Stevin are his family, friends, pets, and relationships. When not spending time with loved ones he enjoys enjoy physical activity/weight training, writing and producing music, and playing video games.  Plus—he’s diehard Kansas City Chiefs fan!

Lex Mapes

Lex Mapes is the house manager at Williams House, where he leads a dedicated team at the forefront of LGBTQ inclusive housing for youth in foster care. The primary goal of Williams House is to provide refuge from the discrimination and harassment that LGBTQ foster youth often face by celebrating, supporting, and centering their voices during their time in care.

While employed with OCS, Lex earned his Bachelor of Social Work at Washburn University. His passion for advocacy grew even stronger during his internship with the Kansas City Anti-Violence Project and later as a camp counselor for Kansas’ first ever LGBTQ+ youth leadership summit.

In his free time, he enjoys fostering for the Lawrence Humane Society and spending time outdoors with family and friends.

Head shot of Lex Mapes

Dyre Plunkett

Dyre Plunkett is the house manager at House 3. His experience includes supervisory or positions of management for over 6 years, working in food, retail, real estate, call centers, ride sharing, and contracting. Dyre can make a mean pizza from scratch. While the public school system didn’t help Dyre thrive, he gained a GED his senior year in high school and been working full time and seeking new learning opportunities ever since. 

He is inspired by the real impact O’Connell has on the youth served. With youth who either don’t know how or are otherwise unable to effectively communicate their needs, helping teach these skills by example and open communication is the one of the most important parts of his job.

Dyre has built bonds with the youth by building a community around the game Magic: The Gathering. The game teaches critical thinking, patience, mathematics, and communication skills. The relationships created through these experiences are invaluable for the youth. 

Olivia Corbett

Olivia Corbett is the house manager at Winter House. She has previously been the case coordinator at Winter, and began her career at O’Connell as a teaching assistant.