The Arc of Katy got its start in 1989 when staff from the Katy Independent School District's Special Education Department hosted an informational meeting about what was then called The Association for Retarded Citizens (ARC), today known as The Arc. The meeting, held at the KISD Outdoor Learning Center, and attended by Katy ISD staff and parents of students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) led to the start of The Arc of Katy.
The second organizational meeting was held on Sept. 19, 1989 at the Holy Covenant United Methodist Church in Katy, TX. and included Janelle Jordan, President of the ARC of Texas who gave direction in forming the organization.
The Arc of Katy’s Board of Directors was established and the first officers were elected at the Sept. 19th meeting. Elected officers included; Ann Davis, President; William M. House, Vice President; Betty Crites, Secretary; and Yolanda Gassert, Treasurer. Board of Directors were Fran Clark-Fielder, Joe Sosa, J. Douglas Trani, and Gordon Fielder. The initial 38 members approved the Articles of Incorporation, constitution and by-laws. On August 2, 1990 the Articles of Incorporation were approved by the Secretary of State of Texas.
During the first year, and for many years to follow, the Arc of Katy membership meetings focused on topics such as inclusion of students with disabilities in the community and general education, guardianship, and estate planning. In addition, The organization was able to provide financial assistance to special education teachers to attend seminars and trainings on various special education topics.
Dances, parties, and occasional picnics for families were hosted by The Arc of Katy beginning in 1989. Many of the first social events were held at the Club House in Williamsburg Settlement and chaired by Diane Nicodemus, Peggy Dougherty and Robert and Barbara Dale. Music for dances at some of the social events was provided by Tim and Debbie Ford using their cassette tape player and Tim’s pre-recorded dance tunes. The Social Committee would use their own money to buy pizza for the social events.
In February of 2005, The Arc of Katy started the four day a week Adult Activity Day Program for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) during the school year and a Summer Day Program for adolescents and adults with IDD.
Over the years the Adult Day Program and Summer Program were located at various locations in the community. A more permanent location was established when the Katy YMCA provided the use of Camp Cinco for the Adult Day Program. The Summer Program was held at the Cornerstone Presbyterian Church.
On January 4, 2018 The Arc of Katy moved into its own building after the facility provided by the Katy YMCA was destroyed by the flood waters from Hurricane Harvey in August 2017. Moving into the building located in downtown Katy at 5819 10th Street, Suite C, Katy, TX was the achievement of a long-term goal of The Arc of Katy of having its own building to serve as home for the Adult Day Program and Summer Program. Through the help of the Board of Directors, parents, Arc participants and community donations the building was transformed into an inviting facility for the Adult Day Program and Summer Program.
The Arc of Katy is a 501(c)(3) under federal tax guidelines.