Home Sweet Home

Dora Krasucki-Alex, ’74, ’00, brings to life her vision of a safe haven for women on the road to addiction recovery

Written by Kelly Stone
Photography by Mel Curtis
July 5, 2011

There is no other place that Dora “D” Krasucki-Alex, ’74,’00, would like to be on a Saturday than the Mary McClinton home, a newly renovated house for women recovering from addiction. “This home has been a vision of mine for a long time,” says Dora, a neurobiology nurse who has worked in the field of chemical dependency for 35 years. “For me, I am in awe by God putting this all together. It’s overwhelming; this is truly a gift from God, and I’m so excited.”

The Mary McClinton home, located in the inner city of Seattle, can house up to six women at a time who can reside there for up to a year.

“It’s about women learning to live in community with one another,” says Dora. While staying in the home, resident will receive intensive drug and alcohol treatment, as well as therapy. They will also be a part of service work in the community and will have the opportunity to take classes in areas such as budgeting, finances and parental skills.

There is a need for this type of housing for women, says Dora, who notes that women ages 12-24 are the fastest growing population in the criminal justice and mental health systems, as well as in addiction and recovery treatment programs.

“The gift of an SU education requires that a person look at the world around them, look at the needs before them and ask, ‘What can I do to make a difference.’”
—Dora Krasucki-Alex, ’74,’00 

The Mary McClinton home was made possible through the support that Dora received and the generosity of many donors who helped in providing supplies and resources to make the house a real home. Donors who contributed to the project include GLY Construction and the Seattle Seahawks, among many others. In late spring the first two women moved into their new home, with others to soon follow.
The Mary McClinton home is the newest component of Seattle’s Matt Talbot Recovery Center, where Dora’s husband, Gregg Alex, ’00, is the executive director. The center offers an outpatient treatment program for the homeless and those with mental illness and substance addictions.

Gregg has been with the Matt Talbot Center since it opened in 1985. He credits his wife for his commitment to his work in recovery issues. Through Dora, Gregg was exposed to the world of detoxification and treatment. “I wanted to do something about a growing problem,” says Gregg.

Both Gregg and Dora received master’s degrees from Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry. Dora also went through SU’s Pastoral Leadership program, while Gregg completed a degree with an emphasis on chemical dependency issues.

Dora’s training as a nurse began at SU and the College of Nursing, which she graduated from in 1974. In addition to her work in neurobiology, Dora is a certified multiple sclerosis nurse. She has a master’s degree in public administration.

“The gift of the SU education requires that a person look at the world around them, look at the needs before them, and ask, ‘What can I do to make a difference?’” says Gregg.

Currently, Dora is on the board of the School of Theology and Ministry. In her work, Dora has been able to tap into her SU education. “You need to be educationally and spiritually prepared for this type of work and I have been well trained to do what I do,” Dora says. “I encourage people to take the moral education, along with the excellent academic preparation that they’ve received, and never use one without the other.”

The Mary McClinton home is the first of three phases Dora has designed to break the cycle of addiction. The second phase, which is in the planning stages, involves housing for women and their children; currently, the Mary McClinton home is for women only. The third phase is independent housing with the opportunity for home ownership.

When asked what motivates them and their work, Dora says it’s the “seeing people grow spiritually.” For Gregg, it’s a calling.

“I know this is what I’m supposed to do,” he says. “It’s non-negotiable.”


Dora “D” Krasucki-Alex sits in the community area of the Mary McClinton home. The women living there will receive welcome gifts as well as towels and linens donated by community partners.