Community gains support with new Extension family life educator

Illinois Extension welcomes Robin Ridgley

Whether you’re in the middle of raising toddlers or learning to navigate the needs of your aging parents, each stage of life brings new challenges. The University of Illinois Extension family life team is available to help connect you with information and resources based on sound science and best practices and walk with you every step of the way.

Robin Ridgley is the newest member of the family life team serving Franklin, Jackson, Perry, Randolph, and Williamson Counties within the heart of Southern Illinois.

“We’re excited to welcome Robin to the Illinois Extension team. As a family life educator, her work will address important issues that many families face, especially during a global pandemic,” says Lynn Heins, Extension county director. “Her program priorities relate to social-emotional wellness, brain health, and family relationships. Much of Robin’s work aligns with community partners and results in larger impact for our communities.”

A native of Benton, Illinois, and a two-time Southern Illinois University alumna, Ridgley received her bachelor’s degree in elementary education and a master’s degree in education administration. She has many years of experience teaching in the public-school system and most recently served as a family services school-based counselor and a prevention specialist at Centerstone, a not-for-profit mental health care provider. Ridgley has also served youth in foster care as a child welfare specialist at Lutheran Social Services of Illinois, a not-for-profit social services agency.  

She lives in Creal Springs with her husband, Rick Ridgley. Together, they lead a local support group for those who have experienced or are experiencing divorce. She also has three grown children and two grandchildren with whom she enjoys sharing her love of birding and collecting driftwood.

Ridgley is excited to connect with local partners and community members as she provides educational programming and resources on healthy living throughout the lifespan. She is based in the Williamson County office and can be reached at or (618) 993-3304.

WRITER: Heather Willis, Marketing and Communications Coordinator
SOURCE: Robin Ridgley, Family Life Educator

ABOUT EXTENSION: Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities