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Mission to Serve

About Progressive Directions, Inc.

Progressive Directions, Inc. is a nonprofit charitable organization established over forty years ago in Clarksville, TN. Since then, PDI has been guided by its mission to support individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities by providing innovative programs and delivering transformative services to the community.  We currently support over 1,000 persons in 12 counties in Middle and West Tennessee. PDI continues reinforcing core beliefs by helping individuals attain personal success through gaining pride, dignity, and independence.

There is no cure for an intellectual disability, but services and supports play an important role to enable persons supported to thrive throughout their lifetimes. Services for people with an intellectual disability and their families are primarily there to provide adequate support to allow for all persons to be active and included in their communities. These services touch their daily lives through education, justice, housing, recreation, employment, healthcare and more.

The Mayor presented PDI with a proclamation making September 11-17, 2016 “Direct Support Professionals Recognition Week” in Clarksville-Montgomery County. From left to right: Octavious Williams (Program Coordinator), Jim Durrett (Montgomery County Mayor), Amy Caudill (VP of Region I) and Jay Albertia (President/CEO).


  • 1976
    The Smiles Center was established The Center’s mission was to serve adults with intellectual disabilities in the Clarksville Tennessee area. The center provided day services to the original 8 individuals whose families founded the concept that same year.
  • 1978
    Name changed to Progressive Directions, Inc.
  • 1979
    Expansion of services
    Expanded services to provide residential support, opening the first group home in Clarksville.
  • 1983
    Services expanded again
    Services expanded to provide residential and day services to individuals residing in Stewart County. As the population aged, it became necessary to provide more intensive medical supports, leading to the agency to add nursing services as well as Medical Residential Supports.
  • 1984
    The Children’s program was added with a mission to support children identified with developmental and/or intellectual disabilities.
  • 2000

    Built an integrated preschool/early intervention program named Kids Depot.

  • 2003
    Purchased a building
    In order to accommodate the growing Day Service program, the building at 170 W. Dunbar Cave Road in Clarksville was purchased. This was made possible by a very generous donation from Clarksville’s Jim Amos. This building replaced the space previously being leased, saving money and building equity in the community.
  • 2006
    Expanded the Kids Depot facility
    Kids Depot added a 7,200 square foot building on the existing property.
  • 2007

    Merge with Buddy Ball Special Needs Athletic League Buddy Ball provided league sports for any person with a physical or intellectual disability. Baseball, bowling, basketball and cheerleading were modified so any person could participate no matter their special abilities.

  • 2011

    PDI took over operation of the Montgomery County Thrift Store
    The store now provides employment training through our Supported Employment Program as well as continuing to meet the needs of individuals with limited incomes.

  • 2013
    Awarded a grant through DIDD’s Employment Initiative
    The State of Tennessee adopted an initiative to ensure anyone who wishes to work in the community does so and awarded PDI a grant. Work began to become an employment network with expansion anticipated into surrounding counties.
  • 2016
    Merge with Impact Centers, Inc.
    This expanded our service area to 4 more counties: Giles, Hickman, Marshall, and Maury.
  • Current
    PDI supports over 1,000 individuals in Middle Tennessee.