Welcome to Gateway Center of Monterey County

Gateway Center is a non-profit, located in Pacific Grove, CA. We run a variety of day and residential programs for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Our dedicated, professional staff provides a caring, supportive environment, which ensures that every individual we serve can live a full and rewarding life. All of our programs are designed around individualized, Person Centered Plans that promote Rights, Choices, and Opportunities for Growth.

Our mission:

At Gateway Center of Monterey County, we serve adults with Developmental Disabilities.  We fully support their individual rights and choices, and empower them to live full and productive lives with dignity and independence within the community.

Gateway in the News

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Monterey County Gives Campaign

Date: January 10, 2020

Update on the Monterey County Gives campaign - We raised $24,402.64!  Thank you all who gave this season to the Monterey County Gives campaign.  Your donations will go towards a much needed new elevator in our Intermediate Care Facility.  This elevator is used on a daily basis to transport clients to the art room, Gym and class rooms. 

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New Executive Director

Date: February 21, 2020

Announcing our New Executive Director, Robert Freiri!

The Board of Directors is proud to announce the appointment of Robert Freiri as Gateway Center’s new Executive Director. Robert comes to us with 30 years of experience in human services and the nonprofit sector. Robert will be responsible for managing our day-to-day operations as well as serving as the main public contact and spokesperson for Gateway. Robert will also help lead our efforts in program development, marketing/communication, finance and philanthropy, in addition to administration and governance. 

The Board is looking forward to working with Robert to build on Gateway’s many strengths.

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Mary Lou Cortright

Date: April 20, 2020

                                                                                                                                                                April 17, 2020

Sadly, Mary Lou Cortright a long-time friend and Gateway family member, passed away last week. She had been battling various health issues for many years.

Mary Lou was the mother of ICF resident David Pilnick. She was always a great supporter and friend of Gateway Center.

She served on the Board for 3 years from 2012-2015. In her service to the Board, she always provided steady, thoughtful advice and gave generously of her time.

Mary Lou was also a talented painter and spent many hours on special projects for Gateway. Whenever there was an event she would spend hours decorating many beautiful flyers, signs and posters. She also left us with a lasting legacy in the form of commemorative tiles. For many years, she created hand-painted tiles in commemoration of all of Gateway’s major donors. These can still be seen in the front lobby and in the living room area of our ICF1 residence.

Our hearts go out to David, his father Steven and to the rest of her family.

Her Obituary was published in Friday’s Monterey Herald. Here is a link to her on-line memorial:


A request was made that all memorial contributions be made in Mary Lou’s name to Gateway Center of Monterey County.


Jim Landman, Board Chairman

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Gateway Families

Date: April 20, 2020


April 20, 2020

Dear Gateway Families,

I wanted to touch base with you and fill you in on some of the recent things we are doing here at Gateway Center to keep our residents and employees as safe and healthy as possible.

Every staff member is being screened at the beginning of their shift, before entering their work site. They are also required to wear masks. Our janitorial service is working extra hours, constantly cleaning and sanitizing our entire Congress Ave. facility. Our off-site residences are also being constantly cleaned and sanitized.We are monitoring the latest information available from the CDC and the Calif Assn of Health Facilities (CAHF),daily to ensure that we continue to follow the latest, “Best Practices”.

For Families who have a loved one in one of our residences:

We have strict protocols in place and are doing as much as possible to prevent the virus from entering into our residences. Only regular staff are being allowed into the units and there is no sharing staff between the two ICF’s as in normal times. The staff is doing their best to have consumers practice social distancing within the ICF’s (challenging at times). Frequent hand washing is being practiced by both staff and consumers.

Day program staff are going into each ICF every weekday (during Day Program hours) to provide Day Program activities. There is no mixing of consumers or staff between the two ICF’s. Consumers who want to do art or fitness are being taken by staff in small groups downstairs to the fitness or art rooms (switching off between the two ICF’s on alternating days).When the weather is good, they can go outside with staff into the courtyard or out front to sit in the gazebo.

The residents have been troopers throughout this stressful time and the staff have been doing an amazing job, keeping everyone as safe, active and occupied.

For families with Day Program Consumers at home:

I wish I could give you a definite date or even a good guesstimate of when we will be able to welcome you back to Gateway Center but unfortunately, that’s impossible at this time.

Lately, Day Program staff members have been reaching out by telephone and on-line check-ins to consumers who are staying with their families. We have also been dropping off art and craft supplies and ideas to the homes of those who want them.  We recently added Zoom fitness sessions and are adding other new activities wherever we can. If you have any suggestions about activity ideas or support we can provide (without staff actually coming into your home) please let us know.

We continue to ask for your patience during this trying time. Please be assured that we want all our Day Program consumers back as much as they want to be back!

Please stay safe and healthy until we can all be together again.


Robert Freiri,

Executive Director, Gateway Center of Monterey County

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Date: May 04, 2020

Gateway Center of Monterey County would like to thank ALL the donors who participated in our #GIVINGTUESDAYNOW Campaign!!! With the Match we raised (Drum Roll Please) ..... $17,150!!!! We have already started putting your donations to work!!

Thank you…stay well,

Robert Freiri

Executive Director


To my son David, Gateway Center is the place where he lives among friends, enjoying as much independence as he can safely assert. He loves the constant activity of group living, and especially enjoys the staff. Though he enjoys visiting with family, he clearly values the autonomy and respect he finds at Gateway. There’s always something going on! As a Mom, I value the peace of mind Gateway provides. Now my son’s future is secure with friends, activities, and a rich social life.

The continued success of Gateway Center is not only vitally important to the residents and staff, but to the families who treasure the quality of life their loved ones would not otherwise enjoy as well. Gateway Center is not an institution warehousing the unfortunate. Gateway Center is a vibrant community that encourages each special resident to be the best that they can be.

Mary Lou/Mother of David, Gateway Resident

How reassuring it is to know that my Granddaughter is living happily under the secure roof of Gateway Center. I am grateful that she is healthy and safe, that she continues to learn how to function in and out of Gateway Center, and that she is receiving tender loving care. Such facilities are difficult to locate when trying to find placement for a family member who is developmentally disabled. We are fortunate. Lisa is encouraged to function to the highest extent of her ability in every area.

Mez/Grandmother of Lisa, Gateway Resident

I believe that the programs Gateway Center provides are excellent because they allow individuals to truly engage in the community and learn new things along the way."

Christopher’s brother, Mark, is ecstatic that Christopher has the opportunity to be a part of the Community Based Program. He believes that the program has improved his brother’s quality of life significantly because it gives Christopher the opportunity to express himself out in the community and is not limited to one place and he is always doing something new. Mark sees more excitement coming from Christopher since he has joined the Community Based program because he enjoys doing their daily activities and socializing with his friends.

Mark Elstob/Brother of Christopher, Gateway Resident