Hocking County Ohio Juvenile Justice Fellow Recognized for Outstanding Service

Yessika Barber, Hocking County Ohio Reclaiming Futures Juvenile Justice Fellow, received the Hocking County Substance Abuse Prevention Award on Monday, October 28 at the Athens-Hocking-Vinton 317 Board (also known as Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board) annual meeting. Board member Erin Gibson nominated Yessika, and shared the following about her decision,

Yessika is very active in the community and is an excellent example of someone who puts children and the community first. She serves as a reminder that for us to raise healthy, strong children we, as a whole, need to work together to provide them with good examples and a safe community.
I am so very lucky to call Yessika a friend, and yes, she is a probation officer, but to the families she touches every day, she is a cheerleader, a shoulder to cry on, a shining light of guidance and a constant source of encouragement. We would like to thank you for all that you do Yessika, and please, keep up the good work!

Yessika has been an employee for the Hocking County Juvenile Court for almost six years, serving as a Juvenile Justice Fellow and Specialized Docket Probation Officer for most of that time. When I asked her what the award meant to her, she explained,

My hope was renewed. It means I have to work harder to move bigger mountains and I think receiving it as a probation officer says a lot in respect to how far we have come from the hammer to the strength-based aspect of this field where kids can really find hope in themselves and the system.

I would like to take the opportunity to congratulate Yessika, on behalf of the National Program Office and the Reclaiming Futures network, for receiving this prestigious award. She truly deserves it!
If you know of any local Reclaiming Futures leaders receiving accolades for their work, please email me because it’s important to share the success stories and news with our national learning collaborative and the field. We love to show off your great work!

As a new staff member at Reclaiming Futures, Christa Myers joins the team as the Fellowship Program Manager. She most recently worked for 5.5 years as the Project Director for Hocking County Reclaiming Futures at the Logan, Ohio site and also served as Program Coordinator for the Juvenile Drug Treatment Court specialized docket. Appointed as a coach by the National Program Office in 2010 to work with Hardin County, Ohio, she expanded her coaching responsibilities to also include Forsyth County, NC and Lucas County, OH in 2012. She received her BA in Biology with minors in German and Russian Area Studies at Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio, with her main work experience in the area of youth development. Her previous positions include: Ohio State University Extension, Hocking County (4-H program); National Crime Prevention Council, Youth Division in Washington, DC; Foundation for Appalachian Ohio; Sunday Creek Associates (Youth Entrepreneurial Project). Christa has been an active community member and served on many local boards, intertwining her interests in photography, ceramics and travel with creating and sustaining programs and volunteering. A focus of her fundraising efforts has been on the issue of hunger, helping to raise over $150,000 through multiple years participation in the Empty Bowls project.

Updated: February 08 2018