DCFS names Suzann Henry employee of the year

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Suzann Rodgers Henry was named "Employee of the Year" by the Arkansas Department of Human Services, Division of Children and Family Services, at a banquet held in Hot Springs last month.

Cecile Blucher, DCFS director, presents Suzann Henry with Employee of the Year award at state convention in Hot Springs last month. (photo provided)

Henry is the daughter of the late Donald and Betty Rodgers of Black Oak and is a 1978 graduate of Monette High School. She and her husband Vernon Henry make their home in Paragould.

"Suzann began her career at DCFS on Jan. 30, 1983, and has seen us go from using a paper file to computer files," DCFS Director Cecile Blucker said. " This is not an easy career to commit over 20 years of your life to, but that is exactly what Suzann Henry, of Craighead County, has done. Working with children and families related to child abuse and neglect is a field that has many gray areas, life and death decisions, and expectations from within the department and community partners that no other division experiences.

"To be able to manage and reflect best practices when interacting with children and families in our system, community providers, as well as other department employees, and maintain a reputation that is reflective of hard work, honesty, respect and community commitment is admirable.

"Suzann has served many roles within DCFS and currently serves as Acting Area Manager for Area 8," Blucker said. "She goes above and beyond the call of duty."

"She believes that children first and foremost belong with their families if anyway possible and remain safe. If the child must be removed for safety reasons, she ensures that there is a connection with the family maintained in anyway possible.

"She is well respected among her peers. Many of the area staff call to consult about a case, ask about policy issues, or just call because of Suzann's knowledge base and skills."

"Suzann has persevered though challenges that many people would have avoided," Blucker said. "Her steadfast focus on doing the right thing, no matter what, is what makes her our choice for the 2009 Employee of the Year."

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