A commemorative clock sits on a white table

Community Resources for Justice recently held its annual awards event, giving special recognition to five outstanding employees who went above and beyond during the last year.

President and CEO Deb O’Brien presented the awards, which recognize employees who, through their hard work, show their dedication to the qualities that are the cornerstones of CRJ’s mission: integrity, excellence, creativity, and compassion. This year’s event was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic on Dec. 16.

Barbara Durham-Goodwin, from Community Strategies-New Hampshire, received the 2020 Compassion Award recognizing kindness and empathy that promotes a safe, just, and inclusive environment for the individuals we serve. Barbara is a tireless advocate for the two individuals who live in the home she manages and a valued member of the team in Keene. Earlier this year she took an individual who was going to become homeless into her home and supported him for weeks until he was able to access a permanent housing solution.

Vienna Thompkins, senior data and policy specialist at the Crime and Justice Institute, received the 2020 Integrity Award recognizing employees who exemplify dependability, reliability, and honesty in a way that sets a high standard for themselves and those around them. Vienna is a strong advocate for initiatives designed to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion, and she volunteers to improve CJI’s recruiting efforts. She helps colleagues with data work, shows passion for what she does, and brings great energy to projects.

Chelsey Kilty, from Community Strategies-Massachusetts, received the 2020 Creativity Award recognizing imagination, resourcefulness, and innovation in overcoming challenges. Chelsey, who was nominated in multiple categories this year, is known for being a wealth of knowledge and was instrumental in launching a new electronic medical record system. She assists and trains program managers and staff across Massachusetts, and coworkers describe her as a mentor, advisor, and teacher.

Pierre Lubin, CRJ’s Vice President of Human Resources and Culture, received the 2020 Excellence Award recognizing employees whose work is of the highest standard and results in superior service and distinction for CRJ. Pierre often works nights and weekends to solve issues and made sure all staff at CRJ’s administrative office had personal protective equipment and cleaning supplies, shopping for supplies and delivering them to the office on weekends. He oversees benefits, legal issues, and numerous aspects of CRJ’s operations.

Joe Jarvis, director of the Coolidge House reentry program, received the 2020 CEO Award, which recognizes employees who exemplify commitment to CRJ’s mission of changing lives and strengthening communities. Joe was a leader in developing CRJ’s reentry programs’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic, setting up new procedures and protocols to protect staff and residents. He also helped train staff in CRJ’s newest reentry program, LightHouse in Buffalo, N.Y., and continues to assist them.

O’Brien also announced the creation of a new annual award named for Kossivi Dogbey, a longtime CRJ employee who passed away in October. The award will be added to the next year’s event to honor an employee who provides direct services to individuals in Community Strategies or Social Justice Service programs and who exemplifies the dedication, selflessness, and caring that Kossivi brought to his work with CRJ for 15 years.

This year’s annual awards also recognized long-tenured CRJ employees, including:

  • Cynthia Daniels, Social Justice Services (30+ years)
  • Michelle McCormick, Community Strategies-Massachusetts (24 years)
  • Sue Whitney, Community Strategies-Massachusetts (23 years)
  • Kris Kelley, Community Strategies-Massachusetts (21 years)
  • Tia Tallman, Community Strategies-New Hampshire (20 years)
  • Dorothy Ellis, Social Justice Services (20 years)
  • David Lucey, Social Justice Services (20 years)
  • Marcy Rosenthal, Administration and Social Justice Services (20 years)