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“A time to Celebrate” — Parting words of retiring Adams County Human Services Director, Donald Cassata, PhD

DONALD M. CASSATA, PH.D.

March 31, 2012

FIRST OF ALL I WISH TO THANK EACH OF YOU FOR BEING HERE TODAY.  I THANK MY WIFE AND STAFF.  IT IS TIME TO CELEBRATE (ITC):

IN SOME WAY EACH OF YOU HAVE MADE IT POSSIBLE FOR ME TO BE SUCCESSFUL IN ACCOMPLISHING OUR MISSION.  IT IS ONE THING TO BE A LEADER BUT A LEADER ONLY CAN BE SUCCESSFUL IF THERE ARE COMPETENT AND DEDICATED PEOPLE WHO LEAD THE WAY.

IN MY OPINION ADAMS COUNTY IS A LEADER IN IMPLEMENTING HUMAN SERVICES PROGRAMS FOR THE STATE OF COLORADO.

 

ITC:  FOR HERE IN ADAMS COUNTY WE HAVE FOLLOWED A BUSINESS MODEL THAT HAS ADDED EFFICIENCY AND POSITIVE OUTCOMES IN SERVING THE CITIZENS OF THE COUNTY.  WE HAVE UTILIZED EVIDENCE BASED DECISION MAKING, CONTINUOUS QUALITY IMPROVEMENT, AND PERFORMANCE BASED CONTRACTS IN OUR GOVERNMENT MANDATED PROGRAM ADMINISTRATION.

PUBLIC SERVICE IS A VERY NOBLE ENDEAVOR, THAT WHICH WE ARE INVOLVED.

 

ITC:  FOR ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I HAVE OBSERVED IS THAT GIVEN THIS ECONOMIC DOWNTURN AND THE INCREASED CASELOADS, AND MORE DIFFICULT CASES, STAFF HAVE MAINTAINED A POSITIVE ATTITUDE, HIGH MORALE, AND A CAN DO SPIRIT IN BEING THE SAFETY NET FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES IN THE COUNTY.

 

ITC:  FOR HOW MANY OF THE “BEST PRACTICE” PROGRAMS WE HAVE IN THE STATE. WE ARE RECOGNIZED FOR OUR TANF PROGRAM, WORKFORCE AND BUSINESS CENTER, CHILD SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT, CHILD WELFARE, LEAP, FOOD ASSISTANCE, OUR MILITARY PROGRAM, THE SPECIAL WAY WE IMPLEMENT THE CHILD ONLY PROGRAM, MEDICAID ACCURACY AND TIMING, A STRONG HEAD START AND EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION PROGRAM, AND ONE OF THE BEST ADULT PROTECTION TEAMS, ADULT SERVICES, AND FRAUD AND RECOVERY UNITS IN THE STATE.

 

ITC:  FOR OUR EFFORTS IN PROVIDING CHILD CARE SERVICES THAT ARE TIMELY AND CUSTOMER SERVICE CENTERED.  OUR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT DIVISION PROVIDES A MARIAD OF GRANTS AND FUNDING TO AGENCIES THAT ASSIST US IN SERVING THE COMMUNITY AND NEIGHBORHOODS.  THE FINANCE/BUSINESS OFFICE IS TOPS IN COORDINATING OUR MISSION IN CHILD WELFARE, ELIGIBILITY PROGRAMS, CHILD CARE AND SO FORTH.

ITC:  FOR OUR SERVICE AND DEDICATION THAT WE PROVIDE THE CITIZENS OF ADAMS COUNTY, IF IT IS PROTECTING CHILDREN, KEEPING CHILDREN SAFE, AND KEEPING FAMILIES TOGETHER OR FINDING PERMANANCY AND ADOPTING CHILDREN, OR IF IT IS KEEPING FAMILIES FROM BEING HOMELESS, MOVING THEM FROM WELFARE TO WORK, OR HELPING THEM GET A JOB, PROVIDING TRAINING, APPROPRIATE CHILD CARE, OR PROVIDING FOOD AND HEALTH CARE FOR THOSE WHO ARE HAVING HARD TIMES.  OUR PROGRAM TO HELP THOSE THAT HAVE DISABILITIES OR PHYSICAL IMPAIRMENTS IS ONE OF THE MOST SUCCESSFUL IN THE STATE.  OUR PHILOSOPHY HAS ALWAYS BEEN FOCUSED ON PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY AND HELPING THOSE WHOM NEED OUR HELP AND BE ABLE TO ASSIST THEM IN HELPING THEMSELVES.

 

ITC:  FOR WE ARE THE SAFETY NET IN PROVIDING ASSISTANCE FOR LONG TERM CARE, THOSE WHO ARE IMPAIRED AND DISABLED, THOSE WHO NEED CHILD AND ADULT PROTECTION, AND FOR THE PAST 24 MONTHS THE CONDUIT FOR DEALING WITH THE CRISIS FOR CHILDREN, FAMILIES OR INDIVIDUALS TO HAVE FOOD ASSISTANCE OR FOR THOSE WHO NEED ASSISTANCE IN GETTING A JOB AND A PLACE TO LIVE.

 

WE COULD NOT HAVE ACCOMPLISHED WHAT WE HAVE WITHOUT OUR COMMUNITY PARTNERS:  COMMUNITY REACH, TRICOUNTY HEALTH, OUR HOUSING AGENCIES, OUR COMMUNITY HEALTH AGENCIES, GOODWILL INDUSTRIES, FAMILY TREE, COMMUNITY COLLEGE OF AURORA, ALTERNATIVES FOR FAMILY VIOLENCE, AND ALL OF OUR NUMEROUS CHILD WELFARE PROVIDERS AND AGENCIES SUCH AS SHILOH HOUSE, AND CASA. ETC.  LASTLY, A STRONG PARTNERSHIP HAS EXISTED BETWEEN THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE, SHERIFF’S OFFICE AND THE 17TH JUDICIAL COURT.

 

OUR ULTIMATE GOAL, WHEN IT IS POSSIBLE, IS TO MOVE PEOPLE TOWARDS SELF SUFFICIENCY AND HAVE THEM BECOME LESS DEPENDENT UPON GOVERNMENT ASSISTANCE, AND GIVE PEOPLE THE OPPORTUNITY TO ACHIEVE A SAFE AND SUBTAINABLE LIFE.

THESE ARE THE THINGS THAT WE ALL SHOULD CELEBRATE—THESE ARE THE THINGS THAT MADE MY WORK NOT WORK AND THE WORK OF STAFF AND OUR PARTNERS MOST NOBLE, THIS IS BECAUSE GIVEN OUR MISSION WE ARE MAKING A POSITIVE DIFFERENCE IN THE LIVES OF OTHERS AND I THANK YOU, FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART, FOR MAKING ALL OF THESE ACCOMPLISHMENTS POSSIBLE AND THANK YOU FOR THE OPPORTUNITY TO SERVE THESE PAST 16 YEARS.  IT HAS BEEN A POSITIVE JOURNEY AND I THANK EACH OF YOU.

IT IS TIME TO CELEBRATE