To start out their work session on Thursday night, the Dawson County Board of Commissioners recognized former Dawson County Family Connection Coordinator Nancy Stites, who retired earlier this year after heading the organization for 15 years.
Before taking photos with Stites and presenting her with bouquets of flowers, community leaders thanked the retiring non-profit leader for her many years of service to the people of Dawson County.
Dawson County Family Connection is part of a statewide and nationwide networking organization, which works to assess the needs of families and children, helping to address those needs through partnerships with local organizations like non-profits, school systems, law enforcement offices and judicial systems.
According to the Dawson County Family Connection website, http://dawson.gafcp.org/, Family Connection can be found in every county in the state of Georgia.
Speaking to Stites and the gathered audience on Thursday night, Commission Chairman Billy Thurmond said that Stites work with Dawson County Family Connection over the last 15 years has been outstanding, stating that she had undoubtedly elevated the organization the where it is today.
“Her dedication and work ethic is unsurpassed,” Thurmond said. “I’ve had the pleasure, since being the chairman, to serve on the board and represent this board at family connection and have been able to see first hand the work that her and her staff do for the citizens of this great community.”
In Dawson County, Family Connection spearheads a variety of different programs and issue-based initiatives, including School-based youth healthcare services, mentoring programs, substance abuse awareness and suicide prevention.
Rebecca Bliss, who has worked with Stites over the past five years and who now serves as Dawson County Family Connection Coordinator, said that she is awed at the impact the former coordinator has had during the last decade and a half.
“I know that you have affected all of us in a positive manner, but I can’t imagine the amount of kids and families in this county that are better simply because of you,” Bliss said. “I hope I follow well in your footsteps and I hope you enjoy retirement, because you have earned it, earned it, earned it.”
Following kind words spoken by other community leaders, Stites said that she was honored at the recognition, thanking the community for supporting Family Connection during her tenure as coordinator.
“I love family connection, I love the work that they do, I love that I have been able to meet so many people in the community,” Stites said. “A big thank you to the whole community, we can’t do it without each other.”