MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

July 2, 2013

CASA names Advocates of the Year

— Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children Inc. announced its Advocates of the Year during its annual appreciation luncheon and board meeting.  

Donna Ausmus from Muskogee County and Mary Jane Bias from Wagoner County were recognized on June 14 at the Spaulding Scout House as the Advocates of the Year for their outstanding efforts, according to a media release.

Ausmus has been an advocate for six years. She has had eight cases with 15 children. Ausmus strives to improve by attending in-service training including several trips to Oklahoma City for the Oklahoma CASA Conference.

Bias has been an advocate for one year. She has had two cases with four children. One involves a medically fragile child in the Bethany Children's Home. Bias has proven she can has the ability to work on the most difficult cases.

Advocates who have reached the five-year mark of service are: Beverly Knight, Sheryl Thygesen, Eric Blackwood, Stan Anthis, Sheila Yandell, Janey Boydston, Dawn Marie Burns, Helen Bumgarner, Barbara Clinkenbeard and Leah Bevan. Advocates who have served 10 years or more are Randy Patterson, David Steele and Anita Weibel.

The board of directors elected a new slate of officers. David Kolb was elected president. He is an insurance agent with State Farm and has been an active member of the CASA board for four years.

Other officers elected were: vice president, Karen Bias; secretary, Vickey Steele; treasurer, Mike Hewitt.

Newly elected board members are Glenda Herrera, Terri Craig and Derryl Venters, who will serve as the advocate representative.

CASA is a non-profit organization that recruits, screens, trains and supervises community volunteers to work with abused and neglected children in juvenile court in Muskogee and Wagoner counties.

Information: (918) 686-8199 or email casaforchildren@sbcglobal.

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