By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Atlantic Area CASA recognizes top volunteers
IMG 5941
Patricia Waye, center, receives the Atlantic Area CASA Volunteer of the Year award for Liberty and Long counties from Debra Morris-Reed, left, the chairwoman of the regional Court Appointed Special Advocates, and Petula Gomillion, the agency's executive director during Business After Hours at LaQuinta Inn in Hinesville on Thursday. - photo by Jason Wermers

Atlantic Area Court Appointed Special Advocates and Hargray co-hosted Business After Hours on Thursday evening at LaQuinta Inn in Hinesville.

During the event, organized by the Liberty County Chamber of Commerce and Convention and Visitors Bureau, Atlanta Area CASA recognized four Volunteers of the Year for different parts of its territory. 

Atlanta Area CASA serves eight counties: Liberty, Long, Bryan, McIntosh, Tattnall, Evans, Ware and Pierce, said Petula Gomillion, the agency’s executive director.

CASA relies on “a very small amount of staff” and a number of volunteers to advocate for children who have been abused or neglected, to ensure that those children are not returned to the same conditions that caused them to be abused in the first place, she said.

“We really, truly invest our time in recruiting the right people to be a part of our CASA network because, as you can see, we are dealing with very vulnerable individuals in our community,” Gomillion said after showing a brief video explaining CASA’s mission. “We do not want a child to be re-offended while they’re in care. So it’s important that we advocate for them so that we’ll make sure that before they go back home to their birth family that that house has been taken care, has been cleaned up, or that offender is no longer in existence for that child.” 

Gomillion and Debra Morris-Reed, the Atlantic Area CASA board chairwoman, handed out the Volunteer of the Year awards to:

Patricia Waye, Liberty and Long countiesNorma Bailey, McIntosh CountyLinda Vaccaro, Bryan CountyNettie Williams, Ware County

Before the CASA presentation, two major-account representatives from Hargray, a regional telecommunications company, kicked off the ceremonial part of Business After Hours. They were Adam Rusgrove, the representative for Hinesville and Richmond Hill, and Phillip D. Scroggin Sr., the representative for Bryan, Bulloch and Liberty counties. Helping start this portion of the event was Leah Poole, the CEO of the Chamber and CVB.


Sign up for our e-newsletters