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Concerted Services has 41st annual meeting
The Rev. James Joyce, Michael Thurmond and Ophelia K. Gaines - photo by Photo provided.
Concerted Services conducted its 41st annual board meeting Nov. 16 at First United Methodist Church in Waycross.
CSI is a community action agency that provides services in 28 counties in rural southeast Georgia. Programs include child development services (Head Start, Early Head Start and Pre-K), elderly services, weatherization, educational talent search, abused women and children’s shelter, residential services, commodities and energy assistance.
The Rev. James Joyce, executive board chairman, welcomed the large gathering. Clarence Billups, Waycross mayor-elect, gave greetings and the Rev. Andy Velie, executive board member and advisory board vice-chairman, gave the invocation.
Guest speaker for the event was Michael Thurmond, commissioner, Georgia Department of Labor. He was introduced by Ophelia K. Gaines.
Thurmond spoke about the importance of community action agencies – something he learned from working in a job-training program at age 16 in South Carolina. He also pointed out anyone can accomplish their goals with the right attitude.
A number of awards of were presented during the meeting. Mrs. Jackie Wilson was the recipient of the Winton Bell & Jeofry J. Jones Humanitarian Award. Lester Young received the D.C Anderson & Rufus Futch Volunteer Award. The Outstanding Head Start Parent of the Year Award was given to Tony Crapps. Carolyn Gibson received the Outstanding Head Start Community Volunteer Award.
Vanessa Melton, consultant for the Department of Human Resources, was on hand to bring greetings from the Atlanta office.
Joyce announced Gaines, interim executive director, had been appointed by the governing board as the agency’s new executive director.
Gaines holds a master's of social work, summa cum laude, from Savannah State University and has been with the agency for 34 years. She is also an adjunct professor in the Master's of Social Work Department at Savannah State University. Most recently, Gaines was the administrative director for the Altamaha Area CSI offices. In addition to executive director duties, Gaines will continue to manage the Altamaha area offices.
She and her husband, Al Gaines, reside in Cobbtown.
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