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  GOLD -  Carla Rittue of the Sheriff's Office
As the Records Supervisor in the Sheriff's Office, Carla has worked diligently over the past six years to replace a Records Management System purchased in the 1980s that was out of date, difficult to support, and equally difficult to integrate with other agencies. After researching numerous systems with personnel at other law enforcement agencies and discussing associated issues with staff in the Sheriff's Office, Information Services, and the County Administrative Office, Carla developed a Request for Qualification and worked to identify a vendor to provide a new system. She developed an implementation plan and scope of work, verified adherence to the services to be provided by the vendor, confirmed the operation of each module, installed the system, trained the trainers, trained the end users, helped bring the system live, and continues to work with a users group to make improvements. Simply put, Carla has been a one person army to bring this system on line during a time of both fiscal hardship and limited resources. She has also taken the initiative to work with other law enforcement agencies to gain their participation and help fund future costs of the project. As a result of her dedication, attention to detail, and extraordinary work ethic, the services provided by the Sheriff's Records Division, officers in the field, and other staff in the Sheriff's Office have been significantly improved.

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  SILVER -  Gina Castaneda, Probation Department

As a Deputy Probation Officer, Gina handles a large caseload involving young people working through the juvenile justice system, including intake, investigation, field supervision, home supervision, and electronic monitoring, as well as placement and prevention of placement for juveniles referred to the Probation Department. She also works with her peers to encourage young people to take advantage of alternatives to gang violence and crime by talking with at-risk youth and their families about the many opportunities available to keep young people out of the juvenile justice system. With a caseload that included a number of young men who wanted to play soccer as a way to pass the time, Gina set out to find teams to which she could make referrals for placement. Finding no options, she volunteered her time to form the Aztecas Soccer Team, comprised of rival gang members, and has successfully assimilated the players into one sports team, teaching them that they can be teammates both on and off the field. In recognition of her outstanding work to improve communication skills, strengthen leadership, and promote sportsmanship, Gina was recognized as a recipient of a 2009 Jefferson Award. Gina is to be commended for her efforts on behalf of the Probation Department, and as the coach of the Aztecas, to help young people make better choices and thereby improve both their lives and the greater Santa Cruz County community.

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  BRONZE -  Laura Garnette, Probation Department

Laura serves as the Probation Division Director and is being recognized not only for her work on a daily basis, but also for her work with the Equity Project. The Equity Project is a national collaboration of individuals and organizations involved in the juvenile justice system working to examine the experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth in juvenile courts across the country. Lack of leadership and professional guidance for juvenile justice professionals can place LGBT youth at risk of harmful discrimination and can affect the course of their delinquency cases. In recognition of this significant problem, Laura spent more than three years working with attorneys, judges, psychologists, researchers, and advocates to promote leadership and provide guidance regarding LGBT youth in the juvenile justice system. As the only Probation Officer on the Equity Project Advisory Committee, Laura played a critical role in the collection and interpretation of data and in the extrapolation of research data to recommended practices. Laura's efforts will affect the treatment and outcomes of LGBT youth across the nation, as well as here in Santa Cruz County, and are deserving of recognition by County government and members of our community.

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