Nacogdoches social workers honored

Nacogdoches - The National Association of Social Workers, Deep East Texas Branch, honored individuals who exhibit outstanding social worker skills, even though all may not be certified social workers.

At an annual luncheon and awards ceremony several received the distinguished honor.

Social Worker of the Year is James Montoya. The retired Nacogdoches ISD social worker is now working part time as a social worker in the health care industry. The rest of the time, Montoya is volunteering his skills to help others. Frequently he helps out the youth, Latinos and anyone needing advice on social services.

Elected official of the year is Nacogdoches city council member Roy Boldon. It's his volunteer work with CASA that gained him the recognition. Several staff members were present, which Boldon called, "his cheering squad". Boldon has supervised and mentored over 30 CASA children and is an advocate for foster care.

Public citizen of the year is Patti Goodrum. She is the executive director of Love In the Name of Christ. She leads the agency thru multiple special projects that provide help for an entire community. Goodrum attended SFA before there was a social work department. Her experience in hospice care and countless individual cases led to the special recognition.

SFA students, Shelby Kolek and Farrah Alvarez received Student Social Workers of the year.

President of NASW Deep East Texas chapter, Bruce McNellie said, "The purpose of social work it to help people of the community the very best that we can be." The awards McNellie said, "reinforces those behaviors to help out."