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WHO WE ARE
The Virginia Community Criminal Justice Association is a non-profit membership organization. Membership includes, local community corrections and pretrial services directors, staff, and other individuals involved with the criminal justice system. Our membership includes nearly 450 individuals and organizations representing all sectors of public safety and treatment providers.
The purpose of the Virginia Community Criminal Justice Association (VCCJA) is to enhance public safety through the development and expansion of pretrial, community corrections and other criminal justice programs in the Commonwealth of Virginia, by providing a forum for the discussion and communication of ideas. All members of the Association shall be committed to the standards of excellence, integrity, and professionalism in the delivery of pretrial and community corrections services.
MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT
President’s Message November 2018
As I close out my time as President of VCCJA, I wanted to first express my thanks and gratitude to all the members who are out in the programs doing the work every day. You do not often get the thanks you deserve and that is a shame, as you all work tremendously hard to change the lives of so many and keep your communities safe. You all are leaders in our profession, no matter your role.
I also want to thank the members of the Executive Committee, both in my first year and then in my second year, who made my time as President so enjoyable. You all gave much of your time to make VCCJA and our profession stronger each day. Many do not realize the time, effort, and sacrifices you make when you serve on the Executive Committee, but you all did so with ethics, integrity, professionalism, and without reward. And you did so for the good of our members, putting them first.
Next, many thanks to the committee chairs, without whom the work of VCCJA could not be done. Whether directly impacting our profession or our association or both, you all did a magnificent job. For your efforts, we are a stronger association and a better profession.
I believe that when you go somewhere or serve in some capacity, you should make the environment better than you found it when you came in and find it better than you left it when you return in the future. I am not sure I made VCCJA better than I found it, as I followed some tremendous leaders, but I know I will find it better than I left it, that is for sure. We have some outstanding leaders coming on board in the 2019.
I follow what I call the 4 P’s in work and serving our constituents and members. I believe that we must be Purposeful in our work—have a purpose for doing what we do and why we do it. We should be Persistent in our work, never giving up, pushing for what we want. We should be Proud of our work, for we have much to be proud of in what we do each day. We should have a Passion for our work. If you do not have a passion for what you do in community corrections, find something in which you do have a passion, that is not a bad thing! So, Purpose, Persistence, Pride, and Passion—live them each day.
We must, as I said at the conference: Listen, Question, Learn and Teach. It is up to all of us to take the time to listen—God gave us all one mouth, but 2 ears, because listening is better than talking. It is up to us to ask the right questions, and it is up to us to learn as much as possible, so we can teach in the future—teach new professionals and stakeholders about the importance of all we do, but first we must learn as much as we can about what we do.
I have only one regret from my time as President, and that is we were not successful in reverting back to differential supervision. Eventually we will return to supervising clients in the most effective way. Our profession will always have someone that is a roadblock to effective, efficient, proven supervision practices, but we will prevail overall. Unfortunately, we must sometimes wait a bit before being successful. And on occasion that type of person gets involved in other aspects of our profession that has no impact on he/she, but they feel it their misguided political/personal duty to do so. Again, the good work we do will prevail as we do not do it for political or personal gain, we do it for professional gain.
Again, thanks to all of you for your excellent work in local probation and pretrial services. It has been my honor to serve as your President.