In Recognition of Beverly Beasley Johnsonby Representative Jackie Speier
Posted on 2014-01-13
in the house of representatives
Monday, January 13, 2014
Ms. SPEIER. Mr. Speaker, I rise to honor Beverly Beasley Johnson for
her 37 years of outstanding public service in California and Michigan.
Beverly is driven by her dedication to justice and has touched the
lives of thousands of people, particularly children.
For the last seven years, she was the Director of the San Mateo County Human Services Agency (HAS) which envisions a world where every child, adult and family lives in a safe, healthy and thriving community. The agency provides an always-expanding list of family services, child care, financial assistance, employment services, veterans services, food assistance and now even enrollment into the new health care system. Under Beverly's leadership the agency has implemented California's child welfare system improvement plan and focused on the disproportionate representation of African American children in the child protective services system. Beverly and I share a steadfast determination to stop commercial sex trafficking which enslaves between 100,000 and 300,000 children in our country alone.
The level of professionalism and excellence at the agency is experienced by San Mateo residents every day, and has been recognized by the Council on Accreditation (COA) and the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). In fact, San Mateo County's HSA was the first public agency in California to receive the COA accreditation and it was just renewed for another four years.
Beverly has been working closely with the state's parole re-entry program. She led her team to research, design and implement the award- winning ``Service Connect'' model to ensure that formerly incarcerated residents had the best chances to successfully reintegrate into the community by having easy access to services and support. Beverly has worked hard to remove the stigma of food stamps as a government handout and to educate the general public about food insecurity. She partnered with the county and the nonprofit Code for America to create an app that will help residents connect with valuable local services and programs.
Before joining NSA, Beverly held a similar position at the Kern County Department of Human Services for four years. There she launched ``Heart Gallery'' for children awaiting adoptions and the Child Welfare Parent Leader Program. She employed parents who had successfully reunited with their children to mentor other child welfare families and she championed the Annie E. Casey Family to Family Program.
Beverly grew up in Michigan and earned her Bachelor's Degree in Psychology from Oakland University and her Law Degree from Michigan State University Detroit College of Law. She served as the chief deputy director of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights after working for 26 years as a social worker, supervisor, manager and administrator of public welfare and human services for what is now named the Michigan Human Services Agency.
[[Page E53]] Mr. Speaker, as you can tell by these accomplishments, Beverly Beasley Johnson has a steel backbone and a generous heart. She believes that every person should be presumed to be worthy until proven otherwise, and she has worked hard to ensure that the purposes of social service programs are upheld. Ultimately, those purposes are to feed and house the poor, to relieve suffering for those wrongly afflicted, and to ennoble the human spirit by educating, supporting and guiding good people towards sound choices. Beverly has been outstanding in achieving these purposes during her career.
In her well-deserved retirement, Beverly will split her time between California and Michigan. She is looking forward to spending more time with her husband Thomas, her four children, five grandchildren and soon her first great-grandchild.
Mr. Speaker, I ask the House of Representatives to rise with me to honor Beverly Beasley Johnson, a genuine public servant, a champion for people in need and a woman with a huge heart. She has led so many onto a path to a better life.