2021 Award Winners
Police Chief Jason Umberger
2021 Cecil Paul & Maria Jones Community Hero Award Winner
The Cecil Paul and Maria Jones Community Hero award was created in recognition of Paul and Maria Jones. The Jones’ have dedicated decades of volunteer hours meeting our community’s needs and have been steadfast supporters of HND. The recipient of the Cecil Paul and Maria Jones Community Hero award must have demonstrated, over a significant period of time, dedication to the promotion of nurturing and empowering families in our community, combined with a strong sense of civic duty.
This year’s recipient has been a strong supporter of our HND Homework Club, often visiting himself or sending officers to create opportunities for positive interactions between our police force and our youth. He serves as an advisor to our Police Athletic League. He is an accomplished law enforcement and public safety leader with almost 30 years of experience. Please join us in congratulating our 2020/2021 Cecil Paul and Maria Jones Community Hero award winner, Police Chief Jason Umberger.
2021 Gail Hallmon Champion of Families Award Winner
The Gail Hallmon Champion of Families Award was created in recognition of Gail Hallmon, who has dedicated decades of volunteer hours championing families in our community. Gail treats her volunteer work with as much importance and deserving the same level of commitment as her professional work. She spent many years championing families through her volunteer work with Parent Craft, as a Girl Scout Leader, taking PTA leadership positions, mission trip work with First Presbyterian Church, IDignity and countless other community events. To be eligible for this award, the recipient must have demonstrated over a significant period of time, dedication to the promotion of nurturing and empowering families in our community, combined with community service geared toward families.
Our recipient this year championed families in her previous roles at HND as an intern, then a contract therapist, and now a community partner. She also champions families in our community in her role as CEO of Family Life Center in Flagler. Our recipient leads by example. In the past few years, she has returned to school to earn her Master of Science in Clinical and Mental Health, has completed the rigorous requirements to become a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, and is currently pursuing her PhD, all while leading the Family Life Center and its employees in providing exceptional, life-saving services to domestic violence and sexual assault survivors throughout our community. Please join us in congratulating our 2020/2021 Gail Hallmon Champion of Families Award winner, Trish Giaccone.
2021 Cynthia Blomquist Quality Client Care Award Winner
Cynthia Blomquist was the very first employee hired by The House Next Door. The history of our agency was positively shaped by her dedication, out-of-the-box thinking, and exceptional work ethic. As the first employee, she embraced the notion of supporting the family unit and believed in the power of the family structure. At the heart of work was her passion to always provide the highest quality of care to our clients. This passion continues to be present in her work today in the insurance field. Cynthia provided quality client care before standards of care existed. Her passion laid the groundwork for what we today refer to as the HND standard of care.
The Cynthia Blomquist Quality Client Care award was created this year to recognize and celebrate a staff member who has gone above and beyond to provide high-quality care to our clients. The recipient of the Cynthia Blomquist Quality Client Care award must have demonstrated throughout the past year, dedication to providing high-quality care, embraced meeting the client where they are, and helped the client decrease risk factors while increasing protective factors, combined with providing the HND level of a high standard of care. This year’s recipient is a shining example of quality client care. Their clients come from a population that have more than their share of hurdles to overcome. They graciously and respectfully assist each client in completing the required paperwork. This employee continuously meets and exceeds the HND standard of high-quality client care. Please join us in congratulating our 2021 Cynthia Blomquist Quality Client Care award winner Mary Thierry.
2021 Ella Bryan HND Values Award Winner
Ella Bryan dedicated her life to strengthening and supporting families. Working through The House Next Door and her church, she made a difference for thousands of families through the years. With a loving heart, she listened to children, parents, and staff with compassion, never passing judgment. Ella had a gift for seeing your potential and making you believe in it too. She was a tireless mentor, always there with an encouraging word and giving strength with her faith in you. If Ella was awake she was working to make a change in her community and to strengthen the individuals who lived within it. A humble woman, she was always willing to extend her hand not only to help, but in friendship. Her passion and belief in each person’s value led her to a leadership position in the Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association (FADAA) on the State level. She believed with all her heart that we would find the answers and make the needed changes working together – families, professionals, communities.
The Ella Bryan HND Values Award was created this year to recognize and celebrate a staff member who demonstrates our values. The recipient of the Ella Bryan HND Values Award must have demonstrated the following values: Family is the foundation, advocated for change, made a difference, instilled hope, listened with compassion, inspired growth, empowered our community, and showed strength in diversity. Our recipient this year exemplifies the qualities of the Ella Bryan award in their caring, empathic interactions with staff. They listen with their heart and always goes the extra mile to support staff. Much like Ella Bryan, this employee is humble and works diligently to support our staff in making positive change in our community. This employee is passionate about the agency and the work we do, compassionate with us when we make mistakes or make their job a bit more challenging, and helps set the workplace culture so that we can live by our values every day. Please join us in congratulating our 2021 Ella Bryan HND Values Award winner Dana Braun.
2021 George & Mary Hood Intern of the Year Award Winner
The Dr. George and Mary Hood Intern of the year award was created in honor of the late Mary and Dr. Hood for their creation of the Stetson and HND intern program. At the heart of Dr. and Mrs. Hood’s work was also the client’s wellbeing and the sanctity of the family unit.
This year, we present our Dr. George and Mary Hood Intern of the Year Award to an intern that excelled at promoting a positive environment for both their clients and staff. This intern has worked to ensure that their clients build new skill sets to enhance their coping skills outside of therapy. This intern has worked to make sure that they are available and flexible to both their clients and other staff at the site in which they completed their internship program. All of this was done, and done well, during a time our world was in a pandemic. Due to their professionalism and outstanding work with our clients, this intern has been hired on as staff. Please join us in congratulating our 2021 Dr. George and May Hood Intern of the Year, Kimberly Alden.
2021 Ann Grell Employee of the Year Award Winner
The Ann Grell Employee of the year award was created in recognition of HND’s first Executive Director and her work ethic of always going above and beyond to serve our community.
To be eligible for this award the recipient must have not only been an outstanding employee, but also excelled in all areas of their job. During a year that we can certainly describe as challenging, this employee has been identified by their co-workers, supervisors and management team as time after time going above and beyond the call of duty.
Our employee of the year for 2021 is certainly an agent of the House Next Door, not just their specific department. In their current role, they take very seriously being a positive gateway to access services for our clients and community at large. Never willing to shy away from a challenge our employee of the month takes on new tasks with a smile and never complains about the time it takes to complete. They make sure that they are available for all staff, not just the staff within their specific department. Thinking not just of themself, this individual works tirelessly to make sure that our community has access and availability to the services that can best fit their needs, going as far as assisting clients in obtaining referrals outside of our agency. This individual goes above and beyond to make sure that they are present and willing to assist everyone within the department. During a very challenging year, this employee went above and beyond during the holidays to make sure that all staff felt included by crocheting a handmade ornament for all staff in the agency. Please join us in congratulating our 2021 Ann Grell Employee of the Year Joyce Cox.