July 1, 2016
Staff Member Spotlight: Denise Ward
Here at HEARTS for Families we are abundantly blessed with team members who are passionate, experienced, hard-working, and knowledgeable about the work that they do. As a testament to this, we will be presenting a “Staff Member Spotlight” each month to highlight a member of our team. This month, the spotlight is on Denise Ward, who is our Community Involvement Specialist for the Alcohol Prevention Project in Millen, Swainsboro, and Sylvania.
Denise grew up in Sparta, Georgia with her parents, who still live there, and her sister. She graduated from John Hancock Academy before pursuing and earning her Bachelor’s of Science in Community Health and Human Services from Georgia College in Milledgeville. Denise still resides in Milledgeville alongside her wonderful husband of 30 years, Robby. They have two amazing grown children, Rob Ward and Tori Ward Padgett, and one awesome son-in-law, as of May 21, 2016, Johnny Padgett. Denise is a member of Zebulon United Methodist Church in Sparta, where she attended services for her entire life. Denise is an animal lover and rescuer and has never met a dog she didn’t love. She also has 4 dogs of her own!
In addition to her passion for animals, Denise has a passion for children and families, which makes her a perfect fit for the HEARTS for Families team. She began working with HEARTS in January of 2012, when the Alcohol Prevention Project began. Prior to this, she worked in counseling and in mental health services. She predominantly worked with youth having behavior and self-control issues and their families in their homes. She also worked in the community and in the school settings while teaching effective coping, studying, communication and social skills to increase their chance for happiness and success. Denise truly has HEART!
What Denise enjoys most is spending time with her family, friends and dogs of course! Another obsession is bird attracting and watching with binoculars and all the works. Yep, she has tons of feeders and she should definitely buy stock in birdseed! Sounds a little nerdy, but something she enjoys most!
A huge accomplishment for Denise is that she has earned accreditation as a certified Preventionist since beginning her career with HEARTS. She enjoys the field of prevention. Her work in Millen, Swainsboro and Sylvania has been very rewarding and has allowed her to meet many wonderful and caring people who want the best for their youth.
Denise hopes to continue her work with HEARTS for Families to improve the lives of youth and their families for the years to come. We appreciate all your hard work Denise and love the heart that you have!