Linda C. Thoreson
Linda Thoreson is a social worker in the Clackamas County State Office for Services to Children and Families in the Oregon Department of Human Resources. She was nominated by her peers for her excellent work and the passion and commitment that she brings to her job.
Ms. Thoreson has won the respect of her colleagues and community for her "dogged determination" to meet the needs of children and families. In Clackamas County, her tenacity is the stuff of legend.
In one instance, a severely neglected youth with pervasive developmental delays needed oral surgery and extensive orthodontic work. Ms. Thoreson found professionals to perform these services at very little expense, including donation of the operating room where the surgery was performed. The child's CASA wrote, "Linda amazes and humbles me with the thought, care, and energy that she puts into giving her caseload children the quality of life, respect, and care that she manages as a matter of course year after year. She is a true champion of the children and, in my eyes, exemplifies what it means to act in the best interest of a child."
In another case, parents with chronic mental health issues were unable to provide a safe and stable home for their five children. The children were placed in permanent foster care, and Ms. Thoreson worked with the parents and care providers to preserve attachments. The parents visited and actively participated in school, recreational, and church activities. One parent later wrote, "How can I begin to express my gratitude and total respect for Linda, fighting for children (our children or those of others), always putting them first and foremost? Linda truly cares and, whether she realizes this or not, she has touched so many lives, including ours."
A Juvenile Court Judge may have summed it up best: "Linda is a miracle worker. If only we had ten more of her."