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Ferryneisa H. Benjamin
Ferryneisa H. Benjamin has exemplified the very best practices of a professional social worker during the course of her 33-year career in human services. Her work has encompassed direct service, supervision, management, advocacy, and administration in all areas of the field of child abuse and neglect.
Ms. Benjamin began her career in 1967 on the "front lines" with the Department of Social Welfare. She provided exemplary services in the Family Services Unit, which worked with Aid For Dependent Children clients, the aged, blind, and disabled populations. Because of her skills, commitment, dedication, and ability to apply herself as a professional, she advanced from Social Worker to Supervisor to Assistant Director and then to Assistant Commissioner when all human services entities within the territory were consolidated to become the Department of Human Services in 1987.
Ms. Benjamin is responsible for territorial supervision and administrative oversight for all children, youth, and family services on three islands. This includes not only front-end investigation of alleged abuse and/or neglect, but also ongoing protective services, foster care, and adoption, as well as all juvenile justice and residential programs for youth. In addition, she is in charge of major preventive programs for children, including Head Start, the Child Care Fund Program, and Youth Promotion/Delinquency Prevention Programs.
In the community, Ms. Benjamin has served on innumerable task forces and planning committees, and she testifies regularly before the Senate and at community hearings as a strong advocate for families and children. Her professional memberships have included the National Association of Social Workers, the National Association of Black Social Workers, League of Women Voters, and Task Forces on Abuse and Neglect and Domestic Violence, to name just a few.
Ms. Benjamin is an active member of the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, where she is currently serving as a Sunday School Teacher and Superintendent, as well as Treasurer, Chairperson of Lay Organization, and Women's Missionary Society Secretary, Board member, and Trustee. She brings her love of God into all of her undertakings and is recognized for her compassion and kindness.