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DJJ Weekly Letter


  • The Florida Department of Juvenile Justice is celebrating its 25th anniversary, and the agency is closing out this milestone year with several important accomplishments.
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  • Congratulations to Chief of Staff Josie Tamayo who recently won the Judges Choice award at the Legal Services of North Florida’s Dancing with the Stars fundraiser in Tallahassee. The event paired ten local celebrities with professional dancers from Fred Astaire Dance Studios to compete to raise funds to provide free legal aid to those who need it most in our communities
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  • Congratulations to Jackie Suttle for being named the Agency IT Professional of the Year at the 2019 Public Sector Chief Information Officer (CIO) Academy. Jackie was recognized for her leadership, vision, and innovation related to the agency’s Juvenile Justice Information System and other agency software applications used by DJJ employees, providers and law enforcement partners.
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  • Congratulations to Sergeant Deborah Caldwell from Hillsborough Regional Juvenile Detention Center who was recognized by the Circuit 13 Juvenile Justice Advisory Board. Sergeant Caldwell was presented the inaugural Julianne M. Holt Dedication to Public Service Award and was recognized for her 30 years of service, hard work, professionalism and dedication to the youth we serve.
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  • The Florida Network of Youth and Family Services, a DJJ Children In Need of Services (CINS)/Families In Need of Services (FINS) provider, was proud to join with Capital City Youth Services in Tallahassee to host Florida's First Lady Casey DeSantis. Department of Children and Families Secretary Chad Poppell joined the First Lady for a tour and meeting to better understand the services provided by the Network agencies and CINS/FINS.
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  • DJJ recently wrapped up its 2nd Annual Restoring Hope Training Summit at the Florida Hotel and Conference Center in Orlando. This two-day event brought together a total of 425 attendees, including DJJ staff members, providers, and community stakeholders from around the state, to develop strategies to enhance juvenile justice reform efforts, strengthen families, and build connections.
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  • AMIkids Orlando recently had the honor of hosting DJJ Secretary Simone Marstiller. The Secretary was given a tour of the renovated facilities and spent time with the students hearing about their goals and aspirations.
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  • Circuit 20 Senior Juvenile Probation Officer Byron Brown recently received a heartwarming letter of appreciation from a youth and parent he worked with.
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  • Congratulations to Systems Project Analyst Randy Agerton for being recognized as the Information Technology (IT) Employee of the Month for September 2019!
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  • Last week, Secretary Simone Marstiller participated in several facility tours with State Senator Jeff Brandes. They visited the Manatee Regional Juvenile Detention Center, Palmetto Youth Academy, and the Hillsborough Regional Juvenile Detention Center.
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  • The Florida Juvenile Justice Foundation (FJJF), the direct support organization for DJJ, recently received a generous $10,000 donation from Walmart. FJJF serves to change the lives of students, the lives of their parents, and the lives of the citizens in our community by promoting delinquency prevention, intervention, and educational opportunities for youth.
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  • Secretary Simone Marstiller recently spoke at the Restoring Families graduation ceremony at the Florida Public Safety Institute in Havana.
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  • This week Team DJJ launched a school threats awareness campaign aimed at addressing school threats made by students in Florida. The “It’s No Joke” campaign aims to dissuade youth from making school threats, because doing so can lead to being arrested and charged with a felony.
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  • Secretary Marstiller along with DJJ staff recently attended the 90th Annual Florida Council on Crime and Delinquency (FCCD) Training Institute in Miami.
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  • September is National Suicide Awareness Month and September 8-14 is Suicide Prevention Week. Suicide prevention is an important part of the work we do at DJJ. Suicide screenings begin at the first contact a youth has with the juvenile justice system and throughout our continuum of care.
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  • Secretary Simone Marstiller recently participated in the Florida Children and Youth Cabinet meeting in Orlando. The Cabinet is charged with promoting and implementing collaboration, creativity, increased efficiency, information sharing and improved service delivery between and within state agencies and organizations. This was the first meeting of the Cabinet with the new chair, First Lady Casey DeSantis.
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  • Several DJJ members were recently honored during the 2019 Florida TaxWatch Productivity Awards. The Florida TaxWatch Productivity Awards are presented annually to recognize state employees and work units whose work significantly and measurably increases productivity.
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  • Congratulations to Our Newly Certified Juvenile Justice Detention Officers! In August, 15 juvenile detention officers graduated from the Juvenile Justice Detention Officer Academy in a ceremony at Hillsborough Community College. The guest speaker for the event was Major Reginald T. Allen from Pinellas Regional Juvenile Detention Center (RJDC). The class president was William Scheel, the class company commander was Dontee Scheel and the class secretary was Karen Lyons.
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  • Congratulations to Paulina Feliciano who was recently named the Orange Regional Juvenile Detention Center (RJDC) Support Services Employee of the Month. Ms. Feliciano has done a wonderful job keeping the main lobby areas clean, cleaning up messes on the, and keeping the main bathrooms stocked and clean.
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  • DJJ Secretary Simone Marstiller had the opportunity to speak at the Florida Sheriffs Association (FSA) Summer Conference in Tampa. While at the conference, Secretary Marstiller spoke to the attendees about how the Department is working to help Florida’s youth and how public safety partnerships are vital to reaching this common goal.
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