At the recent Kentucky CASA Network Conference in Lexington, CASA of the River Region received the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Spotlight Award for its innovative work becoming a more equitable organization. Judge Gina Kay Calvert was also recognized at the Conference as the Kentucky CASA Judge of the Year!
A Pledge for Equity: CASA Leads by Example
The DEI Spotlight Award reflects intensive, ongoing efforts to foster an environment where every child feels represented, supported, and free to express their true self." This award is a milestone, but it is not our final destination. At CASA of the River Region, we are dedicated to becoming an even more equitable organization," stated William Myers, President & CEO of CASA of the River Region. "Our children come from a variety of backgrounds, and they all deserve an advocate who respects and celebrates their individuality."
CASA of the River Region was one of two CASA programs to receive the award, with CASA of Lexington taking home the other. Both programs earned Innovative Status from the All Children, All Families initiative of the Human Rights Campaign in 2022. This status is awarded to organizations that meet thorough requirements for LBGTQ+ inclusion in their policies, procedures, and practices, underscoring their dedication to diversity and inclusivity.
Judge Gina Kay Calvert: Embodiment of Dedication and Service
Besides its own recognition, CASA of the River Region was thrilled that the Honorable Gina Kay Calvert was named as Judge of the Year, an award which celebrates her outstanding commitment to children's advocacy. Judge Calvert, presiding over Division 9 in Jefferson County, has a long career defined by her deep-seated dedication to public service.
Before her current role, Judge Calvert served with distinction as a District Court Judge. Her rich career in law encompasses a spectrum of roles that have profoundly impacted the community: from prosecutor to defense attorney, civil litigator to family court attorney. Her breadth of experience has given her a unique perspective and empathy, which resonates in her work.
"Judge Calvert embodies the spirit of public service and commitment to justice that is essential in our fight to ensure every child has a voice," Myers said. "Her recognition as Judge of the Year is well-deserved, and it reflects the principles that guide our advocates every day."
Continuing the Journey Forward
These recognitions are not just awards; they're a call to action and a reminder that our work is far from done. They represent the efforts of our volunteers, staff, and community partners, and they reinforce the importance of the work being done by organizations like CASA of the River Region and judges like Judge Calvert. If you want to help us in these efforts, please consider volunteering or donating to keep the CASA movement going!
The Judge's Panel featured Judge Calvert and Judge Brown from Jefferson County.