Rainbows’ Prism Award was created in 2013 to recognize a Rainbows’ staff member who goes above and beyond their role to create excellence.
The criteria for this award are to demonstrate Rainbows’ Guiding Principles, achieve excellence in the role they fulfill for Rainbows; demonstrate leadership; make children and families their highest priority; and represent Rainbows in a way that reflects positively on the entire organization.
This year’s Prism Award goes to a professional who accepts responsibility for specialized job functions and then takes it to a level of mastery that is enviable. She achieves the goal of providing high-quality service to families while managing all of the behind-the-scenes work to keep Rainbows in compliance with state and county regulations, standards and expectations. She has earned a high level of trust among Rainbows families, community partners and co-workers. Through dedication, perseverance, compassion and integrity she has transcended her job description.
This year’s Prism Award goes to Kerri Dixon.
Kerri has been the one constant staff person providing Rainbows Specialized Foster Care services for the past 21 years. She brings compassion and organization to the challenge of building and supporting foster families. This year, she worked with Audra Kenneson, Mental Health Services and Specialized Foster Care Coordinator to update the Foster Family Handbook. This project led to overhauling the Foster Care Policy and Procedure Manual.
Also a Targeted Case Manager, Kerri navigates well the life of a worker with two supervisors. She often assists her fellow TCMs, particularly when new staff are hired and need reassurance from a seasoned coworker, notes Lynlea Southards, TCM and Autism Services Coordinator. When myEvolv was implemented, Kerri wholeheartedly embraced it, even the “Anywhere” version! She helped support others on her team who needed help with the transition.
Kerri is anchored in our Guiding Principles. The two Guiding Principles Kerri exemplifies most are “operating with honesty, integrity and accountability” and “achieving success through teamwork, partnership and collaboration.” Her honesty and belief in the integrity of the Specialized Foster Care Program got her through many difficult conversations and decisions regarding kids in care. She acts as a partner with our foster parents and is a trusted colleague among community partners. Our Foster Care program is successful because of the way Kerri approaches her work. Targeted Case Management is better because Kerri works to unify and support her team.
“I am honored to receive this award,” said Kerri. “I am blessed to be able to do a job that I love and I am thankful for the support and encouragement I have received from Audra, Lindsay and Lynlea. I am grateful to Rainbows for valuing families, including their employees’ families. I’ve been able to be there for my two sons and haven’t missed important events in their lives because Rainbows puts families first.”
Thank you, Kerri, for keeping your sights on what is best for children with special needs and their families throughout the pandemic. As the 2021 Prism Award winner, Kerri’s name will be added to the plaque at Kids’ Point. She also received a commemorative and monetary award. Congratulations!