Workforce Solutions East Texas receives $75,000 award

Pictured, from left, are Workforce East Texas staff Tassie Whitener; TWC Commissioner Aaron Demerson; WSET staff, ShaRhonda Miles; WSET staff, Monty Scroggins; WSET staff, Mary Jane Wagner; TWC Executive Director, Ed Serna; WSET Board member, Mary Berry; WSET Board member Claretta Allen; WSET Executive Director, Doug Shryock; WSET Board member, Claude Figueroa; WSET Board Chairman, Robert Haberle; WSET staff, Regina Allen; WSET staff, Keith Huddleston; WSET staff, Valerie Hatten; TWC Chairman Bryan Daniel; and TWC Commissioner, Julian Alvarez III.

Workforce Solutions East Texas (WSET) was recognized for outstanding performance with a Texas Rising Star Child Care Award and a $75,000 performance incentive grant at the Texas Workforce Commission’s 23rd Annual Texas Workforce Conference, held Dec. 4-6 in Grapevine.

As one of the conference highlights, local workforce development boards are recognized for outstanding accomplishments with performance awards. The awards are presented by Workforce Commissioners Bryan Daniel, Chairman, Commissioner Representing the Public; Aaron Demerson, Commissioner Representing Employers; and Julian Alvarez III, Commissioner Representing Labor.

WSET received a $75,000 performance incentive grant for the Texas Rising Star Child Care Award, designating it as one of the top three performing agencies in the State. This award originated in 2017, and the East Texas board has been an award recipient for each of the three years it has been available. The Texas Rising Star Child Care Award honors local boards that have having improved the quality of child care through the development of exemplary child care programs, that demonstrating positive outcomes for the population served.

This year, WSET staff created “Recipes for Early Childhood Quality Education,” a 14-section book with 116 pages of objectives, “ingredients” and directions for 99 quality education learning experiences. Activities in the book guided educators through quality experiences by providing future activities. A total of 1,100 books were distributed to within East Texas: to each TRS educator and every regional child care providers.

“I am extremely proud of Workforce Solutions East Texas and all who played a role in our successes at the TWC Annual Conference in Grapevine... the Board, our Executive Director, our amazing staff and the system partners and operators,” Board Chairman Robert Haberle said. “To try to name everyone individually would be impossible. It truly represents a team effort... Bringing home to East Texas recognition by the Texas Workforce Commission and our peers is truly an honor that reinforces the dedication of our local region to workforce excellence.”

The conference also recognizes an employer in each board region of the State with an Employer of Excellence Award. WSET nominated Times Square Grand Slam (TSGS), a family entertainment center located in Tyler, to be recognized with the award. TSGS employs more than 200 employees and has partnered with WSET to offer on the job training and work experience programs as well as providing positive employment opportunities for struggling members of the community.

The Workforce Solutions East Texas Board serves Henderson, Van Zandt, Rains, Wood, Upshur, Camp, Marion, Harrison, Panola, Gregg, Rusk, Cherokee, Anderson and Smith counties.