The District Attorney's office employee works with families receiving and paying child support

PHOTO COURTESY OF KASSANDRA BLISS - Crook County District Attorney's Office Child Support Enforcement Agent Kassandra Bliss, left, stands with Crook County District Attorney Daina Vitolins.

Kassandra Bliss is passionate about advocating for children.

Her hard work and enthusiasm as the Crook County District Attorney's Office child support enforcement agent has earned statewide recognition.

The Oregon District Attorneys' Association selected Bliss to receive the Oregon Child Support Superior Service Award, which was presented Wednesday, July 19 in Seaside during the at ODAA's annual conference.

Bliss assumed the responsibility of the Crook County District Attorney's Office Child Support Program when her supervisor abruptly left the program, explained Crook County District Attorney Daina Vitolins.

"She accepted the challenges of the job and her steep learning curve with enthusiasm and hard work," she said.

Bliss has been with the district attorney's office since November of 2015, when she started as a child support specialist/restitution clerk. In March of 2016, she was promoted to child support enforcement agent. She monitors the child support cases in Crook County, working with roughly 300 local families who are either receiving or paying child support.

Vitolins nominated Bliss for the statewide award.

"She learned and continues to learn all aspects of child support enforcement," Vitolins pointed out. "Child support enforcement is a difficult job, and rarely does she work with people who are happy. Kassie is consistently professional, helpful and always looks for a solution. She is smart, creative and approaches her work with common sense."

The overall statewide collection rate for the Crook County District Attorney's Office is 76.55 percent, Vitolins reported.

"Kassie is a very hard worker, her collection rates are outstanding," Vitolins said. "She is a positive person who always has a smile for everyone."

Bliss, Vitolins, the three deputy district attorneys, the office manager and the victim's advocate director all attended the ODAA 2017 Summer Conference July 18-20 at the Seaside Convention Center.

Twenty-seven district attorney offices in Oregon participate in child support services.

"It's an honor to have this recognition," Bliss said, adding that when she started a year and a half ago, she had little to no experience but received support from her coworkers and other DA offices.

"It's almost surreal," Bliss said. "I wanted to do the best that I could for our office and the state."

Vitolins was glad ODAA recognizes Bliss' good work.

"We are very proud of her as this was a well-deserved award," she said. "Children in Crook County are well served by Kassie."

Bliss has lived in Prineville for almost two years and coaches softball in the spring and regularly helps with Crook County District Attorney's Office community volunteer projects.

"I think the biggest thing for me is that I get to be an advocate for children, which is something that I'm very passionate about," Bliss said. "It's more behind the scenes, but I get to work in our community and work with the people in our community."

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