EMPLOYEE SPOTLIGHT: Zeke Collins, JPPS III
At the Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), one of the agency's strengths is in recognizing the talent and passion of those employees who have a calling to help the youth in our care.
One such remarkable person is Zeke Collins of DJJ's Toombs Community Services Office (CSO).
An asset to the Toombs CSO team, Zeke has proven himself to be an adaptable player willing to go the extra mile to serve in any capacity needed. Starting as a juvenile correctional officer at the Claxton RYDC over a decade ago, he moved over to the community side of DJJ, first as a Juvenile Probation/Parole Specialist I before being promoted to his current position of JPPS III.
Collins is tough but fair in helping to keep probationary youth on the right path, but it is his humility and compassion that always shines through. While his diligence is not always appreciated in its time by his youth at first, his honesty builds up the rapport needed for long-lasting connection and trust.
An example of the bonds that tie Zeke to his charges can be seen in a former probationer who came back to visit him recently. After a decade passing between the two men seeing one another, the reunion was memorable with the young man now 25 years old, a truck driver and trainer with the Georgia DOT, a nail salon owner, and a father with two young children.
The former probationer stopped by to visit Collins to let him know that by "aggravating and nagging him," he helped turn his life around and turn the probationer into a DJJ success story. It is this passion that Zeke brings to work each day, treating the youth as his children.
This dedication is apparent in other aspects of Zeke's life as well. In Toombs County, he serves as the Board Chair on the Toombs Family Connection, part of the Sunshine House multi-disciplinary team, and on the Children in Need of Services (CHINS) committee in his area. His willingness to collaborate with local law enforcement agencies is appreciated as well.
The Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice is proud to highlight the work of JPPS III Zeke Collins.