Mandy Zehren plans to spend her entire career helping probationers
in Smith County.
After working 20 years for the Smith County Community
Supervision and Corrections Department (Adult Probation), Mrs. Zehren is well
on her way.
“I like being able to help the probationers realize they can
change their lives if they want to,” she said of what she loves most about her
job. “I like to help them make positive changes in their lives.”
Ms. Zehren was studying biology in college when her friends
told her about a criminal justice course. She took a class to try it out and
became hooked, she said. At 22 years old, she started out as a probation
officer for misdemeanor offenders and admittedly had no clue what she was
doing. But she learned fast and after three years, she moved to felony courts.
When a civil program was created to supervise people ordered to pay child
support, Mrs. Zehren became the only probation officer for that program, which
now has eight officers.
Mrs. Zehren was promoted in January to supervisor. She
oversees a unit that consists of employees who conduct pre-sentence
investigations, pretrial, community service coordinator and three probation
officers. “I just love it over here; I love the people,” she said. “We’re like
She was honored for 20 years of service to the county by the
Commissioners Court on Tuesday, September 27, 2016.
Deputy Director Janet Fugler said it has been a pleasure to
work with Mrs. Zehren for 20 years.
Also during Commissioners Court, Esmerelda Delmas, Human
Resources Coordinator, was recognized for earning The Society of Human Resource
Management (SHRM) certification. The organization is the world’s largest HR
professional society, representing 285,000 members in more than 165 countries.
SHRM provides education, thought leadership, certification, community and
advocacy to enhance the practice of human resource management and the
effectiveness of HR professionals in the organizations and communities they
Ms. Delmas has been the HR coordinator for Smith County for more
than a year. She also worked as a probation officer for the Adult Probation
Department for six years. Ms. Delmas said she was able to get the SHRM
certification because of her bachelor’s degree in human resources, as well as
her experience in the field. She had to take a course and study six books before
taking the test.
“It’s a personal accomplishment for me,” she said of the
certification. “It proves that I know the HR field.”
As HR Coordinator, Ms. Delmas handles employee medical
leaves, terminations, unemployment claims, employee interviews and new hire
orientations. “I like being able to help people,” she said.
Other employees recognized this month for years of service
to Smith County include:
10 Years: Alex Jones and Wendell Kelley, Sheriff’s
Department; and Alma Spencer, Adult Probation.
5 Years: Keven Fite, District Attorney’s Office; and Tim
Maloney, Constable Precinct 2.