11:23 AM

Kim Ogg: UHD’s Social Work Person of the Year


By Sheryl E. Taylor

VitalVoices 2018-2019 Speaker Series opens the New Year with the University of Houston-Downtown's 2018 Social Work Person of the Year Award from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 31 in the College of Public Service (Commerce Street Building), Room C100.

Presented by UHD's Social Work Program, this year’s honoree is Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg. A nationally recognized victims' rights advocate and champion of criminal justice reform, Ogg successfully advanced major policy changes promoting diversion and treatment of drug offenders and the mentally ill. She also redirected her office resources in pursuit of violent criminals to make Houston one of America’s safest cities.

“We’re excited for the Social Work Program to announce and celebrate our 2018 Person of the Year, Harris County District Attorney, Kim Ogg,” said Dr. Dawn McCarthy, associate professor and director of UHD’s Social Work Program​. “This is a semester-long selection process, and Kim Ogg, in such a short time in office, has set into motion lasting changes that promote justice, and improve the well-being of vulnerable members of our community. She’s the perfect role model for our students by exemplifying all the good that just one person can do for others. We are eager for students, staff and faculty to come and learn about her remarkable public service.”

Past "Social Work Person of the Year" honorees have included Jim McIngvale (2018) and Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner (2017).

VitalVoices, a nine-event series, serves as a forum to bring scholars, practitioners and UHD alumni to speak to students, faculty, alumni and community partners within the University’s College of Public Service. The event features guest speakers who will share how their work impacts society through their professional experiences and knowledge.

Last year’s lineup included Leonard Kincaid, co-founder and executive director of the Houston Recovery Center who spoke about the work of the center and its implications both for individuals and the community-at-large; and Natasha Slesnick’s, "Homeless Youth: Serving an Invisible Population” presentation focused on how research has informed service efforts in her community. Other speakers included UH System Regent Paula Mendoza.

VitalVoices is hosted by the College of Public Service and the Center for Public Service & Family Strengths. For more information, contact Steven Villano, director of Center for Public Service & Community Research, at 713-221-8906 or villanos@uhd.edu.

About the University of Houston-Downtown

The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) is the second-largest university in Houston and has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974. As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive, four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates approximately 14,000 students, boasts more than 66,000 alumni, and offers 45 bachelor’s degrees, 12 master’s degrees, and 19 online programs within four colleges: Marilyn Davies College of Business, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Public Service, and College of Sciences and Technology. UHD has one of the lowest tuition rates in Texas.

U.S. News and World Report ranked UHD among the nation’s Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Applied Administration and Best Online Master’s Programs in Criminal Justice, as well as a Top Performer in Social Mobility. The Wall Street Journal/College Pulse ranked UHD one of the best colleges in the U.S. for its 2024 rankings, with notable distinctions: No. 1 for diversity (tied) and No. 3 for student experience. The University is designated as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, a Minority-Serving Institution, and a Military Friendly School. For more information on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit uhd.edu.