Kris Ahrens, Prairie Lakes Area Education Agency transition coordinator, was named the Iowa School Social Worker Association's 2012 Friend of Children recipient.
Ahrens was nominated by Brenda Gerdes, PLAEA school social worker, who introduced Ahrens and presented her with the award. Ahrens was selected based on her work with interdisciplinary teams, particularly with school social workers in planning for transition for students for post-secondary.
"Kris has worked tirelessly to improve the lives of students in her role as a transition coordinator, but really we think she is sort of a social worker we want to be," Carol Warmbier, PLAEA school social worker, said. "She has looked at the needs of the whole person, is concerned with post-secondary planning and has collaborated very closely with several of our school social worker staff members. I consider Kris to be a 'why not' person. She looks at possibilities and troubleshoots with students and families to forge a path, when many see limited direction."
Warmbier added, "I consider it an honor to have worked closely with her in the Fort Dodge area over the past few years. She also works closely with several other school social workers serving a number of districts. Kris is truly an asset for our agency and for all those who have the good fortune to work with and get to know her."