Each year the Idaho Youth Ranch honors three of its employees, out of more than 400 statewide, for their outstanding performance and dedication to helping Idaho kids and families. In 2014, two out of the three agency awards went to staff members at Anchor House in Coeur d’Alene.
Amanda Smith, Anchor House Treatment Supervisor, was selected for the 2014 Outstanding Team Involvement Award. Danny Shores, Anchor House Youth Specialist Educator, received the 2014 Modeling Idaho Youth Ranch Values Award. Each honoree received $500 and an engraved plaque made of wood from one of the original Idaho Youth Ranch buildings in Rupert. IYR President and CEO Steve Woodworth presented the awards personally.
Amanda Smith is a Licensed Professional Counselor who has been with Anchor House for two years as the Treatment Supervisor and lead Equine (EAGALA certified) therapist. Originally from Spokane, she attended University of Idaho and earned her master’s degree from Frostburg University in Maryland. An internship with Juvenile Probation inspired her passion for social work and for helping at-risk kids get their lives back on track.
Amanda’s father is the person she most admires because he is so talented with kids and passionate about helping disadvantaged youth. She is living her career ambition by being employed at Anchor House. Amanda’s top priorities in life are the boys at Anchor House, her two dogs Porter and Barclay, and her cat (plus half-time care of a neighborhood cat that adopted her). She uses any holiday as an excuse to plan and create lavish social events with lots of decorations, party favors and fun.
“Not only does Amanda have a ‘can do’ attitude,” said Program Director Greg Orlando, “She is also always the first to offer a word of encouragement with a smile.”
Danny Shores was born in Harvey, Arkansas, and got his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at University of Louisiana in Monroe.
He has worked in a paper factory on the production line and in security, sworn law enforcement, and was an administrator for a Louisiana Alternative School for at risk teens. After retiring from the Louisiana school, Danny went to work for the Coeur d’Alene school district three years ago and was placed at Anchor House as a paraprofessional. The following year, he accepted the Youth Specialist Educator position at Anchor House, where he does amazing work helping the boys complete, or get much closer to completing, their high school education.
Danny is married with two adult children, admires Thomas Jefferson for his intelligence and his work for “the common man,” and his hobbies include genealogy, fly fishing and cooking Cajun food. He was selected for the award because of his personal integrity and his ability to model the IYR mission and values with clients, donors, and other employees.
On behalf of all the Northern Idaho boys and families who have found new, promising futures thanks to their work at Anchor House, congratulations to Amanda and Danny!
P.S. Wondering who the other IYR award winners were for 2014? The Outstanding Service Delivery Award went to Leslie Morthland, our wonderful Volunteer Coordinator. And hard-working Christina Jeffes, the Chinden thrift store manager in Boise, tied with Amanda Smith to also earn the Outstanding Team Involvement Award.