DAYTON, OH (March 23, 2023) – Montgomery County’s Homeless Solutions Policy Board (HSPB) is proud to announce the recipients of its 2023 Homeless Solutionary Awards. They include Craig Braunschweiger, Officer Daniel C. Perry and Janine Pickens.
“In Montgomery County, more than 400 households experience homelessness every night but, these three individuals set an example of how we all have to work together to solve the issue,” said Commissioner Carolyn Rice.
“Daily, they use their creativity, critical thinking skills and collaboration to address the root causes of homelessness and compassionately connect people experiencing homelessness with the resources needed. It’s my honor, on behalf of all the Board of County Commissions, to thank them for their dedication in helping us end homelessness.”
Craig Braunschweiger is a volunteer for the HSPB System Performance and Evaluation Committee (SPEC) and a Retired Systems Engineer from the MITRE Corporation. He helped evaluate and select the Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) that Montgomery County uses to view a person’s journey through the Continuum of Care. He has continued to provide his expertise in data architecture, modeling and analytics projects following retirement.
“I care about making sure the community can do the best it can do for residents, no matter their housing situation,” Braunschweiger said. “That’s one of the most rewarding things. Even though I’m providing expertise in the back room, my support for the committee and improving the system, will help the clients find the kind of help they need and the best outcome they can get.”
Officer Daniel C. Perry is a police officer for the city of Dayton Police Department and a member of Dayton’s Mobile Crisis Response Team. He responds quickly to calls regarding mental health, substance abuse, homelessness and other cases that require delicate and special care. Upon his arrival at a scene, Officer Perry first establishes a human connection by talking face-to-face with people about their situation. He then provides whatever assistance he can to help them.
“A lot of people don’t know where to start so I’m able connect with them and provide some kind of hope and then, get them connected with the right people to help end their homelessness,” Ofc. Perry said.
“A lot of times, homelessness is not their fault. They just fell on hard times, and they just need that little bit of extra help and someone to give them hope.
“It’s very satisfying to be able to connect with someone and then get a phone call that housing has been found.”
Janine Pickens is a Program Manager at St. Vincent de Paul Safe Haven. She has consistently worked to get vulnerable and at-risk people off the streets and to address barriers that prevent individuals from being housed in traditional settings. Many she assists are navigating mental health or substance use disorders.
“I feel so much reward with watching our folks moving forward and making progress with their lives,” said Pickens. “It makes me want to do more and helps me stay focused on the issue at hand. I was shocked and surprised when I found out about this honor. I’m just grateful that we get to do this work.”
A formal award presentation will take place on March 23, 2023, at 4 p.m. during the Continuum of Care meeting.
For more information about the Homeless Solutionary Award and to see past honorees, please visit https://bit.ly/HomelessSolutionaryAward.