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Never give up on people'

By Staff
WEARS MANY HATS n Christine Brown, a native of Meridian, has been employed at East Mississippi State Hospital for 27 years. She is the division director of Community Services. Photo by Steve Swogetinsky/The Meridian Star
By Steve Swogetinsky/The Meridian Star
Sept. 30, 2001
You could describe Christine Brown as a lifelong learner.
It's not that Brown has a lot of free time. Her job as division director of Community Services at East Mississippi State Hospital keeps her on call 24 hours a day at times. But she loves what she does.
Continuing care
The Community Services Division provides care after a person is no longer a patient at East Mississippi State Hospital. Clients enter the program on a voluntary basis, and are helped in whatever area they need.
The division is made up of the following service agencies: The Training Center group homes (six group homes in Meridian and two in Kemper County); The Friendship Center; Case Management Services; Recreational and Transportation Services; Nursing Services; Respite Care; and the Homeless Program. Brown oversees all of these programs and has nearly 100 people working for her.
As far as Brown is concerned, there are no failures when it comes to her clients.
Brown recalled a case where a woman came to the division several times. Each time, she would get to a point, and then would start inflicting injuries to herself. She would have to go back to the hospital. Finally, she made it through the program and now lives in residential services.
Part of Community Services' mission is to train former patients to recognize the symptoms of potential problems and to seek help before they become overwhelming.
More than 400 people are enrolled in Community Services programs each year.
Found her place
Born in Meridian, Brown graduated from T.J. Harris High School in 1967. She went on to Jackson State University, where she received her bachelor's degree. She has continued her education at Mississippi State University, first earning her master's degree in community counseling. Brown is now working on her doctorate.
She has been employed at East Mississippi State Hospital for more than 27 years. Brown went to work with the hospital as an alcohol and drug treatment counselor.
She started as a direct caregiver, and was promoted to counselor and later director of Alcohol and Drug Treatment Counseling. She discovered she enjoyed working in Community Services during the mid-1980s.
Brown came into the division as case management director and assistant division director. In 1994, she was promoted to division director, a post she has held ever since.
In addition to continuing her education, Brown likes to travel and read. Her favorite reading materials are the "whodunit" detective novels.
She is a member of the St. James AME Church.
Steve Swogetinsky is regional editor of The Meridian Star. Call him at 693-1551, ext. 3217, or e-mail him at sswogetinsky@themeridianstar.com.

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