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William “Bill” Stokes: February State Employee of the Month

In early April, Social Services employee William “Bill” Stokes became the only investigator in a 20-county region. Other regions have up to six investigators and fewer counties.

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William "Bill" Stokes

“Bill accepted these responsibilities without hesitation and took it upon himself to organize and maintain the workload in anticipation of additional staff,” said Michele Struemph, assistant chief of investigators, who nominated Stokes for the State Employee of the Month.

Stokes joined the Missouri Department of Social Services Southeast Region Welfare Investigation Unit in March 1999. He was promoted to special agent in charge of the Southeast region in June 2006.

From April to October, Stokes’ workload increased “exponentially,” Struemph said.

“He did not complain, but remained organized, focused and continued to pursue prosecution cases and individuals for public assistance fraud,” she said.

Working four 10-hour shifts, Stokes operates independently with initiative and extra effort, Struemph said.

He drives hundreds of miles on a weekly and sometimes daily basis to locate individuals.

“Because of his well-known status in his community, he is able to do so without failure,” she said.

“Bill’s attitude and resounding pleasant demeanor never waivers and it’s his persistent patience and dedication that contribute to a high and extraordinary work output.

“Bill is extremely dependable and trustworthy, and there are simply no words to describe his worth to the agency.”

The State Employee of the Month is selected by the State Employee of the Month Selection Committee from among nominations submitted by the 16 state departments and some elected offices. The six committee members also are members of the State Training Advisory Council.

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