Carson City’s Latino Employee of the Year feels blessed | NevadaAppeal.com

Carson City’s Latino Employee of the Year feels blessed

Rhonda Costa-Landers
Appeal Staff Writer

Cathleen Allison/Nevada Appeal Claudia Saavedra, community services coordinator with the Carson City Division of Alternative Sentencing, says she looks forward to going to work every day.

Claudia Saavedra says she is one of those fortunate people who look forward to going to work every day.

“I think that makes a difference in life,” Saavedra said.

Saavedra is the community services coordinator/Division of Alternative Sentencing office manager, oversees the Graffiti Abatement Program and manages the Fines and Fees Center for alternative sentencing. She has worked for the city of Carson City for 14 years.

Saavedra’s work was duly noted by another worker in her department, Rory Planeta, who nominated her for the Latino Employee of the Year. Saavedra was named Carson City’s Latino Employee of the Year and honored at the Carson City Board of Supervisor’s meeting Thursday.

“Winning this award, I feel special,” Saavedra said. “It is a great honor Latinos are being recognized.

“We have a good team here.”

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Saavedra, 48, said the Graffiti Abatement Program is “her baby,” and she takes its operation seriously.

“I take it personally. I make them (offenders) realize how bad it is – and the town is cleaner with this program. I’m proud to say that.

“This is where I’ve lived most of my life. Carson City is my town.”

Saavedra said through the program, some of the offenders have been hired for jobs. All of the offenders Saavedra works with are adults.

“I interview them before their community service,” she said. “I find out their skills, talk about their background, and send them to appropriate places for community service.”

Saavedra said if she can make a difference in one person, then it is worth it. And she hopes she’s already done that.

“There’s a few I may have made a difference with. I can only hope.

“I think that if the good Lord puts us in a good place, it’s because we need to make a difference.”

A single mom to 20-year-old Melissa, a junior at UNR, and 16-year-old twin daughters Bianca and Belinda, Saavedra also holds down another job. She is a Realtor for Coldwell Banker/Best Sellers. Born in Nicaragua, Saavedra has lived in Carson City 21 years.

“Sometimes I work more than 40 hours a week,” she said. “But being a single mom, it’s tough.

“But I’m blessed because I always had two jobs and been able to make it.

“And I’m blessed I was chosen (Latino Employee of the Year).”

• Contact Rhonda Costa-Landers at rcosta-landers@nevadaappeal.com or 881-1223.