Staff Spotlight – Korina Heard

Korina Heard is a Parent Partner at Washington Autism Alliance & Advocacy. She is a Masters candidate in Social Work at the University of Washington since 2016. She has also worked with at-risk youth, foster care children, and children with developmental disabilities. Korina is a Court Appointed Special Advocate in Pierce County and represents children in the foster care system in court. After being trained as an Inter-group Dialogue Facilitator, she helped spread cultural awareness and promotes social justice.

The impact she’s had on WAAA’s staff and all of the families she’s worked with is too many to count on one hand. Here are a few things some staff members had to say about Korina:

Trish Thrush wrote: “Korina grew up in Hawaii, which might be why she has such a sunny and warm personality. At the age of 11, she moved to the states. She enjoys working directly with families, helping people fulfill unmet needs and providing mentoring to support sustainable personal growth. She chose to work with WAAA after seeing a statistic that said 1 in 68 children in the US have Autism. She wanted to know more about these families and provide them with meaning full support. Her favorite food is eggplant and not chocolate but we’ll forgive her for that. Korina’s smile lights up any room she’s in and she instantly puts people at ease. She approaches every situation with humor and grace. Korina has amazing empathy and an aptitude for research. If I need a list of resource for an individual family experiencing a unique situation Korina is always who I turn to. She is always loving with WAAA families and her teammates. Working with her is truly a joy. “

Arzu Forough wrote: “My favorite attribute about Korina is her upbeat personality, regardless of the kind of day she’s having personally. This attribute makes her such a wonderful ambassador for WAAA, especially with our colocation partners. Also, Korina has worked tirelessly over the last 2.5 years to learn about the region’s resources and is an invaluable resource to families to call her for information & referrals.”

David Roth wrote: “I’ll second the consistently positive attitude and add that Korina is always happy to help. She’s always willing to jump into a project wholeheartedly.”

Beth Hammer wrote: “She is always there with a ready suggestion or answer when I need it.  A great pleasure to work with her.”

Mika Timmons wrote: “Korina is a true social worker, who goes above and beyond to help out a person in need. Her shining qualities are her empathy towards others and tenacity to always be a positive influence in our community.”

Mary Griffin wrote a sweet haiku: “Serene Korina

                                                                          making meaningful the help

                                                                          for those who need it.”

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