DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) - After more than three decades with the Montgomery County Common Pleas Court, a longtime employee is hanging up his hat.
Jim Dare has spent the last 34 years pointing people in the right direction and helping them through some of the most difficult times in their lives. With all that he's accomplished, he's now heading into retirement.
Family, friends, judges, law enforcement, and even clients honored Jim with a retirement celebration.
Jim was first hired as a probation officer in 1984. For the past five years, he's served as court administrator.
"I've had a great run with the Montgomery County Common Pleas Court," says Jim.
"Jim is an innovator," says the honorable Judge Mary Katherine Huffman. "You talk with anyone who knows Jim and they will tell you that he is responsible for programs that exist in our community."
Over the years, he helped develop four specialty courts.
"We have a men's drug court, a women's therapeutic court, a veteran's treatment court, and a mental health court," says Judge Huffman.
His experience is extensive, crossing paths with many people.
"If someone was having a bad day, he would offer whatever help," says close coworker Shadonna North. "He was the one, the go-to for help."
Jim has always held onto one primary philosophy throughout his career.
"Never give up on anyone," he says. "I'm never gonna give up on anyone even if they make mistakes."
He never did give up.
Those who worked closely with Jim have a parting message for him.
"I appreciate just working with you. You are my sunshine," says Shadonna.
"You deserve this retirement. You have worked tirelessly for 34 years for everyone else but yourself and now it's time to do what you love to do," says Judge Huffman.
Jim says he will now be spending more time with family. He officially retires July 31.
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