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Driven by passion to serve the victims

El Paso FBI recognizes Salvation Army employee for her work in anti-trafficking.

by Heather Melvoin –

FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III, presents the Director’s Community Leadership award to Virginia McCrimmon.

In a ceremony held by the FBI at their headquarters in El Paso, Texas, Salvation Army employee Virginia McCrimmon received the prestigious Director’s Community Leadership Award for her ongoing work in anti-trafficking.

The award recognizes leaders in the community who have demonstrated outstanding contributions to their local communities through service.

“Whatever the motivation—an unfulfilled need, tragic occurrence, desire to give back—these are people who make things happen and enlist others in their cause. They are activists who have earned their prestige through good works,” FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III, said.

After teaching school for 37 years, McCrimmon was hired by The Salvation Army to work in its Anti-Human Trafficking Program. In addition to supplying the basic essentials and social needs of human trafficking victims, she also provides community education through outreach and awareness programs, distributing human trafficking information to the general, private, state and federal sectors.

McCrimmon has collaborated with government and social service partners in New Mexico and across the border in Mexico. She has hosted numerous international guests at the request of the U.S. State Department, which considers the El Paso Human Trafficking Task Force a model program.

Although lack of adequate funding is a hindrance, she doesn’t let that hold her back.

“Funding is not the main focus of my work. The focus is the victim who has no one to be the voice, the advocate or an assistant in protecting his/her human rights,” McCrimmon said.

She goes beyond the call of duty outlined in her job description by spending countless hours of her personal time and even money to help victims in need. She is known to take victims who have nothing but the clothes on their backs and supply them with food, safe shelter, clothing, medical and mental health treatment, transportation, job training and employment.

County Coordinator Captain Keith Bottjen serves with McCrimmon in El Paso.


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