BENTONVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Judge Thomas Smith was presented with a certificate of achievement recognizing the Benton County Juvenile Drug Court as a certified specialty court based on its compliance with established best practice standards.

According to a press release, the presentation was made during the Benton County Adult Drug Court and Veterans Treatment Court Graduation on May 13. To obtain certification, a specialty court program must undergo an assessment by the Specialty Court Program Advisory Committee.

The assessment includes an on-site evaluation of program operations, including observation of team staff meetings and regular review hearings. A comprehensive report is then provided to the court including recommendations for program improvement.

Members of the Benton County Juvenile Drug Court include Honorable Thomas Smith, Program Coordinator Samantha Barragan, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Mason Reynolds, Defense Attorney Rita Smith, Defense Attorney Hadley Hindmarsh, Counselor Jerriod Broadnax, Chief Juvenile Probation Officer Drew Shover, Juvenile Probation Officer Hitzel Juarez, Special Education Coordinator Kathy Herndon, and Adult Specialty Court Coordinator Michelle Barrett.