August 26, 2011

After serving as a Juvenile Services satellite office in the Foster-Powell neighborhood for over 15 years, the Wikman Building officially closed its doors on June 30, 2011.  Staff who had worked in the building gathered to swap stories over a potluck and say good-bye to a place that housed many good memories.  One comment submitted by a Juvenile Court Counselor summed up many of the shared sentiments:

The building has a beauty and a feeling of peace that cannot be described but is truly felt by all who enter the doors.  So much laughter.  So much caring. So many memories.

The decision to close the Wikman building resulted from the Department of Community Justice’s (DCJ) mobile workforce initiative.  “It was a difficult decision to close Wikman,” acknowledged Scott Taylor, Director of DCJ. “But it didn’t make sense to retain it when you consider the facility costs and the fact that our Juvenile Court Counselors are now increasing their time in family’s homes – not at their desks.”

Built in 1919, the Wikman building was once used as a public library and was admired for its rich architectural detail.  Karen Rhein coordinated the closure and made sure the furniture surplus was donated to local non-profit groups.  Rhein said, “It’s important that we not only offer support to our community members but that we avoid having the furniture we no longer use from ending up in landfills.” Donations are currently being made to Five Rock Ranch, June Key Delta Center, Saint Child, and LEP Charter School.