She Doesn’t Want to Go Home Until She’s Helped
Those who work day after day with victims and survivors of sexual assaults don’t have an easy job. Not only do they have to listen to terrifying replays of gruesome events, they have to stay calm, and try and help people who are in crisis. PPB professional staff member Slavica “Slava” Jovanovic was honored with the 2023 Oregon Crime Victims Law Center’s Hardy Myers Victim Advocacy Award. Slava is a Victim Advocate assigned to the Detective Division’s Sex Crimes Unit and has worked for the Bureau for almost 15 years.
Photo courtesy of Slava Jovanovic
Slava founded an innovative program to address the needs of survivors and victims of sexual assault crimes, by providing clients with the tools and resources based on principles of trauma-informed care. She works alongside detectives at PPB. Chief Chuck Lovell sent out a note to the department praising her work and highlighted some quotes from those she has helped:
“I would not have felt comfortable with any other escort during the court appearances. [She is] so respectful and an incredible source of compassion.”
“Having watched her interact with victims of sexual assault, I have developed a great respect for Ms. Jovanovic’s work. She effortlessly communicates an atmosphere of warmth and non-judgment with victims.”
“She has helped me hold my head up high in one of the hardest times in my life. I was really nervous going into his process, but after meeting her, I felt a comfort within her.”
Our professional staff members often go unrecognized for their work, and we know that we simply could not do this job without their support. Slava has positively impacted so many. I know you will join me in congratulating her on the recognition of her commitment to victims as well as serving as a resource to her coworkers.
Slava has also been recognized for her innovative approaches in interacting with individuals impacted by trauma and is a recipient of several PPB and City or Portland awards, including: PPB Achievement Medal, WE Persist (Women’s Empowerment) Award, City of Portland Wonder Woman Award, PPB Life Saving Medal and more.