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Martin Luther King Day Award: John McLernon

The county honored the clinical social worker at its event on Friday.

John McLernon was one of two Atlantic County residents at the county's Martin Luther King Day event on Friday, Jan. 13, at the county offices in Atlantic City.

McLernon earned a bachelor's degree in journalism in 1978, and analyzed the social impact of the casino industry on county residents during his tenure with The Press of Atlantic City.

He became a coordinator in the Office on Aging with the county government in 1986, and later became a supervisor in the Adult Protective Services Unit. In that position, he helped protect residents from abuse, neglect and exploitation, according to information provided by the county.

He helped identify services and funding to meet the unmet needs of county residents as coordinator of the Atlantic County Human Services Advisory Council, the county said.

Since 2001, he has been responsible for administering emergency assistance programs and interventions to at-risk families. He also implements discharge planning services for inmates from the county jail who promote successful transitions upon their return to the communities.

He also helps to reduce recidivism, earned a master's degree in social work in 2002 and became a licensed clinical social worker in 2008.

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