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Treatment Court to Graduate 13 Veterans

Superior Court of Santa Barbara County honors graduates of the Santa Maria Veterans Treatment Court

Military veterans who have successfully completed the Veterans Treatment Court (VTC) program will be honored at a commencement ceremony hosted by Judge Kay Kuns, 1:30 p.m. Friday, May 12, at the Santa Maria Public Library Shepard Hall.

This graduation marks the 10th commencement ceremony of the Santa Maria VTC program; 13 veterans are scheduled to graduate. A reception hosted by the Veterans Treatment Court Foundation will follow the ceremony.

Graduates will receive certificates of completion and will be given the opportunity to speak about their experience in the VTC program. This event also celebrates National Drug Court Month.

Guest speakers will include motivational speaker Jeremy Bates (aka The Hope Dealer), and Ricky Lopez from San Luis Obispo County Drug and Alcohol Services.

Fifth Dist. Supervisor Steve Lavagnino and representatives from the offices of Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham and Rep. Salud Carbajal will attend to congratulate the veterans.

The VTC of Santa Maria was established in November 2011 with the goal of serving justice-involved veterans who are struggling with substance abuse, addiction, serious mental illness, and/or co-occurring disorders.

The court program stems from collaboration among the Superior Court, Probation, the offices of the Public Defender and District Attorney, the Department of Behavioral Wellness, the Sheriff’s Office, the UCSB, and the Veterans Administration (VA).

To learn more about Veterans Treatment Courts, visit For more about National Drug Court Month, visit

— Elizabeth Krene for Santa Barbara County Probation Department.

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