2023 A Look Back: The Hero You Never Knew You Needed Award

Amanda Seay Amanda Seay File photo

Not all heroes wear capes.

At least not Amanda Seay. She seems more the utility pants and boots type. 

A former probation officer who’s handled all kinds of tough cases of people either trying to get their lives together or trying to dodge accountability, this woman has been through it all.

“But what makes her so special?” you may ask yourself. She’s the person on the ground floor of the greatest revelation the Haywood County judicial system has encountered in quite some time — the new recovery court.

The program offers people struggling with addiction a second chance, and it provides all the resources necessary to ensure a holistic approach to recovery.

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There are dozens of people who made the program possible and who continue to ensure its success — from judges to legislators to local leaders. But it’s Seay who does the work on the ground to keep that thing a-hummin’ along. It’s Seay who daily deals with participants in the program; it’s Seay who stands side-by-side with these brave souls looking for change, celebrating every victory and offering compassion and guidance in light of any setback.

And by all accounts, Seay is loved by the participants and is seen as the rare kind of person that actually provides the balance of encouragement and tough love.

So, Amanda Seay, we recognize you as the hero we never knew we needed, who is making Haywood County a better place.

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