Billings downtown resource outreach coordinator Joel Simpson is leaving the job he created for a position as social worker at the Crow/Northern Cheyenne Hospital at Crow Agency.  Simpson introduced his successor, Dave Kobold, during a Community Innovations meeting Wednesday.  For three weeks, Kobold has been on the job offering treatment and counseling services– rather than jail time– to serial inebriates downtown.

 

He will begin working with police resource officers on Monday.  Unlike Simpson, he’s not Native American, but Kobold is a counselor.  He said he feels a connection with Native American people and minored in Native American studies in college.  Simpson received high marks from downtown leaders who expressed gratitude for his work creating the position and helping to move people out of the Yellowstone County Detention Facility and into treatment.  Kobold said he’s seen gradual acceptance as Simpson has been introducing him around the downtown to his clients.