Board of Directors


Arlene Garcia, EdD, LCSW (
GarciaArlene Everyday across the globe, social workers help, support, protect, and advocate on behalf of people in need. Our work comes from the heart and a deep belief that all people should be treated with respect. As a social worker for over 16 years, I have proudly upheld the values and ethics of our profession. My experience began in providing direct care to the homeless and mental health populations and more recently leading the charge for quality education and training for social workers in the Virgin Islands. If elected, I will lead according to the values of the NASW, fulfill the expectations of the position of Chapter President with integrity, and work to meet the needs of social workers in the Territory.

Vice President

Jessica Halliday, Certified Social Worker

St. Croix District Chair

Jean Nesbitt-Matthew, LSW, MSW (
Jean Nesbitt-MatthewJean graduated from Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan in 1985 with a BA in Psychology. In 2004, she earned her Masters Degree in Social Work from Norfolk State University in Norfolk, Virginia. Jean's social work career spans 29 years. She is currently serving in the capacity of District Manager of Child Protective Care Unit at the United States Virgin Islands Department of Human Services in the St. Croix District of the Division of Children and Family Services. She was the Social Services Supervisor of the Virgin Islands Housing Authority for 20 years.

She is married to George G. Matthew, Sr. and they have two sons, George, Jr. and Jared. Her philosophy of life is to treat others the way you would like to be treated. Jean has been a NASW-VI member since 2011 and has previously served as Vice President.

St. Thomas District Chair

Yvonne Woods, PhD, LCSW (

Yvonne Woods2Yvonne Woods served four years in the United States Air Force where she was trained in behavioral health  Fort Sam Houston, San Antonio, Texas. She graduated cum laude from the University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) with a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology, and in 2004, earned a Master in Social Work (MSW) from Norfolk State University. In 2009, she graduated from the Leadership Education and Developmental Disabilities program, New York Medical College, School of Public Health in Valhalla, New York.

While she was pursuing her academic interests, Ms. Woods worked simultaneously as a licensed social worker at the Virgin Islands Department of Health with adults with mental illness, and the St. Thomas Health Care Management, Inc. with youth experiencing behavioral problems. From 2000 to 2005, she worked with the Children, Youth, and Families Division at the V.I. Department of Human Services, and in June 2013, retired from the Virgin Islands Government as an assistant director with the Division of Mental Health, Alcoholism and Drug Dependency Services. She went on to earn her Ph.D. in social work from Norfolk State University in 2014. Ms. Woods also writes on a variety of social issues through her guest editorials in the local newspapers, and served for nine years as an Executive Board Member of Workable, Inc., an organization that provides supported employment for individuals with disabilities.

She is the recipient of many awards and recognitions, including the Air Force Achievement Medal, the Nancy K. Byram Psychology Award, Golden Key National Honor Society Lifetime Member, Special Congressional Recognition for Outstanding and Invaluable Service to the Virgin Islands Community, and in 2011, was a Go Light Your World Foundation Honoree. Yvonne is mom to a son, Peter Jr., and she currently serves as the president and executive director of Street Works-VI , Inc., a non-profit organization she founded in 2011. She continues to give back to the community through this venue.

Member at Large

Ada-Luz Rivera Flemming, LSW, MSW (
Ada-Luz Rivera FlemmingAda-Luz has been a social worker for the past 26 years. She has been working in the Juvenile Justice Division, Department of Human Services, for the past 26 years. From 2004 to present, she has held the position of District Manager of that Division. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Social Work from Oakwood College in Huntsville Alabama (1984) and Masters of Social Work (2004) from Norfolk State University, in Norfolk, Virginia. Ada-Luz has two children and has been married to Master Sergeant Curtis Flemming for the past 27 years.