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2017 Child Abuse Prevention Award Winners Announced

For Release: April 12, 2017 – Cody McDonell, Office of Communications – (405) 271-5601

The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) earlier this week recognized five outstanding child abuse prevention leaders and efforts at the State Capitol. The OSDH was honored to present the awards for demonstrated significant and outstanding work in preventing child maltreatment. In addition, two national organizations recognized separate state efforts to reduce abusive head trauma in young children and improve mother and child well-being. Director Ed Lake of the Oklahoma Department of Human Services served as the Master of Ceremonies.

The 2017 award winners are:

  • Mary Ellen Wilson Award: Desiree Doherty – former Executive Director of the Parent Child Center of Tulsa.
  • Outstanding Child Abuse Prevention Program: The Adult Treatment Program located at the Parent Child Center of Tulsa.
  • Julie L. Bonner Nurse Award: Nichelle Gaines, RN – Children First Nurse at the Muskogee County Health Department.
  • Marion Jacewitz Award: Susan E. Gibson, MS – Program Manager for the Office of Child Abuse Prevention at OSDH, Oklahoma City.
  • Outstanding Home Visitor Award: Marina Montoya-Zorilla – Parents as Teachers Educator at the Latino Community Development Agency of Oklahoma City.

“The Outstanding Child Abuse Prevention award recipients are shining examples of individuals working to support families, so that parents can provide safe, stable and nurturing homes for their children,” said Annette Jacobi, director of the OSDH Family Support and Prevention Service. “These individuals and programs have made a positive impact on the quality of life for Oklahoma's children and saved child welfare costs.”

The following organizations were recognized for their outstanding Implementation for the “Period of PURPLE Crying” by the National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome: 

The Parent Child Center of Tulsa

Office of Perinatal Quality Improvement

Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth

Oklahoma State Department of Health

These four organizations have been instrumental in the implementation and expansion of the “Period of PURPLE Crying” program across Oklahoma. Knowing that infant crying often increases parents’ stress levels, the program utilizes DVDs to teach parents about normal infant crying patterns and ways to soothe infants. In addition, parents are taught safe ways to cope if their child is inconsolable, but otherwise healthy, dry, fed, comfortable, etc. The DVDs are viewed by the parents at the hospital after the birth of the child with the overall goal of reducing abusive head trauma among infants. The program reached more than 85 percent of newborn parents last year.

The State of Oklahoma also received acknowledgement from the Nurse-Family Partnership National Service Office for providing more than 20 years of evidence-based home visiting services. Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP), known in Oklahoma as Children First, provides in-home support for first-time mothers in order to improve the health and well-being of babies and their caregivers.

“Since its inception in 1997, almost 45,000 Oklahoma families have participated in the program,” said NFP Business Development Manager Matthew Wallace.

Mary Ellen Wilson Award

Desiree Doherty receives the Mary Ellen Wilson Award (Pictured: Sarah Neyman and Desiree Doherty)

Outstanding Child Abuse Prevention Program Award

The Outstanding Child Abuse Prevention Program Award is presented to the Adult Treatment Program at the Parent Child Center of Tulsa. (Pictured: Executive Director Kristine Bridges and staff)

Julie L. Bonner Nurse Award

Nichelle Gaines receives the Julie L Bonner Nurse Award. (Pictured: Senator Pemberton,  Nichelle Gaines, and Avery Frix)

Marion Jacewitz Award

Susan E. Gibson receives the Marion Jacewitz Award. (Pictured: Annette Jacobi, Susan Gibson)

Outstanding Home Visitor Award

Marina Montoya-Zorilla with the Latino Community Development Agency receives the Outstanding Home-Visitor Award.

The Period of Purple Crying

Employees of The Parent Child Center of Tulsa, Office of Perinatal Quality Improvement,  Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth, and the Oklahoma State Department of Health receiving recognition for outstanding implementation of “The Period of PURPLE Crying” from the National Center of Shaken Baby Syndrome.

Annette Jacobi and Dr. Edd Rhoades

Annette Jacobi and Dr. Edd Rhoades receiving recognition on behalf of the State of Oklahoma from Matthew Wallace, Business Development Manager with the Nurse-Family Partnership.

 

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