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June, 22

Justice Department Recognizes Crime Victim Services Professionals and Survivors at 2024 National Crime Victims’ Service Awards Ceremony

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Justice Department Recognizes Crime Victim Services Professionals and Survivors at 2024 National Crime Victims’ Service Awards Ceremony

WASHINGTON, DC — Assistant Attorney General Amy L. Solomon and Office for Victims of Crime Director Kristina Rose today recognized 8 individuals and organizations for their advocacy, innovation, and research on behalf of victims of crime.

“We recognize the individuals and organizations represented here that go above and beyond to assist others in their time of crisis,” Assistant Attorney General Solomon said. “They are the ones who ensure that crime victims and survivors aren’t forgotten. They provide them with the support they need today and the encouragement and hope they will need tomorrow.”

The event’s theme, “How would you help? Options, services, and hopes for crime survivors,” is a call-to-action for society to create safe environments for crime victims to share what happened to them. By doing so, we’re able to offer support, options for life-saving services, and, most importantly, hope.

“Since 1981, the Nation has formally honored victim service providers and allied professionals, many of whom were driven to this work because of trauma they experienced personally,” said Kristina Rose, Director of the Office for Victims of Crime. “It is an honor to recognize these individuals and organizations for dedicating themselves not only to making a difference to victims and survivors of crime, but to entire communities and society as a whole.”

The awardees were selected from public nominations in multiple categories, including allied professionals, research, victim services, survivor voices, and tomorrow’s leaders. The Office for Victims of Crime, an OJP program office, leads communities across the country in observing National Crime Victims’ Rights Week. Former President Ronald Reagan proclaimed the first Victims’ Rights Week in 1981, putting crime victims’ rights, needs and concerns in a prominent place on the American agenda.

Following is a list of the 2024 NCVRW award recipients:

  • The Allied Professional Award recognizes individuals from a specific discipline that work alongside the victim assistance field.
    Recipients:
    • Joan Meunier-Sham, MS, RN, Director of the Massachusetts Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Program, Boston, Massachusetts
    • Jocelyn Mejia, social worker, Imperial County Department of Social Services, Children and Families Division, El Centro, California
  • The Building Knowledge Through Research Award recognizes individual researchers or research teams that made a significant contribution to the nation’s understanding of crime victim issues.
    Recipients:
    • Michelle S, Ballan, Ph.D., MSW, Professor and Associate Dean for Research, School of Social Welfare and Director, Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and related Disabilities Center, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, New York
    • Hope Research Center, The University of Oklahoma, Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • The National Crime Victim Service Award honors extraordinary efforts to provide direct services to crime victims.
    Recipients:
    • Angela McCown, LMFT, Director, Victim Services Division, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Austin, Texas
    • Herman Millholland, Independent Consultant, Millholland & Associates, Los Angeles, California
  • The Survivor Voices Award honors crime victims and survivors whose perseverance and determination in the aftermath of victimization was the catalyst for implementing.
    Recipient:
    • Aswad Thomas, MSW, Vice President, Alliance for Safety and Justice & National Director of Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice, Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tomorrow’s Leader Award honors a youth who has dedicated their efforts to supporting survivors.
    Recipient:
    • Elijah Lee, Youth Activist, Hear Our Voices, Virginia

During National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, victim advocacy organizations, community groups as well as state, local and tribal agencies traditionally host rallies, candlelight vigils and other events to raise awareness of victims’ rights and services.

To learn more about NCVRW and past award recipients, visit ovc.ojp.gov/ncvrw.

About the Office of Justice Programs

The Office of Justice Programs provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime; advance equity and fairness in the administration of justice; assist victims; and uphold the rule of law. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.

###

OFFICE: ovc.ojp.gov
CONTACT: OJP Media at [email protected]

Originally published at https://www.ojp.gov/news/news-release/doj-recognizes-crime-victim-services-professionals-and-survivors

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