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1990 National Crime Victims' Rights Week Awardees

Department of Justice

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                               OVC

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 25, 1990                                                                          202/724-7782

President George Bush and Attorney General Dick Thornburgh today honored seven people who have made outstanding contributions in assisting victims of crime. Before the ceremony, President Bush also signed a Proclamation commemorating National Crime Victims' Rights Week (April 22-28, 1990). Those honored at the White House ceremony were selected by the Office for Victims of Crime, a component of the Justice Department's Office of Justice Programs, from 200 nominations submitted by Federal, state, and local criminal justice and victim assistance officials, national victim assistance organizations, and individual citizens.

"I commend these outstanding men and women who have dedicated countless hours of hard work to ensure the fair treatment of crime victims," Thornburgh said. "They are some of the 'thousand points of light' President Bush keeps talking about--those who work day after day on behalf of others. These outstanding American citizens and others like them around the country give of themselves selflessly to safeguard the rights and well-being of the innocent victims of crime."

Those honored were:

-- Howard and Constance Clery, of Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. The Clerys dedicated their lives to preventing future campus victimizations since the murder of their daughter, Jeanne, in her dormitory room by a fellow student at Lehigh University in April 1986. They rounded the nonprofit organization, Security on Campus, Inc., and spearheaded a national campaign to obtain passage of legislation mandating that colleges, universities, and other institutions of higher learning be required to publish their violent crime and drug/alcohol offense statistics. Four states have adopted such legislation; it is pending in 29 other states.

The Clerys also have worked for passage of Federal legislation, and obtained sponsorship for the "Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act of 1989" in the United States Senate and the Mouse of Representatives.

-- Milton Cole, of Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. Milton Cole has a long history of helping to organize victim assistance for Boston's public housing residents, and has been active for many years in crime prevention and community activities in the Boston area. Me rounded a community patrol in the Bromley-Heath public housing project, which plays a vital role in protecting residents against crime and drug dealing. The patrol has become a model for other public housing anti- crime programs.

Cole also played a key role in establishing the Martha Eliot Health Center, which operates a drug treatment program at a public housing project. In addition, he has been instrumental in organizing support groups for addicts and travels extensively to conduct training workshops on preventing and controlling drug abuse in public housing.

-- Sandra Heverly, of Lag Vegas, Nevada. Heverly became an activist for Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) in 1983 following a family tragedy caused by a drunk driver. As executive director of Clark County, Nevada, MADD, she has worked tirelessly as a volunteer directing public awareness campaigns, special events, media promotions, and court monitoring programs, raising funds, and advocating legislation. Because of her efforts, Nevada legislators have passed some of the toughest DUI (Driving Under the Influence) legislation in the country.

Heverly also founded and coordinates the Clark County MADD Speakers Bureau, and various educational, has conducted more than 500 presentations to religious, medical, and civic groups. She produced two training films for DUI schools, and appeared in MADD's "Home for the Holidays," a film shown on television and in movie theaters. She also was instrumental in establishing a Students Against Drunk Driving (SADD) chapter in Nevada.

-- Dean G. Kilpatrick, of Charleston, South Carolina. Dr. Kilpatrick has been involved with the victims' rights movement since 1974, when he helped found People Against Rape, a rape crisis center in Charleston, South Carolina. From that beginning, he pioneered research studies documenting the scope and long-term psychological impact of crime upon victims. He also was instrumental in establishing the Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center at the Medical University of South Carolina, which provides direct mental health treatment to victims and their families, and provides specialized training for professional mental health counselors.

As a member of the South Carolina Crime Victims Advisory Board, Kilpatrick helped set public policy for victims' services in the area of compensation and assistance, and was a founding member of the South Carolina Victims Assistance Network. In addition, he worked for the passage and strengthening of the South Carolina Crime Victims Bill of Rights to obtain more equitable compensation coverage for mental health counseling and state funding for evidentiary rape examinations. Dr. Kilpatrick has demonstrated a sustained commitment to the mission of promoting greater awareness, understanding, and effective response to crime victims.

-- Emelia "Mimi" Olson, of Fort Thompson, South Dakota. For 23 years, Olson has provided services to Native Americans on the Crow Creek Reservation. She began first as a school nurse in Stephan, South Dakota, and then became a consultant to Red Horse Lodge, a group home for emotionally-disturbed Indian children. She obtained support and funding to assist child victims of sexual abuse, and worked to establish protocols to protect child crime victims.

Olson also was instrumental in organizing the first victim assistance program on the Crow Creek Reservation, which she now manages. When the local domestic violence and sexual assault assistance program was floundering, she took over the administration of that program. Her contributions have been admirable and deserving of special recognition.

-- John Walsh, of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. A victims activist since the murder of his son, Adam, Walsh has become the Nation's most visible spokesman for missing and molested children. He rounded the Adam Walsh Child Resource Center, a nonprofit organization responsible for nationwide public education on child safety and dedicated to legislative reform.

Walsh vigorously lobbied for passage of the Missing Children's Act of 1982 and the Missing Children's Assistance Act of 1984--legislation which led to the creation of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. He also travels and promotes legislation at the state level to prevent the abduction and molestation of children. To date, his efforts have resulted in passage of more than 35 state laws to protect and prevent child victimization.

"The work of the individuals honored during Victims' Rights week each year has brought this Nation a long way in restoring a balance to the criminal justice system so that crime victims receive the fairness and respect that they deserve," Thornburgh said. "This Administration, particularly the Department of Justice, and the Office of Justice Programs, through its Office for Victims of Crime, is committed to carrying on this important work in partnership at the Federal, state, and local levels."

The Office for Victims of Crime serves as the Federal focal point for addressing the needs and improving the treatment of crime victims. OVC administers the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) program, which awards grants to states to expand victim compensation and assistance and supports innovative crime victim projects. OVC also provides training for criminal justice officials to inform them about the needs of crime victims and how to better serve them.

The VOCA program is primarily financed by the Crime Victims Fund. Monies in the fund come--not from taxpayers--but from fines, penalties, and bond forfeitures assessed on convicted Federal defendants.

After hours, contact: Anne Voigt, (703) 971-4871

Date Created: June 3, 2020