June 18, 2007

State of Alabama
Press Release: Human Resources, Department of

2007 Alabama Fatherhood Awards presented

Fifteen outstanding community organizations, public officials and private citizens received special awards Friday, June 14th, during a meeting of the Alabama Fatherhood Initiative (AFI) in Montgomery. The AFI is a network of agencies and organizations that assists non-custodial parents in enhancing their ability to provide financial support to their children.

This year’s theme was Celebrating Alabama’s Fathers and encouraged custodial and non-custodial parents to be involved in their children’s lives in a nurturing, constructive way. The state Department of Human Resources (DHR) cosponsored the Fatherhood Summit Program where the awards were presented.

The community-based organizations being honored have operated exemplary fatherhood programs. The public officials being recognized have provided outstanding leadership in the development of programs to support fathers’ involvement and strengthen families. The individuals being honored are program participants who have demonstrated dedication and determination in pursuing the goals of the programs in which they are enrolled.

"The negative impact of broken homes and absent fathers is well documented," said state DHR Commissioner Dr. Page Walley. " The consequences are far-reaching, and can be long-lasting," he said. "Establishing or rebuilding the relationship can be very slow and difficult, but ultimately, the child and the absent parent both benefit from the healing process," Commissioner Walley noted.

Studies have shown that children who live without their biological fathers are, on average, at least two to three times more likely to be poor, to use drugs, to experience health, educational, or behavioral problems, to be victims of child abuse and to engage in criminal activity.


2007 Alabama Fatherhood Initiative Award Recipients:

Dr. Francesca Adler-Baeder (Lee County)—Strengthening Alabama Families Award

Jefferson County Commissioner Bettye Fine Collins—Fatherhood Public Service Award

Dr. Renee D. Culverhouse, President, Gadsden State Community College—Fatherhood Leadership Award

District Judge David J. Breland (Morgan County)—Fatherhood Judicial Award

Lauderdale County Head Start,FAMILY (Fathers as Mentors in Learning Years) Program—Alabama Head Start Fatherhood Program Award

Wiley Lucas (Talladega County)—Fathers in Touch Father Award

Former Alabama State University football player Chad Lucas (now with the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers)--Fathers in Touch Son Award

Carl Carpenter, Assistant Chaplain, Staton Correctional Facility Alabama Department of Corrections Community Program Award

Reverend Joe Simmons Alabama Department of Corrections Community Program Award

The Daniel Foundation of Alabama (Jefferson County)—Fatherhood Private Giving Award

Dr. W. Clyde Williams, CEO, National Institute for Human Development—Fatherhood Pioneer Award

Gary White (Lowndes County)—Alabama Head Start Father Award

Barry Johns (Decatur)—Alabama Children’s Trust Fund Father Award

Community Action Agency of Northwest Alabama, Inc. —Alabama Children’s Trust Fund Fatherhood Program Award

Attorney General Troy King—Protecting Alabama Families Award 



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