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DHS news release

Nov. 17, 2004

Contact: Bonnie Widerburg (503) 731-4180
Technical contact: Adrienne Greene (503) 731-4024


Oregon Safe Kids honors local supporters



Five individuals have been honored as "Champions of Oregon Safe Kids."


The awards were presented Tuesday by Rosemary Nye, deputy director of the federal Region 10 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) at the annual Oregon Safe Kids meeting in Eugene. Recipients are:


  • Gayle Watts, ACTS Oregon and the Child Safety Seat Resource Center, Gladstone;
  • Brandon and Sandi Meyer, volunteers with Safe Kids Rogue Valley, Medford;
  • Debi Bisbee, Medford Fire Department, Safe Kids Rogue Valley coordinator, Medford;
  • Patty McClure, Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) Safety Division Region 5 field representative, La Grande.


"These people were nominated by local Safe Kids chapters and coalitions throughout the state," said Adrienne Greene, Safe Kids coordinator in the Oregon Department of Human Services. "Each one has made an outstanding personal effort to further the Oregon Safe Kids mission of preventing unintentional injuries and death to children."


Watts was recognized for her ongoing coordination and support of Safe Kids Buckle Up trainings and child safety seat clinics since 2000. Watts also teaches at Buckle Up events, which occur monthly throughout Oregon to educate parents and caregivers on proper use and installation of children's car safety seats.


Brandon and Sandy Meyers and Bisbee were honored for their outstanding support of Safe Kids Rogue Valley, a local coalition dedicated to childhood injury prevention efforts in Jackson and Josephine counties. The Meyerses serve volunteer leadership roles with Safe Kids Rogue Valley and as coalition coordinator, Bisbee plans and organizes events among community partners and volunteers.


McClure was nominated for her work in helping establish four Eastern Oregon Safe Kids chapters. Local chapters around the state address injury risk areas in their communities; in eastern Oregon those areas include protection of children riding in motor vehicles, and pedestrian and helmet safety. These are also areas targeted by ODOT's Transportation Safety Division.


NHTSA provides federal grants to state and local governments to reduce deaths and injuries due to motor vehicle crashes, the leading cause of injury death to Oregon children ages 1 to 14.


Oregon Safe Kids Coalition is the state affiliate of Safe Kids Worldwide, the first and only international organization dedicated solely to preventing unintentional childhood injury--the No. 1 one killer of children ages 14 and under. More than 450 state and local Safe Kids Coalitions in all 50 states and 16 countries make up this international campaign, according to Greene.