Founded by a mother whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) is the nation’s largest nonprofit working to protect families from drunk driving and underage drinking. With the help of those who want a safer future, MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving® will end this danger on America’s roads. PowerTalk 21™ is the national day for parents to talk with their kids about alcohol, using the proven strategies of Power of Parents, It’s Your Influence™ to reduce the risk of underage drinking. And as one of the largest victim services organizations in the U.S., MADD also supports drunk driving victims and survivors at no charge, serving one person every 10 minutes at 1-877-MADD-HELP.

Together, these programs ensure that MADD achieves its lifesaving mission.

New Published Research Reinforces the Importance of Underage Drinking Prevention

HealthDay reported today on new research published by the American Academy of Pediatrics on the risk factors in early adolescence that later lead to driving under the influence and riding with a drinking driver. 

Of note in the research are five things that, if they happen at age 14, predict that as an older teen, they will commit DUI or ride with a drinking driver:

  • If they’ve been exposed to peer marijuana use
  • If they’ve used alcohol in the past month
  • If they have positive beliefs about marijuana
  • If there is marijuana use in their family
  • If they perceive alcohol as prevalent

This new, third party data reinforces much of what MADD has said for years – that underage drinking is dangerous and can lead to serious, often deadly consequences. One of MADD’s most important mission prongs is the prevention of underage drinking.

It is crucial not only for parents to talk with their children about underage drinking prevention, but also for teens to understand the important role they play in protecting themselves and their friends from underage drinking and related consequences, such as riding with a drinking driver.

That’s why MADD developed two programs to make the prevention of underage drinking a community-wide priority. The first program, Power of Parents®, equips parents and caregivers with the tools they need to have early, ongoing conversations with their children about the dangers and consequences of underage drinking. The second program, Power of You(th)®, empowers teens to take a stand and help their peers, adults and entire communities understand the importance of underage drinking prevention.

This October, MADD and community partners across the country are promoting the Power of You(th) program’s #ProtectUrFriends campaign, empowering teens to protect themselves and each other from the dangerous and often deadly consequences of underage drinking. Together, we can create a community-wide priority to prevent underage drinking and its tragic consequences to keep our teens, roads and communities safe.

For more information about MADD’s underage drinking prevention programs and this October’s #ProtectUrFriends campaign, click here

Sara Haiken Story

The Haiken family began volunteering with MADD New York in 2009 after a crash that hit too close to home, like many of our dedicated volunteers. A family friend and 43-year-old mother of two was killed on her way to her job at LaGuardia Airport in New York. The driver was uninjured and had two prior DUI convictions.

A middle school student at the time, Sara Haiken immediately saw the senselessness of the tragedy and vowed to do something about it. She began volunteering with her local MADD chapter and in 2012 – as a high school freshman – Sarah was selected to join MADD’s first-ever National Teen Influencer Group.

She and her mother, Cheryl, visited the MADD National Office, where Sarah took part in the teen review committee that helped shape what is now the cornerstone of MADD’s Power of You(th)® program – “The 411 on Teen Drinking” booklet. Since that time, Sarah has remained actively involved locally as well as nationally by returning to the National Teen Influencer Group each year. This year, Sarah is a senior and beginning her 4th year as an active member of the group. Not only has Sarah’s involvement with MADD grown over the years, but so has her family’s. Last year, her mother Cheryl became Chair of the MADD New York State Advisory Board.

Sarah is forever going above and beyond to participate in and expand MADD’s mission. This summer, she helped conduct a Power of You(th) training at MADD’s National Conference in Washington DC; conference attendees ranked this session in the top 5 for the entire conference.

Also this summer, Sarah contacted and requested an internship with Dr. Robert Turrisi at Pennsylvania State University, the lead researcher behind MADD’s Power of Parents program. Dr. Turrisi accepted Sarah into his program, in part due to her dedicated work with MADD.

As she undertakes her senior year of high school, Sarah has elected to become more involved in saving lives and preventing underage drinking by continuing to work through Pennsylvania State University. She will conduct her own research study this year under the supervision of Dr. Turrisi, focusing on the motivations behind high school students who are willing to ride with a drinking driver. Sarah will begin her research at the end of September and hopes to release her findings by the end of the school year.

What started as a teen coping with a tragic loss by reaching out to MADD has evolved into a young woman with a bright future and a true difference maker – inspiring her family, her community, and people across the country to create a future of No More Victims™!


Teen alcohol use kills about 4,700 people each year — more than all other illegal drugs combined. Teens have so much to look forward to – homecoming, graduation, pursuing a career, having a family and more. The choices teens make today will impact the rest of their lives.

Thanks to the support of National Presenting Sponsor State Farm Insurance®, MADD developed its Power of Youth® program to empower teens – individually and in groups – to influence each other, younger kids and even adults to take a stand against underage drinking, and to never ride with an impaired driver.

For the 2015 fall launch of Power of Youth, MADD asks teens to #ProtectUrFriends by talking to their peers about not drinking alcohol before turning 21, or getting in the car with an impaired driver. Teens can post a photo with their friends and use the hashtag #ProtectUrFriends to be a part of the conversation.

One important resource for teens is The 411 on Teen Drinking. This booklet contains useful information to help teens resist peer pressure, influence other teens to not drink before age 21 and never get in the car with someone who’s been drinking. From now until October 31, anyone who downloads the booklet will be entered to win weekly prizes and a grand prize, an Apple Watch Sport!

Why We’re Here: Zachary Gonzalez

By Kelli Donlen

Three days after turning 15, Zachary Gonzalez was killed by a drugged driver while riding his bike with friends.  The driver was found to have valium and cocaine in his system and had five cocaine pipes in his vehicle that all tested positive.  His only concern following the crash was getting his “oxys” (OxyContin) out of his car. 

Kelli Donlen, Zachary’s aunt and legal guardian, was notified of the crash by the police and told Zachary was killed on scene.  They were not allowed to go to the site of the crash and struggled because they were never able to confirm for themselves that it was indeed Zachary.  Kelli said she wanted to believe it was a mistake if she didn’t see her nephew for herself.  It was Zachary’s friend who confirmed for her that it was indeed Zachary.   

Shortly after, Kelli learned that the cause of the crash was placed on Zachary because he and his friends were riding their bikes on a non-pedestrian road.  The impaired driver was charged with a DUI and possession of drug paraphernalia.  He was sentenced from one to six months in jail and was released on probation after only serving one month.  Since his release, he has since been arrested for being drunk in someone else’s car and plead to Disorderly Practice; however, it was not a violation of his parole.

Kelli and her husband, who is the brother to Zachary’s mother, obtained custody of him at the age of 9.  Kelli shared Zachary’s father was killed by a substance impaired driver when Zachary was three years old.  When Zachary was 9 years old, his mother passed away from leukemia and since that time, Kelli described Zachary as quiet and keeping to himself, trying to make sense of all his losses.  Shortly before turning 15, he was beginning to come out of his shell and enjoying life again.  For his 15th birthday the family took a trip to Disney World and Kelli said they had a wonderful time.  They returned home on Saturday evening and it was the next day, Sunday, January 19, 2014 that Zachary was killed. 

The tears and heartache still have not gone away for Kelli, they never will.  She struggles with the fact that the man who killed Zachary never should have been driving.  She struggles with never having the chance to say goodbye.  She does her best to remember all the good times with Zachary but finds herself always thinking of the “firsts” that Zachary will never experience such as prom, graduation, college, driving, marriage and having children.  She tries to stay busy and loves talking about Zachary with others.  Zachary was active on the wrestling team at his school and the family founded The Zachary Gonzalez Scholarship Program in his honor.  Every year they will give out two, $1000 scholarships to students on the wrestling team.  They gave out their first two scholarships this past April and plan to do so for as long as they can.   The family also participated in their first WALK Like MADD event on September 19th in Philadelphia.  Their team, Team Zach, had over 30 members and raised over $1000.  Kelli is also working with Representative John Galloway on House Bill #1076 in Zach’s honor that asks for heavier charges in substance impaired crashes when a death of injury occurs.  Kelli said she will never stop advocating for stiffer laws and honoring Zachary’s life by telling others about him. 

Atlanta Raises Hope Among Rain

Saturday, September 26th might have been a rainy day in Atlanta, but it by no means dampened the spirits of those in attendance at the 11th Annual Walk Like MADD and MADD Dash event at The PGA Tour Superstore in Kennesaw.

Thanks to the generous support of the Atlanta Falcons, Mercedes-Benz and many others, more than 1,100 registered participants and volunteers braved the pouring rain to remember those who have been killed or injured by drunk driving; to inspire people to turn their pain into purpose; and to commit to a future of no more drunk driving victims.

Atlanta Falcons Owner Arthur Blank (whose fiancée, Angie Macuga, co-chaired the event) spoke to attendees before the Walk and Dash kicked off, then led a team of 150 participants in the event.

“Having the support of Mr. Blank and the Falcons as well as so many more in the Atlanta community plays a crucial role in delivering MADD’s mission locally and across the country,” said MADD CEO Debbie Weir, who attended Saturday’s Walk. “We want victims and survivors to know they will always have a place at MADD, and we want entire communities to know that together, we can make sure that drunk driving ends here.”

State Representative Geoff Duncan (District 26) spoke at the Walk as well. Representative Duncan is a strong supporter of MADD and is working tirelessly to strengthen Georgia’s underage drinking and drunk driving laws in order to better protect the public and keep Georgia roadways safe.

“I know firsthand what a crucial lifeline MADD provides to victims and survivors of drunk and drugged driving,” said Atlanta Walk Like MADD Co-Chair Amy Kissam Sands, whose 22-year-old stepson, Tyler, was killed by an underage drunk and drugged driver. “Having Representative Duncan and other valued and trusted community partners join us to make sure these resources are available to those who need them will make a difference to so many people.”

KSU Police Chief Roger Lee Stearns, and Kennesaw Mayor Mark Matthews also attended the Walk.

More than 80 Walk Like MADD events take place across the country every year, and each one plays a vital role in raising much needed funds and support that stays in local communities to prevent drunk driving and serve victims.

The Atlanta Walk, in particular, had strong turnout and support from highly engaged youth in the community. Elementary, middle and high school students as well as college students showed up in force to get the message out that youth engagement is crucial in order to prevent underage drinking and related consequences; and that they can help play a pivotal role in eliminating drunk driving as well.

Thanks to the extraordinary work of Atlanta Walk Like MADD co-chairs Angie Macuga and Amy Kissam Sands, along with many MADD Georgia staff and volunteers, Saturday’s event surpassed its $100,000 fundraising goal and raised more than $155,000.

A big thank you to everyone who participated in the Atlanta Walk Like MADD. Your commitment means that more lives will be saved, and more victims will be served in Georgia.

Coping with Survivor Guilt

When a loved one is killed in a traumatic event such as a substance impaired driving crash, the emotional impact of the event is intense and overwhelming for those left behind. Many survivors may question why they survived when others did not. This is commonly known as survivor guilt, and many victims and survivors of substance impaired driving crashes experience this.

Survivor guilt occurs when an individual feels he or she should not continue to live or go on in the event of another’s death. It is a normal part of grieving, particularly when the death is sudden and traumatic.

When someone experiences survivor guilt, they often try to make sense out of a senseless situation. This endless search for meaning leads to many questions, among them “Why did my loved one die, but not me?” These and other questions are quite common and are characteristic of survivor guilt.

While survivor guilt is a normal part of grieving for some, if after a period of time the guilt affects you in ways that are preventing you from moving forward in your mourning, it is time to seek help. Addressing survivor guilt means learning to live with it successfully. The scar of the crash will never go away and there will be times – such as the anniversary of the death, or the crash date – that are going to bring up a lot of feelings.

If you or someone you know is experiencing survivor guilt, here are some tips to help down the path towards healing:

  • Acknowledge and accept your feelings; it is okay to be happy about surviving the crash
  • Be patient as your feelings evolve over time; there is no time limit on grief
  • What you are experiencing is completely normal and part of grieving
  • All of your feelings are an important part of the grieving process and should not be suppressed
  • Celebrating your own life does not in any way diminish your sorrow and grief over those who were lost
  • Talk about how you feel with a peer or other victims and survivors who have a similar experience
  • You are not alone in your feelings
  • Recognize that while you survived the crash and others did not, that fact may always remain a mystery
  • No one can answer the ultimate question “Why?”, so try not to spend too much time seeking an answer to the unanswerable
  • Look to find a purpose in your life and meaning to what you do as a result of having survived
  • Remember the good times with your loved one
  • Find ways to keep the memory alive of those who were killed; this can be done on a small scale by creating a memory book, or by donating to or participating in larger memorial events
  • Do not let feelings of guilt keep you from responding to your own needs
  • Do not punish yourself
  • If feelings of guilt are overwhelming, seek the help of a professional grief counselor

It is possible for victims and survivors experiencing survivor guilt to enjoy life again without the continued guilt of surviving. It’s important that they understand that doing so does not diminish the tragedy that has occurred or the fact that they would do whatever they could to turn back time and change what happened.

Child Passenger Safety Week

This week is Child Passenger Safety Week, a time to evaluate how to keep our kids safe on the roads.

Car crashes are a leading cause of death for children, and too many of those are caused by drunk driving. In 2013, 200 child passengers (under age 15) were killed in drunk driving crashes—representing 17 percent of all child traffic fatalities. And of those, 61 percent were passengers in a vehicle with the drunk driver.

MADD is urging lawmakers to enact legislation to protect our most vulnerable population, children. Please email your representatives letting them know that you want a stronger DUI child endangerment law in your state and that every child deserves a non-drinking designated driver.

Please take action and share this image to help keep our children safe on the roads.

The Technology That Will End Drunk Driving

Technology is being developed right now to prevent anyone from driving drunk. Ever again. But we need your help today to ensure that this lifesaving, cutting-edge technology becomes an available safety option for all new cars.

Click here to contact your legislators, calling on them to sponsor the ROADS SAFE Act, which will fund the research that will bring this technology to the masses, with the power to save thousands of lives a year.

It’s called the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS). The first test vehicle with DADSS technology has launched. It is a car that cannot be driven drunk because it automatically detects the driver’s blood alcohol level through special sensors as soon as the driver gets inside. If the driver is at or above the legal limit, the car will not operate. It’s that simple.

Now, legislation has been introduced in both houses of Congress – by our allies Senator Tom Udall and Representative Nita Lowey – that makes sure the research on this lifesaving technology is completed, and the technology gets into cars where it can save lives.

Your voice matters. We need you to demand an end to drunk driving. We need to make sure Congress acts to save lives!

Developing this technology has always been the core of our Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving®. And we can see the day when you wouldn’t think of buying a car without it – just like seat belts or airbags. We can achieve a future where drunk driving never claims another life.

Your past support is what got the attention of allies in Congress, like Sen. Udall and Rep. Lowey. It’s because of your voice that we got broad support for initial research into DADSS. Now we need to get every member of Congress on board for the next phase of research that will help to bring this lifesaving technology home to end drunk driving everywhere.

Your elected officials need to hear from you now. So please contact them today.

Thank you so much for all you do to save lives.

2015 Special Anniversary Edition MADDvocate

In honor of our 35th anniversary today, we are pleased to share with you our special 35th Anniversary Edition of MADDvocate.


In this issue, you’ll find compassionate and uplifting articles, including MADD Volunteers, Healing Hearts by Helping Others, the story of how three women turned their family tragedy into a passion to prevent drunk driving, Honoring Loved Ones, about new ways to honor victims and survivors, and much more.

This special edition of MADDvocate also includes an interactive timeline for MADD’s 35th Anniversary, as well as a update on MADD’s four mission prongs, some of the key highlights for each, and how they work together to create a future of No More Victims™.


Sponsored by:

MADD at 35: Creating a Future of No More Victims

For 35 years, MADD has worked tirelessly to change the narrative on substance-impaired driving. Many lives have been saved and much progress has been made since 1980; yet, there is still more to do.

This Saturday marks the official 35th anniversary for MADD. Since September 5, 1980, MADD has championed change across the country. A change in mindset, a change in action, a change in outcome. MADD was founded because of a mother’s grief, and the determination to turn that grief into action. That determination, that commitment to change, is what has always driven us. 

As our 35th anniversary year kicked off in January, we unveiled an updated mission statement to showcase where we’ll focus our efforts going forward:

MADD’s mission is to end drunk driving, help fight drugged driving, serve the victims of these violent crimes and prevent underage drinking.

Let’s take a look at MADD’s four mission prongs and how they work together to create a future of No More Victims™.

End Drunk Driving

MADD’s work at the state and national levels for the Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving®has given it the influence and success it is today, just 9 years after it began. From supporting high visibility law enforcement to pushing for all offender ignition interlock legislation and advanced vehicle technology, we WILL end drunk driving. 

At MADD’s National Conference in Washington D.C. this summer, we joined automakers, NHTSA and the Department of Transportation for the global unveiling of the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS) technology. It was an historic moment, and gave us a glimpse of a very promising future.  

Help Fight Drugged Driving

The biggest change to MADD’s mission this year is the addition of drugged driving. Our mission must be inclusive of everything we do. Drugged driving was part of MADD’s original mission 35 years ago, and we’ve always served drugged driving victims. Having it spelled out says to the victims and survivors of drugged driving that their tragedies are real and that they matter. 

And at a time in our country when drugged driving continues to gain traction among the public and media alike, MADD is expected to have a voice in determining how to combat it. Drugged driving is a problem in every community across America.

MADD is a research and data-driven organization, rooted in facts, to determine sound procedures for where we’ll go and why. There is much we don’t know about drugged driving, but we’re going to find out. And we’re going to use what we find out, to decide how to address it.

Serve the Victims of These Violent Crimes

At our core, MADD is a victim services organization, dedicated to providing hope and healing to victims whenever, and wherever they need it. While we know we can create a future of No More Victims – we’re committed to serving and reaching more victims and survivors until that day comes.

Prevent Underage Drinking

Another way MADD will create a future of No More Victims is to impact the next generation of drivers. MADD’s Power of Parents, Power of You(th) and Power of Community programs – when implemented together – create a community-wide effort to address the dangers and consequences of underage drinking. 

For those we couldn’t save, with those we have, and to those we can. Together, we WILL create a future of No More Victims.

Why We Walk: Shelly Easter

“It’s hard enough to say goodbye to a loved one to old age or to an illness, but when you are robbed of the chance to say goodbye to someone that is just taken from you with no cause – it haunts you.”

– Kim Ray, Shelly’s sister-in-law

On September 29, 2012, Shelly Janeke Easter was on her way home from picking up sandwiches for her family when she was hit and killed by a drunk driver. The driver was traveling at an excessive speed, ran a red light while passing cars in the wrong lane and hit Shelly’s SUV head on. Shelly died at the scene. She was only four blocks from home.

Kim and her husband went to the scene. They will never forget what they saw.

Shelly was not only Kim’s sister-in-law, but also her best friend.  She misses her every day. Shelly’s daughter Chesney, now 18, still struggles with not having her mother around. Kim and Chesney share a close bond and Kim does what she can to help Chesney but she knows it’s not the same, she misses her mom. Tim, Shelly’s husband of 15 years, also struggles and gets through one day at a time.

To honor Shelly, and help save other victims, Kim is committed to MADD’s mission. Kim and her husband Garry participate each year at the Bell County Walk Like MADD. Kim and Garry even lead the Zumba warm-up. And Shelly’s husband Tim plays in a band, Fireside, and that provides the music and mc for the Walk. Every year they have a team that shows up at the race wearing their “Team Shelly” t-shirts to honor Shelly, and to never forget all the victims and survivors of substance impaired driving crashes. Kim has a dream of one day hosting a MADD for Zumba event in Shelly’s honor.

In addition to participating in Walk Like MADD, Kim testified before the Texas Senate to advocate for a law requiring all offenders to have an ignition interlock device on their car earlier this year. And thanks to her efforts, that law went into effect on Tuesday of this week.

“All I know is that I have to do what I can to make sure that everyone understands and are aware that this could happen to them,” Kim says.

Kim and Garry leading the Zumba warm-up at Walk Like MADD

Tim's band Fireside at Walk Like MADD

Play the Most Valuable Position in the NFL this Football Season

MADD and the National Football League are partnering once again this football season to remind fans to “Play the Most Valuable Position in the NFL—the Designated Driver!” 

Through this game-day partnership, MADD volunteers attend select NFL football games throughout the season providing information at MADD booths, as well as circulate through the parking lots promoting the importance of designating a non-drinking driver before the game begins.

One of the dedicated volunteers who helps make the game-day program a success is Beth Obad, a MADD Erie County volunteer for the past 20 years. Beth volunteers with MADD in honor of her George, who was killed in a drunk driving crash when he was 26 years old. Beth has been a key part of our game day program since it began as a pilot with the Buffalo Bills. She has attended 43 out of the 44 home games over the last 6 years (in the less than ideal weather conditions of Buffalo, New York). Thanks to her dedication and determination, the Buffalo Bills came in 5th place in the 2014 League-Wide Designated Driver Standings (compared 4th worst in 2010). At our National Conference this year, Beth was presented with a football signed by Commissioner Roger Goodell and Tennessee Titan tight end and MADD volunteer Delanie Walker in recognition of her role in making the program successful.

MADD National President Colleen Sheehey-Church, MADD CEO Debbie Weir, Tennessee Titan Delanie Walker, MADD Volunteer Beth Obad, and NFL Commissioner Rodger Goodell

If you are interested in volunteering for the game-day program with the NFL, please contact your local office to see if the team near you is participating.

We are proud of the success of the game day program and are grateful to the NFL for partnering with MADD to help raise awareness about the dangers of drunk driving. This football season, what position will you play?

Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over This Labor Day Weekend

Labor Day weekend is a time to celebrate the end of summer with backyard barbecues, beach trips and family gatherings. But all too often, the festivities turn tragic with one wrong decision to drink and drive.

During Labor Day weekend in 2013, drunk driving crashes claimed the lives of 161 people—one death every 31 minutes, on average. That’s why the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has launched its Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign to keep our busy roadways safe this holiday weekend.

Law enforcement officers have already stepped up their efforts during the past two weeks to catch drunk drivers before they can harm others. Officers will be out in full force throughout the long weekend, with effective, high-visibility enforcement that has shown to reduce drunk driving deaths by 20 percent.

This Labor Day weekend, enjoy the waning days of summer by planning for a safe way home for you and your loved ones before consuming alcohol.

Here are a few other ways you can keep protect yourself and your loved ones:

If you plan to be on the road during this potentially dangerous time period, please be careful, and remember to spread the word that driving impaired is simply not worth the risk, so don’t take the chance. Together with law enforcement, we can put an end to the 100 percent preventable deaths and injuries caused by drunk driving.

Why We’re Here: Chilli Vasquez

On July 9, 2011, 7-year-old Xitclalli “Chilli” Vaszquez spent the day at the mall with her sister, cousin, and aunt. She got her hair cut so that she would look extra pretty for her 8th birthday that was just three days away. On their way home, a drunk driver hit the car she was riding in head-on. The doctors didn’t think she would survive—but she did. And her life will never be the same.

Chilli is now paraplegic, which means she has total paralysis of her lower body from the breastbone down.

As part of her healing journey, Chilli decided to write a letter to the offender, which her mother read in court. Here is the letter, as written by Chilli:


The offender in Chilli’s crash pled guilty and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. He’s eligible for parole in five years. Chilli is hoping that he writes her back some day.

Chilli and her family now work with MADD to help raise awareness about the dangers of drunk driving by speaking at MADD events across North Texas. Chilli also shares her story through the Texas Department of Transportation’s (TxDOT) Faces of Drunk Driving campaign. Read more about Chilli and see the other Faces of Drunk Driving victims and survivors at

Online Support for Victims and Survivors

This month we are celebrating the 10th anniversary of the MADD Victim Help Line—a 24 hour phone line for victims and survivors of drunk and drugged driving, as well as underage drinking. While the Help Line serves thousands of people each year, we know that there are many more victims and survivors that need help. That’s why this year, MADD added a service to compliment the call-in Victim Help Line: a live chat feature that can be found on the website. 

Through the live chat box, victims and survivors can chat in real time with a MADD Victim Advocate. If for some reason the advocate is unavailable, the victim or survivor will be prompted to email a Victim Advocate who will respond to their inquiry.  

Many victim and survivors that contact us through the live chat box aren’t aware that MADD provides free victim services. So through this online feature we are able to connect them with a local MADD Victim Advocate who will provide ongoing support.

In just the few months that the online chat feature has been live, we’ve received positive feedback from victims and survivors about their experience:

  • “I am glad that I took this step to get information that can help my niece and it was great having someone there at the other end to help me with a quick response.”
  • “Great service.”
  • “It felt nice to hear somebody from MADD say that nobody should have been allowed to drive that night. She was right about that!! Very nice and compassionate woman.”
  • “Thank you, I had excellent information.  Keep it up!!!”
  • “I want to thank MADD for providing this service. I needed somebody to talk to and had nobody till I found this website… I have always supported MADD and asked others to, also. You all are great! MARCH ON MADD!!!”

MADD Victim Services is excited by the response we’ve had to this new format and we hope to continue to find additional ways to reach and serve victims and survivors of drunk and drugged driving crashes as well as underage drinking.

If you are a victim or survivor in need of support, please call our Help Line at 877.MADD.HELP or chat with us online now on the MADD homepage,


Help Line Volunteer: Glenda Richardson

Glenda Richardson joined MADD 10 years after the drunk driving crash that killed her two sons, ages 4 and 12, as well as her husband, and left her seriously injured. They were heading out on a family vacation when they were hit head on by a drunk driver. 

After the crash, Glenda felt alone – like no one else in the world could relate to what she was going through. At that time, MADD had not been formed yet, and she didn’t have anyone to talk to about what had happened to her. 

That’s why when MADD asked for volunteers to begin answering the Help Line calls, Glenda was one of the first to sign up to provide support to other victims and survivors. Now six year later, Glenda still takes an 8-hour shift on the Help Line every week. Many of the calls that she gets are from victims who have suffered injuries or lost loved ones and are struggling to cope. And just like how Glenda felt after her tragedy, they feel like they don’t have anyone to talk to. Glenda loves being able to give them the gift of listening and provide them with much needed support, sometimes for more than an hour at a time.    

Glenda just recently answered a Help Line call from a woman whose daughter, in her early 20s, had been hit by a drunk driver the night before. Her daughter was in the hospital and had serious injuries, including a serious head injury. The doctor wasn’t giving the family much hope that she would survive. The mom didn’t know where to go or what to do. Glenda was able to talk with her, let her know that MADD was here for her, and put her in touch with her local MADD victim advocate. That night, Glenda sent a message to the local MADD victim advocate and got an immediate response from the advocate stating that they would reach out to the family right away. 

Glenda wants people to know that the MADD Help Line is here to help victims and survivors and to provide support when they need it most.

“There are many things that MADD does that people don’t know about until they are involved in a crash,” Glenda said. “But our goal is to let people know about MADD’s services before they need them.”

Click here to learn more about the Victim/Survivor Help Line and MADD Victim Services. To be put in touch with a MADD Victim Advocate in your area or if you need to speak with someone as soon as possible, call MADD's Victim/Survivor Help Line at 1-877-MADD-HELP (877-623-3435) or send us an email at

Paul David Troutt Paul Ray Troutt Perry Douglas Troutt


We are excited to share with you our new television public service announcement (PSA) for Walk Like MADD, thanks to the generosity of our National Media Partner Velocity!

Please watch and share this new PSA to help spread the word about Walk Like MADD!

Walk Like MADD is the only large-scale, community-based 5K event that provides those personally impacted by drunk driving, and their network of supporters and friends, the opportunity to take steps to stop drunk driving in their community and nationwide. MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving® provides the answer and Walk Like MADD provides the venue to rally the support of everyday citizens to help put an end to this 100 percent preventable crime.

There are still many Walk events taking place this year, and several more 2016 events already open for registration! Will you join us?

If you are unable to attend a Walk because of the date or location, you can still sign up as a virtual walker and raise money to eliminate drunk driving in your community. Whatever way you contribute, your support is greatly appreciated.

Don’t have a Walk near you? This year, 34 Walk Like MADD events across the country are run entirely by volunteers who want to make an impact in the fight against drunk driving in their community. If you are interested in learning more about starting a Walk Like MADD event near you, contact

We appreciate your support and hope to see you at a Walk Like MADD event near you soon!

New MADD Victim Services Infographic

Exclusive Benefits and Discounts for MADD Supporters from Nationwide

You and your support of MADD are saving lives and serving victims of drunk and drugged driving.

We are excited to announce that Nationwide® is offering exclusive discounts on insurance for you and other MADD members and supporters around the country. You can learn more here.

Each Nationwide policy purchased through this partnership helps support MADD’s efforts. But Nationwide’s support doesn’t stop there. Nationwide is also a presenting sponsor of Power of Parents® and Tie One On For Safety®.

Thank you Nationwide for supporting MADD and our supporters, and a future with No More Victims™!


Products underwritten by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company and Affiliated Companies. Home Office: Columbus, OH 43215.  Subject to underwriting guidelines, review, and approval. Products and discounts not available to all persons in all states.
Nationwide and the Nationwide N and Eagle are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company.

Statement on Aldon Smith Arrest

MADD is upset when anyone is arrested on suspicion of drunk driving; but when it’s a person’s third alleged offense, it’s an outrage. We hope no was injured or killed as a result of this alleged incident, and we support law enforcement’s efforts to thoroughly investigate the matter. If found guilty of drunk driving, we urge that Mr. Smith be required to install an ignition interlock on his vehicle to protect the public and prevent this from happening again. There were 867 drunk driving fatalities in California in 2013, more than one-fourth of all traffic fatalities in the state. With so many alternative ride options available, there’s no excuse for anyone to drink and drive.