MADD Honors Remarkable Volunteers, Staff And Partners At 30th Anniversary President’s Awards Dinner

Awards Presented to 17 Individuals and Local Organizations at 2010 MADD National Conference


Contact Information

Anna Duerr, 469-420-4503

WASHINGTON, D.C. (September 27, 2010) – Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) recognized the best of the best on Saturday for their dedication and accomplishments over the past year, at the 2010 President’s Awards Dinner, the closing event of the MADD’s 30th Anniversary National Conference in Washington, D.C.  MADD National President Laura Dean-Mooney honored 17 staff members, volunteers and partners for their outstanding work in furthering MADD’s mission to stop drunk driving, support the victims of this violent crime and prevent underage drinking.

“These people and organizations have all demonstrated tremendous commitment to the safety of individuals and families in their communities,” said Dean-Mooney. “Looking back on our remarkable 30-year history, I know MADD simply wouldn’t be where we are today without people like them working to end this violent crime, which took 10,839 lives last year alone.”

The 2010 MADD National President’s Award winners are as follows:

Elizabeth Obad from MADD New York received the prestigious Golden Achievement Award, the highest award given to a MADD volunteer. Obad has worked tirelessly to educate soldiers on the dangers of drunk driving following the death of her son, a Marine killed after surviving two tours of duty in Iraq.

Karen Housewright from MADD Texas won the Robert C. Shearouse Employee of the Year Award for her leadership of the largest MADD state affiliate in the country. Housewright has successfully developed and maintained a statewide grant program, in addition to serving thousands of victims a year and managing to have budget surpluses even in times of economic downturn.

Linda Ketchum from MADD Gateway received the Brenda Altman Heart of MADD Award for victim assistance. Ketchum dedicated herself to helping families with their grief after her own daughter was killed in a drunk driving crash.  Even after being diagnosed with cancer, she raised more than $700 for a fundraising event while undergoing chemotherapy.  On April 9, she lost her battle with cancer.

MADD Northern Oregon has garnered the Community Action Site of the Year Award.  Despite staff and budget cuts, the MADD Northern Oregon CAS remained focused on victim services.

J.R. (Rocky) Gitlin from MADD Missouri earned the Criminal Justice Court Monitor Award for his dedication to MADD’s courting monitoring program. Gitlin is a retired Missouri probation and parole employee whose insight and knowledge has proven invaluable for navigating court proceedings.

Judge Susan B. Handy from Connecticut won the Criminal Justice Judge Award for her commitment to educating others about the consequences of drunk driving.  Judge Handy even invited MADD to address sitting judges about the effectiveness of victim impact panels and ignition interlock devices.

James Benison from Kent County, Michigan has been awarded the Criminal Justice Prosecutor Award for his ability to handle even the toughest drunk driving cases.  In 2009, Benison had a 100 percent conviction rate.

Diego Asencio from MADD Florida garnered the Excellence in Diversity Award for providing Spanish language interpretation during victim impact panels, serving as a spokesperson for Spanish language media and providing interpretation services for law enforcement officers.

Missouri Highway Patrol has been selected for the Outstanding Law Enforcement Agency Award. This full-service law enforcement agency has a primary emphasis on traffic safety and has worked closely with MADD’s local affiliates to reduce alcohol-related fatalities and injuries.

Christopher Coleman from Virginia earned the Outstanding Law Enforcement Individual Award. Coleman led his department in DUI arrests and is known for his aggressive enforcement of the state’s drunk driving laws.

Kristyn Hovanec from MADD Long Island won the Linda Kitazaki Fundraising Achievement Staff Award for her financial leadership and fundraising abilities. Hovanec was able to help MADD Long Island improve its financial situation, while also remaining active in the community.

Susan Cleveland from MADD Virginia has been awarded the Linda Kitazaki Fundraising Achievement Volunteer Award for her role as the chair of an all-volunteer led Walk Like MADD event, which exceeded their fundraising goal.

Herman (Bud) Balke from MADD Missouri received the Mickey Sadoff Drunk Driving Award for his dedication to researching and tracking each call he receives, knowing that he is on the frontlines of the fight to end drunk driving.

Jermaine Galloway from Idaho garnered the Mickey Sadoff Underage Drinking Award for his tireless work to prevent underage drinking.  Galloway believes the keys to prevention are education and enforcement, and thanks to these efforts, the city of Boise has seen a reduction in underage drinking.

Mary Klotzbach from MADD California earned the Public Policy Achievement Award for her instrumental role in advocating for, and leading efforts, to pass ignition interlock legislation in California.

Dick Roth from MADD New Mexico has been selected for the Ralph Hingson Research in Practice Award for his research on both New Mexico’s interlock law and interlock use in general.  Roth’s work serves as part of the groundwork for making an effective case for mandatory interlock laws across the U.S.

Charles Lambert from MADD Kentucky received the Youth Activist of the Year Award for his work with law enforcement, state officials and local youth.  Among his many accomplishments, Lambert has implemented a youth-led underage drinking prevention community luncheon and a law enforcement recognition event.

About Mothers Against Drunk Driving
Founded by a mother who lost her daughter in a crash, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) is the nation’s largest nonprofit working to protect families from drunk driving and underage drinking. MADD also supports drunk driving victims and survivors – serving one person every 10 minutes – at no charge. To learn more about MADD, visit or call 1-800-GET-MADD. For victims/survivors, call 1-877-MADD-HELP.

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