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McLeod will be recognized for a lifetime of dedication to children and families in crisis

Contact: Fawn Pattison, (919) 516-9581

KNew Photo_smallerRALEIGH – On Friday April 5, Karen McLeod will be awarded the Tom V Award for Child Advocacy at the Voices for Children Breakfast in Raleigh. McLeod is being recognized for her years of tireless advocacy on behalf of children and families in North Carolina. The statewide nonprofit organization NC Child organizes the event.

“Karen is one of the most powerful voices for children in North Carolina,” said Michelle Hughes, Executive Director of NC Child. “She goes to work every day fighting for a better future for kids, particularly our most vulnerable kids. No matter who is in power at the state legislature, Karen finds common ground and moves data driven policies for kids forward.  In a time of polarization, Karen inspires us all to find good people who care about kids, and work with them to craft effective solutions.”

Throughout her career, Karen McLeod has fought against labels and silos. Recognizing that children who enter foster care are there because of significant trauma in their lives, Karen has helped break down the barriers between social services, health care, and education that have a tremendous impact on the lives of children in foster care.

McLeod is the CEO of Benchmarks. Throughout her career, she has worked with county social services agencies, as a crime victims’ advocate, and currently serves as chair of the NC Child Fatality Task Force. Whether working with children, with service providers, or with legislators, she is widely recognized for her compassion, clear thinking and strong voice.

“She is a fierce advocate for children, families, and for those who cannot speak for themselves,” said former state senator Tamara Barringer, who will help present the award on April 5. “Together we have made huge differences.”

About the Community Voices Award

Once every two years, NC Child brings the child advocacy community together at an event to celebrate victories for children and their families, and to recognize leaders who have made a difference. At the Voices for Children Breakfast on April 5, the Tom V Child Advocacy Award will be presented to Karen McLeod. The award will be presented by its namesake, Tom Vitaglione. The Community Voices Award will be presented for the first time this year to SaySo.

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