FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 27, 2019
Contact: Adrian Nicholas, 202-580-7934
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) presented its 2019 highway safety awards to two individuals who have made a tremendous impact on improving highway safety and four programs tackling the nation’s top highway safety challenges at a luncheon as part of its 2019 Annual Meeting in Anaheim, California. The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility (Responsibility.org) and The National Road Safety Foundation, Inc. sponsored the luncheon.
GHSA presented its most prestigious honor, the James J. Howard Highway Safety Trailblazer Award, to Candace Lightner, President of We Save Lives and founder of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). Under Lightner’s leadership, MADD became a national and international force behind a movement that shifted America’s attitude toward impaired driving. More recently, she founded another non-profit organization, We Save Lives, which focuses on reducing drunk, drugged and distracted driving.
Ford Driving Skills for Life (Ford DSFL) Global Program Manager Jim Graham received the Kathryn J.R. Swanson Public Service Award. A leading partner on teen driver safety, Graham has been among GHSA’s most valued colleagues throughout the past 16 years. During his tenure with Ford DSFL, he has brought free, hands-on advanced driver training to newly licensed drivers in every state. Graham and the Ford DSFL program were also instrumental in launching GHSA’s first competitive state grant program, which provides funding to help states augment their existing teen safe driving efforts.
GHSA also presented four Peter K. O’Rourke Special Achievement Awards for outstanding highway safety accomplishments to the following programs:
- The Connecticut Superior Court’s Online Adjudication system enables individuals who plead “not guilty” to an infraction to participate in the court process electronically, rather than be required to physically appear in court. Currently available throughout the state, the system has reduced costs, improved the quality and timeliness of hearings and improved the convenience and efficiency of the process for both the court and the individual who receives the infraction.
- The Montana Family, Career and Community Leaders of America’s (FCCLA) Traffic Safety Program leads the way in saving lives in rural communities across the state. The program provides public and private school students unique traffic safety trainings depending on students’ grade levels. Highway safety throughout Montana has benefited greatly from this program, which is evident by the state’s lowest number of fatalities in over twenty years last year.
- The South Dakota Office of Highway Safety’s “Jim Reaper” campaign puts forth a marketing strategy designed to keep drivers safe by reminding them that death is always waiting for them to slip up. The campaign inserts a Grim Reaper character into the lives of everyday people as a reminder that, by making smart decisions like wearing a seat belt, calling a cab or opting to wear a helmet, people can beat death, not just cheat it. The state has seen its fatality rate drop since the program’s inception.
- The Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP) has increased the number of safe rides home in the Washington, D.C. area to record setting levels since 1991 by removing tens of thousands of drunk drivers from the region’s roadways through its SoberRide program. In 2017, WRAP entered into a strategic partnership with ride-hailing platform Lyft to assist with the program. Since the beginning of this partnership, utilization of the program has increased by over 300 percent.
More information on the award winners can be found at http://www.ghsa.org/about/safety-awards. To request a photo from the awards presentation, contact Adrian Nicholas at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 202-580-7934. The full GHSA Annual Meeting schedule is available online.
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The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy, enhance program management and promote best practices. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Contact GHSA at 202-789-0942 or visit www.ghsa.org. Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GHSAhq or follow us on Twitter @GHSAHQ.