Earlier this summer, Darkness to Light announced that their Board of Directors has welcomed two nationally recognized figures to the team, both whom have shown commitment to the public health and safety of children. Regina Benjamin, MD, MBA and Patricia Dailey Lewis, Esq. were nominated and voted onto the Board for terms beginning July 1, 2016 – June 30 2019. The appointments demonstrate Darkness to Light’s commitment to public policy and health reform and a national strategy for educating all adults to protect children from child sexual abuse.
“As Darkness to Light moves towards building a national alliance of child sexual abuse prevention partners and advocates, we are thrilled to have the critical guidance of Dr. Benjamin and Patricia Dailey Lewis in creating a national child sexual abuse prevention strategy,” said CEO Lyndon Haviland, MPH, DrPH. “Each brings a unique set of strengths to the Board, including experience in developing a coalition of like-minded partners committed to public health reform.”
Regina Benjamin, MD, MBA was the 18th United States Surgeon General, appointed by President Barack Obama. With a long-standing commitment to improving public health, Dr. Benjamin will aid Darkness to Light in bringing national awareness to the issue of child sexual abuse, helping to create a momentum toward ending this public health crisis that affects children and impacts all of us.
Dr. Benjamin’s public health experience will be critical to helping Darkness to Light expand their reach nationally and internationally. As Surgeon General, she oversaw the operational command of 6,700 uniformed public health officers who serve in locations around the world to promote and protect the health of the American people, giving her the expertise to create a large scale public health initiative.
On her appointment to the Board, Dr. Benjamin said, “Darkness to Light is a leader in the child sexual abuse prevention space and I am looking forward to working with them to bring national attention to this issue that affects one in ten children. I believe creating a national prevention strategy for child sexual abuse is a critical step in keeping more children safe in every community across the country.”
Dr. Benjamin has a B.S. in chemistry from Xavier University of Louisiana, an M.D. degree from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and an M.B.A. from Tulane University. She attended Morehouse School of Medicine and completed her family medicine residency in Macon, Georgia. Dr. Benjamin is the recipient of 24 honorary degrees.
Patricia Dailey Lewis, Esq. is the Executive Director of the Beau Biden Foundation for the Protection of Children. Prior to this position, Mrs. Lewis served as Deputy Attorney General and Director of the Family Division of the Delaware Department of Justice (DDOJ). Mrs. Lewis has worked in the field of family and child advocacy and protection since 1985, when she joined the Delaware Department of Justice. Prior to being the Division Director, she was the statewide leader for the Families at Risk unit of the Delaware Department of Justice.
“I am honored to become a member of the Board of Directors of Darkness to Light,” said Dailey Lewis. “The Beau Biden Foundation believes that prevention can be achieved through knowledge and education; our partnership with Darkness to Light is an invaluable tool in achieving our shared goal of ending child sexual abuse.”
An impassioned advocate for children, she has served as a commissioner on the Child Protection Accountability Commission, the Child Death, Near Death, and Stillbirth Commission, the Governor’s Steering Committee for the Protection of Children, the Victims Advisory Council, and more. Since 1989, Dailey Lewis has served as an Adjunct Professor at Delaware Law School. Mrs. Lewis is an authorized Facilitator of Darkness to Light’s Stewards of Children® child sexual abuse prevention program.
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