18th Annual Drug-Free Kids Campaign Awards Dinner

CADCA’s Drug-Free Kids Campaign Awards Dinner Celebrated Leaders in the Field

“Be confident, know what you want. You can be the change,” affirmed Jetter White of the Pittsfield Prevention Partnership (Pittsfield, MA), a young adult keynote speaker and youth coalition leader who shared his knowledge and prevention expertise at CADCA’s 18th annual Drug-Free Kids Campaign Awards Dinner, convened on Thursday, October 6, 2016.

Youth coalition leader Ananth Ghosh of the SRSLY Chelsea Coalition (Chelsea, Michigan), who was also featured at Thursday night’s event, shared that, “CADCA is an important inspiration source. We know that CADCA has our back – reinforcing the importance of people my age adopting peer pressure release strategies that help us realize that being drug-free is the norm.” Both young people acknowledged CADCA’s National Youth Leadership Initiative’s (NYLI) pivotal influence – that participation in the NYLI leadership training has set these two young men on trajectories that will enable them to achieve success in their lives and in the communities in which they live.

Scott Melville, President and CEO of the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) and Mary Bono, Principal of FaegreBD Consulting and former member of U.S. Congress, were also recognized last Thursday evening for their support and commitment to CADCA’s effective substance use prevention model. With more than 400 people in attendance – including coalition, community, business, and government leaders from across the U.S. – event speakers placed the spotlight on the importance of committing resources and energy to this next generation of young people who are poised to take on the drug misuse challenges that impact our world today.

CADCA paid tribute to Scott Melville who was honored as the 2016 Humanitarian of the Year for his commitment to addressing the complex issues of medicine abuse and misuse and for CHPA’s 10 years of outstanding partnership with CADCA. Thanks to CHPA’s support, CADCA was able to activate coalitions around National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month in October; recognize and reward coalitions who implement robust medicine abuse awareness efforts with the Dose of Prevention award; and provide coalitions with a free resource, the website StopMedicineAbuse.org.
“I am honored to receive this prestigious award in recognition of the successful collaborative effort to reduce teen abuse of cough medicines containing dextromethorphan. Our industry is thankful for the partnership with CADCA to help influence teens to make healthy and smart choices in their lives,” affirmed Scott Melville, President and CEO, CHPA.

The Honorable Mary Bono, CADCA’s 2016 Champion for Drug-Free Kids, was recognized for her countless hours of leadership and service, in and out of Congress, towards reducing drug abuse among America’s youth. As a U.S. Representative (1998-2013), she served as co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on Prescription Drug Abuse and the Youth Drug Prevention Caucus.

In 2015, Bono co-convened the Collaborative for Effective Prescription Opioid Policies (CEPOP), which engages diverse stakeholders behind a comprehensive and balanced public policy strategy to reduce prescription opioid abuse and promote treatment options.
Upon receiving her award, Ms. Bono affirmed that, “During my time in Congress, finding solutions to our nation’s prescription drug abuse epidemic was one of my top priorities. After leaving Congress, I was committed to continuing this work by joining CADCA’s Board of Directors and co-founding CEPOP.” She concluded, “I don’t do this work for accolades. I do it because addressing youth drug use is an issue dear to my heart. It’s an honor to be named CADCA’s Champion for Drug-Free Kids, and I’m humbled to accept this special award.”

While the 2016 Drug-Free Kids Campaign Awards Dinner has concluded, the campaign achieves great things all year round. Funds raised help support CADCA’s efforts to build and strengthen local community coalitions and transform youth into civic leaders to reduce substance abuse.

To support the campaign, donate today.

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