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Published:  November 29, 2010

Advocate for Children Honored for Long-Term Collaborative Leadership Efforts

Sandra A. Martin, LMSW, has been named the recipient of the 2010 Community Health Leadership Award, presented by St. Luke’s Episcopal Health Charities, for her continued leadership and advocacy of children.

Martin has dedicated more than 40 years to the protection of children through her work in government and nonprofit organizations. She is the founding Chief Executive Officer of the Center for Child Protection, a nationally-accredited children’s advocacy center serving the children of Travis County in Austin, Texas. Founded in 1989, the Center for Child Protection is the first stop for children who are suspected victims of sexual and physical abuse and for children who have witnessed a violent crime. The Center provides an innovative model of shared resources and services to capture a recorded interview, forensic medical exam, counseling and crisis intervention in one location, with minimal emotional trauma for the children.

“Her passion and commitment to children is an inspiration to all. Her ability to give a voice to abused and neglected children is a critical step in stopping the destructive cycle of abuse,” said Michelle Lyn, MD, Associate Professor Baylor College of Medicine, Pediatric Emergency Texas Children's Hospital and executive chair, St. Luke’s Episcopal Health Charities Board of Directors.

As part of Martin’s recognition, a gift of $50,000 will be presented to Austin’s Center for Child Protection. In 2009, the center delivered 3,409 services to 1,408 children and 3,043 services to 1,123 adult caregivers. 

A Licensed Master Social Worker, Martin holds a Bachelor of Arts from Northwestern State University and a Master of Science in Child Development from Oklahoma State University.

Previous award recipients include the Denver Harbor Clinic’s Daniel Montez, recently retired Urban Harvest co-founder Bob Randall, PhD, Casa De Esperanza de los Ninos’ Bill Jones, The Rose’s Dorothy Weston Gibbons and Bering Dental Clinic’s Mark Nichols, DDS.

St Luke’s Episcopal Health Charities, a supporting organization of the St. Luke’s Episcopal Health System, conducts research and distributes grants to provide community health services to the underserved and motivates others to join in these efforts. Now in its sixth year, the Community Health Leadership Award was created to honor the efforts of outstanding nonprofit community health leaders who are motivated to use their knowledge and skills to reach out and advance community health in body, mind and spirit.

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