JEFFERSON CITY - Four highway safety statewide award winners and 14 regional award winners were given recognition at the 2014 Blueprint for Safer Roadways Conference held in St. Louis Sept. 29 - Oct. 1. Six organizations and individuals also received outstanding partner awards. The conference is sponsored by the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety, whose goal is to reduce fatalities and disabling injuries on Missouri roads. "We very much appreciate the efforts of all who are involved to encourage safe driving, and we will continue to work towards the ultimate goal of losing zero lives on Missouri roads," said Leanna Depue, Ph.D., director of highway safety for the Missouri Department of Transportation.
The statewide Arrive Alive Award was presented to One Curve at a Time, a nonprofit organization made up of concerned citizens who have been dedicated to building awareness and making changes to dangerous roads and curves where vehicle crashes occur. The organization was founded by the family of Kaela Marie Acrchambault, who was 20 years old when she died in a traffic crash along Highway FF in Jefferson County. The award recognizes an individual or group that has shown exemplary dedication and leadership in the field of highway safety. It is the highest award given by the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety. (picture attached)
The statewide Tempe Humphrey Award was presented to ThinkFirst of Greater Kansas City/The Research Foundation. This award recognizes an individual or group that has made a significant impact in the area of youth or teen safety. It was named for a former Division of Highway Safety employee who created and implemented the statewide Team Spirit program to engage high school students in the process of safe driving. Tempe was killed in 2006 in a motorcycle crash. ThinkFirst of Greater Kansas City is committed to educating young people about the importance of safe driving by offering three distinct program: school assemblies; the Youth Traffic Offenders program; and RoadWise. Among 145 chapters nationwide, the KC Chapter of ThinkFirst ranks #1 in the number of youth reached each year. (picture attached)
The statewide Lay Down the Law Award was presented to Patrol Sergeant Brent Bernhardt with Troop B of the Missouri State Highway Patrol. This award recognizes an individual or group that has substantially advanced highway safety in Missouri. Sgt. Bernhardt has dedicated 24 years to serving Missouri travelers. He has spent countless hours, evenings and weekends presenting a variety of safety programs to audiences of all ages. His passion and determined approach for the safety of the traveling public come across in every presentation. His field knowledge working crashes has given him firsthand experience to relate to the audience the difference a seat belt can make, as well as the dangers of distracted and impaired driving. (picture attached)
The statewide Show-Me Safety Award was presented to the three organizations, TrailNet, MoDOT and Metro of St. Louis, for their collaboration of "Safe Roads for All," a safety campaign to build awareness regarding bicyclist, pedestrian and motorist safety. For the past three years, the three organizations have partnered to lead a safety drive, a large bicycle ride, and a walking group to MetroLink from Forest Park to the St. Louis Downtown Bicycle Station to represent the importance of sharing the road. (picture attached)
The MO Coalition for Roadway Safety oversees seven regions that work closely with communities to identify opportunities to reduce fatalities and disabling injuries on Missouri roads. Each region selected an Arrive Alive Award recipient and a Show-Me Safety Award recipient. They are as follows:
Northwest Regional Arrive Alive Award winner is the "I'm a Safe Driver" program, sponsored by the St. Joseph Police Department.
Northwest Regional Show-Me Safety Award winner is Safety Town, sponsored by the St. Joseph Safety and Health Council.
Northeast Regional Arrive Alive Award winner is Terri Magers, school nurse for Atlanta C-3 School.
Northeast Regional Show-Me Safety Award winner is Kim Biondo, outreach coordinator for the NE Coalition for Roadway Safety and employee of Lincoln County Emergency Management.
Kansas City Regional Arrive Alive Award winner is Rose Simone, co-director, ThinkFirst of Greater Kansas City.
Kansas City Regional Show-Me Safety Award winner is Phyllis Larimore, car seat program coordinator, Children's Mercy Hospitals and Clinics.
Central Regional Arrive Alive Award winner is Dianna Johnson, education and outreach/Adopt A Highway coordinator for MoDOT.
Central Regional SHow-Me Safety Award winner is Maggie Roberts, retired school teacher from St. James High School.
St. Louis Regional Arrive Alive Award winner is the Jefferson County Safety First Coalition.
St. Louis Regional Show-Me Safety Award winner is the Safe Kids Child Passenger Safety Event.
Southwest Regional Arrive Alive Award winner is Kurt Larson, for the Missouri Safe and Sober Program.
Southwest Regional Show-Me Safety Award winner is Lt. Jeremy Lynn, Green County Sheriff's Office.
Southeast Regional Arrive Alive Award winner is Trooper Cameron Heath, Missouri State Highway Patrol.
Southeast Regional Show-Me Safety Award winner is Courtnie Glenn, Wright County Health Department.
The Coalition is led by an executive committee that recognized the following organizations and individuals as outstanding partners:
City of St. John and Hardy Menees of law firm Menees, Whitney, Burnet and Trog, for their primary safety belt ordinance legal defense; Kurt Larson for the Missouri Safe and Sober Program; Joe Machens Ford, ThinkFirst Missouri, and KRCG 13 for their support of the "Focus on the Road" campaign.
The Blueprint Conference is held every two years and led by several active members of the Coalition. More information about the Coalition can be found online at http://www.savemolives.com/. Photos of award can be found at www.flickr.com/photos/modot/.