Champions for Children Award recipients recognized at the 18th Annual Child Abuse Summit

News Release from: Clackamas Co. Sheriff's Office

Posted: April 13, 2017, 3:50 p.m.



On April 13 at the 18th annual Child Abuse Summit & Family Violence Conference several individuals were recognized with the "Champions for Children" award for serving children in our community. The "Champions for Children" awards are given to people, businesses, and community organizations doing exceptional work in the field of child abuse and family violence.

Details about those honored with the prestigious "Champions for Children" award at the Child Abuse Summit are provided below.

- Melissa Erlbaum, Executive Director with Clackamas Women's Services, and Lieutenant Angie Brandenburg, Director of a Safe Place Family Justice Center, along with Mike Wells, Board President for Clackamas Women's Services were honored for their work on "Camp Hope" a summer camp for children exposed to domestic violence. Camp Hope is in its 3rd year in Oregon and gives kids a chance to experience summer camp. Kids who attend the camp leave with a renewed sense of hope for their future.

- Lieutenant Dave Okada of the Salem Police Department has faithfully served in law enforcement for more than 25 years. He has developed strong relationships between law enforcement and youth in Oregon. Okada is a strong advocate for adult and student threat assessment teams. These teams are a way for law enforcement, school officials, and mental health professionals to work together to help students who may be at risk for harming themselves or others. Okada was honored for his dedication to serving young people in the community.

Lieutenant Tony Kollias accepts the "Champions for Children" award on behalf of his late wife Germaine- Lieutenant Tony Kollias of the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office and his daughter, Alia, accepted the award on behalf of his wife Germaine who died in a tragic car crash last year. Germaine Kollias was a former law enforcement officer and went on to work with the Children's Center as a Community Outreach Specialist and Forensic Interviewer. During her time there she presented information about child abuse to hundreds of individuals at local school districts, health care providers, law enforcement agencies, child protective workers and other professionals who serve youth.

The Child Abuse Summit brings together law enforcement, mental health providers, social workers, and other individuals and organizations to learn about child abuse and family violence prevention. More than 800 people around the nation are attending the conference this week at the Red Lion at Jantzen Beach. Learn more about the Child Abuse Summit at the conference website at


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