For Immediate Release - June 05, 2013

Patrick-Murray Administration Honors 50 Foster and Adoptive Families in Massachusetts

FRAMINGHAM — The Patrick Administration’s Department of Children and Families (DCF), the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (MSPCC) and the Massachusetts Alliance For Families (MAFF) this weekend celebrated the 28th Annual Foster and Adoptive Parent Recognition Awards Brunch in Framingham.

“There is nothing more important than the safety, health and well-being of our Commonwealth’s children,” said Executive Office of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary John Polanowicz. “I congratulate this year’s award recipients on this deserving honor, and the Commonwealth is grateful to all the foster and adoptive parents who share their homes and lives with children in need.”

DCF joined MSPCC and MAFF to thank a diverse group of families from cities and towns throughout the Commonwealth for the compassion, care and support they provide to foster and adopted children. During the celebrations, 50 foster and adoptive families were acknowledged for their dedication to children in need of safe and loving homes.

“The work of the Department of Children and Families is not possible without the love and dedication of our foster and adoptive parents,” said DCF Acting Commissioner Olga Roche. “Each one of our foster and adoptive parents throughout the Commonwealth has made a real difference in the lives of the children we serve and it is an honor to pay them tribute today.”

DCF also honored 44 families with Foster Parent All-Star Awards, and an additional five families have been honored as Adoptive Parent All-Stars. Ruth Silva, of Brockton, was chosen to be the 2013 recipient of the Goldie Rogers Award. This selective award is named in honor of foster parent and child advocate Goldie Rogers who, in 1989, tragically perished in a fire while attempting to rescue foster children from her burning home.

Senator Stanley Rosenberg was honored with the 2013 Lisa Anne Jenkins MAFF Legislator of the Year Award for his work on behalf of foster families in the Commonwealth. As a former foster youth, Senator Rosenberg is the founder and co-chair of the Massachusetts Legislature’s Foster Kids Caucus, which is the first of its kind in the nation. The caucus seeks to improve the conditions and address issues related to foster and adopted children. His work has been vital to reforms in child welfare policy and to efforts to secure funding to meet the needs of children and families being served by DCF.

“Foster parents are responsible for providing safe and nurturing homes for thousands of Massachusetts children each year,” said MSPCC President and CEO Mary McGeown. “They open up their hearts to bring children into their families, for days or years at a time. Adoptive and foster families, including kinship foster placements, give children the support they need to continue growing when they are cannot be safe and healthy in their own homes.”

“It’s so important to celebrate the hard work and dedication of the thousands of foster families in Massachusetts,” said MAFF President Cheryl Tellier-Haddad. “We are so thankful to foster parents for providing nurturing homes for children who need their love and support. I hope their selflessness inspires others to become foster parents.”

The following honorees were recognized:

Foster Parent Winners

  • Gail and Louis Teixeira
    Acushnet
  • Kathleen Singer
    Amesbury
  • Lori and Frederick Michaud
    Attleboro
  • Michele and Raymond Auletta
    Belchertown
  • Stacey Weatherbee
    Bridgewater
  • Kelly Chuckran
    Canton
  • Kelly Blackburn
    Charlestown
  • Alice Sullivan
    Charlestown
  • Aida Rodriguez
    Dedham
  • Artemis Boynton
    Dorchester
  • Brenda Devaughn
    Dorchester
  • Melissa Romano
    East Sandwich
  • Tammi and Shaun Brierly
    Gardner
  • Shelly and Donald Phillips
    Greenfield
  • Silke Kistner
    Halifax
  • Tammy and Paul Flanagan
    Holliston
  • Rebecca Ganieany and Phai Kim
    Holyoke
  • Angela Marshall
    Jamaica Plain
  • Benedicta Robles and Rogelio Acosta
    Lowell
  • Erica and Roger Rains
    Ludlow
  • Janice and Brad Barrows
    Lunenburg
  • Velma and Hollis Baptiste
    Mattapan
  • Debra King and Amy Garland-King
    New Bedford
  • Kristen Hannan
    North Andover
  • Kimberly and Kevin Mello
    North Dartmouth
  • Tara Bean and Greg Waldrup
    Peabody
  • Lisa and Michael Phillips
    Raynham
  • Tara and Chris Ferragamo
    Revere
  • Elizabeth Kirkland
    Roxbury
  • Dawn Audet
    Russell
  • Christyne and Wayne Tremblay
    Salem
  • Noreeen and Robert Selvage
    Saugus
  • Dana and Jason Cusimano
    Shelburne Falls
  • Kelley and Jeffey Lane
    Somerville
  • Isabel Espiritusanto
    Springfield
  • Alice Preston
    Springfield
  • Ann Taylor
    Springfield
  • Sharon and Frank Taylor
    Sterling City
  • Kristen Wigandt
    Stoneham
  • Edith and Ronald Graham
    Wales
  • Vikki and Peter Bosse
    Walpole
  • Normanda and Mariano Ponte
    Westport
  • Marguerite Savage
    Worcester

Adoptive Parent Winners

  • Leslie and Matthew Plunkett
    Ayer
  • Lester Hoiberg and Michael Albor
    Hanover
  • Tracy and Michael Norton
    Methuen
  • Victoria Souza and Jeffrey Medeiros
    Somerset
  • Kristine LeClair
    Westminster

Goldie Rogers Award Winner

  • Ruth Silva
    Brockton

Beyond National Foster Care Month, the need remains for caring families to open their homes and hearts to our children in foster care. To learn more about becoming a foster or adoptive parent, please call 1-800-KIDS-508 or visit www.mass.gov/dcf.

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