WV Sen. Cookman given Champion of Children award - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

WV Sen. Cookman given Child Care Assoc. Champion of Children award

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The West Virginia Child Care Association recently gave Sen. Donald Cookman, D-Hampshire, its 2013 Champion of Children award.

Cookman was presented with the award during the association's 2013 annual retreat in Charleston.

The association gives the award to someone who puts children's needs ahead of others and who gives children a voice where they might otherwise not be heard.

Kathy Szafran, CEO of Crittenton Services Inc. and past-president of the West Virginia Childcare Association presented the award to Cookman.

"One can truly assess an individual's character by their commitment to our most valuable and fragile resource, our at-risk children," Szafran said. "Over the years, Judge Cookman has not only placed children at our facility, but remained actively involved during their placement, assuring that they received quality care.

"He has even traveled for hours from his home in Romney to tour our facility in Wheeling and to visit several of the young ladies and their babies that he had placed with us. This is something rarely seen at our facility."

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin appointed Cookman in January to serve in the 15th Senatorial District, and he was appointed to the newly formed Senate Select Committee on Children and Poverty.