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Child Fatality panel members appointed; New law called for reinstatement of panel

Friday, 07 19, 2013

Jennifer Brislin
502-564-7554 (office)
502-753-9766 (cell)

FRANKFORT, Ky. – The newly appointed Child Fatality and Near Fatality External Review Panel will meet at 10 a.m. Monday, its first gathering since a state law codified the group that had been operating under an executive order since last year.  The meeting will be held at the Kentucky Domestic Violence Association, 111 Darby Shire Circle in Frankfort.

The independent, multi-disciplinary panel includes members who had been serving under an executive order issued by Gov.  Steve Beshear last July.  Legislators codified the panel in House Bill 290 from the 2013 Regular Session.

“I appreciate all those who have agreed to serve on this important task force that helps protect Kentucky kids and prevent future tragedies,” said Attorney General Jack Conway, who appointed the majority of members who are not serving by virtue of their office.

Retired Circuit and District Judge Roger Crittenden will again serve as chairman of the group.
“Judge Crittenden’s extensive experience in and proven commitment to serving Kentucky's children and families is commendable, and the continuity his appointment will provide will be valuable as the panel continues its work,” Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, who made the chairman’s appointment, said.

House Bill 290 added three new positions to the panel, including a representative for a community mental health center (Dr. Kimberly McClanahan), a representative for foster care (Nathan Goins), and the commissioner for public health (Dr. Stephanie Mayfield Gibson), who will serve as an ex-officio, non-voting member.

The panel is attached to the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet for staff and administrative purposes, and will conduct comprehensive reviews of child fatalities and near fatalities that are determined to be the result of child abuse or neglect.

Other members of the panel include:
• Dr. Jamie Pittenger Kirtley, a pediatrician from the University of Kentucky’s Department of Pediatrics who is licensed and experienced in forensic medicine relating to child abuse and neglect; 
• Dr. Melissa Currie, a pediatrician from the University of Louisville’s Department of Pediatrics who is licensed and experienced in forensic medicine relating to child abuse and neglect;
• Andrea M. Goin, a court-appointed special advocate (CASA) program director;
• Kevin Calhoon, a peace officer with experience investigating child abuse and neglect fatalities and near fatalities;
• Joel T. Griffith, a representative from Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky, Inc.;
• Jenny Pitts Oldham, a practicing local prosecutor;
• Mr. Robert Walker, a practicing social work clinician;
• Dr. Carmella P. Yates, Ph.D., a practicing addiction counselor;
• Maxine Reid, a representative from the Family Resource and Youth Service Centers;
• Dr. Ruth Shepherd, acting chair of the State Child Fatality Review Team;
• Dr. Tracey Corey,  chief medical examiner;
• Teresa James, commissioner of the Department for Community Based Services. She serves as an ex officio, non-voting member;
• Rep. Tom Burch, chair of the House Health and Welfare Committee. He serves as an ex officio, non-voting member;
• Sen. Julie Denton, chair of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee. She serves as an ex officio, non-voting member;
• Family Court Judge Brent Hall.  He serves as an ex officio, non-voting member; and
• Sharon Currens, executive director of the Kentucky Domestic Violence Association.