The North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation Child Health Recognition Awards program honors local health departments, public health staff and individuals for innovative, collaborative programs that improve the lives of North Carolina’s children. The Foundation works with the
North Carolina Public Health Association(NCPHA) to coordinate the program, and all nominees and award recipients are recognized at a luncheon at NCPHA’s annual meeting. Recognition awards are presented in four categories: Lifetime Achievement, Individual, Local Health Departments and Public Health Staff. The awards include grants and scholarships that promote public health study and programs that benefit children. Up to three health departments and three to five individuals are honored annually.

Public health professionals know that providing care and services for families and children can be done in different ways. Sometimes, children come to clinics for health services; other times, services come to them in the form of mobile dental clinics, health fairs or through school nurse programs. Mothers of autistic children meet for lunch to support each other through challenges, while elsewhere new mothers meet with supportive coaches who teach them to breastfeed their babies. And the local health department "clinic" may not be inside at all, but in the open air at community gardens, to learn about nutrition and combat obesity with fresh vegetables and fruit.

While health care can be delivered in different ways, North Carolina's public health providers have these traits in common: passion, dedication and commitment to the children and families they serve. The North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation salutes all public health professionals in our state who work harder every year to deliver more services in times of great need and tight budgets. We applaud their creativity and innovation and are honored to present the annual Child Health Recognition Awards.

2023 Child Health Recognition Award Recipients:

Those honored with awards, selected from nominations submitted by colleagues, and chosen by a selection committee of public health professionals. Awards given included:

2023 Lifetime Achievement Recognition Award Recipient:

Sally Herndon, MPH
Head, NC Tobacco Prevention and Control Branch
NC Department of Health and Human Services

Sally Herndon has devoted her life and career to preventing and reducing tobacco use. Tackling this issue is magnified as NC is known as the number one tobacco producing state in the nation. Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death. As Head of the NC Tobacco Prevention and Control Branch she is the nation’s longest serving state program manager for tobacco prevention and control. She supported and helped implement the 2010 law that makes all NC restaurants and bars smoke-free as well as to restore local government authority to make government buildings, grounds, and public indoor spaces smoke-free/tobacco free. She is a co-founder and part of the leadership team of the Duke - UNC Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist Program.

2023 Individual Achievement Award Recipient:

Amy Phillips, RN
Catawba County Public Health
Grandparents Café

When Amy Phillips came across a nationwide increase in grandparents raising school-aged grandchildren, she decided to provide a way to help meet those needs in her school designing and piloting a new program, Grandparents Café. Families take different forms including grandparents as caregivers, foster parents and non-biological parents. These caretakers and families face unique challenges. The Grandparents Café key to success includes teachers, the school principal and counselor, the school health program manager and the charge nurse, and other partners. Café meetings included free childcare, meals and an educational program at each event to help meet these families’ common needs. In addition, the participating grandparents, fosters and the children they are raising are forming bonds and provide support to each other.

2023 Public Health Staff Recognition Award Recipient:

Amanda Deaver, MPA
Health Director
Scotland County Health Department

Amanda Deaver advocated for children, women and adult health services as a social worker. Her desire to do more, was seen when she secured a master’s degree in Public Administration. In her current role as Health Director of Scotland County she continues to advocate for citizens in the county – working to improve health outcomes for all. An additional task and burden on all public health professionals and health directors is rebuilding the COVID challenged infrastructure at their local health department. The health department infrastructure now includes a Postpartum Home Visiting Program, a School Health Liaison Program, and an adolescent pregnancy prevention Teen Peer Ambassador Program.

2023 Local Health Department Achievement Award Recipient:

Cabarrus Health Alliance
Stop School Violence

A three-year grant allowed the implementation of the Stop School Violence program in partnership with Kannapolis City Schools and Cabarrus County Schools. Results of a 2021 Student & Parent Satisfaction survey, indicated nearly 20 percent of Cabarrus County middle and high school students felt unsafe at school. When asked about bullying and racial conflicts, approximately 34 percent of students reported bullying and racial conflicts as problems at their respective schools. The goal of the program is to reduce and prevent school violence through a series of innovative trainings effective in improving school climate and student mental health. Program activities focus on high-risk schools where the incidence of school violence, including bullying and harassment, had increased. The two phase approach is working to decrease school violence incidents.

Gaston County Department of Health and Human Services
Community Child Protection Team & Child Fatality Prevention Team

The Community Child Protection Team and Child Fatality Prevention Teams are multidisciplinary and multi-agency teams mandated by the state. Their passion is seen in the collaboration with multiple agencies, individuals, and professionals to promote a community-wide approach to the issues of child abuse and neglect. Teams recommend and implement changes to help prevent future child deaths and to support the safe and healthy development of children. The Safe Sleep subcommittee is providing public awareness campaigns on many levels and in a variety of settings.

Orange County Health Department
Gateway Collaborative

The Gateway Collaborative is led by the Orange County Health Department in collaboration with DSS, representatives from the county housing and community development, the town, local schools, and other municipal departments. The Gateway Collaborative is working to identify and improve metrics around housing stability, health outcomes, financial stability, tenant safety, and access to services and education. The Gateway Village community is a privately owned, HUD based property. A total of 64 units are in the eight apartment buildings. Single mother-led families and those with disabilities occupy the 1-3 bedroom units. Providing resources in the community at the village is decreasing barriers where inequities existed.

Congratulations to our 2023 award recipients and all nominees.

The North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation appreciates the diligence of the North Carolina Public Health Association (NCPHA) in overseeing the North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation Child Health Recognition Awards program. NCPHA coordinates many tasks associated with the program, including selecting healthcare professionals to serve as selection committee members. We are grateful to the committee members for their time and careful consideration of all nominations. The information presented was provided by the nominators and reflect their views. We appreciate their participation sharing the work of others that create innovative programs. Thank you to everyone involved.

Previous Awards by Year

Link to award booklets: 2022 Child Health Recognition Awards Highlights, 2021 Child Health Recognition Awards Highlights, 2020 Child Health Recognition Awards Highlights , 2019 Child Health Recognition Awards Booklet, Child Health Recognition Award Booklet 2018, Child Health Recognition Award Booklet 2017, Child Health Recognition Award Booklet 2016, Child Health Recognition Award Booklet 2015, Child Health Recognition Award Booklet 2014, Child Health Recognition Award Booklet 2013, Child Health Recognition Award Booklet 2012, Child Health Recognition Award Booklet 2011, Child Health Recognition Award Booklet 2010