ORLANDO - State Senator Denise Grimsley (R- 21st District) accepted the 2013 Daniel Webster Leadership Award during the Healthy Families Florida Annual Leadership Meeting in Orlando on Sept. 20.
This award was created in honor of former State Rep. Daniel Webster who, as Florida Speaker of the House, worked tirelessly to pass the legislation that created Healthy Families Florida in 1998.
Grimsley was being recognized for outstanding leadership in advocating for the prevention of child abuse and neglect.
"Fifteen years ago, it was my privilege to be a part of bringing Healthy Families to Florida," said Webster, a Republican currently representing Florida's 10 the District in the U.S. House of Representatives. "Healthy Families has become a model program for others to emulate. I have been thrilled to watch them grow, and to remain a part of their continued success, which has far exceeded our initial humble expectations," he said.
"Sen. Grimsley is an outstanding Floridian who leads with an essential combination of head and heart, inspiring both her colleagues and community members alike. She understands that when it comes to kids, investing in the early years avoids higher costs in both health and human terms."
Grimsley has supported Healthy Families throughout her legislative tenure and, as Health and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittee Chair, she was instrumental in the appropriation of an additional $3 million in funding for Healthy Families Florida during the 2013 legislative session.
This additional funding will strengthen Healthy Families programs across the state, re-establish services in Gulf and Walton counties and increase the number of families to be served in 29 counties with existing programs.
Grimsley said, "I believe in commonsense solutions. Healthy Families meets a critical need for family support services in our communities; and by preventing child abuse before it begins, Healthy Families saves taxpayers millions of dollars in child welfare services and other costs associated with abuse and neglect."