Carol E. Jordan, director of the UK Center for Research on Violence Against Women, has been awarded the Paul H. Chapman Award, which is given each year by the Foundation for Improvement of Justice located in Atlanta.
Jordan's 23-year career has focused on helping women and children who have faced sexual assault, intimate partner violence, child abuse, stalking and other crimes.
The Foundation for Improvement of Justice was established in 1984 to honor those who have created innovative programs which have proven effective and can serve as models for others around the nation. Jordan is one of eight people across the country being honored by the foundation.
One of the other honorees this year is W. Mark Felt, the former FBI official who earlier this year revealed that he was "Deep Throat" in the Watergate investigation of former President Richard M. Nixon's administration.
"I am deeply honored, not just by the award, but by the luxury I have had for more than twenty years of contributing to such an important cause," Jordan said. "That we have made reforms on behalf of women and children in Kentucky and that those reforms have been shared by the nation, speaks not to what a single person has done, but to what the collective effort of people believing deeply in their work can create."
In announcing the award, the foundation noted that Jordan has 20 years of experience in public policy, legislative advocacy, and the development of programs addressing intimate partner violence, rape, stalking and child maltreatment. She has authored numerous articles on violence against women and the legal system and has co-authored two books which address violence against women, the mental health effects of victimization, the experience of women in the court of justice, and practice implications in forensic mental health.
Jordan will receive the award Wednesday, Aug. 24, in a formal ceremony in Atlanta hosted by the Foundation for Improvement of Justice. She will receive a check for $10,000 which she will donate to the Center for Research on Violence Against Women. The money will support endowment efforts to establish a chair of studies on the mental health effects of violence against women.
Jordan became director of the UK Center for Research on Violence Against Women in 2002. She has led the center in the development of a $2.5 million endowment which will grow to ultimately support four endowed chairs at UK. The first endowed chair was recently established with the support of Verizon Wireless and will be placed in the UK College of Medicine.
Her current research efforts at the center include studies related to emergency protective orders; sentencing patterns in cases where battered women kill offenders; and a study on the relationship of homicide and intimate partner violence. Jordan also served as co-principal investigator for the Women's Safety Study released during 2004 which has served as a catalyst for safety reforms on UK's campus.
Before coming to the University of Kentucky, Jordan served for eight years as executive director of the Governor's Office of Child Abuse and Domestic Violence Services. During her time in that position she oversaw the expansion of Kentucky's Children's Advocacy Centers, eventually establishing a center in every region of the state. She also helped develop Kentucky's statewide AMBER Alert program which helps locate abducted children. Her efforts also led to increased funding for Kentucky's regional rape crisis centers and domestic violence shelter programs. Her influence has also been heavily felt in the Kentucky General Assembly as she spearheaded the successful passage of over 30 pieces of legislation.