Anti-Child Sex Trafficking Advocate Nelson Diaz Elected Kristi House Board President
MAY 10, 2012 - 13:25 ET
FOR: BECKER & POLIAKOFF
Nelson Diaz, attorney and lobbyist with Becker & Poliakoff, was elected president of the Board of Kristi House, the non-profit child sexual abuse agency and Children's Advocacy Center for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
MIAMI, FL--(Marketwire - May 10, 2012) - The Kristi House, the non-profit child sexual abuse agency which serves as the Children's Advocacy Center for Miami-Dade County, announced that the Board of Directors elected Nelson David Diaz as its president at its annual meeting on May 10. Mr. Diaz will serve a two-year term as president.
Mr. Diaz, an attorney and lobbyist with Becker & Poliakoff, has served on the Board since 2007 and is a leading fundraiser. He was elected vice president in 2011.
Mr. Diaz is credited with leading Kristi House's effort in the successful passage of the Florida Safe Harbor Act which changes how commercially sexually exploited children are viewed and treated in Florida. As Kristi House's pro bono advocate lobbying for the passage of the legislation, he described this legislative victory as the conclusion of a long and, at times, arduous road, but the beginning of many, many success stories for all child victims of sexual abuse.
"Human trafficking, in particular the sex trafficking of children, is a pandemic in this country," Diaz said. "The Safe Harbor Act will allow first responders the option of treating commercially sexually exploited children as victims, and not criminals, by placing them at private treatment centers, or Safe Harbors, to treat these children and offer them hope for a brighter future."
Mr. Diaz represents local governments, businesses, trade associations and other corporate clients before the legislative and executive branches of state government and has successfully guided many pieces of legislation into Florida law. His previous experience as Chief Legislative Aide to the Former Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives and now U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, along with a history of elections campaign and fundraising work, make him ideally suited to lead the Kristi House organization, which is supported by public and private sector grants and philanthropy.
Mr. Diaz is joined on the executive board by newly elected officers: Ms. Bobbie Jones-Wilfork, Vice President, Ms. Lauren Harrison Genovese, Vice President, Mr. Antonio Zamora, Treasurer and Mr. Chuck Vodicka, Secretary. The officers and board members will assist Kristi House in its mission of healing and ending child sexual abuse, and will be dedicated to ensuring services remain free to children and their non-offending family members and that no child is turned away for help.
About Kristi House
Kristi House serves as the Children's Advocacy Center for all of Miami-Dade County and is dedicated to providing a healing environment for child victims of sexual abuse and their families. This approach includes coordinating client families' involvement with legal, medical and mental health systems, limiting the number of interviews to reduce the trauma associated with each retelling of the story, and ensuring that no child falls through the gaps. Kristi House provides a full continuum of wrap-around services and care for victims and their families free of charge including mental health services, critical for recovery from the trauma of sexual abuse for most survivors.
Kristi House's Project GOLD is a specialized program addressing the commercial sexual exploitation of children. An emergency shelter and drop-in center will be opened in 2012.
Founded in 1996, Kristi House has served more than 8,500 victims of child sexual abuse and their families. Thousands more are reached every year with education and prevention outreach programs. Visit www.kristihouse.org for more details.