Penn’s Field Center to Host Annual Field of Dreams Luncheon

The Field Center for Children’s Policy, Practice & Research at the University of Pennsylvania will host its fourth annual Field of Dreams Luncheon, Friday, Oct. 24, at the College of Physicians, 19 S. 22nd St., Philadelphia.

Celebrating the passion and work of the late Alan Lerner, a former faculty director at the Field Center and a member of the University of Pennsylvania Law School clinical faculty, the luncheon bestows two­ honors in his memory, the Alan Lerner Child Advocacy Award and the Alan Lerner Fellowship in Child Welfare Policy.

In the past, the Alan Lerner Child Advocacy Award has been issued to a child welfare professional. However, this year, four community leaders will receive the award for their efforts to create the Philadelphia Safety Collaborative, a groundbreaking facility that allows for the joint investigation of child abuse.

This year, the recipients include Anne Marie Ambrose, the former commissioner of the Philadelphia Department of Human Services, Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams and Chris Kirchner, the executive director of the Philadelphia Children’s Alliance Child Advocacy Center.

“For the first time, we are honoring four of Philadelphia’s visionary leaders who worked together to elevate the response to victims of child sexual abuse in the City,” said Debra Schilling Wolfe, executive director of the Field Center. “The Philadelphia Safety Collaborative is a perfect example of the Field Center’s approach to system reform, an achievement that could not have happened without the hard work and commitment of the four honorees.”

The Alan Lerner Fellowship in Child Welfare Policy will be bestowed upon a promising Penn Law student who has demonstrated a commitment to child advocacy. The recipient will be announced at the luncheon and will spend the academic year as a member of the Field Center’s team.

The Field Center at Penn is an interdisciplinary effort between the schools of Social Policy & Practice, Law, Medicine and Nursing, along with the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. It works to improve the lives of victims of child abuse and neglect by reforming the systems that are responsible for protecting them through innovative and critical change.

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