Child Abuse Expert Installed as First Professor of Child and Adolescent Protection

Children’s National on May 11 installed Allison Jackson, MD, MPH, as the inaugural Washington Children’s Foundation Professor of Child and Adolescent Protection. The professorship, endowed through the generosity of the Washington Children’s Foundation, is the second of its kind in the country. It will allow Dr. Jackson to dedicate her time to further advocate for vulnerable children, as well as expanded education for providers and caregivers.

“The Washington Children’s Foundation has long provided critical program support that enables us to reach the kids in our region who are at risk,” said Kurt Newman, MD, President and CEO of Children’s National. “Their generous funding of this professorship speaks to their deep commitment to our kids. They’re placing their trust in Allison, her team, and Children’s National to do the tough work ahead."

Dr. Jackson, who completed her residency at Children’s National in 1998, is the division chief of the Child and Adolescent Protection Center (CAPC) at Children’s National and an associate professor in the Department of Pediatrics at George Washington University. She specializes in providing direct medical care to abused and neglected children and has expanded the center’s reach to educate medical personnel in recognizing the signs of abuse or neglect.

In her remarks, Dr. Jackson thanked the Washington Children's Foundation, the leadership of Children's National, her CAPC team, and others who have supported her work. "It is my hope that this professorship will permit me to implement a greater vision for children and youth," she said. "The vision that healthcare professionals recognize that child abuse is not rare, that their clinical practice is not immune from maltreatment of children and youth, and that it is their duty to recognize it and respond appropriately. The vision that the professionals who care for children and youth are equipped to provide developmentally appropriate, trauma-informed, and evidence-based medical and mental health evaluations and care to them. The vision that legislators at the local and federal levels do more than simply offer lip service that children are our future, but that they support and appropriate the resources necessary to promote safe, stable, and nurturing environments for children and youth. The vision that more children grow up free from harm in their home and community."

The Washington Children’s Foundation has been caring and advocating for at-risk children in the Washington, D.C., community for over a century, evolving into its current form as an independent grant-making entity in 2007. Its mission is to provide assistance to nonprofit organizations and agencies that work with at-risk children in the District, reflecting the founders’ belief that early intervention is vital to helping children overcome conditions which are beyond their control and impair their ability to lead stable, happy, and productive lives.

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