Hope House founder Emily Fitchpatrick wins 2012 Community Leadership Award

Charlotte, NC – M. Chris Briese, Special Agent in Charge of the Charlotte Division of the FBI has chosen Mrs. Emily Fitchpatrick as the 2012 Director’s Community Leadership Award (DCLA) recipient for North Carolina. Mrs. Fitchpatrick is the founder and executive director of Hope House Programs (HHP) in Asheville, NC.

HHP is a national initiative dedicated to helping domestic underage victims of human trafficking. The faith-based network began in 2008 and provides outreach to minors who are sexually exploited, shelter for those who are rescued, and leadership training for those who want to move beyond their current situation.

Human Trafficking victims may be held through force, fraud, physical or psychological coercion. The number of cases is growing nationwide. The FBI cannot combat human trafficking alone. We work with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies and national victim-based advocacy groups in joint task forces that combine resources and expertise on the issue. While the FBI investigates the crime, Mrs. Fitchpatrick and her organization provide an invaluable service to help these victims start a new life.

Since 1990—through the Director’s Leadership Community Awards (DCLA)—the FBI has publicly recognized the achievements of individuals and organizations who have gone above and beyond the call to service by making extraordinary contributions to their communities in the areas of terrorism, cyber, drug, gang, or violence prevention and education.

Mrs. Fitchpatrick will receive the award from FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III in a national ceremony to be held at FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. in April 2013.

The media is invited to attend a local presentation on Monday, October 22, 2012 at the Seacoast Church located at 123 Sweeten Creek Road, Asheville, NC. Please arrive at the church by 12:45 pm. You will be escorted inside for the local award presentation at 1:00 pm. You must RSVP by Sunday, October 21, 2012 by calling 704-672-6766 or emailing shelley.lynch@ic.fbi.gov.

Learn more about human trafficking and crimes against children: www.fbi.gov.

About Margaret Williams
Editor Margaret Williams first wrote for Xpress in 1994. An Alabama native, she has lived in Western North Carolina since 1987 and completed her Masters of Liberal Arts & Sciences from UNC-Asheville in 2016. Follow me @mvwilliams

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