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In January 2017, the Survivors Council was created to advise and assist the Office of the Attorney General on matters related to victims of crime, including but not limited to awareness initiatives; training efforts; and publications, policy and legislative initiatives. Its purpose is to ensure that these efforts are victim-centered, effective and responsive to the needs of diverse victims.

What does it mean to be victim-centered?

The Federal Office of Victims of Crime defines a victim-centered approach as one which seeks to minimize retraumatization associated with the criminal justice process by:

  • Providing the support of victim advocates and service providers;
  • Empowering survivors as engaged participants in the process;
  • Providing survivors an opportunity to play a role in seeing their offenders brought to justice.

What is the structure of the Council?

The Survivors Council is co-chaired by a member of the Council and the Director of the Office of Victims Advocacy. The Council meets quarterly (Four times a year) in Frankfort at the Office of the Attorney General, and members are appointed for up to a two-year term.

Does the Council provide any services to the public?

Many members of the Survivors Council are available for providing speaking, training and technical assistance to agencies. Topics include but are not limited to: child abuse awareness; human trafficking; child marriage; speak out support workshops for survivors of sexual exploitation and abuse; phases of victim-grooming (recognizing the signs); grief and bereavement training; bullying and cyberbullying; self-care; campus sexual assault; non-profit and law enforcement collaboration; learning from a survivor-led organization; best practices for communities and survivors of mass shooting; Darkness to Light; Stewards of Children; linking child sexual abuse to the life-altering effects of adult survivors; strength-based soul care for adult survivors—a faith-based, trauma-informed response to abuse in the church; childhood trauma- trauma-sensitive schools; trauma-informed care; Title IX; and dating violence/sexual assault. To request training or a speaker, contact Gretchen Hunt at

Annual Report

Each January, after a year of advocacy work and empowering other survivors, the Council issued a report outlining recommendations on how Kentucky can improve the Commonwealth's efforts to better support survivors of violent crimes. These reports are available for downloading below.

New Survivors Council Annouced

Survivors Council.jpg
Attorney General Andy Beshear announces 2019-2020 council to give voice to survivors of violent crime.


Crime Victims' Information Guide (1.03 MB pdf)

Nicole Aghaaliandastjerdi
Ann Bauers
Annie Bowen
Brandie Cobb
Summer Dickerson
Robin Garner
LaShana Harris
Jennifer Hartzler
Rohitkumar Virbhadra Joshi
Deborah Lee
Kathleen Niestadt
Cal Pfeiffer
Anita Rowe-Franklin
Jessie Schartung
Kristina Smith
Avalon Sutherland
Hilary Bickel Sykes
Demetrius Watson
Ify Whitfill

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