Jennifer Storm to head up PA Office of the Victim Advocate

Written by Tim Lambert, WITF Multimedia News Director | Nov 8, 2013 12:29 PM

(Harrisburg) --  A Cumberland County woman has been nominated to lead the state's Office of the Victim Advocate.

38-year-old Jennifer Storm of Camp Hill, has served for the past 10 years as executive director of the Dauphin County Victim/Witness/Assistance Program.

Governor Corbett made the announcement today.

The office is responsible for referring crime victims to local programs and basic crisis intervention and support, and providing general information on the status and location of the inmate as allowed by law. It also provides notification of the expiration of an inmate’s maximum sentence or date of execution, if applicable, as well as conducts preparation for a victim who chooses to witness an execution.

Victim assistance coordinators work with advocates at community-based victim services programs and also with advocates in county district attorney’s offices to ensure that all victims of crime who have requested post-sentencing services receive the compassionate and individual attention and advocacy that they require.

Storm currently serves on the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, Victim Services Advisory Committee, Dauphin County Domestic Violence Task Force, Dauphin County Criminal Justice Advisory Board, Elder Abuse Task Force of Dauphin County and Crime Victims Alliance of Pennsylvania.

"Victimized by crime in her youth, Jennifer Storm refused to settle for the label ‘survivor,’ and instead took on the mantel of ‘champion’ on behalf of thousands of others who have been the targets of criminals,’’ Corbett said, in a statement. “In appointing Ms. Storm as victim advocate, we are naming a true defender of human rights and personal dignity."

The author of several books and magazine articles, Storm has received numerous honors for her advocacy efforts.

Delilah Rumburg, chief executive officer of the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape and the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, praises Storm’s appointment.

“Ms. Storm’s track record as a victim advocate and her ability to collaborate with allied stakeholders to ensure justice for all victims is exemplary," she says.

The Office of the Victim Advocate was created in 1995 to represent the rights and interests of crime victims before the Board of Probation and Parole and the Department of Corrections. In addition, it also provides notification to crime victims of the potential for inmate release, opportunity to provide testimony, and notification of the inmate’s movement within the correctional system.

"Jen Storm is a fearless advocate for victims of crime. She has shown throughout her career that she understands the combination of empathy and toughness needed to speak for those who are often unable to speak for themselves,’’ says Dave Freed, president of the Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association and district attorney of Cumberland County. “Jen's strong record and compelling personal journey make her a solid choice to be our state victim advocate. I commend Governor Corbett for making such a strong selection.’’

Storm will serve as acting victim advocate, beginning December 2nd, until she is confirmed by the state Senate. The six-year term pays $113,272 annually.

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