December 16, 2016

Braking Traffik Recognized as Recipient of FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award for 2016

Sean M. Cox, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Springfield Division, announced that Braking Traffik, a program of Family Resources of the Quad Cities which serves both Northwest Illinois and Southeast Iowa, has been selected as the recipient of the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award for 2016.

This special award, presented on behalf of the Director of the FBI, was formally created in 1990 as a way to honor individuals and organizations for their efforts in combating terrorism, cyber crime, illegal drugs, gangs, and other crimes leading to violence in America. Braking Traffik is one of 56 individuals or organizations around the United States who will receive this award this year. Braking Traffik is being recognized for their programs that provide training through education and direct services to survivors of human trafficking.

Braking Traffik is a leader in Illinois and Iowa dedicated to end human trafficking. It provides community outreach and education, legislative advocacy, and comprehensive services to survivors of human trafficking.

Braking Traffik’s “Any Kid Anywhere” is a program which targets middle and high school students. The program’s curriculum teaches students and teachers about what human trafficking is, risk reduction, and how to end the demand. This program is currently being conducted throughout the United States. Braking Traffik is proud of their “Hotel/Motel Project” where they partner with area organizations to provide training to hotels and motels to raise awareness of human trafficking and to advise on effective responses to suspected incidences.

Braking Traffik was founded by Maggie Tinsman in 2008, and 2011 served as a turning point for the organization. They needed someone who could grow the non-profit, and that is when Cathy O'Keeffe was hired as Executive Director for Braking Traffik. Mrs. O’Keeffe has been working for the organization since 2011.

James B. Comey, Director of the FBI, will present the Director’s Community Leadership Award to Braking Traffik during an official ceremony held at FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. in April 2017.