CHICAGO, Jan. 22, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Archbishop Blase J. Cupich today announced the appointment of Mary Jane Doerr as the Director of the Office for the Protection of Children and Youth. The appointment is effective beginning on February 8, 2016. Ms. Doerr was Associate Director in the Secretariat of Child and Youth Protection of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). Ms. Doerr replaces Jan Slattery, who recently retired after ten years in this position.
"We are pleased to have attracted a national leader in child protection to the Archdiocese of Chicago," said Blase J. Cupich, Archbishop of Chicago. "We look to Ms. Doerr to continue and build on the fine work of Jan Slattery. Over her tenure, Jan established a nationally recognized approach to preventing abuse, and led an office that provides help and healing to victims and their families and cooperates with civil authorities in a prompt and transparent manner."
Ms. Doerr, who joined the USCCB in 2008, supported dioceses across the country in implementing their safe environment programs and assisted in the development of mechanisms to audit adherence to the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. Ms. Doerr served as the Safe Environment Coordinator for the Diocese of Kalamazoo for five years, where she was responsible for implementing the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People in all diocesan parishes and schools. Additionally, she has more than 20 years' experience in Catholic school systems as a classroom teacher, an elementary school principal and a college instructor.
A native of Chicago Heights, Ms. Doerr attended Marian Catholic High School in Chicago Heights. She holds a BA in Behavioral Sciences from Nazareth College, Kalamazoo and a MA in Educational Leadership from Western Michigan University.
The Archdiocese of Chicago Office for the Protection of Children and Youth is widely recognized as one of the first such efforts in an American diocese and consistently a leader in child protection services. The Archdiocese, DCFS and the State's Attorneys' Offices in Cook and Lake Counties work collaboratively on behalf of children who have been abused. Since 2003, we have trained more than 165,000 priests, deacons, religious, lay employees and volunteers to recognize and prevent abuse and more than 200,000 children to protect themselves from sexual predators. The Archdiocese of Chicago has done this in more than 3,000 training sessions, conducted by 280 facilitators.
About the Archdiocese of Chicago
The Archdiocese of Chicago, the third largest in the United States, serves more than 2.2 million Catholics in 353 parishes in Illinois' Cook and Lake Counties, a geographic area of 1,411 square miles. The Archdiocese, pastored by Archbishop Blase J. Cupich, has more than 15,000 employees in its agencies and ministries, including Catholic Charities, the region's largest nonprofit social service agency, one of the country's largest seminaries and the country's largest private cemetery system. The Archdiocese's 230 elementary and secondary schools comprise the largest U.S. private school system and have garnered more U.S. Department of Education Blue Ribbon Awards than any system of any type.
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SOURCE Archdiocese of Chicago