OKLAHOMA CITY – As the curtain draws on the 2020 session of the Oklahoma Legislature, the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy (OICA) has named Tulsa state Sen. Allison Ikley-Freeman as its “Children’s Senator of the Year.”
The award goes annually to the member or members of the Oklahoma Senate who has particularly distinguished himself or herself during the session. For 2020, the decision was easy, according to Joe Dorman, CEO of OICA.
“Oklahoma is fortunate to have a number of lawmakers who write, support, and advocate for ‘child-friendly’ legislation,” Dorman said. “This year, the steadfast work of Senator Ikley-Freeman stood out among her colleagues. Her determination to make Oklahoma a better place for all its children was inspirational, and it is an honor for OICA to have her as our ‘Children’s Senator of the Year’.”
The lawmaker carried a series of bills encompassing many of the legislative goals of OICA, targeted to improving the lives of children. Beyond that, she has been a tireless advocate for the state’s children. Specifically, she has been a champion in developing proper procedures to handle student issues relating to pre-school and grade school suspensions.
Dorman gave Senator Ikley-Freeman the news about the award on her birthday recently - May 7 as noted in OICA’s 2020 Legislative Desk Calendar. “Senator Ikley-Freeman knew she was getting the award,” Dorman related. “Now, all Oklahoma’s prayers are with her as she recovers from the automobile accident which occurred as she was on her way to what is likely the Legislature’s final day this session.”
According to news reports, Ikley-Freeman was involved in an accident on the Turner Turnpike as she returned for the day’s session the morning of May 22. She is reportedly in stable condition at Oklahoma City’s OU Medical Center.
Ikley-Freeman is a mental health therapist holding bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Northeastern State University.
About OICA: The Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy was established in 1983 by a group of citizens seeking to create a strong advocacy network that would provide a voice for the needs of children and youth in Oklahoma, particularly those in the state’s care and those growing up amid poverty, violence, abuse and neglect, disparities, or other situations that put their lives and future at risk. Our mission statement: “Creating awareness, taking action and changing policy to improve the health, safety, and well-being of Oklahoma’s children.”