FRIDAY, DECEMBER 19, 1997202/307-0703

Federal Crime Victims Program Acting Director Is Native Kansan

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Reginald L. Robinson, an advocate for victims' rights, has just assumed the post of acting director of the Justice Department's Office for Victims of Crime (OVC). Robinson, a native Kansan, who has been instrumental in efforts to draft a victims' rights amendment to the U.S. Constitution, succeeds OVC director Aileen Adams who resigned the post after three years to return to California.

"As OVC's acting director, Reggie Robinson will ensure program continuity. He knows OVC's programs and staff, and is committed to the issues important to victims and their families," said Assistant Attorney General Laurie Robinson, who heads the Office of Justice Programs (OJP). "We are delighted that he has agreed to take on this new assignment."

In addition to ensuring the high quality of service delivery for victims and advocacy on behalf of their rights, Acting Director Robinson said he wants to improve programs and services for hate crime victims. He also praised OVC for their work over the last 13 years. "OVC is a unique agency that has supported many programs to help thousands of victims heal from the trauma of crime. I'm eager to be part of those efforts."

Money for OVC's programs comes from the Crime Victims Fund, which is administered by OVC and supports programs for crime victims with money paid in fines by federal criminal offenders -- not taxpayers. Fines collected in one year by U.S. Attorneys, the U.S. Courts and Bureau of Prisons are deposited into the Fund and are available for grant awards in the following year. Fund deposits for 1997 totaled just under $363 million.

Kansas' share of this money this year will include $694,000 in victim compensation grant funds and $2.87 million for victim assistance to reimburse victims for losses they incur as a result of violent crime and to provide emergency shelter, counseling and court advocacy for countless numbers of people victimized in Kansas.

Prior to his OVC appointment, Robinson served in several Justice Department posts, most recently as Deputy Associate Attorney General, where he was a key adviser on civil rights, environmental and justice programs. He also played a vital role in departmental work on a victims' rights constitutional amendment. From 1994 to early 1997, Robinson was the Deputy Assistant Attorney General at OJP, spearheading efforts in community-based public safety initiatives and leading the department's implementation of the Drug Courts Program. He came to the Justice Department in 1993 as a White House Fellow, serving as special assistant to Attorney General Janet Reno.

Robinson, who lived in Salinas and Lawrence, Kansas, earned his undergraduate and law degrees at the University of Kansas where he was also a law faculty member. He and his wife, Jane, a registered nurse, have two daughters -- Clare and Page.

For more information about the Office for Victims of Crime, visit OVC's World Wide Web site at or the Office of Justice Programs web site at Or, call the Office for Victims of Crime Resource Center at 800/627-6872.