ROANOKE, W. Va. — During a statewide conference on foster care and children’s well-being, Senator Jay Rockefeller was honored by the Children’s Home Society of West Virginia and the Alliance for Children for his work in public policy advocating for services in foster care and promoting adoption.

The CHS presented the retiring senator with a “Champion for Children” medal.

Rockefeller said the acknowledgement should go to those who helped him.

“I’m not undeserving but I’m only deserving because I had so many wonderful people in my office and elsewhere here in West Virginia helping along the way,” he said. “People who get medals didn’t get them by themselves.”

From 1988-1991, he chaired the National Commission on Children. While serving in the position, the Child Tax Credit was created and the Earned Income Tax Credit was expanded. Together, it represented one of the largest anti-poverty initiatives in the country. After serving on the committee, he still lead efforts to enact policy focused on children. In 1997, he helped develop the Adoption and Safe Families Act, which doubled the number of adoptions after its enactment.

Rockefeller reflected back on his time working with the children of Emmons while serving in the VISTA program and how it inspired him to make childcare part of his life’s work.

“Almost everything I’ve done, all the votes I’ve made since then have been with those kids in Emmons in my mind,” he said. “It’s true. They’re my moral compass, they’re my passion. I still keep in touch with them.”

He also pontificated how it has become more difficult to get funding for childcare programs.

“It’s controversial. It’s hard to get votes. It should be the easiest thing in the world. You know everybody loves kids but when it comes to spending money on kids, Congress doesn’t like to do that, at least not Congress these days.”

The West Virginia Behavioral Health Providers Association also presented him with a plaque, thanking him for his work with the recent Excellence in Mental Health Act which was signed by the President in April and expands access to community mental health centers and aims to improve the quality of mental health care.

The tokens of gratitude were presented after a roundtable discussion on the topic of permanency for children in foster care as part the Alliance for Children Annual Meeting and Senior Leaders Conference at Stonewall Resort.

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  • Todd

    Is this the same "Rockefeller" that claims everyone is a racist if you don't like/accept "Obummercare".

  • susanf1218

    Well, I guess he can look at all of his "awards" and feel like he accomplished something during his tenure, even though he didn't. He has been ineffective and insignificant and a disappointment as a Senator.

  • WV Citizen

    The vile comments made below about someone who has been given an award by the Children's Home Society...a reputable and proud West Virginia childcare group...are an embarrassment to most of the citizens of West Virginia and to all Christians. Shame on you!

    • Don

      I'll go first........
      So, we have to like the choice simply because WHO is giving the award.....regardless of WHO is receiving it? That doesn't even make sense.....Jay, is that you???

    • DWL

      Seems "wv citizen" is the only one embarrassed by it's lone support of the carpetbagger and the proud liberal group - Children's Home Society. Shame on you for lying!

  • anne

    What does he know about WV and its citizens? He only comes 2 or 3 times a year and only to accept awards. I have written to him in the past, and he only responds during the year he is running. By that time, I have forgotten what I asked. Byrd and Capito always answered in a timely manner as does Manchin.

  • Goodbye

    I honestly cannot remember any good things that he championed for our state. He was in office for a long time. If he did have a legacy of qualitative or quantitative efforts on our behalf they are so far below the radar in consideration of great achievement and long lasting benefit for the state.

  • Gary Karstens

    A champion of a lot of things....for sure. He will be missed.

    A champion of children and the teachers that teach them.

    Thank you, Senator of the best WV has ever had.

    • Jephre

      "A champion of children and the teachers that teach them" - and the teachers unions, and the EPA, and race-baiters, and Obamacare... the list goes on and on. Good riddance.

    • P B and J

      Ha Ha

  • DWL

    Champion of Children? He is responsible for the destruction of the Juvenile Justice System in WV. His own children, during their youth , were little snots with ZERO respect. It's like honoring a pedophile at a kids camp.

    Numerous studies confirmed that the Child Tax Credit and the Earned Income Tax Credit are the two largest and most abused sections of the IRS code and where fraud is ramped.

    And liberals, (d)'s, socialists, & democrats are honoring this RACIST, race baiting, corrupt, slimy, carpetbagger that has done NOTHING for the state of WV except crawl from beneath his rock, see his shadow, then slither back out of sight. No wonder WV is dead last in everything!

    • Paco

      De paco agree DWL. I like de medicaid but de Rockefeller he tell me no no no ju got to take de Obamacare. At least Gobernor Orange Ray expanded de medicaid for amigos like me.

  • David

    EIC = just another method of Democrats buying votes with my tax dollars ....

    And keeping people on the government dole never fed any child....

  • northforkfisher

    Giving him an award for anything, is like giving a fox award for guarding the henhouse. All he ever done was use us (the state of West Virginia) as the means to get in Congress. He really never done anything for us except draw a pay check and excellent benefits for nothing.

    • Pickle Barrel


  • Wane

    He has also spent years advocating for Veterans on the Veteran's Affairs Comm. Where has that got veterans?

    • What a joke

      I totally agree. His political service to vets and the state as a whole is hollow at best. He just needed a hobby like all wealthy in this country.

  • wow

    what a joke of a man.

  • Don

    What a great idea, give a Child Advocacy Award to an empty suit who has voted Pro -Abortion for 30 years while 30 million babies went to an early death. Great decision.

    • P B and J

      Wow, awesome statement. + 1