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Our Founder

Sarah Cardwell Shuptrine passed away suddenly Saturday, April 19, 2008. Sarah committed her career to improving the well-being of families and children. Her passion and dedication are evident in the millions of lives her work touched.

Sarah founded the Southern Institute on Children and Families January 1990. During her seventeen years as President and Chief Executive Officer (1990-2007), she provided leadership for all initiatives of the Southern Institute and directed the Covering Kids and Covering Kids & Families national initiatives, the Southern Business Leadership Council, the Southern Regional Initiative on Child Care and public benefits access improvement projects. Prior to founding the Southern Institute, Sarah was President and CEO of Sarah Shuptrine and Associates, a private consulting firm specializing in public policy analysis and problem solving. She was the author and co-author of numerous reports on improving access to public benefits, identification and removal of public program eligibility barriers and implementation of effective outreach.

During the administration of South Carolina Governor Richard W. Riley, Sarah held the positions of chief policy advisor for Health and Human Services and staff director of the South Carolina Children’s Coordinating Cabinet. She also led numerous collaborative endeavors that resulted in actions to improve access to health and social benefits for low-income children and families, including the Work Group for the Southern Regional Task Force on Infant Mortality, which was the catalyst for the 1986 federal Medicaid Infant Mortality Amendment and the Southern Regional Task Force on Child Care. She served on the National Commission on Children and was Co-Chair of the Commission’s working groups on collaboration, coordination and family support programs. She also served on the Carnegie Task Force on Meeting the Needs of Young Children and the National Advisory Committee for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s national program, State Coverage Initiatives.

“Words could not express the deep void we shall all have without her incredible presence in our lives. She was a tremendous inspiration to her friends and family and will be greatly missed.”

Tate, Ishmael (2008, April 21). Children’s advocate Shuptrine dies at 65. The State.Com. Retreived April 21, 2008 from


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90-F Glenda Trace, Suite 326
Newnan, GA 30265
(803) 779-2607

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