Sheila Miller, VP of Philanthropy at the Child Protection Center (CPC), has been named the ‘Empowering Woman of the Year’ by the Venice Area Chamber of Commerce at the Women Empowering Women event.
Sheila was nominated by several staff members of the Child Protection Center, citing her vast impact on the nonprofit. “She inspires and leads in her relentless advocacy for children, in her devotion to and support of her staff, and we are fortunate enough to say in her immense strength as a friend.”
Mrs. Miller has a long history of advocating for children, which can be seen in her years of work as a teacher, later as a principal, and for the past 11 years at CPC. Doug Staley, the Executive Director of the nonprofit, commented that, “In my 26 years with CPC, no other person has had a greater impact on CPC’s mission and vision than Sheila Miller.”
Just over two years ago, Sheila finished her last round of chemo in a tiring battle with breast cancer. She often used the support she received from her diagnosis to shed light on the children fighting child abuse. “Why is it okay to talk about cancer but taboo to talk about child abuse? Every victim needs that same level of support.” In 2019, she was featured as one of Sarasota’s Women of Influence and used that platform to share her dream of eliminating the apprehension of discussing child abuse. “Like cancer, child abuse is not determined by socioeconomic status or demographics but is 10 times more prevalent than cancer; these conversations are crucial.”
Following the Women Empowering Women event, Sheila said, “I am honored and humbled by this award. The words, ‘Women Empowering Women’ are very meaningful to me. As individuals, we don’t realize how we sometimes inspire or empower others by showing up and admitting your struggle. I have learned through surviving cancer and listening to victims of child abuse that sometimes sharing your difficulty, (which you may see as your weakness), is really the message that empowers others to share their struggle or to get help. Sometimes ‘acting brave’ makes others brave.”
The Child Protection Center’s mission is the Prevention, Intervention, & Treatment of Child Abuse, as the organization envisions a community where children are safe from abuse and free to thrive. For over 40 years, CPC has been serving Sarasota and DeSoto Counties in the State of Florida, and is accredited by the National Children’s Alliance. For more information on CPC, visit www.cpcsarasota.org or call 941-365-1277.