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Harold Dennis and Stephen Panus Join MADD Sports Advisory Board to Combat Impaired Driving in the Sports World

The New Advisory Board Members Will Leverage the Power of Sports to Inspire Change for a Safer Future

[Irving, Texas, May 16, 2024] — Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) proudly announces the addition of Harold Dennis and Stephen Panus to its Sports Advisory Board. This collaboration aims to elevate awareness and emphasize the importance of impaired driving prevention and personal wellness within the sports community.

Harold Dennis, hailing from Lexington, KY, brings a profound personal experience to the MADD Sports Advisory Board, as a survivor of the Carrollton Bus Crash — the deadliest drunk driving crash in U.S. history. In May 1988, 24 children and three adults were killed by a drunk driver in this catastrophic crash which shattered the lives of countless families. Dennis has since dedicated his life to being a voice for those impacted by such tragedies. His athletic achievements include being All-State in soccer and track at North Hardin High School, followed by a successful college football career at the University of Kentucky, where he earned national recognition and awards for his courage and resilience. Harold is also the creator and co-producer of “IMPACT: After the Crash,” a powerful documentary chronicling the crash and following the lives of several survivors and victims’ families in the aftermath of that fateful night.

Reflecting on his journey, Dennis shared, “May 14, 1988, changed my life and the lives of many others forever. Since then, I promised to be the voice of the 27 people who were tragically killed by a drunk driver. Today, I continue that promise by joining forces with MADD, leveraging the power of sports to inspire change and end impaired driving.”

Stephen Panus, a veteran sports marketing and public relations executive and author of “Walk On” — a compelling memoir about overcoming grief and turning pain into purpose, brings a unique perspective to the advisory board. “Walk On” has received critical acclaim and endorsements from notable figures in publishing, media, and sports and was featured on ABC TV’s “Good Morning America.” The inspiring and emotionally powerful story has resonated with readers worldwide as a beacon of hope and resilience. University of South Carolina Head Football Coach Shane Beamer wrote the Preface to the book. Jake’s enduring legacy and the launch of the Jake Panus “Walk On” Scholarship funds have been chronicled nationally across the media over the last several years. Panus is the founder and CEO of Twisted Hairs, LLC, a modern agency delivering fearless, creative, and visionary counsel with a classical focus across public relations, strategic communications, marketing, and media.

A little over three and a half years ago, his 16-year-old son, Jake (a rising junior at Fairfield Ludlowe High School in Fairfield, Connecticut, and a football and lacrosse player), was a passenger in a vehicle when he was killed in a senseless and reckless crash on Block Island, Rhode Island while away with his girlfriend and her family.

“As we reflect on these horrific tragedies that have forever altered lives and caused immeasurable grief, we stand strong in our unwavering commitment to ending impaired driving. We are honored to welcome Harold Dennis and Stephan Panus to our Sports Advisory Board,” said Stacey D. Stewart, CEO of MADD. “Their passion, experience, and commitment to making a difference align perfectly with MADD’s mission to eliminate impaired driving and promote personal wellness. Together, we will work towards creating a safer and healthier environment, especially within the sports community.”

As part of their roles, Dennis and Panus will collaborate with MADD on initiatives to raise awareness, promote wellness, inspire change, and advocate for safe decision-making.

For media inquiries or interviews, please contact [email protected].

 

About Mothers Against Drunk Driving

Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) is the nonprofit leader in a movement to create a world where there are #NoMoreVictims of impaired driving. By working in collaboration with law enforcement to end underage drinking and all drunk and drugged driving, MADD has helped reduce drunk driving deaths by more than 50%, saving more than 400,000 lives. The organization is a vocal advocate for tougher sentencing, new laws and new technology, including the implementation of the Halt Act. MADD also has provided supportive services to nearly one million victims of drunk and drugged driving at no charge through local victim advocates and its 24-Hour Victim Help Line: 1-877-MADD-HELP. For more information or to make a donation, visit us at https://madd.org/ and follow MADD on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

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