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The Office on Violence Against Women (OVW), a component of the U.S. Department of Justice, provides national leadership in developing the nation's capacity to reduce violence against women through the implementation of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). Created in 1995, OVW administers financial and technical assistance to communities across the country that are developing programs, policies, and practices aimed at ending domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. Currently, OVW administers one formula grant program and eleven discretionary grant programs, all of which were established under VAWA and subsequent legislation. Since its inception, OVW has awarded nearly $3 billion in grants and cooperative agreements, and has launched a multifaceted approach to implementing VAWA. By forging state, local, and tribal partnerships among police, prosecutors, victim advocates, health care providers, faith leaders, and others, OVW grant programs help provide victims with the protection and services they need to pursue safe and healthy lives, while simultaneously enabling communities to hold offenders accountable for their violence.

In addition to overseeing 12 federal grant programs, OVW often undertakes a number of special initiatives in response to areas of special need, dedicating resources to develop enhancements in areas requiring particular attention or in communities facing particularly acute challenges. OVW special initiatives include, but are not limited to, the Judicial Oversight Demonstration Initiative, the President's Family Justice Center Initiative, the Safety for Indian Women from Sexual Assault Offenders Demonstration Initiative, and the National Protocol for Sexual Assault Forensic Exams. These special initiatives allow OVW to explore different innovations in the violence against women field and share knowledge that can be replicated nationwide. The Office on Violence Against Women (OVW), a component of the U.S. Department of Justice, provides national leadership in developing the nation's capacity to reduce violence against women through the implementation of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). Created in 1995, OVW administers financial and technical assistance to communities across the country that are developing programs, policies, and practices aimed at ending domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. Currently, OVW administers one formula grant program and eleven discretionary grant programs, all of which were established under VAWA and subsequent legislation. Since its inception, OVW has awarded nearly $3 billion in grants and cooperative agreements, and has launched a multifaceted approach to implementing VAWA. By forging state, local, and tribal partnerships among police, prosecutors, victim advocates, health care providers, faith leaders, and others, OVW grant programs help provide victims with the protection and services they need to pursue safe and healthy lives, while simultaneously enabling communities to hold offenders accountable for their violence.

In addition to overseeing 12 federal grant programs, OVW often undertakes a number of special initiatives in response to areas of special need, dedicating resources to develop enhancements in areas requiring particular attention or in communities facing particularly acute challenges. OVW special initiatives include, but are not limited to, the Judicial Oversight Demonstration Initiative, the President's Family Justice Center Initiative, the Safety for Indian Women from Sexual Assault Offenders Demonstration Initiative, and the National Protocol for Sexual Assault Forensic Exams. These special initiatives allow OVW to explore different innovations in the violence against women field and share knowledge that can be replicated nationwide.

Cindy Dyer currently serves as the Director of the United States Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women. Ms. Dyer was nominated to this position by President George W. Bush on August 2, 2007 and confirmed by the United States Senate on December 19, 2007. As Director Ms. Dyer serves as the liaison between the Department of Justice and Federal, State and International governments on the crimes of domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence and stalking. In this role, she is responsible for handling the Department's legal and policy issues regarding the implementation of the Violence Against Women Act and oversees an annual budget of almost $400 million.

Ms. Dyer is an experienced prosecutor and a recognized authority on the topic of family violence and sexual assault. Prior to her appointment she was with the Dallas County, Texas, District Attorney’s Office. She was the first prosecutor to join the Family Violence Division during its inception in 1994 and became the Chief Prosecutor of that division in 1998. She has received numerous awards and recognition for her service to victims, including the Henry Wade Prosecutor of the Year award from the Greater Dallas Crime Commission, the Equal Justice Award from the Legal Services of NorthWest Texas (Now the Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas), and the Stephen Von Riesen Lecturer of Merit Award from the National College of District Attorneys.

As an active member of her community in Dallas, she has served on the board of the Texas Council on Family Violence, assisted in proposing and drafting legislation to help victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, and volunteered for local organizations, including a non-profit women’s shelter.

Ms. Dyer graduated from Texas A&M University and Baylor University Law School.

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