Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman
Steven_Curtis_and_Mary_Beth_ChapmanSteven Curtis Chapman who has been the recipient of four Grammy awards, sold more than seven million albums, had thirty-seven number one singles, and been awarded an unprecedented number of Dove awards (Christian music’s Grammy awards), is an advocate for children in need.  Steven and his wife, Mary Beth, have three biological children, Caleb, Will Franklin, and Emily.  In March of 2000, Steven Curtis and Mary Beth adopted their little girl, Shaohannah, from China.  After returning from China, the Chapman’s were changed forever, and began to talk to their friends and family about opening their homes and hearts to adoption.  In 2001, Steven and Mary Beth returned to China to accompany their friends, the Moore family, and Mary Beth’s brother and his wife to adopt their children from China.  Steven and Mary Beth have become true advocates for adoption.  They created a foundation called Shaohannah’s Hope.  According to Steven, “Shaohannah’s Hope is a fund to help aid families who want to adopt and have a place at their table and a place in their heart, but don’t have a place in the bank account for it.”  Included in Steven Curtis’ new album, “Declaration,” is a song written about his adopted daughter, Shaohannah, entitled “When Love Takes You In.”
Rosie O’Donnell
rosie_o_donnellRosie O’Donnell has become America’s best friend for an hour each day as host and executive producer of the critically acclaimed, nationally syndicated talk/variety series “The Rosie O’Donnell Show.”  She is also known to the world as a diverse actress in films and theater, and more importantly as an advocate for children.  On of the best things to happen to children waiting for loving adoptive homes was for Rosie to take up their cause, because everything Rosie does, she does with all her heart and might.  Rosie is an advocate for children in both her personal and professional life.  In celebration of her birthday, she aired a show, entirely devoted to the issue, called the “How to Adopt,” show.  This show presented basic information for those seeking to adopt, and she was able to share her own adoption journey to bring her children home.  As a tireless crusader for children she established The For All Kids Foundation, which distributes money to children’s charities across the country.  All the proceeds of a best-selling collection of Rosie’s favorite jokes sent to the show by children are given to the foundation.  Six years ago, Rosie became a mother for the first time when she adopted her son, Parker.  Since then, she has gone on to adopt her daughter, Chelsea, and most recently, in 1999, she adopted her son Blake.  Her popularity as a person and celebrity has helped people realize that adoption is not a second choice; but rather, that there are two frist choices for building a forever family.  She has also done immeasurable amounts to build up birth moms and to show that these women, through their sacrificial love, are the true heroes.  Rosie is an Angel in Adoption to all members of the adoption triad: birth parents, adoptive parents, and children in need of loving, safe, and permanent homes.
Hans van Loon
Hans_Van_LoonJohannes (“Hans”) H.A. van Loon is the Secretary General of the Hague conference on Private International Law, a long-standing intergovernmental Organization based at The Hague, the Netherlands.  This organization is currently composed of 54 member states, including the United States of America, and, since the Second World War, has drawn up over 30 multilateral treaties to advance the exercise of rights of private individuals, families, businesses and other entities in transnational situations.  Before he took the position of Secretary General in 1996, Hans was the member of the Hague conference Secretariat who initiated, around 1985, the work of the Hague Conference.  This ultimately led to the Hague Convention of 29 May 1993 on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption.  Hans was responsible for persuading both Hague Conference Member and non-Member States of the need for and feasibility of negotiating a worldwide treaty on inter-country adoption.  After the treaty was first signed in May 1993, he continues to be involved in its promotion and implementation, including through high level contacts with governments, further missions to Romania and Paraguay, contact with associations of adoption organizations, universities, and other international organizations.  Hans has also been involved in the preparation of other multilateral treaties in and outside the family law arena, and has published widely on these issues.
Dave Thomas
dave_thomasCCAI was deeply saddened by the passing of our dear friend, Dave Thomas, in January of 2002.  An adoptee himself, Dave was a tremendous advocate for adoption, and a hero to the thousands of waiting children of the United States foster care system.  In Dave’s words, “Every child deserves a permanent home and loving family.”  In 1992, Dave established the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, which support programs that make adoption easier and more affordable for families.  Dave sought to promote adoption benefits for corporate and government employees, ways to simplify the adoption process, and to make adoption tax credits a reality for all adoptive parents.  He took his message to every corner of the country, meeting with Members of Congress, corporate American and the media.  Dave and the foundation were instrumental in the creation of the U.S. postage stamp promoting adoption, and an annual television special on CBS called “A Home for the Holidays.”  Both of these efforts have taken the issue of adoption into homes across America and prompted thousand of people to inquire about waiting children.  Dave had a true passion for waiting children.  His family, dear friends, members of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption and the Wendy’s Corporation will continue to work with the United States government and the private sector to fulfill his dream that every child find their forever family.  We are pleased that prior to his passing, Dave was aware that he was chosen as a 2001 National Angel in Adoption.  Although he is no longer with us, his legacy in adoption continues to make this world a better place for children and now he truly is their Angel in Adoption.