The 2023 Schade-Hill Public Policy Award Honors A Hero: Stefanie Turner Of Texas Against Fentanyl

This year, the Texas Pain Society was honored to present the Schade-Hill Public Policy Award to Stefanie Turner, founder of the nonprofit Texas Against Fentanyl. 

Texas Against Fentanyl Founder Stefanie Turner receiving award at Texas Pain Society annual conference

Each year at its annual conference, the Texas Pain Society (TPS) gives out awards to distinguished individuals in the pain industry. One such honor is the Schade-Hill Public Policy Award, which was inspired by the countless hours that Drs. C.M. Schade and Stratton Hill dedicated to TPS, in order to help craft the pain medicine laws that govern Texas today. In its eleventh year, the award recognizes outstanding work that has made a positive change in the world of pain medicine, and this year – during the TPS 15th Annual Scientific Conference – it went to Stefanie Turner.

Turner lost her 19-year-old son, Tucker Roe, after he purchased one illicit fentanyl pill from a peer on social media. After he passed, she began sharing his story and educating others on the deadly effects of this dangerous drug. Texas Against Fentanyl (TXAF), a 501c3 nonprofit, was born.

Her work didn’t stop there, though.

During this past legislative session, Turner was a key advocate for several fentanyl-related bills. She was with Governor Greg Abbott at the Fighting the Fentanyl Crisis Bill Signing at the Texas Capitol on June 14. The laws designate October as Fentanyl Poisoning Awareness Month, requiring schools to provide education on fentanyl abuse prevention, allowing the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to partner with college campuses to distribute Narcan, and making it clear that people who cause death by distributing fentanyl can be prosecuted for murder. 

Turner also co-hosted Governor Abbott's One Pill Kills Summit, which brought together Texas families, law enforcement, state officials, education leaders, healthcare professionals, and other fentanyl advocates for meaningful conversations. The Governor and Turner moderated panels that highlighted the work Texas has done to address the fentanyl crisis and discussed strategies to combat it.

At the TPS’ conference – which took place October 27-29 at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort & Spa in Cedar Creek – Turner told attendees about the Tucker Project, a fentanyl curriculum that TXAF is working on, in partnership with a leading national textbook publisher. It will allow teachers to easily integrate fentanyl education into lesson plans, all while ensuring it meets learning objectives and criteria for effective health education.

The Texas Pain Society was honored to present Stefanie Turner with the 2023 Schade-Hill Public Policy Award. From the founding of her nonprofit and her efforts at the Capitol to spreading awareness at events, to fellow parents, through curriculum…She certainly earned this award, and she definitely earned the standing ovation that followed. 

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