James R. Blue
As President & CEO of Cedars Youth Services - a private, nonprofit, child caring organization - James R. Blue has worked with dedicated staff to create innovative services for the prevention and treatment of child abuse and neglect.
Intervention-based initiatives that have been created since Mr. Blue joined Cedars in 1991 include a residential treatment center, two treatment group homes, two emergency shelters, family-based foster homes, street outreach services, and independent living programming. The majority of children and youth residing in these programs have been the victims of abuse and/or neglect. The program structure and staff at these facilities are especially sensitive to the unique needs of children and youth who have experienced abuse and/or neglect in their young lives.
Recognizing the necessity of taking a holistic approach to child abuse and neglect, Cedars has developed an array of innovative child abuse/neglect prevention services, including in-home counseling and family support services for children and youth, quality head start child care, and after-school programs in high risk neighborhoods. Recognizing the linkage between child abuse and spouse abuse, Cedars has also developed domestic violence services in rural communities throughout the state.
Under Mr. Blue's leadership over the past nine years, Cedars has grown from serving 950 to more than 6,000 children annually. Including family members, the organization now serves nearly 12,000 individuals each year.
In addition to heading Cedars Youth Services, Mr. Blue serves as a member of the Nebraska Health and Human Services Partnership Council and is a founding member of the Coalition for Children and Families of Nebraska. On a personal note, he is a volunteer soccer coach for the YMCA, a volunteer at a homeless service center, and a husband and father of two children.