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(March 20, 2015 – WASHINGTON, DC)- Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) honored exceptional affiliates, staff members, and volunteers for their important contributions to health care, family planning and education services, and reproductive rights at the annual Affiliate Excellence and Volunteer Awards on March 19, 2015. Memphian Leah Ford received the prestigious Young Volunteer of the Year Award.

Ford, a senior at Rhodes College, worked tirelessly during the Tennessee Power Tour/Youth Organizing & Policy Institute (YOPI).  Ford was responsible for registration and recruitment and is largely responsible for the Power Tour being the largest in PPFA’s history with 184 attendees. 

“Planned Parenthood is thrilled to share that Leah Ford, PPGMR volunteer and advocate, was awarded the PPFA Young Volunteer of the Year Award in Washington, D.C. today,” said Ashley Coffield, CEO of Planned Parenthood Greater Memphis Region. “Planned Parenthood affiliates across the US engage thousands of volunteers annually, so this is an amazing honor.”

Ford, in addition to being a student leader on campus at Rhodes College through Generation Action, helped the roughly 100 Power Tour attendees from Tennessee become future leaders on their campuses.  As an active volunteer at PPGMR since 2012, Ford has completed PPGMR’s Sexpert peer education training and educates campus peers about safer sex practices and Planned Parenthood services.

Ford volunteered over 200 hours for YOPI, while being a full-time student at Rhodes College, an active volunteer at PPGMR, and leading the Generation Action chapter at Rhodes. In addition, Ford volunteered over 450 hours on the Vote NO on 1 Campaign, a Tennessee anti-abortion ballot initiative, assisting with volunteer leadership development and engagement and database management. 

Ford now works part-time at PPGMR as the Social Media Coordinator and will be accepting a full-time position as the Volunteer Coordinator following graduation in May. 



Planned Parenthood Greater Memphis Region (PPGMR), founded in 1938, is an affiliate of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. PPGMR’s mission is to ensure broad public access to reproductive and related health care through clinic services, education, advocacy and community partnerships in serving 42 counties in West Tennessee, North Mississippi and East Arkansas.


Planned Parenthood Greater Memphis Region


Latrivia Nelson
Director of Marketing and Communications
Planned Parenthood Greater Memphis Region



March 20, 2015