King County Councilmember Dave Upthegrove on Tuesday (Nov. 16, 2021) awarded Barbara Drennen with the Martin Luther King Medal of Distinguished Service, an award that recognizes individuals whose work has answered the question asked by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. “What are you doing for others?”
Drennen, who is the founder and executive director of the Pediatric Interim Care Center in Kent, has spent the last four decades of her life caring for premature newborns who were exposed to drugs while still in the womb.
“For over four decades, Barbara has selflessly cared for the most vulnerable babies and supported their families during the challenging early months of their fragile lives,” Upthegrove said. “She truly personifies the ideals of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and is a deserving recipient for this distinguished award.”
Over the years, Drennan has managed the care for over 3,300 drug-exposed newborns and has trained thousands of caregivers along the way. She continues to lead the Center today.
This marks the sixth year that councilmembers have each selected someone from their district whose work embodies the spirit of King’s question.