New CARES Program Manager position filled by Debi Riley-Broadnax

The Destin Log

The Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center (ECCAC) recently selected Debra “Debi” Riley-Broadnax to join their team as the non-profit’s new CARES Program Manager. 

Debi Riley-Broadnax

In this newly established position as manager, Riley-Broadnax will be responsible for creating, managing and sustaining the CARES Program. CARES stands for Community, Awareness, Resources, and Support. The CARES Program is being established because of the need for elevating ECCAC’s community abuse prevention education in Okaloosa and Walton Counties. The non-profit’s successful Prevention and Safety Matters programs, already in the schools, will also be overseen by the CARES Program Manager. 

Riley-Broadnax, is a native of Fort Walton Beach and a product of the local public school system. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Troy University, and her Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of West Florida. Her job experiences working with the community are extensive and well-suited for this position. She began her career working at the Fort Walton Beach Public Housing Authority under the umbrella of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD); worked in behavioral health at Bridgeway Center; was the Director of Healthy Start with the Okaloosa County Health Department; and was the Executive Director of Okaloosa County Head Start. As well, she worked aggressively speaking for the voiceless in the Greater Sylvania Heights area, a small community in Fort Walton Beach just North of Lovejoy Road with about 1,000 residents.  

For years now, Riley-Broadnax has worked diligently in the local community advocating for families with educational, social, economic, health and welfare, and affordable housing issues. She is also a member of the National Association of Social Workers, and was one of the founding members of the Emerald Coast Local Black Social Workers Chapter. On the home front, this accomplished woman has three children, and five grandchildren, enjoys college and professional sports and hanging out at the beach with family and friends. 

“We are thrilled to welcome Debi to our team. She has a strong proven track record of community engagement and we are excited for where her expertise can take CARES,” said ECCAC’s COO Solange Arnett. 

ECCAC’s two Centers in Niceville and DeFuniak Springs house representatives from the Florida Department of Children and Families, Child Protection Team, State Attorney’s Office, local law enforcement, licensed mental health counselors, and ECCAC’s staff and volunteers. In the past 23+ years, ECCAC has provided more than 170,000 services at no cost to over 15,000 children who have been abused, neglected or assaulted. 

For further information about the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center, visit or call 850-892-0280. If abuse is suspected, call the anonymous Florida Abuse Hotline at 1-800-96-ABUSE.