Ohio Teen Safe Driving Coalition

We are a Coalition of more than 35 organizations committed to helping teens leverage the proven principles of Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL). We represent state and local government, law enforcement and public health agencies, traffic safety and injury prevention organizations, academia, businesses, teens, parents and crash victims.
While teen crashes and fatalities nationwide fell to record lows in 2010, our goal is zero -- no crashes, injuries or fatalities. Ensuring that teens survive the most dangerous time of their life is not just the responsibility of parents, police and school officials, but every citizen. 

Led by Teresa Carper from Ohio SADD, our Coalition is working collaboratively to effect change in Ohio. We invite you to learn about our initiatives and to join us. There are no monthly meetings or membership dues; your only obligation is to help spread the word about Ohio's GDL program.  If you are interested in learning more about the Ohio Coalition, please contact Teresa Carper at [email protected]





  • Teresa Carper | Ohio SADD
  • Ray Sanderbeck | Michelle's Leading Star Foundation
  • Paulette Farago | Ohio Family Community Leaders of America                                           
  • Frank H. Arvay | ODPS/OCJS-TS                          
  • Ann Smith | Wexner Medical Center at The Ohio State University and Central Ohio Think First Chapter
  • Sheree Nuske, BSN, RN | Trauma Injury Prevention/Outreach Coordinator, Aultman Hospital, Trauma Services
  • Sara Morman | Violence and Injury Prevention Program, Ohio Dept. of Health           
  • Sara Morman | Ohio Injury Prevention Partnership, Child Injury Action Group    
  • Robert L. Seufert, Ph.D | .Director Applied Research Center, Miami University   
  • Joe Vitrano | National Male Engagement Committee Vice-Chair, National PTA 
  • Venezuela Robinson | Director Communications, Ohio PTA
  • Jackie Arendt | Director of Advocacy, Ohio PTA
  • Ricky Birt | SADD
  • Heidi Deane | Impact Teen Drivers
  • Christy Beeghly | Ohio Dept. of Health, Injury Prevention
  • Angela Norton | Ohio Dept. of Health, School of Adolescent Health
  • Kerstin Carr, Ph.D | Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission
  • Gary Catapano | FirstGroup
  • Kristy Duritsch | Safety Council of Southwestern Ohio
  • Sharon George | Stark County Safe Communities
  • Anne Goodman, MPH | Grant Medical Center-Trauma Program
  • Megan Greulich | Ohio School Boards Association
  • Terry Grice | Montville Police
  • Doug Longhitano | American Honda
  • Linda Tvorik | Columbus Public Health
  • Kathy Wesolowski | University Hosp. Rainbow Babies & Children's Hosp.
  • Bill Windsor | Nationwide Insurance
  • Mandy Thomas | Rainbow Injury Prevention Center
  • Jackie Stephenson | Ohio Dept. of Public Safety/Ohio Traffic Safety Office
  • Michelle May | Ohio Dept. of Transportation
  • Kim Lust | State Farm Insurance
  • Kristen Castle | Ohio Department of Public Safety
  • Krista Jones | Bethesda North Trauma Services
  • Stephanie Lambers M.Ed.,OTR/L | Bethesda North Trauma Services
  • Larry Kingston | Northern Ohio Chapter, National Safety Council
  • Dean Fadel | Ohio Insurance Institute
  • Gretchen Long | Westfield Insurance
  • Felice Moretti | Ohio Traffic Safety Office
  • Lt. Anne Ralston | Ohio State Highway Patrol
  • Karisa Harvey | Franklin County Safe Communities
  • Andrea Hauser MPH | Franklin County Safe Communities
  • Victor Hipsley | Governmental Policy Group, Inc.
  • Andrew Huffman | Governemntal Policy Group, Inc.
  • Scott Turney | First Student, Inc.
  • Linda Wuestenberg | My Emergency Contact Info.
  • Katie Pendergraft | Safety Council of Southwestern Ohio
  • Carrie Minor | Licking County Health Department
  • Elizabeth Fries | Union County Health Department
  • Maureen Spooner | The Progressive Corporation
  • Nichole Hodges | Center for Injury Research & Policy The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital
  • Jess Roscoe | SADD
  • LIsa Catalano | Director of Health, Welfare & Safety, Ohio PTA



Ticket Your Parents

The Ticket Your Parent(s) program was designed by the Ohio Teen Safe Driving Coalition in partnership with the National Safety Council. Ticket Your Parent(s) is for teachers or organization leaders who closely work with pre-teens. Program facilitators give pre-teens a book of mock traffic tickets to issue to parents or other adult drivers engaging in unsafe driving behaviors. After the program ends, pre-teens discuss what they learned while observing their parents' driving behaviors. 


Register to host Ticket Your Parent(s)! All materials are free and available for download as soon as you register. 

The HEARTS Network

Nearly everyone knows someone whose life has been impacted by a teen driving-related crash. The National Safety Council manages the HEARTS Network, a nationwide group of families and victims who have been directly impacted by a teen-related crash. The HEARTS Network - an acronym for Honoring Everyone Affected, Rallying The Survivors - helps families and victims support one another and advocate for change. We encourage anyone who has been impacted to join the HEARTS Network and the Teen Safe Driving Coalitions. 

Personal stories play an important role in affecting change. For that purpose, we have created a “Sharing HEARTS” section of the HEARTS Network webpage dedicated to telling the stories of those whose lives have changed forever because of teen-related crashes.

Visit the HEARTS Network webpage to learn more. 


GDL Game Plan for Coaches

The GDL Game Plan for Coaches is a vehicle for high school and recreational or travel league coaches to hold an open dialog with athletes about enforcing and adhering to GDL laws in their state. The 4-page document includes an overview of how and why the New York GDL program works; offers suggestions for engaging athletes, parents and fans; outlines a sample code of conduct; and lists online resources. Information for coaches, athletes and parents about the Coaches Game Plan – including sample text for a GDL Student-Athlete Code of Conduct. The PDFs are available below.


What is the Graduated Driver License Program?

First implemented in Michigan and Florida in the mid-1990s, Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) is a three-step system designed to provide novice drivers with the necessary tools to be safe on our roadways and minimize those things that cause them the greatest risk of crash – distraction caused by other passengers, the use of cell phones and electronic devices as well as driving late at night and riding unbelted. There is a minimum age for teens to be eligible for a driver’s permit, a mandatory holding period or probationary license and a basic or full license.

What does Ohio’s GDL program entail?

 Young Ohio drivers must:

  1. Be 15 years and six months old to obtain a permit
  2. Complete 50 hours of driving – 10 at night – over the next 6 months before they can obtain an intermediate, or restricted, license at 16 years old (the second step)
  3. Never drive unsupervised between midnight and 6 a.m. while they are 16. The hours are extended to 1 a.m. through 5 a.m. for 17-year-old drivers
  4. Never to carry more than one passenger during the intermediate licensing phase
  5. Be at least 18 to obtain a full, unrestricted license 

Why does Ohio need a GDL program?

Motor vehicle crashes are the No. 1 killer of teens, and their crash risk is four times that of an experienced driver. The risk is highest when teens are in the first 12 to 24 months of licensure.

The “License to Save” report issued by The Allstate Foundation in December 2011 estimates that 6,086 people in Ohio have been killed in teen-related motor vehicle crashes since 1991. It also estimates that 598 lives have been saved since Ohio implemented GDL laws. The implementation of GDL programs has saved approximately 14,820 lives nationwide since 1991. It is proven to reduce the number of motor vehicle crashes involving teen drivers.

Why are passengers dangerous for teen drivers?

Most teen crashes involve some form of distraction, and passengers are particularly distracting to young drivers. A teen driver is twice as likely to be killed in a crash while carrying just one passenger, regardless of whether the passenger is a friend of a sibling. Carrying two passengers increases crash risk by 158 percent, and three passengers increases risk by 207 percent.

Why is nighttime driving risky for teens?

Forty percent of all fatal teen driver crashes occur between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. While Ohio has its own nighttime driving restrictions, parents can always set earlier times for their teens to be off the roads. 

May teen drivers use hands-free cell phones?

Ohio does not have a cell phone ban in place for motorists of any age on its roadways.Research clearly shows that both handheld and hands-free devices cause manual, cognitive and visual distraction. The National Safety Council and the National Transportation Safety Board have called for a nationwide ban of all cell phone use while driving for all motorists regardless of age.

How can I help a teen driver gain more experience?

Research clearly shows that GDL programs are the most effective tool for addressing teen crash risk because they help novice drivers build skill while minimizing risk. Whether you’re a parent, teacher, coach, older sibling, neighbor or friend, learning about and enforcing the GDL program is important. 

Parents in particular play a critical role in teen driver safety. Teens who report having parents that set rules and monitor their activities in a helpful and supportive way are half as likely to crash, 71 percent less likely to drive intoxicated, 30 percent less likely to use a cell phone while driving and 50 percent more likely to wear a safety belt. By partnering with parents, you can help to ensure that they know about and leverage the proven principles of GDL so their teens gain skill and become good drivers for life.



Ohio Websites

Allstate Parent-Teen Agreement - for parents and teens


National Websites

National Safety Council


The Allstate Foundation

Impact Teen Drivers

DCH Teen Safe Driver program - for parents and teens

Center for Disease Control - Teen Drivers

IIHS - Highway Loss Data Institute

AAA Keys2Drive for parents and teens

Safe Kids - for parents and teens 13/14-years of age

SADD - for parents, teens and educators

National Organizations for Youth Safety for parents, teens and educators

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration - for parents, teens and educators


Contact Us

To learn more about Coalition membership, our initiatives and/or to provide financial or in-kind support, contact Coalition leader Teresa Carper at [email protected].