Debra Coffey

Ms. Coffey has devoted her life’s work to public safety, is a nationally recognized leader in impaired driving prevention, and a pioneer in the ignition interlock industry. For 26 years, Ms. Coffey was responsible for driving Smart Start’s government and special interest initiatives and led the company’s legislative efforts in state government and Congress. She was Smart Start’s liaison to judicial, court, and DMV authorities and spearheaded advocacy efforts for public safety leaders and groups throughout the nation. She was instrumental in educating stakeholders on the application and benefits of Smart Start’s ignition interlock program, helping to assure its successful adoption in every state. She founded Safety and Advocacy for Empowerment (SAFE), formally known as the Coalition of Ignition Interlock Manufacturers (CIIM), which led to the adoption of model legislation in 35 states. She proudly serves on the Executive Committee for the National Alliance to Stop Impaired Driving and the Texas Impaired Driving Task Force.

Ms. Coffey is an accomplished national presenter and spokesperson and is considered a knowledgeable expert and credible representative in the field of ignition interlocks and DUI offender monitoring.

Ms. Coffey provides resource testimony across the U.S. before House and Senate committees concerning model interlock legislation, functionality of the interlock device and her vast experience of state interlock programs.
She is committed to continuing to shape the business of saving lives and sharing information about this lifesaving technology with as many audiences as possible. She continues her important work at Smart Start as an interlock industry representative in an emeritus position.

Ms. Coffey joined Smart Start in 1998, bringing 20 years of Texas court management experience. Ms. Coffey earned her bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Texas State University. She lives in Lampasas and Austin, Texas, is married to Retired Criminal Court Judge, Daryl Coffey, and enjoys time with her grandson, Oliver Beaux, and cows on the Coffey Grounds Ranch.