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2014 Conference Archive

Thank you for another amazing year. We have received amazing feedback about the Beyond Housing 2014 conference that we will be incorporating into Beyond Housing 2016.

Below you can download electronic copies of PowerPoint presentations and handouts that were presented during the breakout sessions. You can also view videos of Keynote speeches and other videos that were shown during the conference.

Please note: in some cases, session speakers did not have presentations or handouts, or we do not have permission to post them here. For these reasons, we have also included a contact sheet of all the presenters for future follow up.

For the full list of presenter contact information, please click on the link below to download:
Beyond Housing 2014 Presenter Contact


Listen to the full keynote speeches by Ralph da Costa Nunez, President and CEO, Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness and Nikki Johnson-Huston, Esq., Managing Partner, Law Offices of Nikki Johnson-Huston, by clicking the links below:

Keynote speech by Ralph da Costa Nunez
Keynote speech by Nikki Johnson-Huston, Esq.

The video about rapid rehousing, shown in conjunction with Ralph da Costa Nunez's keynote speech, can be viewed here.

Craig Blankenhorn, an internationally published photographer whose clients include HBO, Warner Bros., and CBS, showcased photographs documenting the growing crisis of child and family homelessness in America. View a video of his work and discussions with the families he photographed here.

Some photos from Beyond Housing 2014:

Ralph da Costa Nunez, ICPH

Ralph da Costa Nunez, President and CEO, Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness

Delivers morning keynote on January 16, 2014.

ICPH's exhibit table stocked with children's books and reports. ICPH Exhibit table
Dona Anderson, Director, Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness

Dona Anderson, Director, Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness

Gives afternoon remarks and introduces KidCare as inaugural recipients of the "Beyond Housing Award."

Aurora Zepeda, Vice President, Homes for the Homeless, and Ralph da Costa Nunez, President and CEO, Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness with Beyond Housing Award recipients from KidCare. KidCare award acceptance
Melissa Harris-Perry Dr. Melissa Harris-Perry Keynotes on afternoon of January 16, 2014.
Nikki Johnson-Huston, Esq. Keynotes on afternoon of January 17, 2014. Nikki Johnson-Huston
General session audience, Beyond Housing 2014 Morning general session audience at Beyond Housing 2014.



Below is a list of 2014 speakers:

  Matthew Adams  is the principal policy analyst at the Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness (ICPH), in New York City. A specialist in spatial analysis with years of experience in geographical information systems, Matthew Adams leads the team responsible for the National Survey of Programs and Services for Homeless Families, an online, state-by-state compendium tracing interconnections between governmental and nonprofit efforts to end family homelessness. Prior to joining ICPH, in October 2008, Mr. Adams worked for Robert K. Futterman & Associates, in New York, and DeLorme Mapping, in Maine. He holds a master’s degree in geography from Boston University and a bachelor’s degree from Clark University.

Michael Ames is director of Mobility Mentoring Programs at the Boston-based Crittenton Women’s Union (CWU) and is pursuing his PhD degree at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University. He has received MSW and MBA degrees from Boston College and a bachelor’s degree from Hobart College. Mr. Ames’s research interests include at-risk children and families, antipoverty programs, and organizational strategy. His dissertation will explore the reciprocal relationship between low-income single parents’ efforts to achieve economic independence and the well-being of their children. Mr. Ames was the lead author of CWU’s recently released Massachusetts Economic Independence Index 2013 (Mass. Index).

His work at CWU includes oversight of its Mobility MentoringTMprograms, which provide mentoring and support to low-income individuals who are working to build their skills and capacities to better meet their basic needs. Prior to joining CWU, Mr. Ames was site director and director of evaluation and quality assurance for the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (MSPCC), a not-for-profit organization providing behavioral health, parent education and support, early intervention, and other services to children and families.

Faye Askew-King, MSW, ACSW, LMSW, is the executive director of SOS Community Services. She leads and coordinates programs that reach more than 4,700 people annually in Washtenaw County, Michigan. Since she came to SOS, in 1993, Ms. Askew-King has expanded all of the organization’s projects for children, in addition to introducing the Early Risers research-based prevention strategy for homeless youth and two nationally recognized children’s programs, Parents as Teachers and Telling It. She was awarded the 2008 Lisa Putnam Award by the Michigan Chapter of the National Association for Social Workers in recognition of her work in the area of child welfare. Ms. Askew-King also received the 2008 Woman of Distinction Award from the Girl Scouts of the Huron Valley Council. She led the creation of the SOS Consumer Advisory Board, which advises SOS staff and board members on program policy and successfully advocates for homeless families at the county and state levels. She expanded SOS’s employability support services and initiated a Women’s Leadership Training program to help homeless mothers improve their self-confidence and social skills. Ms. Askew-King also strengthened collaboration and outcome evaluation within the Family Support Network, which comprises eight human-service agencies providing integrated, shared services to homeless children in Washtenaw County. In her past professional life, Ms. Askew-King worked with mentally handicapped children, with pregnant teens, and in an acute-care psychiatric hospital. In Oakland County she created playgroups for children in families dealing with sexual assault. Ms. Askew-King earned a master of science degree in social services at the Boston University School of Social Work and a bachelor of arts degree in psychology at MacMurray College, in Jacksonville, Illinois.
  Marija Bingulac is a PhD candidate in public policy at University of Massachusetts–Boston’s McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies. Her dissertation uses mixed-methods research to understand patterns of Romani social exclusion in Serbia, consequences of their deprivation, and sustainable pathways out of poverty. Since 2009 Ms. Bingulac has been a research consultant for an NGO, Church World Service, which works to alleviate poverty in Eastern Europe, with a focus on the Romani population. In this consultancy role, Ms. Bingulac has undertaken many evaluation projects in the areas of inclusive education, food security, and sustainable economic development. Ms. Bingulac also currently holds a research associate position at the Center for Social Policy, where she works on participatory research projects related to poverty alleviation and housing stability.
  Karen Bonuck, PhD, is a professor in the Department of Family and Social Medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Dr. Bonuck's research interests include early childhood feeding and pediatric sleep disorders. She is the principal investigator or investigator of numerous NIH and other federally funded parent-child behavioural-intervention trials. Her work has been published in leading journals, including PediatricsSLEEP, and the American Journal of Public Health.
  Cathey Brown, MEd, has a lifelong commitment to helping children, families, and the organizations who serve them achieve success and fulfill their potential. Dr. Brown is the founding CEO of Rainbow Days Inc., a national nonprofit organization based in Dallas, and the developer of the innovative and award-winning Curriculum-Based Support Group (CBSG®) Program.  Rainbow Days has served more than 160,000 children locally and trained more than 18,000 professionals and volunteers in 35 states to replicate the CBSG® Program. A noted speaker, consultant, trainer, and facilitator, Dr. Brown conducts workshops throughout the country on the CBSG® Program, organizational capacity building, and leadership development. She is a Results-Based Conversations ™ facilitator and trainer and was a Stanford University 2001–02 Center for Social Innovation Fellow, a 2001–02 Frances Hesselbein Community Innovation Fellow, and a recipient of the inaugural Visionary Award from the Betty Ford Center in 2000.
Jacob L. Brown is a member of Marian Development Group, LLC (MDG), which he and his wife, Cynthia Brown, formed in 2001 to provide development services to market-rate and affordable-housing projects. By the end of 2013, MDG will have produced, since its inception, a total of 784 affordable housing units. Mr. Brown has been involved in construction for over 30 years.
  Patti Caldwell, MSW, has served locally, regionally, and nationally in human-service and social-justice organizations. She is the executive director of Our Family Services, in Tucson, Arizona. Our Family—the result of the merger of several local organizations whose roots go back to the early 1950s—provides a wide range of services through a paid staff of 80 and 250 volunteers. More than 50 percent of the agency’s services focus on homelessness and housing. Ms. Caldwell has given presentations and provided training sessions at many local and national venues, educating participants both in specific content areas and on how to train. She has been recognized with a variety of awards.
  Roberta Cancellier serves as the deputy director of the City of Philadelphia’s Office of Supportive Housing, where she leads Philadelphia’s Continuum of Care process. She was instrumental in development of the city’s Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness and co-leads the planning team for 100k Homes Philly. Among the other key initiatives in which she is involved are a training curriculum for providers of family shelter/transitional housing, which includes a trauma-informed Sanctuary® Model component, and a Homeless Death Review process, in collaboration with the Medical Examiner’s Office. Ms. Cancellier has a bachelor’s degree from Marquette University, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and a master’s in social work administration from the University of Michigan. Her previous experience includes work with girls and women in Detroit as part of the Jesuit Volunteer Corps as well as nonprofit housing advocacy.
  Dr. Charles Carter has over 20 years’ experience working with low-income children and families. He is currently the senior vice president and chief operating officer at the Boston-based Crittenton Women’s Union (CWU). Dr. Carter combines strategy with on-the-ground implementation to develop, lead, evaluate, and refine innovative antipoverty programming to support low-income women’s efforts to become economically self-sufficient.  He was a part of the original design team for the Career Family Opportunity (CFO) program; he also designed and is helping to implement a supportive-housing model focused on economic mobility. In addition, he created program-outcome maps to help apply CWU’s Bridge to Self-Sufficiency ™ model to all services. He is currently working on developing a two-generation economic-mobility model. Prior to joining CWU, Dr. Carter was director of the Child Welfare Institute at Salem State University; a regional director of the Massachusetts Behavioral Health Partnership; a child- and youth-focused network director at the Home for Little Wanderers; and a senior clinical consultant with Wediko Children’s Services. Dr. Carter teaches cultural diversity and leadership as a guest lecturer at the Graduate School of Education at Harvard University; Graduate School of Management and Social Work at Simmons College; the New England Conservatory with the El Sistema Fellowship Program; and the Graduate School of Social Work at Boston College. Dr. Carter obtained a master’s degree in social work from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a PhD in social work from Boston College.
  Sara Chaganti is a senior graduate research assistant at the Institute on Assets and Social Policy (IASP) and a PhD candidate in social policy and sociology at Brandeis University. Her research focuses on workforce-development policies for disadvantaged workers, low-wage work in the post-industrial service economy, and racial and gender disparities in labor-market outcomes. Ms. Chaganti has experience in researching and advocating for homeless people and service provision, most recently as co-author (with Tatjana Meschede) of the IASP report Rapid Re-Housing and Short-Term Rental Vouchers for Homeless Families: Summary Report of a Pilot Program.
Zhifen Cheng is the director of research at the New York City Department of Homeless Services (DHS). She manages research activities within DHS, conducting and supervising evaluations of existing programs and policy initiatives in collaboration with other agencies, consultants, and research institutions. Ms. Cheng manages the technical aspects of DHS’s annual Homeless Outreach Population Estimate, including survey-area sampling and result reporting. She oversees creation and maintenance of reports containing data and information about DHS and responds to public inquiries and requests for briefings and information sharing from other localities. Before joining DHS, she worked at the Vera Institute of Justice, conducting research in immigration justice. Ms. Cheng received her PhD in measurement and evaluation from Columbia University’s Teachers College.
  Janice Chu-Zhu has been on staff at the National Center for Community Schools since 2001. As senior director of national capacity building, she works with clients interested in adapting and developing community schools in their own communities. Her responsibilities include training, development, and consultation on a variety of topics, such as partnerships, program quality, parent involvement, organizational capacity, funding, and sustainability. Ms. Chu-Zhu’s work is documented in her chapter in Community Schools in Action: Lessons from a Decade of Practice. Before joining the National Center, she worked in the national office of the Girl Scouts of the USA, initially as a pluralism strategies consultant for its 319 affiliates and later as the quality recognition manager, overseeing the annual award for best practices. As a licensed social worker, Ms. Chu-Zhu has worked in foster care and the Family Court PINS Program. She also worked as a private consultant for corporations on issues of managing diversity. Ms. Chu-Zhu holds a master's degree in social work from Fordham University’s Graduate School of Social Service and a bachelor of arts degree in social psychology from the State University of New York at Binghamton.
  Anne Marie Collins is the executive director of Holy Redeemer Health System’s Drueding Center, a transitional-housing program for homeless women and children, located in North Philadelphia. After earning her bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Scranton, Ms. Collins spent a year with the Jesuit Volunteer Corp Midwest in Detroit, Michigan, working with disadvantaged youth and as a community organizer. She then returned to the university, where she earned a master’s degree in community counseling. Ms. Collins serves on the boards of the Women’s Community Revitalization Project and the American Street Empowerment Zone Community Trust Board. She chairs the Training Committee of the Children’s Workgroup in Philadelphia. She is active with the Family Service Providers Network, a coalition of emergency and transitional-housing providers in Philadelphia.
  Kathryn Cox, MS, is a business leader and anthropologist. She is the administrator of the YWCA Sara McKnight Transitional Living Center in El Paso, Texas, the largest TLC in the region and part of the largest YWCA. Her background includes work in both for-profit and nonprofit organizations. Ms. Cox has been recognized with a YWCA REACH Award and an SBA Award for her business, Cox and Associates. Her work as CEO of Project ARRIBA, in El Paso, helped to earn the organization recognition from the Texas Economic Development Council as the state’s top workforce program. Ms. Cox has an MS degree in applied anthropology from the University of North Texas, and she graduated from William Jewell College with honors studies at Oxford University, Oxford, England.
  Larry Crawford Sr. is the truancy specialist for Joliet Public Schools, District 86. He serves as a gang-prevention specialist and works with the Will County (Illinois) Regional Office of Education, providing services to homeless families. Mr. Crawford is the coordinator for the BEST/ATM (Building Esteem Support Team/Advocacy-Tutoring-Mentoring) program. He has over 30 years of experience in municipal recreation, truancy intervention, and child advocacy. Mr. Crawford volunteers at several youth and family organizations in the Joliet area and is the current president of the Joliet Alliance for Youth organization. He is a member of Association of Middle Level Educators.

Ralph da Costa Nunez has served as president of the Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness (ICPH) since the organization’s founding in 1990.  He has also served as president and CEO of Homes for the Homeless, a leading provider of social services and transitional housing for homeless families with children since 1987.  Dr. Nunez holds a PhD in Political Science from Columbia University, where he serves as professor at the School of International and Public Affairs.  He is the editor of the Journal of Children & Poverty and has authored numerous reports and articles as well as six books.

Prior to ICPH, Dr. Nunez spent his career in public service, working in New York City and state government.  He was the deputy director under Mayor Koch for the Mayor’s Office of Homeless and SRO Housing Services, overseeing policies and services administered by all city agencies serving the homeless population.  In addition, he also served as a first deputy commissioner of the Human Resources Administration and held executive positions with the Mayor’s Youth Bureau, the New York State Office of Mental Health, and the Legislative Office of Budadget Review. 

  Amy Dixon is a former AmeriCorps VISTA worker with Venture Theatre in Billings, Montana. In 2012 she graduated from Carroll College with a BA degree in history and dual minors in philosophy and political science. Ms. Dixon is currently a graduate student in twentieth-century American history at Montana State University.
  Barbara Duffield, policy director at the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY), began her involvement in homeless issues in 1990, as a tutor for homeless children in Washington, D.C. She subsequently joined the National Coalition for the Homeless (NCH) and served as its director of education from 1994 to 2003, working closely with educators, service providers, federal agencies, and congressional offices to strengthen policy and practice on children’s issues. Ms. Duffield has conducted hundreds of trainings around the U.S. for school districts, community organizations, and local, state, and national groups to assist in the implementation of the McKinney-Vento Act. She is frequently quoted in print media and has appeared on television and radio news programs to discuss issues relating to homeless children. In addition, Ms. Duffield has published several academic articles on policy and advocacy issues relating to the education of homeless children and youth. She is co-author of Educating Children without Housing, published by the American Bar Association. In addition to her work with NAEHCY and NCH, Ms. Duffield is a founding and continuing Advisory Committee member for the LeTendre Education Fund for Homeless Children, which provides scholarships for homeless and formerly homeless young people who wish to pursue post-secondary education. Born and raised in Michigan, Ms. Duffield received her bachelor's degree in political science, summa cum laude, from the University of Michigan.
  Cathe Dykstra is president and CEO of Family Scholar House, in Louisville, Kentucky, which supports single parents as they earn four-year college degrees. She has a BA degree in economics from Wake Forest University. Ms. Dykstra has banking and other financial experience and has spent over 20 years in social work, with the goal of assisting special populations through unique approaches to attaining and maintaining self-sufficiency. Ms. Dykstra is committed to promoting education as an asset that appreciates over time and provides long-term self-sufficiency through career-track employment. Under Ms. Dykstra’s leadership, Family Scholar House has increased capacity of its housing program and expanded services to meet the growing needs of its region. Family Scholar House has been recognized for its work, receiving the 2010 Charles L. Edson Award, being named the 2010 Not-for-Profit of the Year by Business First, and being honored with the 2011 Service Provider of the Year award from the Coalition for the Homeless.
  Sandra Edmonds was a CETAs (Comprehensive Employment and Training Act) worker in Vermont community mental health in the 1970s, beginning a lifetime commitment to working with people whose opportunities are limited by their social and economic class. She has taught art at the elementary-school level in New Rochelle, New York, for 20 years. While working on her doctorate at Teachers College, Ms. Edmonds began a secondary career as a college professor. When she started teaching at the School of Visual Arts (SVA), in New York City, Ms. Edmonds was asked to take over a course taught at Icahn House West, a homeless shelter. The course was so valuable to both student teachers and shelter children that she took it to Pratt Institute, where she was also teaching, with the help and support of Antonio Rodriguez at the Department of Homeless Services. The two worked with the Women In Need program in Bushwick, Brooklyn, and children were brought to the Pratt campus. During this time Ms. Edmonds also taught in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, and began a program for Pratt there.
  Joan Eichner is the children’s policy director with the University of Pittsburgh’s Office of Child Development. Her areas of interest include public health, maternal/child health, early childhood development, mental health, homelessness and poverty, and global child welfare. In her current position, Ms. Eichner works to translate research to practice to improve health, development, and educational outcomes for children and their families, particularly those in low-income urban communities.  She has master’s degrees in public health and public administration, concentrating on community and behavioral health and nonprofit management, and is currently a part-time doctoral student in public health. Ms. Eichner also serves as the board secretary of Milestone Centers Inc.

Stephanie Ettinger de Cuba is the research and policy director for Boston’s Children’s HealthWatch.  In this role she oversees the development of policy-relevant research questions and the analytic process.  She works extensively with policymakers and advocacy organizations to disseminate Children’s HealthWatch original research and provide new trajectories for future investigation.  Additionally, she oversees data collection at the group’s five study sites. 

Prior to joining Children's HealthWatch, Ms. Ettinger de Cuba worked at Project Bread–the Walk for Hunger, a statewide antihunger organization in Massachusetts.  There, she focused on SNAP (formerly food stamps) policy and outreach and was the evaluator and interim project director for USDA grants to develop and pilot Massachusetts’s first SNAP Web site and online application.ho  Ms. Ettinger de Cuba previously worked for the Agricultural Health Study at the University of Iowa College of Public Health and served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Bolivia, focused on small-scale agriculture as well as nutrition and hygiene education. Ms. Ettinger de Cuba received her BA degree from the University of Michigan and her MPH degree in international health from Boston University School of Public Health.

  Susan Leger Ferraro started her career at the age of 17 in her parents' house and ended up building an empire 30 years later. Susan is the Founder of Little Sprouts Inc., CEO Imajine That, Inspirational Ones, and Peace Love and Happiness, LLC. Under the leadership of Susan; Little Sprouts Inc. received $10MM through the prestigious US Dept. of Education Early Reading First Preschool Center of Excellence Award three separate times, raising children's reading proficiency scores from the 60th % in most at risk communities in Massachusetts to top 5 %. Susan grew Little Sprouts 225% in four of the most economically challenged years and was awarded the Boston Business Journal's Pacesetters Award. Susan Leger Ferraro is also currently the Chief Innovation Officer for The Lupoli Companies and its real estate division of Riverwalk Properties.  Most recently, she was recognized with the US Small Business Administration’s Massachusetts Woman in Business Champion award, Greater Boston Small Business Enterprise Entrepreneur of the Year award, Boston Women’s Fund Woman of Action Award, Top 100 Women Led Businesses in Massachusetts, National Top 100 Diversity Owned Businesses, Beacon for Homeless Families award from COMPASS for Homeless Families and the Massachusetts School Committee Partners in Education Award.

Michelle Frank is the Assistant Director for NYS-TEACHS, a project of Advocates for Children.  She holds a J.D. from the University of Michigan law school, and a B.A. from Tufts University.  For over 15 years, she has advocated on behalf of vulnerable communities and individuals, including ten years leading and managing technical assistance initiatives to protect the legal rights of disadvantaged populations. Michelle regularly offers workshops and trainings about the McKinney-Vento Act and related state laws.  She has led collaborations with Head Start/Early Learn programs and free school meal initiatives focused on the rights of students in temporary housing. 

  Elizabeth Garcia has been working with young adults in a variety of capacities for over ten years. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania with a BA degree in psychology, Ms. Garcia began her social-service career at Covenant House New York (CHNY). During her seven-year tenure at CHNY, Ms. Garcia held ten different positions as she rose through the managerial ranks. In 2006 she obtained an MSW degree from New York University and graduated from CHNY’s Executive Management Training Program. In 2009 Ms. Garcia joined Good Shepherd Services (GSS), a youth development, education, and family services agency, and became program director for its transitional-living program, the Chelsea Foyer. In the past year and a half, she has also been charged with directing GSS’s newly acquired supportive housing program, the Edwin Gould Academy, and launching its new Street Outreach Program. Ms. Garcia is dedicated to working with New York City’s homeless youth and those aging out of foster care.
  Nancy Lynch Gibson, LCPC, is a certified trauma counselor who has worked with traumatized children, women, and families for over 15 years. Ms. Lynch Gibson is an ordained interfaith minister and a pastoral counselor. She currently works as the assistant program director for homeless women in transitional housing at Marian House in Baltimore, Maryland. She has also been the child/adolescent therapist for homeless families at Marian House. Ms. Lynch Gibson co-facilitates a successful mindfulness group for homeless children in Baltimore. She is a published poet and has over eight years of psychodrama training.

Gwendolen Hardwick is the artistic and education director of Creative Arts Team (CAT), a New York City nonprofit organization that uses theater to promote social, emotional, and intellectual growth in the city’s communities. Ms. Hardwick oversees the design and implementation of all CAT programs in schools and community sites. During her 25-year career at CAT, she has created and led CAT’s pioneering Healthy Choices HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention initiative, in partnership with the New York State Department of Health/AIDS Institute. She has also led special projects for the NYC Department of Correction, the Fresh Air Fund, Nickelodeon, the Women's Sport Foundation, the National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball, and the Liz Claiborne Inc. initiative against domestic violence, among other organizations and programs. Internationally, Ms. Hardwick has spearheaded educational theater models with theater companies in Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Jamaica, and the Republic of Ireland, and she led a three-year collaboration with three South African universities to develop and direct theater pieces addressing HIV/AIDS education and health issues affecting women and children.

  Melissa V. Harris-Perry is host of MSNBC's  Melissa Harris-Perry, which airs on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to noon, Eastern Time. Ms. Harris-Perry is professor of political science at Tulane University, where she is founding director of the Anna Julia Cooper Project on Gender, Race, and Politics in the South. She is the author of the well-received new book Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America (Yale University Press, 2011) and the award-winning text Barbershops, Bibles, and BET: Everyday Talk and Black Political Thought (Princeton University Press, 2004). Professor Harris-Perry is a contributor to The Nation magazine, for which she writes the monthly column Sister Citizen. She lives in New Orleans with her husband, James Perry, and their daughter, Parker.
  Cheryl D. Hayes is the founder, president, and chief executive officer of The Finance Project, based in Washington, D.C., which disseminates information and provides technical assistance to help children, families and communities. Ms. Hayes is a respected national expert on financing for education, family and children’s services, and community building and development. She has more than 35 years of experience in public policy research, development, and technical assistance.  Before launching The Finance Project, Ms. Hayes served as executive director of the bipartisan National Commission on Children, which developed a broad national policy agenda for America’s children and families on behalf of Congress and the president. Prior to her commission appointment, Ms. Hayes directed the policy research program on children and families at the National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council. She serves as an adviser and consultant to government agencies, private foundations, nonprofit corporations, and community organizations on strategic planning, financing, and sustainability.  She also is the author or editor of numerous books and articles on public policies for children and families and on human services financing.  Her most recent publication, EARLY LEARNING: A Guide to Federal Funding for Grade Level Reading Proficiency, is a comprehensive tool for identifying and accessing federal funding to promote early learning and early-grade-level academic success.  Ms. Hayes received an MBA degree from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, an MA degree in American family studies from Georgetown University, and a BA degree from Skidmore College.
  Maureen Hayes, PhD, senior researcher at the Massachusetts-based National Center on Family Homelessness, has worked in the field of child, youth, and family homelessness for more than 15 years. Her work for the center has included serving as the project director for the SHIFT Study (Services and Housing Interventions for Families in Transition). A multiyear project sponsored by the Marie C. and Joseph C. Wilson Foundation, the SHIFT Study examined the effectiveness of different housing models in helping homeless families achieve stability and assessed multiple outcomes for the mothers and children over a period of two and a half years. Dr. Hayes is also the lead evaluator for the Campaign to End Child Homelessness. Prior to her work with the National Center, she was a research associate at the New York State Psychiatric Institute, working on projects related to homelessness and serious mental illness as well as mental health issues involving youth in the juvenile justice system.

Jodi Wilinsky Hill is Executive Director and co-founder of COMPASS for kids. COMPASS for kids provides education, workforce development training, coaching, mentoring and support that improve the skills and transform the perspectives of the adults and institutions that matter most to under-served children, focusing efforts on early childhood educators and programs, and homeless parents and families. 

Ms. Hill earned a BA in Biology from Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT and a Master’s in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where she specialized in Counseling and Consulting Psychology.

Ms. Hill holds expertise in child and adult development, clinical counseling, and trauma. She consults broadly on organization development, management and leadership, with particular interests in cross sector partnerships, outcome driven program development, community engagement and change, and poverty alleviation. Ms. Hill is passionately committed to efforts that level the playing field for all children and families, mentoring emerging leaders, and engaging as many people as possible in these efforts.

  Sarah Houssayni is a pediatrician on faculty at Via Christi Clinic Family Medicine in Wichita, Kansas. Her passions are asthma and obesity prevention and refugee and LGBTQ health. She identifies as a dreamer and a social activist.
  Shahera Hyatt is the executive director of the California Homeless Youth Project, a research and policy initiative of the California Research Bureau focusing on educating policymakers on the needs of homeless youth in California. Ms. Hyatt is the local coordinator for the National Association for Educating Homeless Children and Youth’s Sacramento Homeless Youth Task Force, and is a member of the National Alliance to End Homelessness’ National Advisory Council on LGBTQ youth. Her publications include policy briefs on LGBTQ and sexually exploited homeless youth in California, as well as a state action plan on ending youth homelessness. Ms. Hyatt is also an associate clinical social worker with over eight years of experience in working with or on behalf of youth in both nonprofit and government settings. Her experience includes mental health therapy, substance abuse counseling, advocacy, and research with vulnerable populations. She holds a master’s degree in social work from California State University, Sacramento.
  Nikki Johnson-Huston, Esq. is a tax attorney in Philadelphia. A 2004 graduate of Temple University Beasley School of Law, she earned a JD/MBA/LLM in taxation in four years. Ms. Johnson-Huston gives frequent talks on how she overcame a life of poverty and homelessness to become an award-winning young attorney. She is the former co-chair of the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Women in the Profession Committee, a member of the Philadelphia Bar Association Board of Governors, and former co-chair of the Women in the Profession Public Service Task Force of the Philadelphia Bar Association. Ms. Johnson-Huston used that position to start a mentoring program for high school students interested in pursuing careers in law, conducted numerous panels about issues related to educational opportunities and the law, and co-moderated a fireside chat with Bill Cosby in November 2008. In addition, she has won several awards, including the Craig M. Perry Community Service Award, given by the Philadelphia Bar Association Young Lawyers Division. Among other honors, she was also named a 2009 “Lawyer on the Fast Track” by the Legal Intelligencer, one of the “10 People under 40 to Watch in 2010” by the Philadelphia Tribune, a 2010 Philadelphia Business Journal Woman of Distinction, and one of the 2012 Nation's Best Advocates: 40 Lawyers Under 40 by the National Bar Association. Ms. Johnson-Huston was a 2012 USA Eisenhower Fellow, traveling to India and New Zealand in September 2012 to work with women and children who were living in poverty. She was recently appointed the diversity chair of the Philadelphia Bar Association and named a 2013 Diverse Attorney of the Year for Pennsylvania by the Legal Intelligencer.
  Keith Johnston is a professional actor, director, musician, and teacher. In 1992 he joined Creative Arts Team (CAT), a New York City nonprofit organization that uses theater to promote social, emotional, and intellectual growth in the city’s communities. There, he co-founded the College/Adult Program, providing interactive workshops and training in independent living skills, college and workplace readiness, financial literacy, parenting, and more. His clients include students and teachers in CUNY’s Black Male Initiative; the Fatherhood Academy; incarcerated youth and correctional officers on Rikers Island; high schools; and families in transitional living. Mr. Johnston has developed, directed, and led workshops in many settings, including conferences, New York City public and private schools, New York University, and corporate training sessions. He also wrote, directed, and co-produced Thriving Teens, a film series for the NYU Child Study Center, and devised and implemented workshops and lectures addressing HIV, parenting, and violence in South Africa's townships, colleges, and universities. Mr. Johnston earned a BFA degree as an honors scholar at New York University and is the artistic director of American Theatre of Harlem.
  Caroline Kennedy, LMSW, serves as the coordinator of Children’s Services for SOS Community Services in Ypsilanti, Michigan. She oversees children’s programming, as well as case-management duties, for children and their families experiencing homelessness and living in shelters in Washtenaw County. Her commitment has led to partnerships with numerous community resources to enhance SOS’s children’s programming and to bring new and exciting experiences to youth. She is also a trained substance abuse prevention specialist and works to promote social and emotional well-being among children in SOS’s programs. Ms. Kennedy has dedicated three years to SOS. She received her master of social work degree from the University of Michigan School of Social Work in 2010.
  Cathy Kuhn is currently the director of research and training at Families in Transition (FIT), in Manchester, New Hampshire, where she has worked since 2006. In addition to grant writing and grants management, Ms. Kuhn oversees all research and evaluation activities at FIT.  In 2012 she took on an additional role as the director of the New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness (NHCEH), a nonprofit organization dedicated to finding thoughtful and effective solutions to homelessness in New Hampshire through research, training, and advocacy. Ms. Kuhn holds a PhD in sociology/urban studies from Michigan State University, where she taught before joining FIT. She also holds a master’s degree and a bachelor’s degree in resource development and environmental studies. From 1997 to 1999 Ms. Kuhn lived in Panama, where she served as a Peace Corps volunteer, teaching environmental education in primary schools. In addition to her roles at FIT and the NHCEH, she is an adjunct professor of sociology at St. Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire.
  Joseph Lagana, EdD, is the founder and CEO of the Homeless Children’s Education Fund, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization whose mission is to provide advocacy, community engagement, and direct-service programs that support the education of children and youth experiencing homelessness in Allegheny County. Dr. Lagana’s vision—and HCEF’s—is that all children and youth experiencing homelessness will receive the necessary educational resources, guidance, and opportunities to launch them on a path of success in school and in life. In his long career as an educator in the Penn Hills and North Allegheny school districts, Dr. Lagana was a classroom teacher, counselor, and administrator before becoming superintendent of the Northgate School District. From 1992 to 1999 he was executive director of the Allegheny Intermediate Unit (AIU), comprising 42 school districts. Upon his retirement from the AIU, he was named executive director emeritus. Dr. Lagana has been a community activist and a volunteer in several community organizations and agencies, with service on the boards of Pittsburgh’s Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, the Three Rivers Regatta, Leadership Pittsburgh, and the National Commission for Certifying Physician Assistants Foundation. He currently serves on a Community Trust Building Task Force. Among his honors are a 2006 Jefferson Community Service Award, the 2007 League of Women Voters Good Government Award, the 2007 Sandra Neese Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Association for Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY), the 2009 Lewis Hine Volunteer Award from the National Child Labor Committee, the 2010 ACHIEVA Sattler Humanitarian Award, the 2012 Sojourner House Pearl of Hope Award, and the 2013 Champion of Spirit Award from the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
  Heather Larkin, PhD is an assistant professor at the University at Albany (SUNY) and co-director of the National Center for Excellence in Homeless Services. She volunteers as a consultant on research and education at the Center for Post-Trauma Wellness. Dr. Larkin has researched Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) prevalence and service use among homeless people, and co-developed the Restorative Integral Support (RIS) model to facilitate the development of ACE-informed programming. She leads ACE Think Tank and Action Team meetings and works closely with agency directors to strengthen ACE response.
  For over 15 years, Sara Liegl has worked at the St. Paul Area Council of Churches with Project Home, providing emergency shelter to hundreds of families each year in Ramsey County, Minnesota. In partnership with dozens of area churches, synagogues, and schools, Project Home mobilizes thousands of local volunteers to help area families. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin–Oshkosh, where she earned a BSW degree, Ms. Liegl worked previously in child protection in Wisconsin and in Girl Scout camps in Wisconsin and Maine. She has served on the board of Open Your Heart to the Hungry and Homeless, providing funding for agencies across the state. Currently, Ms. Liegl is on the advisory board of Hope for the Journey Home, a new family shelter initiative of Guardian Angels Catholic Church in Washington County, and she serves as the chair of the Federal Emergency Shelter and Food Program (ESFP) Local Advisory Board in Ramsey County.
  Dr. Margaret Lovejoy (ABD) holds a BA degree in communications, a master’s degree in religion and theology, and an , in educational leadership. She is executive director and founder of a 12-year-old nonprofit agency in St. Paul, Minnesota—The Family Place, a day center for homeless families. Her current undertakings include addressing the transformation of the shelter system; improving the living conditions of children ages zero to three via the Invisible Child Network; and completing her dissertation, entitled “Childhood Stories and Memories of African American Women Who Have Been Homeless.” Dr. Lovejoy’s interests include spending time with her family (especially her grandchildren), gardening, traveling, reading, canning, writing, and interior decorating.
  Susanne Lovejoy holds an AMI Montessori teaching certificate for the primary-school level and a BA degree in diverse leadership and early childhood education within an urban framework. She works as a volunteer fund-raiser for The Family Place, a day center for homeless families. She is establishing a Montessori classroom at The Family Place, converting it from a play-based room to that focused on education.
  Alice Manning-Dowd is the coordinator of student services and homeless education liaison for Joliet Public Schools, District 86, in Joliet, Illinois. She has 15 years’ experience as a junior high school classroom teacher and 23 years’ experience as a district-level administrator. She has coordinated the Bilingual Education, Title I Reading, and Summer School programs. Ms. Manning-Dowd directs homeless student services, conducts student discipline hearings, and supervises the truancy intervention program and is a past president of the Joliet Alliance for Youth organization. She is also a member of Association of Middle Level Educators.
  Karen Matson has been the director of services for Housing Hope, in Everett, Washington, since 2005. She is responsible for the development, oversight, and evaluation of services provided to families living in Housing Hope’s 300 units of affordable housing. Services include case management, adult life skills education, employment, licensed child care, child development, parent education/support, and recovery support. Ms. Matson has extensive expertise and experience in providing services to families with histories of trauma, homelessness, and poverty. Previously, she was a program manager for a Community Action Agency and a therapist for the Homebuilder Intensive Family Preservation Program. She has a master’s degree in social work, with a focus on administration, from the University of Washington.
  Laurie Mazerbo, LCSW, is the New Beginnings Homeless Services Program director at Our Family Services, in Tucson, Arizona. Ms. Mazerbo has 11 years of experience working with homeless youth, adults, and families. She is the vice chair of the Tucson-Pima Collaboration to End Homelessness, the HUD Continuum of Care in Tucson and Pima County. She has been chair of the Street Count Committee for three consecutive years, with responsibility for organizing the annual HUD point-in-time count of persons experiencing homelessness. Ms. Mazerbo is the local field director for Tucson of a national study of youth who live on the streets. She is a certified trainer and presenter for Runaway and Homeless Youth Technical Assistance and Training Centers (RHYTTAC) and the Federal Youth Services Bureau and has presented on four occasions at national conferences on homeless youth issues. Ms. Mazerbo has also presented at two national conferences of the Office of Adolescent Pregnancy and Prevention and was a co-author on an article in the Journal of Family Social Work in 2011.
  Chris Megison is the founding president and CEO of the San Diego–based North County Solutions for Change, a nonprofit organization that has provided permanent housing solutions for more than 650 homeless families since it began, in 1999. Mr. Megison and his wife, Tammy Megison, saw the need for a program dedicated to family homelessness, in which the unique circumstances and challenges these families faced could be dealt with effectively. The Solutions for Change model, dubbed the Solutions University, stresses the doctrine of partnership, accountability, and compassion, equipping people with the skills, knowledge, and resources they need in order to permanently solve homelessness. Mr. Megison has been interviewed for many radio shows and television specials, including a 30-minute worldwide CNN feature on homelessness and a recent CW Television Network documentary detailing the vision, model, and plan that Solutions for Change is using to solve family homelessness.
  Tatjana Meschede is the research director at the Institute on Assets and Social Policy (IASP) and a senior lecturer at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University. She has close to two decades of experience in research on homelessness, collaborating with Massachusetts's state government departments and local communities. A skilled and experienced quantitative and qualitative researcher, Dr. Meschede is the author of numerous reports and other publications on homelessness, and she has written or contributed to many reports on Homeless Management Information Systems (HMIS) data. She also manages the IASP project on indicators of financial well-being and risk, including the creation of data tools documenting economic security and risk for the U.S. middle class and seniors and analysis of wealth gaps between racial gaps. Dr. Meschede is the lead author on many IASP publications and has given presentations on economic well-being for seniors, with a focus on racial/ethnic disparities, at many conferences and events.
  Anne Murphy, PhD, is a psychologist, assistant professor of clinical paediatrics, and associate director of the Center for Babies, Toddlers and Families in the Department of Pediatrics, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, in Bronx, New York. Dr. Murphy developed the Group Attachment Based Intervention (GABI), an intensive parent/child psychotherapy program that since 2005 has served over 100 socially isolated families with children ages birth to three years. Along with Drs. Miriam and Howard Steele and Einstein’s Department of Family and Social Medicine, Dr. Murphy was awarded a federal research grant to test the effectiveness of GABI compared with that of parenting-skills classes, the “treatment as usual” recommendation for the vast majority of vulnerable families in New York City. Through this research, Dr. Murphy hopes to show that GABI, a clinical application of attachment theory, will prove to be effective; she hopes that it will become part of treatment recommendations affecting how therapeutic services are delivered to families of vulnerable children from birth to age three.
  Amanda Noble is the manager of Research and Community Initiatives at Raising the Roof, in Toronto, Ontario, where she has led national research on employment programs for at-risk and homeless youth. She is a PhD student in the Faculty of Education at York University, where she is researching innovative housing models for homeless youth. Ms. Nobel has served as an antipoverty advocate and a frontline worker for youth, women, and children experiencing homelessness. 
  Staci Perlman, MSW, PhD, serves as both assistant professor of human development and family studies at the Delaware Education Research & Development Center of the University of Delaware and as the 2013 visiting scholar at the People’s Emergency Center (PEC). She works with a team at PEC to evaluate the feasibility of promoting positive parent-child interactions in the context of emergency/transitional housing. She is currently co-editing a book, Supporting Homeless Families: Current Practices and Future Directions. Dr. Perlman also serves as the co-chair of the American Psychological Association (APA) Task Force on Promoting Positive Parenting in the Context of Homelessness and was the 2011 recipient of the APA’s Early Career Award for Outstanding Contributions to Practice in the Field of Child Maltreatment.
  Michael Power, PhD, began his tenure with the Tacoma Housing Authority (THA) in the fall of 2009, after a long career in public schools. He is responsible for the design and implementation of programs and services designed to increase the educational achievement of THA’s student and adult clients. Dr. Power is manager of the THA McCarver Elementary Special Housing Program, an innovative approach to linking housing for homeless families with educational outcomes for children. Prior to coming to THA, he worked in all levels of public education, from classroom teacher to assistant superintendent of Tacoma Public Schools. His doctorate is in educational psychology, and he has an extensive background in program evaluation and educational research at the state and district levels. Dr. Power is a past president of the Washington Educational Research Association.

Susan Reyna-Guerrero, LCSW, has served since 2001 as the president and CEO of Beacon Therapeutic Diagnostic and Treatment Center, where has worked for nearly 27 years. Founded in 1968, Beacon has grown from a single school to a multi-site service center for high-risk children, adolescents, teens, and their families living in the metropolitan Chicago area, with academic programs and clinical therapy geared toward their clients’ unique behavioral, developmental, and educational needs. Long active in Chicago’s homeless-services system, Ms. Reyna-Guerrero has been a member of organizations and projects ranging from the Governing Board and the First Plan to End Homelessness to Plan 2.0 and the Planning Council. She founded the Homeless Families Constituency Group, has served on the SPC Executive Committee for the past two years, and is currently a member of the Coordinated Access Steering Committee and the Systems Performance Goals Task Group. She is also a member of the Family Assertive Community Treatment (FACT) Planning Coalition. As an advocate for homeless families, young mothers, and children, she has been instrumental in keeping the needs of these vulnerable populations at the forefront of discussions regarding funding and planning in Chicago.

  Rebecca Rhoads, senior associate at the Massachusetts-based National Center on Family Homelessness, provides technical assistance and training in support of community efforts to address homelessness. Before joining the National Center, she worked in Mercer County, New Jersey, to implement a countywide rapid-rehousing model for families using county, state, and federal resources including TANF emergency assistance. Previously, as a program officer for the Corporation for Supportive Housing, Ms. Rhoads furthered the expansion of supportive housing throughout the state of New Jersey and provided technical assistance to Continuum of Care, homeless provider agencies, and state and county government. Ms. Rhoads received an MA degree in psychological counseling from Monmouth University.
  Adrian Rodriguez has been working with children and young adults in a variety of capacities for close to 15 years. After graduating from Lemoyne College with a BA degree in psychology, he began his social-service career at Good Shepherd Services (GSS), in New York City, in 1999. During the past 14 years at GSS, Mr. Rodriguez has held multiple positions in both the family foster care and residential divisions and has risen through the managerial ranks. In 2004 Mr. Rodriguez obtained his MSW from Fordham University, and in 2005 he took over as the social work supervisor for GSS’s transitional-living program, the Chelsea Foyer. In the past year and a half, he has been promoted to program manager, with responsibility for the daily operations of the program.

Megan Sandel, MD, MPH, is an associate professor of pediatrics at the Boston University School of Medicine, the former director of pediatric health care for the Homeless at Boston Medical Center, a principal investigator with Children's HealthWatch, and a nationally recognized expert on housing and child health. Dr. Sandel is also the interim executive director of the National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership. In 1998 she became the first medical director of the Family Advocacy Program, and she was appointed medical director of the National Center in 2007. She served as a general academic fellow at Boston Medical Center with a concentration in environmental health in children, earning a master’s degree in public health with a dual concentration in environmental health and epidemiology and biostatistics in 2002.  In 1998, with other doctors at Boston Medical Center, Dr. Sandel published the DOC4Kids report, a national assessment of how housing affects child health.  In the following year she was a co-author of “There's No Place Like Home,” a second report documenting how asthma, lead, injuries, food insecurity, chronic disease, and educational attainment were all affected by housing status and conditions.  In 2000 she was a co–principal investigator of the Boston Healthy Homes Partnership, the result of a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to the Boston Public Health Commission to study whether changes in housing improved the health of children with asthma.  Dr. Sandel is a founding member of the Asthma Regional Council of New England.

Over the course of her career, Dr. Sandel has written many scientific articles and papers and served on the committees and advisory boards of numerous organizations, such as the Alliance for Healthy Homes, a national advocacy group, and the Massachusetts Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

  Lila Anna Sauls is the president and CEO of Columbia, South Carolina’s Trinity Housing Corporation (THC) and its programs St. Lawrence Place, a transitional facility for homeless families, and Live Oak Place, an affordable-housing development currently under construction. Her more than 20 years of service in the nonprofit sector includes work for Easter Seals, the Alzheimer’s Association, and the Special Olympics. Ms. Sauls is a graduate of the University South Carolina with a bachelor of arts degree in journalism and mass communications, and she holds a certificate in nonprofit leadership and a master’s degree in organizational change and leadership from Columbia College. She has served on numerous boards and committees on behalf of THC and has been an appointed representative of area CEOs. She has led presentations on nonprofit best practices for the Sister of Charity Foundation’s Carolina Learning Academy and has served as a guest speaker for Columbia College’s Continuing Education Program.

Stephanie Allain Savard is the vice president of Families in Transition and a New Hampshire licensed clinical social worker. She has been working on the issue of homelessness for over 15 years. At Families in Transition, Ms. Savard provides development and oversight of clinical services for the adults, families, and children the agency serves. Her clinical specialties are homelessness, trauma, women’s issues, and clinical supervision.  Ms. Savard received a master’s degree in social work from Boston University as well as a bachelor of arts degree in psychology and an associate degree of science in chemical dependency, both from Keene State College. She was recently appointed to the Governor’s Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention, Intervention and Treatment for a three-year term. In addition, Ms. Savard is member of the National Association of Social Workers and past vice president and current member of the New Hampshire Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers. She was named as a 40 Under 40 Leader of New Hampshire by the Union Leader and Business Industry Association in 2004 and is a member of the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce “Leadership Greater Manchester” Class of 2011.


Jenny L. Sawyer has an MA degree in college student personnel from Bowling Green State University and a BA degree in political science from the University of Louisville. Ms. Sawyer has dedicated her career to improving access to post-secondary education, which she believes can transform lives. She came to the University of Louisville in 1983 and has served as executive director of admissions since 1998. Ms. Sawyer was a member of Family Scholar House’s board of directors from 2007 to 2013; during that time, as program committee chair, she provided ongoing support for the education and case management of the program’s student-parent participants. She is currently a member of the board of trustees. Ms. Sawyer’s professional memberships and positions also include ACT state organization chair, 2006; ACT state representative, 2008–present; Kentucky Association of Secondary and College Admission Counselors (KASCAC) government relations chair, 2003–06; KASCAC member, 1998–present; and National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) member, 1998–present.


Claire Seryak earned a doctorate in social work from the Jane Addams College of Social Work at the University of Illinois–Chicago (UIC) in the fall of 2011. She has 15 years of experience in both professional and service capacities working with a variety of nonprofit, grassroots community organizations in the U.S. and Latin America. As a direct service provider, researcher, and advocate, Dr. Seryak has worked with and on behalf of people from many different walks of life—orphaned, abandoned, abused, and neglected children, low-income African American fathers, families and children experiencing homelessness, and parents of children with growth disorders. She has a passion for teaching in higher education and is committed to direct service, policy, and advocacy work in the areas of housing and homelessness.


Jama Shelton is director of the Forty to None Project at the True Colors Fund. For more than a decade, Dr. Shelton has worked in the field of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning youth homelessness. After receiving an MSW degree in 2004, she began an eight-year stint at the Ali Forney Center, an organization that provides housing and supportive services for homeless gay and transgender youth. Dr. Shelton received her doctorate in social welfare from the CUNY Graduate Center in 2013. Her dissertation examines the unique needs and experiences of transgender and gender non-conforming youth experiencing homelessness. She is also a professor at both the Hunter College and New York University schools of social work.


Alison Shmerling is a fourth-year medical student at Tufts University School of Medicine, in Boston. Her interest in working with the homeless population stemmed from an elective within her family-medicine clerkship, when she spent two days working with Dr. Marcia Tanur. In those two days, Dr. Tanur inspired a full-year fellowship to address the unique health and other needs of the homeless population in Boston.


Suzanne Smith is a serial social entrepreneur. As founder and managing director of Social Impact Architects and co-founder of Flywheel: Social Enterprise Hub, she bridges many disciplines as a coach and consultant to social-sector organizations. She also educates future social entrepreneurs as a frequent guest lecturer at campuses across the country and as adjunct professor at the University of North Texas and research fellow at the Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship at Duke University. In addition, she is a leading author, blogger (@socialtrendspot) and top-rated speaker. Prior to founding Social Impact Architects, Ms. Smith was a senior consultant with the Washington, D.C., firm Community Wealth Ventures. She also worked in government relations and strategy with both Phoenix House and the American Heart Association. While with the national office of the American Heart Association, Ms. Smith championed early efforts to build an integrated and impact-driven platform to combat childhood obesity. In that role, she is credited with starting the Alliance for a Healthier Generation with a team from the William J. Clinton Foundation. In each role Ms. Smith has won praise for building public-private coalitions and widespread support around a common strategy. Ms. Smith is a member of the Society of Organizational Learning (founded by Peter Senge) and the Young Entrepreneur Council, serves on the National Board of the Social Enterprise Alliance, and is the 2010 recipient of the Next Generation Social Entrepreneurs Award. Locally, she is a member of Dallas Social Venture Partners, Leadership Dallas/North Texas, and Junior League and was proud to be selected in 2012 for the Dallas Business Journal’s 40 under 40 Award. Ms. Smith holds an MBA degree from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, where she was a CASE (Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship) scholar and now serves on the alumni council. A native of a rural community outside Dallas, Ms. Smith was raised by career educators who were deeply committed to making a difference through education. Her lifetime goal is to help spotlight the social innovation in the “flyover states” of the U.S. and bring practical and impact-driven solutions to both rural and urban communities.


Rebecca Smith-Hill is the director of grants and special projects for St. Lawrence Place, a grassroots transitional-housing program for homeless families in Columbia, South Carolina. Ms. Smith-Hill has an undergraduate degree in psychology from Washington & Lee University and a master’s degree in social work from University of South Carolina.  She taught special education for four years in San Francisco, California, and Columbia, South Carolina, before transitioning into social work.  She has worked with the military veterans population and has served on behalf of homeless families for seven years. Ms. Smith-Hill is an adjunct professor of social work at the University of South Carolina.


Deborah Snyder, MA, LLP, has been involved in behavioral health services for over 30 years. A licensed clinician through the State of Michigan, she has been a practicing clinician for many of those years and continues to see clients. Ms. Snyder’s background includes administrative oversight of managed-care services for private insurance companies as well as community mental health.  She has held all levels of responsibility throughout her 30 years of service, from unit manager to executive director. Currently, Ms. Snyder is both the vice president of Clinical Services for Matrix Human Services and executive director for Family Service of Detroit and Wayne County. She is the liaison between these two agencies in their affiliation partnership. Family Service provides behavioral health services in Metro Detroit to a diverse number of programs and populations of all ages.


Lisa Stand is a senior analyst at the National Alliance to End Homelessness in, Washington, DC. The Alliance identifies and advocates for proven solutions to homelessness, through public policy and community-based housing strategies. Ms. Stand has background in health law, advocacy, education, and community engagement. At the Alliance, she informs policy and practice affecting homelessness from the perspective of health care policy. Most recently, she has focused on the implications of health care reform for communities dedicated to serving vulnerable people experiencing homelessness.  Her research and analysis support the Alliance’s educational and technical assistance programs, as well as its work on federal and state policy priorities. Prior to joining the Alliance in November 2010, she concentrated on health and aging issues in various capacities over 10+ years at AARP. She began her policy career as an attorney at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Ms. Stand has a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and a B.A. from Bard College.


Miriam Steele, PhD, is professor and director of the doctoral program in clinical psychology at the New School for Social Research, where she co-directs (with Dr. Howard Steele) the Center for Attachment Research. Dr. Steele is also an Anna Freud Center trained psychoanalyst and a member of the American Psychoanalytic Association.  She initiated the London Parent-Child Project, a major longitudinal study of intergenerational patterns of attachment, which gave rise to the concept of “reflective functioning.” Dr. Steele has also carried out longitudinal attachment research in the context of child maltreatment and adoption—and established the research partnership with Dr. Anne Murphy that has led to the NIH-funded study (2012–15) examining the efficacy of group attachment based intervention (GABI) aimed at preventing child maltreatment and promoting attachment security.


Dr. Marcia Tanur went to Boston in 1982 to work for Oxfam America. “Dr. Marcia” has been working with homeless families ever since, bridging health care disparities among Boston’s marginally housed.  She is the medical and clinical education director of Women of Means (WOM), an NGO devoted to caring and advocating for women in need.  Dr. Tanur also practices more conventional family medicine, which includes medical acupuncture; LGBTQ wellness; and geriatric care. Dr. Tanur is on the faculties of Boston, Tufts, and University of Massachusetts medical schools.


Vikki C. Terrile is the coordinator of Young Adult (Teen) Services for Queens Library in New York City, responsible for the programs, services, and materials collections for teen populations in the 62 Queens Library locations. She received a master’s degree in library science in 1997 from Long Island University and an MA degree in urban affairs in 2011 from Queens College, where her capstone project was on family homelessness. Ms. Terrile has been a youth-services librarian for more than 15 years, focusing on serving socially excluded populations including detained/incarcerated youth and adults, families and youth experiencing homelessness, and youth with disabilities. Ms. Terrile has frequently published articles and given presentations on these subjects, work that includes writing a chapter on serving homeless youth for Pre-School through Teen Library Outreach, to be published by McFarland in 2014. She is currently an adjunct instructor at the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at Queens College.


Jeannette Then is a social worker and director of PS 50, the Children’s Aid Society community school in East Harlem, New York City. She has worked with family and community partners to support her students with the programs and services they need to survive and thrive. In that fashion Ms. Then has tackled many ongoing challenges, including asthma-related health problems that lead to chronic absenteeism.


Elizabeth Von Werne, vice president for program services at the Florida-based Chapman Partnership, is responsible for the supervision of 35 case managers—including follow-up case managers, housing developers, and job developers—who work collaboratively to secure permanent housing for the homeless. She has a master’s degree in comparative sociology, with an emphasis on disaster studies, and is a veteran in housing and homeless programs, with 25-plus years’ experience—and 20 years of experience in implementing military-family support programs with the U.S. Air Force. Formerly employed with Lutheran Services Florida as the regional director responsible for statewide programming, Ms. Von Werne designed the Access and Chance rapid-rehousing programs for Miami-Dade County’s homeless Continuum of Care. These programs and the stimulus-funded HAND program are directly accessed by Chapman Partnership placement specialists to provide multiple levels of outplacement assistance, including lease negotiation and moving-in expenses, that have proven to effectively rehouse the homeless.


Shelba Waldron has been a part of the Juvenile Welfare Board (JWB) of Pinellas County, Florida, since 2006.  She spent 13 years working in residential settings, with a primary focus on adolescent mental health, youth development, and substance abuse, before making JWB her home. Her master's degree is in criminal justice, with a specialization in adolescent crime. Ms. Waldron is a part of JWB’s Program Development Department as a senior program consultant for bullying, violence, poverty, and disaster preparedness. She is a co-developer of the Pinellas Poverty Experience, which creates a live simulation of what it is like to live the life of the poor. As a member of the Disaster Recovery Leadership Network, Ms. Waldron is also working with community partners on preparing their organizations for a disaster, and she is passionate about revealing and combating the impact of violence and bullying on school success. She has spoken locally and nationally on the topics of bullying, youth development, and poverty and spoke at the National Conference on Bullying in 2012 and 2013.


Chris Warland is manager of program quality and technical assistance at the National Transitional Jobs Network, based in Chicago. He leads the Network’s technical-assistance activities, consulting with providers, state- and city-level leadership, and regional consortia regarding the transitional jobs program’s design and implementation; developing program resources and tools; researching and disseminating best practices; and providing training and learning opportunities for providers. Mr. Warland’s experience in workforce development and in serving hard-to-employ individuals also includes providing direct training and adult-education instruction; developing training curricula for job-readiness and life-skills courses; and conducting public policy research and analysis. Mr. Warland holds a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Michigan and a master of arts degree from the School of Social Service Administration at the University of Chicago.


Whitney Welshimer joined Good Shepherd Services (GSS), in New York City, in February 2012 as a program analyst in the Program Evaluation and Planning department. In this role she designs customized data-collection systems to track program and agency-wide outcomes; conducts analyses and designs comprehensive reports to identify programmatic strengths and areas in need of modification; and collaborates with programs to use data to inform practice and improve services. Prior to her work with GSS, Ms. Welshimer assisted the Population Council in Kenya on a quantitative and qualitative evaluation of the Married Adolescent Girls intervention, aimed at increasing utilization of reproductive-health services in multiple districts of Nyanza province. Before focusing her career on program evaluation, Ms. Welshimer worked in the communications department of the International Women's Health Coalition and in the Public Information department of amfAR. She received a master’s degree in public health from UCLA and a BA degree in biological anthropology from Harvard College.


Joe Willard is vice president for policy and supervises all policy and research at the Philadelphia-based People’s Emergency Center. In this capacity Mr. Willard manages the regional Family Services Provider Network and co-chairs the Pennsylvanian statewide advocacy network HAPPN.  Most recently, Mr. Willard was associate manager for public policy at the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania for four years and associate director at the Reinvestment Fund's Regional Workforce Partnership for four years. He earned a master’s degree from Hunter College and a bachelor’s degree from Penn State University.


Marcella Wilson, PhD, has over 30 years of experience in health-care and social-work services. Her extensive experience includes not-for-profit management, managed-care systems, behavioral health, criminal justice, and public-sector programming. Dr. Wilson, a University of Michigan alumnus, holds degrees in psychology and sociology, a master's degree in social work, and a PhD degree in health-care administration. Dr. Wilson is committed to developing comprehensive systems of care that target generational poverty. Under his leadership, Matrix Human Services, a 501(c)(3) organization, is leading the development of a national, scalable, sustainable model of care, Transition To Success. Dr. Wilson’s work at Matrix has been showcased on CBS Evening News, in the New York Times, and at numerous professional conferences.


During her 20 years as a public librarian, Julie Ann Winkelstein held a variety of positions, from jail and prison librarian to family literacy coordinator to children’s, teen, and adult services librarian to newspaper columnist. She returned to school in 2008 and received a PhD degree in information and communication in 2012. Her dissertation focused on public libraries and homeless LGBTQ youth, bringing together her twin interests of social justice and public libraries.


Holly Woodbury is currently the vice president for development at Florida’s Chapman Partnership, where she executes the organization’s fund-raising, marketing, and volunteer strategies. Since she came to Chapman from Denver, Colorado, in September of 2010, her leadership and energy have brought synergy to the organization’s external communication and helped to increase fund-raising, volunteer activities, and brand awareness in the community for this nationally recognized homeless-service organization.  Prior to her work in leading the development department for Chapman Partnership’s homeless-assistance centers, Ms. Woodbury developed fund-raising and marketing campaigns for Denver Parks & Recreation, Women’s Bean Project, the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Colorado AIDS Project, and the Red Cross Mile High Chapter.


Miranda Yates, PhD, is the director of program evaluation and planning at Good Shepherd Services (GSS), a multiservice youth and family development organization in New York City. Prior to joining GSS, in 2010, she was a regional director at the Covenant House Institute and a program director overseeing transitional living, employment, and educational services at Covenant House California. Dr. Yates received a BA degree from Georgetown University and her MA and PhD degrees in developmental psychology from the Catholic University of America. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Brown University's Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America. With James Youniss, Dr. Yates co-authored Community Service and Social Responsibility in Youth (University of Chicago Press) and Roots of Civic Identity: International Perspectives on Community Service and Activism in Youth (Cambridge University Press).


Sara Zuiderveen is the assistant commissioner for the Prevention Services Division of the New York City Department of Homeless Services (DHS), where she administers $26 million in homelessness-prevention contracts with 20 social-service vendors. She joined the agency in early 2004, assisting with the planning and implementation of the Homebase homelessness-prevention program, an innovative pilot project that was expanded citywide in 2007. Ms. Zuiderveen previously served as DHS’s director of program analysis for prevention, managing data collection, reporting, quality assurance, and ongoing program development for Homebase and other prevention efforts. Prior to that, she worked in the field of child-abuse prevention as a program analyst for Healthy Families America, a national home-visiting program service in Chicago.




Session Presentations:

Workforce Development for Homeless Families: Using a Partnership Model to Achieve Secure Employment and Housing

Workforce Development for Homeless Families
Presented by: Tatjana Meschede, Research Director, Institute on Assets and Social Policy, Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University
Sara Chaganti, Senior Graduate Research Assistant, Institute on Assets and Social Policy, Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University 

An Innovative Partnership Between Housing and Public Schools

Tacoma Housing Education Project & McCarver
Presented by: Michael Power, Manager of Educational Programs, Tacoma Housing Authority 

Family Homelessness: A Framework for Prevention and Early Intervention

Family Homelessness Framework
Presented by: Amanda Noble, Manager of Research, Raising the Roof 

After-school Programs for Children Experiencing Homelessness

After-school Programs for Homeless Children
Risk Associated with Homelessness
Presented by: Claire M. Seryak, Social Worker, University of Illinois-Chicago

Using Data and Evidence to Strengthen Programs for Homeless Youth at Good Shepherd Services

Using Data and Evidence to Strengthen Programs for Homeless Youth at Good Shepherd Services
Presented by: Miranda Yates, Director of Program Evaluation and Planning, Good Shepherd Services
Elizabeth Garcia, Program Director, Chelsea Foyer, Edwin Gould, and Street Outreach, Good Shepherd Services
Adrian Rodriguez, Program Manager, Good Shepherd Services
Whitney Welshimer, Program Analyst, Good Shepherd Services

Changing Lives, Families, and Communities through Education

Family Scholar House – Changing Lives, Families and Communities Through Education
"Participants Speak" video
"Building Futures" video
Presented by: Cathe Dykstra, Chief Possibility Officer, President and CEO, Family Scholar House, Inc.
Jacob Brown, Principal, Marian Development Group, LLC
Jenny Sawyer, Executive Director of Admissions, University of Louisville

Safe in the Stacks: Community Spaces for Serving Homeless LGBTQ Youth

Safe in the Stacks
Presented by: Jama Shelton, PhD, Forty to None Project Director, True Colors Fund
Julie Ann Winklestein, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Vikki Terrile, Outreach and Youth Adult Services Coordinator, Queens Borough Public Library

The Poverty Experience: A Collaborative Training Effort in Pinellas County

The Poverty Experience Presentation
The Poverty Experience - Handout
Presented by: Shelba Waldron, Senior Program Consultant, Juvenile Welfare Board

Strategies for a Comprehensive Integrated Model for Decreasing Family Homelessness and Poverty

Strategies for a Comprehensive Integrated Model
Presented by: Karen Matson, Director of Social Services, Housing Hope

Supporting Families Experiencing Homelessness

Staci Perlman – Parenting in the Context of Homelessness
Mary Haskett – Parenting Interventions in Shelter Settings: A Review of the Literature
Beryl Cowan – Children’s Mental Health in the Context of Homelessness
Leigh Wilson – Addressing the Needs of African American Male Youth in Family Homeless Residences
Matthew Adams – What Federal Policies Have Positive and Negative Impacts on Homeless Families?
Presented by:
Staci Perlman, PhD, Assistant Professor, University of Delaware
Mary E. Haskett, PhD, Professor of Psychology, North Carolina State University
Beryl A. Cowan, JD, PhD, Clinical and Community Psychologist and Attorney
Leigh Wilson, MSW, Stoneleigh Emerging Leader Fellow, People's Emergency Center
Matthew Adams, Principal Policy Analyst, Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness

Building State Capacity to Address Youth Homelessness

Shahera Hyatt – Building State Capacity to Address Youth Homelessness
Shahera Hyatt – More than a Roof report
Lisa Stand – State Policy Tips & Tricks
Presented by: Shahera Hyatt, Director, California Homeless Youth Project, California Research Bureau
Lisa Stand, Senior Analyst, National Alliance to End Homelessness

Approaches in Creative Assessment

CAP Menu
Creative Arts Team Overview
Presented by: Gwendolen Hardwick, Artistic and Education Director, City University of New York-Creative Arts Team (CUNY-CAT)
Keith Johnston, Program Director, City University of New York-Creative Arts Team (CUNY-CAT)

System-Wide Training Curriculum for Staff Working with Families Experiencing Homelessness

Promising Practices for Agencies Serving Homeless Students
Children’s Work Group – System-wide Training Curriculum for Staff
Presented by: Roberta Cancellier, Deputy Director, City of Philadelphia – Office of Supportive Housing
Anne Marie Collins, Executive Director, Holy Redeemer Health System – Drueding Center

Framework for Community Schools and Social Return on Investment Analyses

Did You Know? – Quiz
Framework for Community Schools & Social Return on Investment
Tips for Supporting Students who are Homeless
Presented by: Janice Chu-Zhu, Senior Director of National Capacity Building, The Children’s Aid Society
Jeannette Then, Community School Director, The Children’s Aid Society at PS 50

Can You Hear Me Now? Influence as a Tool to Hear Your Call

Can You Hear Me Now? Influencing Policymakers to Hear Your Call for Increased Support
Presented by: Suzanne Smith, Founder and Managing Director, Social Impact Architects

Lightening Rounds:
Literacy Success for All: Out-of-School Time Program for Children Experiencing Homelessness

Community Partners & Funding List (SLP)
Community Partners & Funding List (Blank)
Literacy Success for All – Handout
Presented by: Lila Anna Sauls, CEO, Trinity Housing Corp/St. Lawrence Place
Rebecca Smith-Hill, Director of Grants and Special Projects, St. Lawrence Place

Fundamental Strategies for Homeless School-age Youth

Ages & Stages Handout – For Kids 5-13
Ten Principles of Trauma Informed Practice
Presented by: Faye Askew-King, Associate Director, SOS Community Services
Caroline Kennedy, Children’s Services Coordinator, SOS Community Services

Does Prevention Work: Evaluation of the NYC HomeBase Program

Does Prevention Work: Evaluation of the NYC Homebase Program
Presented by: Zhifen Cheng, Research Director, New York City Department of Homeless Services
Sara Zuiderveen, Assistant Commissioner, Prevention Services, New York City Department of Homeless Services

Breaking the Cycle of Adversity and Toxic Stress in Early Childhood: How Can We Protect and Support Young Children?

Young Children Experiencing Homelessness, Adversity, and Trauma: An Integrated Look at Improving Outcomes and Services
Presented by: Joan Eichner, Children’s Policy Director, University of Pittsburgh Office of Child Development

Using Mindfulness Practices with Homeless Children and Families

Using Mindfulness Practices with Homeless Children and Families
Presented by: Nancy Lynch Gibson, Assistant Program Director, Marian House

A Place of My Own: From Communal Shelter to Scattered Sites for Families

Scattered Site Approach To Emergency Shelter Services for Families
Presented by: Laurie Mazerbo, New Beginnings Program Director, Our Family Services
Patti Caldwell, Executive Director, Our Family Services

Mobility Mentoring: An Innovative Model for Disrupting the Poverty Cycle

Mobility Mentoring Presentation
CWU Housing Program Outcome Map
Presented by: Charles Carter, Jr., PhD, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Crittenton Women’s Union
Michael W. Ames, Director of Mobility Mentoring Programs, Crittenton Women’s Union

More Information 

1.8 million homeless children walk the halls of America’s schools: the number is a daunting challenge to us all. Together with their parents and younger brothers and sisters, these children represent hundreds of thousands of families that endure homelessness and poverty each year.

The Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness (ICPH) has invited service providers, practitioners, policy makers, homeless and formerly homeless individuals, advocates, researchers, and members of the media to submit presentation proposals for the Beyond Housing 2014 Conference in January. Conference sessions will provide an opportunity to build bridges between service providers and policy makers, and between practitioners and researchers, helping colleagues across the field to imagine new and dynamic ways to reduce the impact of poverty and homelessness on children and families.


  • Activists
  • Advocates
  • Community Action Agencies
  • Educators / Professors
  • Fiscal analysts
  • Geographers
  • Government administrators
  • Health care providers
  • Homeless Education Liaisons
  • Homeless and formerly homeless individuals
  • Journalists
  • Legal aid providers
  • Legislators
  • Lobbyists
  • Policy makers
  • Faith community members 
  • Researchers
  • Shelter providers
  • Social workers
  • Students
  • Volunteers

About the Conference Sessions

In addition to plenary sessions and site visits, the conference includes concurrent sessions and interactive workshops. These sessions aim to address and provide actionable solutions to unique topics and themes tailored to the needs of the participants.

Presentation Topics

Education and Enrichment

  • Early childhood care and education
  • K–12 education 
  • Out-of-school-time enrichment and recreation
  • Service learning
  • Family literacy
  • Homeless students and McKinney Vento
  • Underemployment
  • Employment placement

Employment and Adult Skill-Building

  • Employment and child care strategies
  • Adult education and training 
  • Working families and homelessness

Health & Wellness

  • Food/Nutrition for children and families
  • Food assistance


  • Foreclosure and homelessness
  • Foreclosures and rentals
  • Affordable housing for homeless families 

Program Strategies

  • Housing placement strategies
  • Supportive housing for young families and youth in foster care
  • Strategies and programs for unaccompanied youth
  • Rapid re-housing / Transition-in-place models
  • Prevention strategies
  • Role of shelter


  • Evaluating programs
  • How data informs policy

The Family

  • Family physical and mental health
  • Family and domestic violence
  • Families at risk, effective intervention 
  • Fatherhood and family structure initiatives
  • Jail and prison re-entry and family reunification
  • Home visiting and healthy families 
  • Veteran families