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'World turns' at annual conference

'World turns' at annual conference

PCSAO’s annual conference enjoyed a new venue at the Hilton Easton, drawing nearly 600 participants across its three days, Sept. 19-21.

This year’s theme, “As Our World Turns,” highlighted the fast-spinning nature of the children services system — facing workforce and placement challenges while trying to maximize new state and federal opportunities. The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services partnered with PCSAO for the first time to make the conference possible, supporting conference scholarships for two frontline workers in each county through the workforce grant. ODJFS Director Matt Damschroder addressed attendees on Monday and shared a video welcome from Gov. Mike DeWine.

OhioRISE Aetna Better Health served as World Champion Sponsor once again this year, along with 40 other sponsors.

The conference featured 25 workshops, continuing education credits, basket raffles and evening networking receptions. Keynote speakers Elliott Hinkle on Monday and LaShaun Carter on Tuesday addressed the importance of improving equity in the child protection system.

PCSAO recognized Reps. Tavia Galonski and Susan Manchester as Legislators of the Year and presented retiring Lucas County Children Services Executive Director with its Child Advocate of the Year award. Awards were also presented to Families of the Year, Leaders of Tomorrow, and Outstanding Agency Staff.

Next year’s conference will be back at the Hilton Easton Tuesday through Thursday, Sept. 19-21, 2023.