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Attendees 'build connected future' at annual conference

Attendees 'build connected future' at annual conference

PCSAO’s annual conference wrapped up another successful event today that featured workshops, keynotes, awards and networking opportunities for Ohio’s public child protection community.

This year’s theme, “The Ties That Bind: Building a Connected Future,” highlighted the values of belonging and connection: among workers within an agency, between workers and families, and between families and their children. Aetna Better Health/OhioRISE once again served as top sponsor this year, along with more than 45 other sponsors.

Keynote speakers Jerry Milner and David Kelly of the Family Justice Group challenged attendees to engage families’ voices in the work, while Janine Boyd told how her personal journey has helped her see, understand and commend caseworkers for their efforts.

PCSAO recognized Sen. Nickie Antonio and Rep. Jim Hoops as Legislators of the Year and presented Aimee Clemson of Ashtabula County with its Child Advocate of the Year award. A new award, the PCSAO Partner of the Year, was presented to Joel Potts, outgoing director of the Ohio Job and Family Services Directors’ Association. Awards were also presented to Families of the Year, Leaders of Tomorrow, Outstanding Agency Staff, and Dan Schneider Child Welfare Training Leader.

ODJFS Director Matt Damschroder was recognized for his leadership and passion, even as oversight of children services transitions to the new Ohio Department of Children and Youth, to be led by Kara Wente, who shared her vision for the work going forward.

Next year’s conference will be back at the Hilton Easton Monday through Wednesday, Sept. 9-11, 2024.