Session 4B: Using Data and Research to Inform Practice
Track: Research and Innovative Practices
A critical function of NCA is using data and research to inform CAC services. CAC leadership should understand the critical role data and research play in programs and services and in the outcomes for children and families. We'll talk about the importance of ensuring that CAC data is protected, accurately gathered, documented, and shared.
Michelle Miller, Ph.D., LCSW
Project Coordinator for Mental Health Initiatives
National Children’s Alliance
Michelle Miller, PhD, LCSW, LCPC, has over 25 years’ experience working in the child welfare field and 18 years’ experience providing mental health care and clinical supervision to mental health practitioners, in addition to training and implementation of evidence-based practices and treatments. Michelle co-founded the Butte Child Evaluation Center, Montana’s first accredited CAC, in 1998, where she served as director, forensic interviewer, and MDT coordinator until 2013. Michelle was also instrumental in founding the Montana State Chapter organization of NCA, which she chaired from 2008-2011, and continued to serve as a board member until 2016. Michelle has served on numerous local, state, and national task forces and committees. In her private practice, Michelle specialized in providing CFTSI and Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT). Michelle has been the Project Coordinator of Mental Health Initiatives at NCA since 2016.
Libby Ralston, PhD
Founding Director of the Dee Norton Lowcountry Children’s Center, Inc (DNLCC)
Libby Ralston, PhD was the founding director of the Dee Norton Lowcountry Children’s Center, Inc (DNLCC) an accredited Children’s Advocacy Center located in Charleston, SC and now serves as the Director Emeritus. Dr. Ralston is on the clinical faculty of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at the Medical University of South Carolina. She served on the NCA Board of Directors, on the NCA mental health standard revision committee and participated in the partnership between NCA and NCTSN to develop the CAC Director’s Guide to Mental Health services. Since 2007 Dr. Ralston has served as the co-director of Project BEST, a Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy dissemination and since 2013 has served as Co-Director of the South Carolina Trauma Practice Initiative, a collaboration between the South Carolina Department of Social Services, the SC Department of Mental Health and Project BEST. Both initiative have been funded by The Duke Endowment.
Kaitlin Lounsbury, MA
Program Evaluation Coordinator
National Children's Alliance
Kaitlin Lounsbury is the Program Evaluation Coordinator for the National Children’s Alliance. Her work is dedicated to helping our field demonstrate the impact of services provided by Children’s Advocacy Centers. This includes NCA's Outcome Measurement System (OMS) to evaluate satisfaction and service needs, helping to improve services for families and multidisciplinary team professionals involved in the response to child maltreatment. Her background includes academic research with a focus on child abuse interventions and direct service work as a counselor, providing a blended skillset to help child-serving organizations effectively measure their work and improve practices.