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Staff

Carroll Schroeder
Executive Director

Carroll Schroeder presides over all Alliance advocacy, accreditation, member services and executive support activities and staffs the Executive and Nominating Committees.

 

Carroll came to the Alliance in 2001 after nearly 30 years in the field of child and family services. Beginning as a CPS worker in Baltimore in the early '70s, he moved to California to attend graduate school at UC Davis. After obtaining his Master's degree, he helped establish and grow FamiliesFirst where he worked for 18 years and held a variety of program and administrative positions ranging from youth care worker through social worker, program director, director of training, research and program development, and associate executive director. He directed the residential, nonpublic school and intensive family preservation programs.

 

After a brief stint in consulting, Carroll became executive director of Stanford Home for Children in 1995. There he redesigned the residential treatment program, was part of a four-agency joint venture that established the permanency-focused Family Alliance foster family agency, expanded Stanford Home's array of services to include mental health and vocational services, and brought all of the service offerings together through implementation of wraparound service and support.

 

He has chaired and served on numerous boards and commissions and has extensive, practical hands-on experience in nonprofit leadership and management, family-centered practice, residential care, foster family care, special education, family preservation and wraparound services.

 

Carroll holds a master's degree in child development from UC Davis and a bachelor's degree in sociology from Catawba College.

 

Email Carroll at cschroeder@cacfs.org.

 

Public Policy Advocacy

Doug Johnson
Associate Executive Director

  

Doug is associate executive director and staffs the Residential Care, Juvenile Justice, and Research and Evaluation Committees. His particular areas of expertise include policy development in the areas of residential care and juvenile justice, with a special emphasis on federal and State funding, auditing and licensing requirements, and government regulatory processes.

 

Doug came to the Alliance in 1998 from nearly 20 years in state service, spending 18 years with the California Department of Social Services. Probably best remembered by member agencies for his work as a bureau chief in the Children and Families Services Division, Doug oversaw development and implementation of the current group home and FFA rate-setting systems. He served as chief of the Foster Care Policy Bureau, the Child Welfare Services Policy Bureau and the Emergency Assistance Program Bureau. Additionally, Doug held management positions in the Individual and Family Grant, the Refugee Services, and the Food Stamp Programs. His last assignment prior to joining the Alliance staff was as the coordinator for federal legislation during welfare reform.

 

Doug holds a bachelor's degree in political science from UCLA and did graduate work in Soviet studies at the University of Glasgow. From 1975-1978, he was an adjunct professor of political science, teaching courses on comparative government and international relations at the Monterey Institute for Foreign Studies in Monterey and at Hartnell Community College in Salinas.

 

Email Doug at djohnson@cacfs.org.

 

Jacqueline Rutheiser
Senior Policy Advocate

Jacqueline Rutheiser is a senior policy advocate responsible for advocacy on child welfare issues including the adoption of children from foster care, foster family-based care and services, in-home and family-based services, and housing, services and support for transition-age youth. Jackie staffs the Adoption, Foster Family Agency and Family-Based Services Committees.

 

Jackie came to the Alliance in 2007 with over 20 years experience in local, state and national politics, most recently with the California State Legislature where she served as senior staff for Senator Nell Soto (D-San Bernardino, Pomona) and previously as staff with Assembly Majority Leader Kevin Shelley (D-San Francisco). Prior to her work in the State Capitol, Jackie was a managing partner in a political research and campaign strategy consulting business for eight years and was the research director for the National Health Care Campaign for then First Lady Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee.

 

Jackie holds a bachelor's degree in international relations from UC Davis.

 

Email Jackie at jrutheiser@cacfs.org.

 

 

Danielle Molé
Policy Advocate and Grassroots Advocacy Coordinator

Danielle Molé is policy advocate and grassroots advocacy coordinator. On the policy side, Danielle works under the supervision of the education consultant and executive director to support members during the transition of educationally-related mental health services from county mental health departments under AB 3632 to local SELPAs and LEAs under AB 114.

 

As grassroots advocacy coordinator, Danielle coordinates and supports Alliance members as they re-focus their advocacy and marketing efforts in a realigned environment on county boards of supervisors and county departmental leadership in child welfare, mental health and juvenile probation; and with school boards, district superintendants, special education directors and SELPA administrators. Additionally, she helps members build local linkages with state legislators and coordinates members’ district level advocacy on state legislative and budget issues.

 

Danielle comes to the Alliance from the California Family Resource Coalition where she was a Project Manager and where her responsibilities included the building of grassroots advocacy capability. Previously, she served as a Program Manager for the Child Abuse Prevention Center in Sacramento, Program Officer for United Way of the Bay Area, and as first an intern, then as Juvenile Justice Division Program Coordinator with the Child Welfare League of America.

 

She received her bachelor's degree with distinction in political science from San Diego State University, and her master's degree in political science from California State University, Chico.

 

Email Danielle at dmole@cacfs.org.

 


dave neilsen, MSW

Senior Mental Health Policy Advocate


dave neilsen focuses primarily on mental health related legislation, and the state’s upcoming Medicaid waiver requests and amendments to the state’s Medicaid plan.

 

He was most recently was a division chief in the Department of Healthcare Services (DHCS) before retiring from state service. Immediately prior to joining DHCS, dave served as chief of the Prevention, Treatment and Recovery Services Division of the state’s Substance Use Disorder Services until the responsibilities in that division were transferred to DHCS when the departments were consolidated.

 

In dave's 20-year career with the state’s Department of Mental Health, his last position was chief of Community Programs overseeing the department’s Children/Family Program Policy Unit which developed and implemented guidance for community-based mental health services within the Childrens System of Care. He also served as an appointed member of the California Blue Ribbon Commission on Children in Foster Care. Going back to early 1990s, dave worked for one of the Alliances predecessor organizations, the California Association of Children’s Homes. Go back far enough and he worked as a residential counselor at Alliance member agency, EMQ, before it was EMQ FamiliesFirst.


 

Lynn Thull, PhD
Consultant for Mental Health Policy and Practice Improvement

Lynn serves as the children’s mental health policy and practice improvement consultant for the Alliance. As such, Lynn is primary staff to the Mental Health and Practice Improvement Committees and is our consultant on public policy issues pertaining to children's mental health.

 

A licensed clinical psychologist in both California and Arizona, Lynn has over 30 years experience in the field, 15 years in executive positions. Most recently, she has been principle of LMT Consulting and has provided consultation to several Alliance member agencies, primarily in the Sacramento area. From 1993 to 2005, she held a succession of positions of increasing responsibility with Alliance member agency River Oak Center for Children, beginning as a staff psychologist and advancing through director of psychological services and vice president for professional services, to chief operating officer.

 

Lynn began her career in Arizona, first as a youth counselor in a children’s hospital and later as a special education teacher. She also has an active California Teaching Certificate for severely/profoundly handicapped, multiple subject and pupil personnel-counselor.

 

Lynn holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology, Fresno, a master's degree in educational counseling from Northern Arizona University, and a bachelor's degree in education with a specialization in special education from Arizona State University.

 

Email Lynn at lthull@cacfs.org.

 

Gina Plate
Consultant, Education Policy

Gina Plate manages all policy advocacy pertaining to educating children in foster care, with particular emphasis on the use of nonpublic schools and charter schools to provide educational services, and staffs the Alliance Education Committee.

 

Gina has a wide range of administrative and teaching experience including experience as regional director, program director, director of educational services, and special education teacher at Seneca Center for Children and Families. She has more than 15 years of experience in the special education field in both public school districts and non-public schools. Gina worked as a special day class teacher and taught severely emotional disturbed pupils at the elementary and middle school level. She also served as a full inclusion aide, transition job coach and speech therapy aide.

 

Gina holds a master's degree in special education from the University of San Diego and a bachelor's in communication with a minor in business administration also from the University of San Diego.

 

Email Gina at gplate@cacfs.org.

 

Membership and Marketing

Kevin Swartzendruber
Director of Membership and Marketing

 

Kevin Swartzendruber directs all membership and marketing activities for the Alliance. He is the principal liaison with national accrediting bodies and staffs the Membership and Marketing Committees.

 

Kevin has extensive experience in membership recruitment and retention, strategic marketing, business development, corporate communications, publication management, media and public relations, and governance processes and oversight.

 

Prior to joining the Alliance, he was director of marketing and communications for the California Association of School Business Officials (CASBO) and he has also held positions as associate director, communications for the California School Boards Association (CSBA), marketing communications director for the Chico Chamber of Commerce, and has operated his own marketing and communications firm, Exclamation Point Communications and Consulting in the Sacramento area.

 

He received his bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communications from the University of Iowa, with a concentration in marketing and public relations.  

 

Email Kevin at kevins@cacfs.org.

 

Conferences and Training

Deborah Clore-Myers
Certified Meeting Planner, Event Specialist & Special Projects Manager

 

Debbie coordinates all conference and training events and assists in staffing the Continuing Education Committee. A certified meeting planner, Debbie is responsible annually for the coordination of two executive conferences and several conferences and trainings throughout the year on a variety of topics.

 

Debbie came to the Alliance in 2000 through the merger of the California Association of Children's Homes (CCH) and the California Association of Services for Children (CSC). From 1990 to the merger, Debbie worked with CCH as executive assistant, meeting planner and office manager. Prior to joining CCH, Debbie held bookkeeper and full-charge bookkeeper positions in several settings including the California Psychiatric Association.

 

Email Debbie at dcmyers@cacfs.org.

 

Administration and Support

Kim Janoe
Finance and Human Resources Manager

 

As finance and human resources manager, Kim Janoe manages all Alliance bookeeping functions, payroll and human resources activities. Kim assists the executive director with Board and Executive Committee Meetings and is also the support for the director of membership and marketing.

 

Kim came to the Alliance in 2000 when it was formed by the merger of the California Association of Services for Children (CSC) and the California Association of Children's Homes (CCH). Previously, Kim worked at CSC as a bookeeper, office manager and executive assistant and worked in the financial sector with Van Kasper and Company and E. F. Hutton.

 

Email Kim at kjanoe@cacfs.org. 

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