Because Childhood Lasts a Lifetime.

Prevent Child Abuse America Welcomes Jennifer Jones as Its New Chief Strategy Officer

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Chicago—Prevent Child Abuse America (PCA America) announced today that Jennifer Jones (pictured below) will join the organization as its new Chief Strategy Officer, effective February 15. She currently serves as the director of the Change in Mind Institute and the co-director for Safety and Resilience for the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities (which recently announced a merger with the Council on Accreditation).

“Jennifer Jones is a well-respected leader in the areas of brain science, child welfare and child and family well-being, and I’ve had the very good fortune to collaborate with her and the Alliance on numerous occasions during the past several years,” explained Dr. Melissa Merrick, president & CEO of PCA America. “We’re thrilled that she’ll be joining us, bringing tremendous passion, expertise, and acuity to our efforts to provide the safe, stable, and nurturing relationships and environments that enable children, families and entire communities to thrive—today and for generations to come.”

At the Change in Mind Institute, Jones helps to advance a common understanding of the core story of brain development and integrate this knowledge into the social and public services sectors. She leads all aspects of the institute, including recently raising $1.7 million for the Texas Change in Mind Learning Collaborative and National Impact Study. She also serves as the project director of the Child Safety Forward Initiative, a three-year Department of Justice cooperative agreement working with five jurisdictions to develop community-led, systematic solutions to reduce child fatalities caused by child maltreatment.

“Prevent Child Abuse America’s important work to reshape child welfare in the United States, focusing on prevention and equity and proactively creating the conditions and contexts for strong families and communities, dovetails seamlessly with the work I’ve been doing for the past two decades, which I’m eager to continue with them.” said Jones. “The Alliance has enabled me to achieve so much, and I’m deeply indebted to my colleagues throughout the organization, who have contributed meaningfully to the field, particularly to advance brain science, science-infused policy and trauma-informed care legislation.”

“Jennifer’s commitment to research and the integration of brain science into the development of policy and practice through her work at the Change in Mind Institute has been foundational to so much of the work of the Alliance,” commented Susan Dreyfus, former president and CEO and senior advisor to the Alliance. “We wish her all the best in her new endeavors, which remain closely aligned with this important work in brain development and the impact of adverse childhood experiences.”

“As the incoming president and CEO of the newly merged Alliance and Council on Accreditation, I remain committed to furthering the excellent and groundbreaking work that Jennifer fostered and to our ongoing support and leadership of the Texas Change in Mind Learning Collaborative and National Impact Study,” added Jody Levison-Johnson.

Prior to her positions with the Alliance, Jones served as the associate director of the Wisconsin Children’s Trust Fund. For her last two years at the agency, she served as interim executive director, at the board’s request, and coordinated all activities related to the Governor-appointed Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Board, including managing all operations, and overseeing the agency’s budget and grant-making functions. Jones received her master’s degree in social work from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and bachelor’s degree in social work from Marquette University.

About Prevent Child Abuse America

Prevent Child Abuse America is a leading champion for all children in the United States. Founded in 1972 and headquartered in Chicago, we are the nation’s oldest and largest organization dedicated to the primary prevention of child abuse and neglect, working to actively prevent all forms of child abuse and neglect before they occur. Our success is founded on a nationwide network of state chapters and nearly 600 Healthy Families America home visiting sites, which directly provide parents and caregivers a wide variety of services and resources that help children grow up to be productive, contributing members of their communities and society. Our comprehensive approach is informed by science—we translate and disseminate innovative research to promote proven solutions that our vast network then puts into action. And we raise public awareness and advocate for family friendly policies at the national, state, and local levels to support transformative programs and promote the conditions and contexts that help children, families, and communities across the country thrive.

About the Newly Merged Alliance for Strong Families and Communities and Council on Accreditation (COA)

The merged Alliance and COA and resulting new organization will convene and catalyze a dynamic inclusive multifaceted network of human and social services organizations and passionate allies who are committed to creating a just and equitable society where all people and communities flourish. Using the collective experience of the field coupled with research, the organization will offer a range of assets and opportunities that support the social and human services sector in their quest for continuous evolution and improvement and equip them to solve for the social problems that plague our communities and undermine the fabric of our nation. The new organization will provide a range of offerings and learnings informed by the field and literature to actively shape the future of the sector through policy, advocacy, knowledge exchange, certification, accreditation, connection, and ongoing iterative and reflective interactions.

Charles Mutscheller
Chief Communications Officer


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