Latin American Father
“Empowering Fathers: One size does not fit all.”

Interdisciplinary Conference Agenda
Washington Convention Center, Friday October 28, 2011


8:30 am - 9:00 am

Registration and Continental Breakfast

Room 146 A/B

9:00 am – 9:30 am

Welcoming Remarks

Honorable Lee Satterfield, Chief Judge, Superior Court of the District of Columbia
Honorable Zoe Bush, Presiding Judge, Family Court, Superior Court of the District of Columbia

Conference Overview and Introduction of the three Doctors

Honorable Hiram Puig-Lugo, Deputy Presiding Judge, Family court, Superior Court
    of the District of Columbia

Room 146 A/B

9:30 am – 10:15 am

Plenary Panel — "The Three Doctors: Sampson Davis, George Jenkins and Rameck Hunt"

Sampson Davis, M.D., Boarding Certified Emergency Medical Physician
    and Assistant Medical Director Emergency Department, Raritan Bay Medical Center

Rameck Hunt, M.D., Board Certified Internist at University Medical Center at Princeton
    and Assistant Professor Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

George Jenkins, D.M.D., Assistant Professor Clinical Dentistry, Adult Dentistry, Columbia University

The doctors will discuss the absence of their fathers, the effects of growing up fatherless in the inner-city, an understanding of their fathers absences, the roles of their mothers and building relationships with their fathers later on.

Room 146 A/B

10:15 am – 10:45 am


Networking with the three Doctors, meeting with service providers, and Break

Room 146 C

10:45 am – 11:00 am

Introduction of Moderator & Panel
    Honorable Milton Lee, Associate Judge Family Court, District of Columbia Superior Court

Room146 A/B

11:00 am – 12:45 pm

Plenary Panel — “Diverse Perspectives on What It Means to be a Father ”
        Moderator – Derek McGinty, Anchor, WUSA 9NEWS NOW

What does it mean to be a father? Who is a father? What is fatherhood? These questions will be answered by a panel of males who will share the triumphs and struggles of fulfilling the role of “father” in their day to day life experiences. The perspectives offered by the panel will: (1) shed light on culturally-defined beliefs and practices about “fathering,” and (2) examine the implications for necessary change in policy and practice in order to be more responsive to the unique needs of fathers within Family Court and across service systems in the District of Columbia. 

Tawara Goode, Director, National Center for Cultural Competency
Also Associate Director and Assistant Professor, Center for Child and Human Development
Georgetown University

Ms. Goode will offer some reflections about the implications for change at both the individual and systems level based on stories shared by the panel.

Room 146 A/B

12:45 pm – 1:45 pm

Lunch and Facilitated Dialogue
    Facilitator: Dave Rosenthal, J.D., Senior Assistant Attorney General,
Public Safety Division, Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia

Mr. Rosenthal will engage the audience in a lively dialogue about their reactions to the panel and the implications for change in Family Court and across service systems.

Room 146 A/B

1:45 pm – 3:00 pm

Plenary Panel — “Developing Effective Systems of Care and Approaches
to Engage Fathers Positively in the Lives of Their Children”


    Cedric Hendricks, Deputy Director
    Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency
    Jeffery Johnson, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer
    National Partnership for Community Leadership (NPCL)
    Ron Scott, Program Manager
    District of Columbia Superior Court Fathering Court
    James Worthy, Director
    Baltimore Responsible Father Initiative Project, Center for Urban Families
    Including Fathers in the work we do with the families
    Angelisa Young, Community Outreach Specialist
    Child Support Services Division, Policy and Training Section, Office of
       the Attorney General  for the District of Columbia

     Laurie S. Kohn, Professor and Director
         Family Justice Litigation Clinic, George Washington University Law School
     Honorable Lori Parker, Magistrate Judge Family Court, District of Columbia Superior Court
Male NCP Presentation  | White House Conference  | Responsible Fatherhood System  | Fathering Court

This panel will address: training service providers on effective system-wide practices to engage fathers in services; building capacity and developing an effective system of care through key partnerships and interagency collaborations; early reintegration efforts by District agencies and community partners to connect persons with criminal histories with services and supports; and services to assist non-custodial fathers address potential barriers to fulfilling their support obligation. Building effective partnerships and strategies to support a father’s successful involvement in family life includes collaboration and coordination around issues of mental health, substance abuse, physical health, education, parenting and co-parenting, employment, and visitation.

Room 146 A/B

3:00 pm – 3:15 pm


146 A/B 

3:15 pm – 4:30 pm

Concurrent Workshops



A- Locating, Engaging and Advocating for Non-Custodial Fathers

    James Campbell, Program Administrator
        District of Columbia Child and Family Services Agency
    Kathleen Creamer, Esq., Stoneleigh Foundation Fellow
        Community Legal Services, Inc. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    Howard Davidson, Esq., Director
        Center on Children and the Law, American Bar Association
    Rishaunda Ewings, Program Manager
        Office of Planning, Policy and Program Support (OPPPS)
        District of Columbia Child and Family Services Agency
    Jack Gilmore, Esq., Attorney
        Counsel for Child Abuse & Neglect (CCAN) Attorney
    Marlesia Neloms, Special Assistant to the Deputy Director for Agency Programs
        District of Columbia Child and Family Services Agency

Honorable Noel Johnson, Magistrate Judge, Family Court, Superior Court of the
District of Columbia

This panel will look at the obligations of attorneys, social workers, and courts in locating, engaging and advocating for non-custodial fathers. The panelists will provide information from both a national and a local perspective. In addition, one of the presenters will offer special expertise on working with incarcerated fathers. The panelists will also discuss reaching out to the mother and relatives for information, using diligent search, and using investigators.

This panel will then move on to a discussion of how to engage the father once he has been located. This would include how to initiate contact, communicate effectively, maintain communication, and build trust, in addition to providing appropriate service referrals, advising fathers on how to establish paternity, and advising fathers on maintaining a positive bond with their children.


B - Integrating Fathers After Domestic Violence

    Juliet Francis, Psy.D, President and Chief Executive Officer
        Francis & Associates
    Courtney Hall, Supervised Visitation Program Coordinator
        Supervised Visitation Center, District of Columbia Superior Court
    Honorable José  López, Presiding Judge
        Domestic Violence Unit, District of Columbia Superior Court
    Lisa Nitsch, Director
        Gateway Project, The House of Ruth Maryland and also the
        Vice President of Women in Fatherhood, Inc.

Moderator: Laurie S. Kohn, Professor and Director, Family Justice Litigation Clinic,
George Washington University Law School

This panel will discuss the particular challenges that judges, practitioners, and litigants face when dealing with fathers’ access to their children after domestic violence has occurred.  In this panel, we will explore how to determine what kind of custody and visitation should be awarded; how supervised visitation can meet the needs of this population; what comes after supervised visitation; how to make visitation most safe and productive for children; and the best practices of programs aimed at making the integration of fathers safe and successful.


C - It Takes Two: Including and Advocating for Teen Fathers

    M. Victoria Bellard, Program Coordinator
        New Heights Program, District of Columbia Public Schools
    Allison E. Green, Staff Attorney
        Children’s Law Center
    Robert Nelson, President and Founder
        Daddy’s Corner, Inc.
    Henry Prempeh, Family Services Coordinator
        Generations Program/Teen Dads Group, Children’s National Medical Center
    Dion Wright, Young Father

Moderator: Kristin Henning, Professor, Co-Director of the Juvenile Justice Clinic
      Georgetown University Law Center

Despite the increased attention paid to teen motherhood on the local and national level, teen fathers are a subgroup whose unique needs are too often overlooked or inadequately addressed by the systems serving them.  This session will focus on the legal considerations and social service resources that are particularly relevant for young fathers in the District of Columbia. Panelists will address issues such as preparing teen fathers-to-be for parenthood, paternity establishment, custody, child support, school engagement, housing options and parenting supports. The session will be beneficial for lawyers, guardians ad litem, social workers and others who work with custodial and non-custodial teen fathers.


D - The Impact of a Father's Absence: Psychologicial, Social and Economic
Impact and the Positive Effect of Services to Assist the Father

    Theodore Butler, Public Health Technician
        District of Columbia Department of Health
    Derrick Colbert, Family Support Worker
        Far Southeast Family Strengthening Collaborative
    Chester Marshall, Founder & Chief Executive Officer
        Institute for African Man Development
    Phillip Terrell, Program Coordinator
        Fatherhood Education Empowerment and Development Program (FEED)
        Healthy Families/Thriving Communities Collaborative Council

Jamie Rodriguez, Juvenile Services Program Coordinator The Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia
Honorable Mary Grace Rook, Magistrate Judge Family Court, District of Columbia Superior Court

This panel will explore through local service providers the impact of absent fathers as observed, including the likelihood of poverty, educational problems, emotional and behavioral problems, and the benefits of services to include fathers in children’s lives-- including better cognitive outcomes, higher self esteem, academic achievement, assistance to mothers, etc. The panel will also discuss what local services exist and what additional services might be useful to the District of Columbia community.



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Washington Convention Center | October 28, 2011