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DSS Seeks Nominees for Leadership Forum Advisory Board

Louisiana Department of Children & Family Services (DSS) Secretary Kristy Nichols today announced a call for nominations for the agency’s Leadership Forum Advisory Board, which will serve an important role in a series of new initiatives designed to cultivate a culture of leadership and innovation in social service delivery.

“Inviting community leaders and stakeholders to serve on DSS’s Leadership Forum Advisory Board will help to strengthen our link to DSS clients and address some of Louisiana’s most pressing social problems,” said Nichols.  “The advisory board is an important part of our agency’s new initiative to develop leadership and foster innovation in social services in an effort to ensure the safety of children the stability of families and the well-being of all Louisiana citizens.”

The DSS Leadership Forum Advisory Board will be comprised of representatives of community-based and non-governmental agencies, as well as government and industry.

DSS will consider individuals for the advisory board who share in the agency’s vision that Louisiana children, families and individuals are safe, thriving and self sufficient and who are committed to fostering strategic innovations to make this vision a reality. Potential board members are:
  • Recognized leaders with a demonstrated interest in fostering innovation in social services;
  • Knowledgeable in social services related business processes, cost savings, efficiencies, intervention strategies, improved service delivery and client outcomes, or systems level integration; and
  • Willing to serve if appointed and to commit the necessary time, energy and effort to contribute to activities related to the Innovation in Louisiana Government Fellowship.
The primary responsibilities of the board include advising DSS on policy and program issues on a regular basis and will provide input on innovative solutions to help streamline DSS services and increase the efficiency of business practices.

The board also will be responsible for confirming 15 individuals selected as program fellows for the Innovation in Louisiana Government Fellowship. Board members will provide guidance to the fellowship class as they work to develop effective solutions to social service delivery that may be implemented, assessed and replicated.

In addition, members will hold a twice-yearly Leadership and Innovation Conference in August 2009 and February 2010.  The first conference will serve as the orientation and opening summit for the first class of fellows, and the second conference will include graduation activities and the presentation of the final fellowship projects.

The advisory board will be invited to participate along with other social service stakeholders in monthly Web casts, which will provide networking opportunities and updates on new and ongoing DSS programs. As part of these meetings, DSS will arrange for nationally recognized guest speakers to give lectures and facilitate discussions about issues that are important to the social service delivery system in Louisiana.

To nominate a representative or to apply, submit a résumé or curriculum vitae of the nominee along with a letter of intent describing the nominee’s motivations and qualifications to serve on the board.  Submit applications to Brandon Reeves at  breeves@la.govs  by July 31, 2009, at 5 p.m.

For more information, visit

About the Innovation in Louisiana Government Fellowship
DSS, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, will bring together individuals in state government and community organizations to the Innovation in Louisiana Government Fellowship (ILGF), which will build a community of leadership and solution-driven collaborations within the state. The fellowship will offer 15 individuals the opportunity to develop further as professionals and leaders and will provide training and technical assistance a six-month training academy. The ultimate goal is to spark improved social service outcomes for Louisiana’s citizens and communities.

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