Plenary Speaker

Roy Juarez, Jr. CEO – IMPACTtruth, Inc.

Entrepreneur | Speaker | Author

“Never allow anyone to decide who you are, why you are and when you will be that person… that choice is for you alone!”

Roy Juarez Jr. founded the human development company, IMPACTtruth, Inc. in 2005 with a dream to inspire youth and reunite families by sharing his turbulent yet inspirational life story. 

Roy has partnered with national organizations such as the U.S. ARMY, Ford Motor Company Fund, and the United States Hispanic Leadership Institute to inspire thousands of individuals across the United States and abroad. His work has garnered national media attention on outlets such as CNN, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and many local and online publications. 

In 2018, Roy published his highly anticipated book, Homeless by Choice: A Memoir of Love, Hate, and Forgiveness. This riveting memoir journeys through Roy’s decision to live homeless once again, but this time, Homeless by Choice. His mission was to inspire youth to never give up on life, their dreams and for them to understand the power of higher education.

If you would like Mr. Juarez to present at your next organizational event please visit http://www.homelessbychoice.com/event-form/

Keynote Speaker – Luncheon

Claudine L. WilliamsFounder / President

S.T.R.I.V.E Foundation

“There is no single correct approach
to healing from trauma. Each individual’s ‘road to
survival’ will be unique in itself.”

Claudine L. Williams is the founder and motivational speaker of S.T.R.I.V.E. Foundation, a not-for-profit mentoring and coaching firm offering premier resources for at-risk youth and their families, individuals, and businesses. In addition to devoting her life to helping at-risk youth and victims of sexual assault and labor trafficking, Claudine owns and operates G.O. Eyes Optical, the exclusive distributor for the Italian eyewear designer Dario Martini. Claudine holds over 25 years of experience as a Multi-Media Communications and Marketing Specialist and is poised to open her first family restaurant, “Sweet Sadie’s Kitchen & Social Lounge,”- dedicated to her mom, in Abilene, Texas, April 2022. 

Claudine’s background includes an M.A. in Strategic Communication and Innovation and a Master’s Certificate in Advanced Digital and Social Media from Texas Tech University College of Media & Communication, where she served as Vice President Texas Tech University Graduate Assembly. A B.A. in Broadcast Media from Columbia College Chicago and. Claudine’s broad knowledge base includes various modalities, including Social Etiquette, International Protocol, Relational and Conflict Management, and Communication Skill Training.

Sessions Presenters

Jonathan Cogburn, LMFT  

Mental Health Family Services Consultant; Region 14 ESC Head Start Program

Jonathan Cogburn has worked in a variety of mental health care settings since obtaining his master’s degree from ACU’s Marriage and Family Institute in 2010, including Crisis Intervention, Hospice Chaplaincy and Bereavement Care, and private practice therapy as an LMFT. He currently serves as a Mental Health and Family Services Consultant for the Region 14 Head Start Program, and in that role, he supports the social and emotional needs of students, families, and staff members. Jonathan’s service at region 14 includes regular trainings on mental health concepts and skills, psychoeducational social skills groups for students, and coaching to Head Start staff in evidence-based practices for classroom behavior intervention. Jonathan loves creating engaging training experiences that rely on the vast expertise of learners, which always makes training experiences better.

Workshop Description

Systems Theory has much to offer professional conversations about ethics. Learners in this workshop will explore how ethical practice of mental health care and social work makes the systems in which we live healthier, just as the vegetables we eat make our bodies healthier.  Learners will explore systems theory concepts that pertain to ethical practice. Explore how systemic concepts can help contribute to ethical decision-making in everyday work using case examples and group learning activities. Construct some takeaway observations and plans for their own work which explain how ethics, like vegetables, make our systems healthy.

Trooper Adam Constancio

State Trooper; Texas Department of Public Safety

Trooper Adam Constancio has served with the Texas Department of Public Safety since 2013. During his probationary period, he made his first Interdiction for the Protection of Children (IPC) case while on Field Training. Since then, he has made and assisted with numerous IPC cases. He also graduated from the Texas DPS Physical Techniques Institute. During his time in Stephenville, he was being deployed to the border frequently. While deployed to the border he made and was a part of numerous human trafficking cases as well as narcotic trafficking. In September of 2016 he transferred to his home county of Eastland. While in Eastland he rescued a missing/endangered child out of Oregon, became a certified Drug Recognition Expert, and received the District Commanders Award for his work in the apprehension of intoxicated drivers and in criminal interdiction. He is also a Field Training Officer, a Marksman, an Arrest & Control Tactics Instructor, and Interdiction for the Protection of Children Instructor.  

Workshop Description

The Texas Department of Public Safety (TXDPS) has developed a training course, Interdiction for the Protection of Children, to help law enforcement officers identify and rescue endangered or exploited children and identify those who pose a high-risk threat to a child. The Interdiction for the Protection of Children program is not only a Human Trafficking class, but a Crimes Against Children Class. Students will know resources available to them and courses of action to take when encountering an endangered child. Students will be able to identify research supported indicators of an endangered child and a high-risk threat to children. Student will have a basic understanding of behavioral patterns of both suspects and victims.

Darrin Cox

Homeless Liaison AISD

Darrin Cox graduated with a BSW in 1989 from Abilene Christian University. In 1988 he begin his work career as a Juvenile Probation Officer at the Juvenile Probation Department of Taylor County.

During his internship he was hired to begin the Intensive Supervision Probation Program and worked for Taylor County until 1993 where he first became employed by Abilene Independent School District as a Truant Officer. He is presently the Homeless/ Foster Care Liaison for AISD.  

As the McKinney Vento Homeless Liaison for AISD we serve over 1400 homeless students, including more than 350 unaccompanied youth, in Abilene, TX without draining McKinney-Vento funds. Hear how we created a one stop shop for clothes, school supplies and hygiene items for homeless students and provide case management for the unaccompanied youth. We will also discuss best practices in creating community awareness and collaboration to create new programs to include washing clothes and housing for unaccompanied youth. Every day we get to see students light up and want to better themselves by attending school daily by helping remove barriers from them.

Workshop Description

Darrin Cox will present on how we have raised awareness in our community regarding the student homeless population and how that has created a collaboration and increased access to services for our students. He will discuss how we expanded funding and resources to provide basic needs for AISD students. He will discuss youth housing options in the community and possible programs for the future.  

Participants will receive best practice examples of how to create a community collaboration and raise awareness of the homeless student population. Participants will learn of a one stop shop program that is replicable in their community and how to do so without straining the McKinney-Vento Funds. Participants will learn the importance of working on more options of housing for our youth in our community.  

Rhonda Cox

M.A.; LPC Regional Mental Health Consultant

Rhonda has over 21 years experience working with children and adolescents as a Licensed Professional Counselor. Helping
children find healing from hurt is my purpose.

Workshop Description

This interactive and exploratory workshop will focus on a variety of basic yet effective play therapy
techniques to use with traumatized children. We will look at the characteristics of post-traumatic
play, three typical phases of this play, and how to return responsibility for self-regulation and healing
back to children.

Kaitlyn Eberhardt

Texas Advocacy Project; Prevention Strategist

Kaitlyn Eberhardt is the Prevention Strategist at Texas Advocacy Project, a non-profit organization providing free legal and social services to survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, human trafficking, and child abuse. Kaitlyn travels across the state to facilitate conversations on best practices and strategies in responding to the unique needs of power-based abuse victims. She provides training to a wide variety of professionals and organizations related to the criminal justice system, with a focus on dating violence prevention in teen populations. Kaitlyn also works directly with survivors within the agency to provide crisis intervention, safety planning, and resource referrals. She serves on task forces, community planning groups, and committees that are focused on ending domestic violence and sexual assault, and bringing survivors to safety.

Workshop Description

This training focuses on the complexity of systems that survivors of family and sexual violence may encounter, as well as a deep dive into the dynamics of trauma’s impact on survivors’ views of these systems. Advocates will develop a deeper understanding of their roles in supporting survivors of all ages, with an approach grounded in empowerment-based advocacy.

Dyan Garcia

Licensed Professional Counselor; Private Practice

Dyan is trained in trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy, cognitive processing therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy. She is a certified Equine Assisted Psychotherapist and loves using animals as an experiential modality. She enjoys working with clients of all ages and has an affinity for working with individuals with ADHD. Dyan is currently finishing her doctorate in Counselor Education and Supervision. Her dissertation is on the clinical resistance encountered with the use of Collaborative Documentation.

Workshop Description

Collaborative Documentation is the process of the provider and client working together to document the session. This process includes engaging the client in the client’s treatment from the intake through treatment planning through note documentation. Collaborative documentation is a critical factor in ensuring clinical information is clearly understood, conceptualized, and conveyed. Collaborative documentation has been found to be a significant benefit and helps build a positive therapeutic alliance in session. Additionally, use of collaborative documentation will reduce provider time outside of the session, thus reducing stress and provider burn-out, and giving the provider back time in their day. We will discuss what collaborative documentation is, some of the ethical concerns, and how to apply collaborative documentation to session with children, adolescents, and families.

Crystal Leake

Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor; New Horizons

Crystal Leake is Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor currently working at New Horizons as a counselor at the New Horizon’s Family Center. She serves primarily foster children and families in healing process. For over 10 years she has served in a professional setting helping connect children and adults to healing. Her experience in the field has covered supporting children, adults and families in settings of psychiatric hospital, residential treatment centers, outpatient practice, and Military Family Life Counselor. Crystal has a Master’s in Family Ministry, Master’s in Family Psychology, is a Trust Based Relational Intervention practitioner, has specialized trainings in trauma, premarital/post marital counseling, and drug prevention. She is currently working toward obtaining her RPT (registered play therapist). Her experience as a foster and adopt mother helps her relate to the unique challenges and successes of the foster care world. Crystal speaks at many different events covering both psychological and theological topics. She is a mother of two wonderful children, kinship mom/cousin to wonderful baby, and wife to a supportive and loving husband.  

Workshop Description

This workshop is to identify and address ways we can build resiliency with the persons we work with and within ourselves, Define Resiliency, Identify Risk factors to resiliency, and Identify ways to build resiliency.

Catherine Mason

Detective – APD

Detective Catherine Mason was born and raised in Abilene, Texas and graduated from Abilene Christian University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice. Catherine worked at Child Protective Services as an Investigator prior to joining the Abilene Police
Department in 2015. Catherine joined the Cyber Crimes Unit in 2018 as a Detective and has helped grow and develop the unit into what it is today. Catherine has completed numerous investigations centered around Child Exploitation. Catherine is a certified
Peer to Peer Investigator, an Internet Crimes Against Children Investigator, certified Chatter through Calibre Press, and a Task Force Officer with Homeland Security. Catherine works closely with Federal agencies and Federal prosecutors to bring justice in these types of investigations.

Workshop Description

This course will detail cyber-crimes investigations, both proactive and reactive, and will provide case studies for both. The course materials and case studies will help investigators learn how to identify individuals who are targeting children online.

Brain Poynor

Community Response Team Officer

I work for the Abilene Police Department. I have been with the department for 14 years. I have been assigned to the Community Response Team since June of 2019. The CRT has a police officer, paramedic and a mental health professional assigned to the
team. The team responds to calls that come in through the 911 dispatch center that involve someone in crisis. The team will also follow up with individuals that were seen in crisis over night or in the hospital. The ultimate goal is to get individuals connected with various services in the community to prevent future hospitalizations and involvement with the criminal justice system.

Workshop Description

Workshop will provide the Audience a different approach to dealing with subjects in a mental health
crisis. Traditionally the response is sent individuals that are experience a mental health crisis to the
hospital or potentially the jail. Workshop will provide discussion on how alternative ways when
dealing with these individuals.

Jason Shaw

Licensed Professional Counselor; New Horizons

Jason Shaw is a licensed professional counselor and currently works at the New Horizon’s Counseling Center. He has been working with New Horizons for the last 7 years. He has a Masters of Counseling and Human Development from Hardin Simmons University and a Bachelor of Education from Angelo State University. Jason taught elementary school grades 2-5 over the course of 8 years and has over 20 years of work with youth. Jason is a TBRI Practitioner and CANS provider. Jason enjoys reading, theology, sports and art. Jason and his wife, Ashton, have been married for 5 years and have two children.

Workshop Description

The fast-paced internet age has brought many wonderful things, however, when it comes to our children it has become a dangerous place. This course is designed to share the current research and recommendations for screen time and children/teens, ways to set up healthy boundaries with screen time in homes, and ideas to help monitor screen time.

Ann Marie Willoughby

Forensic Nurse Examiner; Hendrick Hospital

Ann Marie Willoughby a forensic nurse examiner at Hendrick Medical Center with over 20 years of nursing experience.

Workshop Description

Children are being victimized daily, the workshop will look at strategies that can be implemented to help minimize these abuse.