2016 TASH Conference has ended
Each year, the TASH Conference strengthens the disability field by connecting attendees to innovative information and resources, facilitating connections between stakeholders within the disability movement, and helping attendees reignite their passion for an inclusive world. This year’s conference theme, “Gateway to Equity,” explores inclusive communities, schools, and workplaces that support people with disabilities, including those with complex support needs, in living a fair, just, and balanced life. Return to TASH website.
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Wednesday, November 30 • 8:15am - 11:30am
Where the Rubber Hits the Road: Building a Dynamic, First Rate Infrastructure to Support State Employment 1st Efforts LIMITED

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Limited Capacity seats available

Strategic investments in developing the capacity of front-line direct support professionals and in testing innovative tactics for supporting individuals in competitive integrated employment is critical to the success of state Employment First efforts.  Both the Administration on Community Living and the Office on Disability Employment Policy have invested heavily in support state E1st systems change efforts in recent years.  This pre-conference session will focus on reviewing the challenges that states are facing in building a first-rate direct support professional workforce within an E1st framework, and to highlight strategies and models that states have successfully implemented to build and sustain the capacity of their front-line employment support workforce to support individuals with disabilities achieve competitive, integrated employment.


At the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  1. To identify Federal and state resources that can be utilized to build the capacity of front line direct support professionals and providers to bring to scale effective practices that lead to competitive, integrated employment (CIE).
  2. To discuss the learnings from two Federally-funded state E1st systems change initiatives -- ODEP's Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Program and ACL's Partnerships in Integrated Employment -- regarding strategies for bringing to scale effective practices that foster and promote CIE.  
  3. To acquire and develop new strategies and approaches in four key areas (customized employment, individualized supported employment, using technology as an equalizer and employer engagement) to developing staff and programs that are focused on supporting individuals with disabilities achieve and sustain CIE. 


8:15-8:35 a.m.            Welcome & Overview

  • ODEP/ACL’s investments, collaboration, and unified commitment to Employment First systems change efforts.
  • Objectives for the Day
  • Expectations of Participants (ask the group, pick 2-3 participants to respond)


8:35-9:05 a.m.            Person-Centered Planning and Personalized Service Delivery –

Strategies That Move People from Programs Into REAL LIFE!

Gail Fanjoy, KFI (Maine)


9:05-9:35 a.m.            Creating a Successful Employment Team:  

Dynamic Program and Staff Development

Rachel Pollock, Job Path, Inc. (New York)


9:35-10:15 a.m.          Leveling the Playing Field thru Person-Centered Technology


                                    Jennifer White, Able Opportunities (Washington State)


10:15-10:30 a.m.        Applying Promising Practices to Our Realities Back Home: 

Interactive Small Group Discussion

  • Have you attempted to use any of these strategies in your professional/personal work in this field thus far?  If not, what do you think would be the most feasible way to get started?
  • Based on the concepts discussed in the morning, where do you see the greatest opportunities to adopt some of these practices into your ongoing work?  What do you think might be the greatest barriers to overcome?


10:30-11:00 a.m.        Field perspective: Employment First Systems Change in Action

                                    Julie Christensen, Iowa’s University Center for Excellence on Disabilities

                                    (Formerly NY State Lead on EFSLMP & PIE Partnerships)


11:00-11:30 a.m.        Interactive Q&A and Wrap-Up


avatar for Julie Christensen

Julie Christensen

Associate Director, Center for Disabilities and Development (IA UCEDD)
Julie J. Christensen, LMSW, PhD, is the Associate Director of the Center for Disabilities and Development (CDD), a University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), at the University of Iowa. Prior to joining CDD in May 2016, Dr. Christensen served as the Director... Read More →
avatar for Gail Fanjoy

Gail Fanjoy

2016 TASH Award Winner (Barbara R. Trader Leadership Award) Gail Fanjoy is CEO of KFI (Katahdin Friends, Inc.), an agency which provides supports for people with disabilities in the areas of community employment, supported living, and community life engagement in Maine.  Having worked... Read More →
avatar for Serena Lowe

Serena Lowe

Senior Policy Advisor, Administration on Community Living, Office on Policy Analysis & Development, HHS
A policy-geek at heart with an insatiable intellectual curiosity, I have spent the past twenty years serving in a variety of leadership roles focused on furthering policies that promote the socioeconomic advancement of low-income working families, citizens with disabilities, aging... Read More →

Wednesday November 30, 2016 8:15am - 11:30am CST
Grand D 1820 Market Street, St. Louis, MO 63103