One On One

Jennifer Sharma

Consultant/Life Coach

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What is your background in child welfare?

I have worked in child welfare and children's mental health for 19 years. I started in direct service and worked on systems of care reform grants. Then I moved into working with private and public child welfare agencies as an evaluator and researcher. Throughout my career, I have applied my strengths in strategic and business planning, research to practice, leadership development, systems design, and organizational development to support non profit organizations in achieving their missions. I joined CWLA in 2008 as a regional director. During my three-year tenure with CWLA, I provided leadership in resource development, research to practice, leadership development, public-private partnerships, publications and training/consultation.

What kind of work are you doing now?

I am currently initiating and growing my own consultation company, Cadence Consulting, in Ohio. As part of their leadership development, I am coaching managers and supervisors in a local child welfare agency and am a participating coach in a state wide network of coaches for leaders in Ohio's public child welfare system(s). I find this work extremely rewarding and enjoy watching these leaders build skills, engage their staff, and lead quality service provision to children and families.

I also provide consultation to non-profits in the areas of leadership development, strategic planning, program and system design, system implementation, and member services. One recent project involved facilitating an aspect of the Ohio Attorney General's meeting on foster care. The day was designed by the AG's office, in collaboration with several public and private entities, to gather feedback regarding several areas of need in the foster care system and was attended by ACYF leaders, ODJFS, child welfare professionals, foster care alumni, legal professionals, and professionals in related fields.

Finally, I provide individual life coaching using an approach that focuses on creating one's life "from the inside out". With these clients, we work on developing clarity regarding each person's unique purpose, strategies to fulfill this purpose, and strategies to bring one's best self into every situation.

I am incredibly thankful for the time I spent at CWLA and think of my colleagues often. I have applied the knowledge I gained at CWLA to continue to support child welfare agencies in improving their effectiveness and therefore, better serve children and families.

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