May 16, 2012

Partners for Our Children (POC) has named Laurie Lippold Director of Public Policy. In this new role, Lippold will use scientific research, policy analysis and national best practices to lead efforts to inform and support child welfare policy choices that improve outcomes for children in Washington State. Lippold is a longtime advocate for children in the state, working for nearly two decades with organizations that address foster care, child welfare and children's health.

"We are thrilled to have Laurie on board," said Dr. Benjamin de Haan, Executive Director of POC. "With her expansive knowledge of child welfare issues, her strong relationships and her deep personal commitment, she is a perfect fit for leading a collective effort to build the best child welfare system in the nation."

As part of the University of Washington's School of Social Work, POC is a public-private partnership that provides research, evaluation and data collection, to address the challenges and needs of vulnerable families in Washington State. POC works closely with the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services and other advocates to ensure that all children have the resources and services they need to live safe and healthy lives.

Laurie will work to establish common goals with other organizations working toward improving services for children and families. Areas of  particular focus for the next year will include improving the effectiveness of contracted services, securing greater flexibility with federal funding for child welfare services, and supporting new approaches to the assessment of child abuse and neglect.

With more than 16 years of experience in the field, Lippold has demonstrated her passion and commitment to helping strengthen the system. She previously served as the Policy Director at Children's Home Society of Washington.

POC's research findings are pointing the way toward new and innovative practices to strengthen the system. Later this year, POC will launch the Washington State Child Well-Being Data Portal, which provides access to the critical data policy makers, community leaders, child advocates and the general public need to guide system improvement efforts that will lead to better outcomes for children and families. The Portal will help highlight what is working, identify areas for improvement and help other organizations and agencies to become more effective.