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Policy and Advocacy

The purpose of this committee is to educate and engage ILAIMH membership in early childhood mental health policy and advocacy by promoting the inclusion of the Association’s infant mental health expertise in state level committees, coalitions, and advocacy groups that are impacting early childhood policies, programs, and systems; and informing ILAIMH members of efforts to improve public policies in Illinois that impact the lives of young children and their families.

Committee Chair:  Alli Lowe-Fotos, e-mail: alowefotos@ounceofprevention.org

Education and Professional Development

This committee is responsible for organizing and overseeing our annual conference and annual series of seminars.  The annual conference of ILAIMH features a nationally known speaker in the field of Infant Mental Health.  Professionals in many different disciplines working with infants, young children, and their families attend the conference every year.  Members of this committee may choose to work on the conference, the seminar series, or both.

  • Chair: Tammy Besser
  • Advisor: Norma Swanson Irie

Contact infant@ilaimh.org for more information

Development

The development committee is a very important committee of the ILAIMH. The goal of the committee is to explore sources of funding (both public and private) to ensure the work of the Association continues. This is a fundamental committee of the Association.

Board Member/Consultant: Sabrina Townsend, email: satownse1@yahoo.com

Student

The student committee is designed to engage both graduate and undergraduate students in early childhood and clinical programs in the work of the Illinois Association for Infant Mental Health. This committee works to help students come together to learn about the field of Infant Mental Health and implications for future practice in the field, as well as educating students on the importance of policy and advocacy related to infancy and early childhood.

Student Representatives:

Research

The research committee brings researchers from many different settings together for support around the challenges of conducting research with young children and their families. They provide an atmosphere of collaboration and professional reflection to support research in the field of Infant Mental Health. This committee oversees the awarding of the Dolores Norton Research Award, which is presented annually to a doctoral or post-doctoral student conducting research in the field of infant mental health.

Committee Chair: Nora Barquin, email: nora.barquin@family-focus.org

Membership

The membership committee focuses on outreach to professionals serving infants and young children and works to strengthen the membership base of the association. They maintain a presence for the association on social media as a way to reach out to our members and the community with information that is of interest to professionals working in the field of infant mental health.

Committee Chair: Nancy Mork, e-mail: nmork@erikson.edu

Reflective Practice Groups

This committee coordinates the work of the Reflective Practice Groups and the Reflective Practice Group facilitators. The Reflective Practice Groups are funded by the Harris Foundation and have been in existence since 2015. There have been groups throughout Illinois, and the groups meet for 10 sessions, where professionals can earn up to 12 hours of reflective supervision toward the credential application process.

Committee Liaison/Chair: Mary Lehman, email: marylehman@marcfirst.org

Communication

The communication committee is responsible for the administration of our listserv and assists with the running of our website. This committee also works on the production and distribution of our quarterly newsletter for members.

Credential

The Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Credential is a project of the ILAIMH. The credential committee has workgroups that focus on different aspects of the credential process. These workgroups include the competency workgroup, which reviews the competencies on which the credential is based, the implementation workgroup, which oversees the credential process and focuses on how the credential is administered, and the higher education workgroup, which interfaces with personnel educating future infant mental health professionals.

Committee Chair: Karen Freel, e-mail: karen.freel@att.net