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2018 Summit Highlights

A Message from Executive Director Camille Maben

Thank you to those who attended the 2018 Child Health, Education, and Care Summit on April 10–12 in Glendale.

During the three days, we had attendees from a variety of backgrounds, inspirational keynote speakers, 20 pre-summit workshops, 35 sessions, and the support of so many generous sponsors (more than ever before) – for which we are very grateful.

We especially appreciate attendees who completed the on-line survey; your comments will be used to enhance future Summits.

Here’s a sampling of some of the results and feedback we received from the survey:

  • “It was great to meet other First 5 Commission staff and staff from partner organizations. The information presented was closely relevant to my job, and I am able to apply what I learned right away. Most importantly, the feeling of familiarity as part of the big First 5 family the entire time was great.”
  • “The Summit was informative and educational. The place was perfect, and the keynote speakers were outstanding.”
  • “This was one of the most informational Summits I have ever attended. The quality of the presenters and keynote speakers were top-notch.”

  • Additionally, an overwhelming number of participants responded that the summit was well organized and they would attend a future Summit.

    Thank you for your support, and we look forward to planning the next Summit.

    Camille Maben
    Executive Director
    First 5 California

    2018 Keynote Speakers


    Andrew N. Meltzoff, Ph. D.

    Dr. Andrew N. Meltzoff holds the Job and Gertrud Tamaki Endowed Chair and is the Co-Director of the University of Washington Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences. A graduate of Harvard University, with a PhD from Oxford University, he is an internationally renowned expert on infant and child development. His discoveries about infant imitation have revolutionized our understanding of early cognition, personality, and brain development. His research on social-emotional development and children’s understanding of other people has helped shape policy and practice.

    Dr. Meltzoff's 20 years of research on young children has had far-reaching implications for cognitive science, especially for ideas about memory and its development; for brain science, especially for ideas about common coding and shared neural circuits for perception and action; and for early education and parenting, particularly for ideas about the importance of role models, both adults and peers, in child development.

    He is the co-author of two books about early learning and the brain: The Scientist in the Crib: What Early Learning Tells Us about the Mind (Morrow Press, 2000) and Words, Thoughts and Theories (MIT Press, 1997). He is also co-editor of The Imitative Mind: Development, Evolution and Brain Bases (Cambridge University Press, 2002), a unique, multidisciplinary volume combining brain science, evolutionary theory, and developmental psychology.

    Dr. Meltzoff is the recipient of a MERIT Award from the National Institutes of Health. In 2005, he was the recipient of an award for outstanding research from the Society for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics and the Kenneth Craik Award in Psychology, Cambridge University, England. Dr. Meltzoff is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Psychological Association, and the American Psychological Society. He has been inducted into the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters and is the recipient of the James McKeen Cattell Sabbatical Award.

    Dr. Meltzoff is active in volunteer work concerning children, having served on the board of directors of the Foundation for Early Learning, the board of directors of the University Child Development School, the National Advisory Committee for Grants of the March of Dimes Foundation, and the national advisory board of Parents Magazine.

    Dr. Meltzoff has appeared on the PBS programs Scientific American Frontiers and NOVA, on ABC's World News Now, NBC's Today Show, the CBC Discovery series, and in numerous other media outlets. He is married to Dr. Patricia K. Kuhl, and they have one daughter.


    Dr. Dana Suskind

    Dr. Dana Suskind is a Professor of Surgery at the University of Chicago, Director of the Pediatric Cochlear Implant Program, and Founder and Director of the Thirty Million Words® Initiative, a program dedicated to harnessing the power of language to build a child’s brain and impact his or her future. Dr. Suskind is also the author of Thirty Million Words: Building a Child’s Brain, published in September 2015.

    A well-known study by Betty Hart and Todd Risley in 1995 found some children heard thirty million fewer words by their fourth birthdays than others. The children who heard more words were better prepared when they entered school. They had bigger vocabularies, stronger reading skills, and higher test scores. Dr. Suskind learned of this thirty million-word gap while she was working as a cochlear implant surgeon at the University of Chicago Medical Center. Intrigued and alarmed by the study, she began the Thirty Million Words® Initiative in response to this word gap and is actively working to close this ever-widening achievement gap.

    In her book and keynote presentations, Dr. Suskind details the critical importance of early language exposure on a developing child’s brain and encourages parents to take an active role in this development. Drawing on her own experiences with patients and the compelling research on the neuroscience of brain plasticity, Dr. Suskind explains that the most important, and astoundingly simple, thing that one can do for a child’s future success in life is to talk to him or her.

    Dr. Suskind and the Thirty Million Words® Initiative have been profiled by numerous media outlets, including the New York Times, NPR, The Economist, and, and they have received support from The Department of Education and The Hemera Foundation. She also received the University of Chicago Medical Faculty Award for “Distinguished Leader in Program Innovation.”


    Dowell Myers, Ph.D.

    Keynote Slides

    Dowell Myers, Ph.D., is a professor of policy, planning, and demography in the Sol Price School of Public Policy at the University of Southern California. Professor Myers is a specialist in demographic trends and their relation to all areas of policy and planning. He is a leading expert on the California and the U.S. population. Dr. Myers’s work emphasizes the current generational transition underway between the aging baby boomers, who are beginning to retire, and a younger, more diverse generation now being educated to replace them in the work force, among the taxpayers, and in the housing market. His recent study for the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health focused on the “doubled importance” of children in the post-Great Recession era. Dr. Myers is the author of the award-winning book Immigrants and Boomers: Forging a New Social Contract for the Future of America. He holds his Ph.D. from MIT, a Master of City Planning from UC-Berkeley, and a B.A. degree in anthropology from Columbia University. Many of Dr. Myers’ publications are available at


    Ajay Chaudry, Ph.D.

    Keynote Slides

    Ajay Chaudry, Ph.D., is the author of Putting Children First: How low-wage working mothers manage child care, and co-author of Cradle to Kindergarten: A new plan to combat inequality as well as articles related to child poverty, children of immigrant families, and U.S. social and economic policies. He is currently a Visiting Scholar at New York University, and previously served in the administration of President Barack Obama as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Human Services Policy in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation at HHS (2012–15). Prior experiences include Senior Fellow & Director of the Center on Labor, Human Services, and Population at the Urban Institute (2007–12); Deputy Commissioner for Early Childhood Development at the New York City Administration for Children Services (2004–06); and faculty at the New School for Social Research. Dr. Chaudry completed an A.B. degree at Columbia University, and an MPP and Ph.D. at Harvard University.


    Dr. Vincent J. Felitti

    A renowned physician and researcher, Dr. Vincent J. Felitti is one of the world’s foremost experts on childhood trauma. Leading the charge in research into how adverse childhood experiences affect adults, he is co-principal investigator of the internationally recognized Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study, a long-term, in-depth analysis of over 17,000 adults. Founder of the Department of Preventive Medicine for Kaiser Permanente, Dr. Felitti served as the chief of preventive medicine for over 25 years. Under Dr. Felitti's leadership, his department provided comprehensive medical evaluations to 1.1 million individuals, becoming the largest single-site medical evaluation facility in the western world. Dr. Felitti also has served on advisory committees at the Institute of Medicine and the American Psychiatric Association. A noted expert on the genetic disease hemochromatosis, as well as obesity, he educates audiences around the country on these two very common, deadly maladies. Drawing on his years of experience, he has become an important voice advocating for the wellbeing of children everywhere. Dr. Felitti helps show audiences how we can understand these physical and mental traumas, and ultimately, prevent them.

    2018 Summit Sessions

    Pre-Summit Sessions
    Session Presenter(s) Session Slides
    PS-1A: California Family Engagement: It’s Everybody’s Business Mindy May, Boston Children's Hospital
    Wendy Watson, Boston Children's Hospital
    Eva Rivera, Brazelton Touchpoints
    PS-1B: Quality Counts California Technology and Digital Ecosystem: A Playground of Opportunities Evelina Du, WestEd
    Kim Taniguchi, California Department of Education
    Simon Marquez, First 5 California
    Elizabeth Magruder, WestEd
    Session Slides 1
    Session Slides 2
    PS-1C: Serving Dual Language Learners in QRIS Settings: What Are Effective Strategies? Heather Quick, American Institutes for Research
    Raquel González, American Institutes for Research
    Rebecca Bergey, American Institutes for Research
    Session Slides
    PS-1D: Working Together Toward a Statewide Coach Certification: Where Are We Now? Randi Shapiro, EarlyEdU Alliance
    Susan Sandall, EarlyEdU Alliance
    Valerie Mendez-Farinas, University of Florida's Lastinger Center for Learning
    Alexandra Prinstein, University of Florida's Lastinger Center for Learning
    Abby Thorman, Early Childhood Innovations, University of Florida
    Kathleen Artman Meeker, University of Washington
    Session Slides
    PS-2A: 384 Miles to the Oregon Border: Collaboration in Long-Distance Partnerships Leah Benz, First 5 Sonoma County
    Angela Glore, First 5 Del Norte
    Megan Richards, First 5 Solano
    Jerri Leighton, Community Child Care Council, Sonoma County
    Denise Gale, El Dorado County Office of Education
    Danielle Singley, Region 3 Hub
    Session Slides
    PS-2B: Close the Gap: Local and Sustainable PreK–3 Alignment Christine Thorsteinson, Center for Early Learning, Silicon Valley Community Foundation
    Audra Pittman, Bayshore Elementary School District
    Session Slides
    PS-2C: Early Quality Matters: Engaging Family, Friends and Neighbors in Quality Initiatives Catherine Goins, Placer County Office of Education  
    PS-2D: Get in the Game of Data: Tools to Interpret, Reflect Upon and Plan Environment, Interactions and Daily Routines Using Data Tamarra Osborne, WestEd
    Heidi Mendenhall, WestEd
    PS-2E: QRIS and Help Me Grow: Early Identification and Intervention Partners Heather Little, First 5 Association of California
    Vincent Cheng, First 5 Alameda
    Krista Murphy, Orange County Department of Education
    Theresa Zighera, First 5 San Francisco
    PS-2F: QRIS Beyond the Matrix—Leadership Development and Racial Equity in Early Care and Education Neva Bandelow, Alameda County Office of Education
    LaWanda Wesley, Alameda County Early Care and Education Program, Alameda County General Service Program
    Session Slides
    PS-2G: The Coaching Continuum: Utilizing Parallel Process and Research-Based Strategies to Build Capacity in Coaches and Workforce Members Eunice Munro, San Diego County Office of Education
    Jena Kubiak, San Diego County Office of Education
    PS-2H: Using Parallel Process to Evaluate and Guide Local QRIS Implementation Raechelle Bowlay-Sutton, Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo County, Child Care Planning Council  
    PS-3A: Building Local Consortia, Financing Strategically, and Leveraging Resources in QRIS Elizabeth Blakemore, El Dorado County Office of Education
    Kathleen Guerrero, First 5 El Dorado
    Lawanda Wesley, Alameda County Early Care and Education Program
    Sharon Baskett, Riverside County Office of Education

    Session Slides 1
    Session Slides 2
    Session Slides 3

    PS-3B: Create an Attainable Network of Effective CLASS Supports to Increase Access to Powerful, High-Quality Early Learning Care Melissa Kelley-Knutsen, Teachstone
    Leah Benz, First 5 Sonoma County
    Krista Murphy, Orange County Department of Education
    Jackie Scott, First 5 Shasta
    PS-3C: Creating a Coaching Culture in Early Learning Anika Bugarin-Jebejian, Kidango, Inc.
    Renuka Hiremani, Kidango, Inc.
    Session Slides
    PS-3D: Expanding and Enhancing QRIS Implementation: Creating Efficiencies through Collaborative Efforts Carrie Murphy, Ventura County Office of Education, Early Childhood Programs
    Sloane Burt, Ventura County Office of Education, Early Childhood Programs
    Session Slides
    PS-3E: North State QRIS Scholarship Hilary Bingham, North State QRIS/First 5 Shasta
    Rea McFadden, North State QRIS/Shasta County Office of Education
    Wendy Dickens, First 5 Shasta
    Elizabeth Tanner, Shasta College
    Phadie Irons, Glenn County Office of Education
    Session Slides
    PS-3F: QRIS in Sacramento: Diving Deeper through RQT Pathways Ramee Serwanga, Sacramento County Office of Education
    Christine Smith, Sacramento County Office of Education
    PS-3G: Turning Assessment Into Learning on the Path to CQI Ann Hentschel, The Branagh Information Group  
    PS-3H: Utilizing the Inclusive Classroom Profile (ICP) to Determine Quality Kathryn Wahl, Santa Clara County Office of Education Session Slides
    Summit Day 1 Sessions
    Session Presenter(s) Session Slides
    1A: Mapping Disparities in Access to Early Childhood Education Programs in California Karen Manship, American Institutes for Research
    Jennifer Anthony, American Institutes of Research
    1B: Telling Your Story: One District’s Journey Toward Putting Early Learning on the Map Chris Becerra, Brea-Olinda School District
    Krista Murphy (QRIS Region 9 Lead), Orange County Department of Education
    1C: Systemwide Implementation of Motivational Interviewing to Engage Families in Relationship-based Approaches Miriah de Matos, American Academy of Pediatrics, Chapter 3
    Lillian Valmidiano, American Academy of Pediatrics, Chapter 3
    Session Slides
    1D: Responsive Early Education for Young Children and Families Experiencing Homelessness Julie Nicholson, WestEd, Center for Child and Family Studies
    Irenka Dominguez-Pareto, WestEd, Center for Child and Family Studies
    Cecelia Fisher-Dahms, CDE, Early Education and Support Division
    1E: Envisioning the Future of Early Education: How County Office of Education Regional Hubs Can Help Create Cohesive and Inclusive Programs Amanda Dickey, CCSESSA/COEPACD
    Lucia Garay, San Diego County Office of Education
    Sharon Baskett, Riverside County of Education
    Catherine Goins, Placer County Office of Education
    Session Slides
    1F: Ensuring Children are Ready to Learn by Reducing Chronic Early Absence Hedy Chang, Attendance Works
    Araceli Sandoval-Gonzalez, Attendance Works
    Session Slides
    Handouts 1
    Handouts 2
    1G: Essentials for Childhood Introduces Two New Initiatives Focused on Understanding Childhood Adversity, Preventing Trauma, and Building Resilience Nathan Porter, Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health
    Karen Clemmer, ACEs Connection Network
    Angela Ponivas, CDSS, Office of Child Abuse Prevention
    Steve Wirtz, CDPH, Injury Surveillance and Epidemiology
    Session Slides
    1H: The Marijuana Boom: Cultivating Alternative Revenues for Children’s Services Margot Grant Gould, First 5 Association of California
    Mary Ann Hansen, First 5 Humboldt
    David Brody, First 5 Santa Cruz
    Gina Daleiden, First 5 Yolo
    Jim Provenza, Yolo County Board of Supervisors
    Session Slides
    1I: A Life Course Framework for Improving the Lives of Boys and Men of Color Arnold Chandler, Forward Change  
    2A: The Children Need Us; Recognizing Our Role in Working with and Healing Hurting Children Laurie Prusso-Hatch, TeacherLaurie.COM  
    2B: A Father’s Role in Supporting Their Child’s Development Carlos Guerrero, Children's Hospital and Resource Center at Oakland Deborrah Bremond, Marriage and Family Therapist Session Slides
    2C: 1000 Days in Gap City: Exploring the Relationship Between the Breastfeeding Gap and the Word Gap Dia Michels, Platypus Media  
    2D: Transforming the Workforce: Early Childhood Education Workforce Efforts in California Maggie Steakley, Glen Price Group
    Caitlin Lawrence-Toombs, Glen Price Group
    Session Slides
    2E: Narrowing the Kindergarten Readiness Opportunity Gap in Alum Rock, East San Jose: Creating Systemic Pathways to Success for All Children Jolene Smith, First 5 Santa Clara
    Hilaria Bauer, Alum Rock Union School District
    Lisa Colvig-Niclai, Applied Survey Research
    Camille Llanes-Fontanilla, SOMOS Mayfair
    Session Slides
    2F: Learning from the Experts: Using Empathy Interviews with Families to Guide Programs and Policy Change Angela Glore, First 5 Del Norte
    Ben York, ParentPowered Technologies
    Session Slides
    2G: Develop Leadership within the Field of Early Childhood Education Jennifer Burrell, Orange County Association for the Education of Young Children
    Melissa Wheelahan, Orange County Association for the Education of Young Children
    Session Slides
    Handout 1
    Handout 2
    2H: Strategies for Public and Institutional Policy Change to Advance the Workplace Rights of New Parents Jenna Gerry, Legal Aid at Work
    Jenna Gaarde, MCAH, San Francisco Department of Public Health
    Session Slides
    3A: Child Care Bridge: An Interactive Two-County Panel on Successes, Challenges, and Lessons Learned Susan Savage, Child Care Resource Center
    Nicky Hackett, County of San Bernardino
    Maria Romero, Los Angeles County Department of Children and Families
    Jennifer Rexroad, California Alliance of Caregivers
    Session Slides
    3B: Strengthening Connections with the Physical Health Sector: Lessons Learned from the Prenatal to Age 5 Workforce Development Project Christina Nigrelli, Zero to Three
    Jenifer Chacon, Zero to Three
    3C: Creating a Strategic Approach to Strengthen, Integrate, Expand, and Sustain Solano County’s Early Childhood System Michele Harris, First 5 Solano
    Megan Richards, First 5 Solano
    Lisa Colvig-Niclai, Applied Survey Research
    Session Slides
    3D: Building an Inclusive Preschool System: How New Legislation and Promising Practices Are Decreasing Barriers to Inclusion Amanda Dickey, CCSESA/COEPACD
    Lucia Garay, San Diego County Office of Education
    Amy Anderson, El Dorado County Office of Education
    Kathy Wahl, Santa Clara County Office of Education
    Session Slides
    3E: Family Engagement: Improving Health Literacy, Health Behaviors, and Site Policies for Staff and Parents Lisa Tadlock, Public Health Institute Center for Wellness and Nutrition
    Ariella Herman, UCLA, Johnson and Johnson Health Care Institute
    Carol Teutsch, UCLA, Johnson and Johnson Health Care Institute
    Jane Banister, Public Health Institute
    Session Slides
    3F: Child Abuse Prevention and Parent Retention: Changing Lives through ACEs Parent Education Components and Reflection/Resilience Activities Lucy Morse Roberts, Lead4Tomorrow  
    3G: Moving from Insights to Action on School Readiness in the Bay Area Theresa Zighera, First 5 San Francisco
    Sarah Crow, First 5 Contra Costa
    Chris Hwang, First 5 Alameda
    Christina Branom, Applied Survey Research
    Kim Carpenter, Applied Survey Research
    Session Slides
    3H: From Pilots to State System Change Margot Grant Gould, First 5 Association of California
    Sarah Neville-Morgan, CDE, Early Education and Support Division
    Graham Dobson, San Francisco Office of Early Care and Education
    Lupe Jaime, Fresno County Office of Education
    Session Slides
    3I: Understanding Barriers to Fathers' Engagement with Their Children and Support Services and Introduction to the Alameda County Father Friendly Principles Kevin Bremond, First 5 Alameda County
    Gary Thompson, Alameda County Public Health Department
    Session Slides
    3J: Improving Quality through Shared Services: A Systems Change Strategy for Early Care and Education Providers Moderator: Joyce Robinson, Low Income Investment Fund
    Gloria Davis, Girl's Club of Los Angeles
    DeAnna Featherstone, Precious Little Heartbeat Child Care
    Verlinda Walker, Precious Little Heartbeat Child Care
    Elyssa Nelson, Child Education Center, Inc.
    Summit Day 2 Sessions
    Session Presenter(s) Session Slides
    4A: Maternal Mental Health Disorders and Disrupted Attachment Joy Burkhard, 2020 Mom
    Diana Lynn Barnes, The Center for Postpartum Health
    4B: The Two-Generation Approach to Promoting Child Success & Supporting Family Self-Sufficiency Angie Dillon-Shore, First 5 Sonoma
    Marta Tilling, Community Action Partnership of Sonoma County
    Session Slides
    4C: How Our Youngest Kids Use and Interact with Technology Jill Murphy, Common Sense Media
    Sierra Filucci, Common Sense Media
    Session Slides
    4D: Expanding ACEs: Understanding and Addressing Childhood Economic Hardships Christine Rinki, California Department of Public Health
    Caroline Danielson, Public Policy Institute of California
    Lori Turk-Bicakci, Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health
    Session Slides
    4E: So You’ve Collected Data – Now What? Transforming Data into Action Juan Carlos Torres, San Diego County Office of Education
    Nancy Baum, San Diego County Office of Education
    Session Slides
    4F: Building Bridges to Equity: Engaging ALL Learners Kathryn Wahl, Santa Clara County Office of Education Session Slides
    4G: Building Family Leaders: Lessons Learned about Creating and Sustaining an Effective Family Leadership Program Kelsey Gottschalk, Tandem, Partners in Early Learning Session Slides
    4H: Approaches to Embrace Father Participation: Successful County Efforts Serving and Engaging Fathers Moderator: George Halvorson, Commission Chair, First 5 California
    Kevin Bremond, First 5 Alameda County
    Gary Thompson, Alameda County Public Health Department
    Chinayera Black-Hardaman, First 5 Madera County
    Leticia Casillas-Sanchez, First 5 Los Angeles
    Session Slides