Latino Youth: A Glimpse Into Baltimore’s Future
Welcome to the Latino Health Conference 2016 homepage
You will need to register to attend this conference. To register please click (registration closed) If you need reduced fee please contact us by April 25, before purchasing your tickets, providing a description for your request. Funding is limited and we cannot guarantee that all who apply will receive this grant.
Thursday May 12, 2016, 8am-4pm
Creative Alliance, 3134 Eastern Ave. Baltimore, MD 21224
Latino Youth: A Glimpse into Baltimore’s Future: a conference sponsored by the Johns Hopkins Centro SOL and the Urban Health Institute. The conference will address topics of high priority suggested by our community partners, such as intergenerational gaps in mental health support, communication, reunification, acculturation, teen pregnancy, and educational opportunities and barriers for immigrant and U.S. born Latinos. Register at http://
Juventud Latina: Un Vistazo al Futuro de Baltimore: una conferencia patrocinada por Centro SOL y el Urban Health Institute. Durante la conferencia se tratarán temas de alta relevancia sugeridos por socios comunitarios, tales como brechas intergeneracionales en apoyo a salud mental, comunicación, reunificación, aculturación, embarazos adolescentes, y oportunidades y barreras educacionales para Latinos inmigrantes y nacidos en EE.UU. Regístrese para asistir a la conferencia http://
Keynote speaker, Commissioner Rafael López, Commissioner of the Administration on Children, Youth and Families (ACYF) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Joining Commissioner López will be Liany Arroyo, Director of the The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy
- Between Two Worlds: Mental Health Among Latino Youth – Moderated by Dr. Philip Leaf, Professor, Department of Mental Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
- Protecting the Promise: Teen Pregnancy Prevention – Moderated by Rev. Deborah Hickman
- Living the Promise: Education – Moderated by Cassie Motz, Executive Director, CollegeBound Foundation
Promote enriching mentorship, after-school and summer program opportunities for Latino youth, in partnership with entrepreneurs, and local organizations.
Eric Lin, Small Business Coach & Trainer at LEDC’s Baltimore office where he provides bilingual support for the creation and growth of small enterprises in the Baltimore area through one-on-one coaching, group training sessions, and networking entrepreneurs with strategic partners. Eric holds a Master’s degree from George Washington University’s Elliott School for International Affairs in International Development Studies, and a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in Economics. He also has a PMD-Pro certification for project management from APMG-International and coaching training from Neighborworks® America. Prior to joining LEDC he led the start-up of a community managed eco-tourism enterprise in a national park in the Dominican Republic, advised community tourism projects throughout Central America including a sea turtle tourism project in a critical nesting ground for Hawksbill Sea Turtles, and coached social entrepreneurs in over 15 countries on organizational development. While in Bocas del Toro, Panama he was general manager for three associated enterprises and oversaw the opening of a new business segment leading to year over year growth in revenue of over 20%. In addition to his experience in business operations Eric has spent over 7 years living and working in Latin America and the Caribbean. In his free time he spends time with his family, fixes bicycles, and surfs.
Thanks to our Business Breakfast co-sponsor:
Welcome and Opening remarks
Dr. Kathleen Page, MD, is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Her work focuses on improving access and quality of care to the emerging Latino community in Baltimore. Her practice in the Moore Clinic and at the Baltimore City Health Department primarily serves Latin American immigrants with HIV. She has established the Latino HIV Outreach Program at the Baltimore City Health Department which collaborates with various local community based organizations to improve timely HIV diagnosis and access to care for Latinos. She is co-founder and co-director of the Bayview Centro SOL (Center for Salud/Health and Opportunities for Latinos) which is developing novel strategies to meet the health needs of Latino migrants through education, community advocacy, clinical care, and research. She is the Baltimore City Health Department’s Director of STD/HIV/TB Clinical Services.
Sarah Polk MD, ScM, MHS serves as a bilingual (English/Spanish) primary care pediatrician and Medical Director of the Children’s Medical Practice. She is as Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins’ School of Medicine. Her overall research interest is optimizing primary care as a means of addressing racial/ethnic health disparities with a particular focus on early childhood obesity prevention and mental health care. Her work as a clinician has familiarized her with the challenges of providing high quality health care to Latino children of immigrants with Limited English Proficiency who comprise the majority of the patient population at the Children’s Medical Practice. This has led to hear involvement in a number of collaborative efforts to address healthcare quality concerns. For example, the Bayview Children’s Medical Practice Latino Family Advisory Board has sustained participation among immigrant, Latina mothers and provided ongoing, applicable feedback to the practice. She previously co-chaired the Hopkins Organization of Latino Awareness the aim of which is to galvanize faculty support around healthcare quality and access improvements for Latino patients. Finally, she and colleagues established Centro SOL the mission of which is to optimize the health of Latinos over their life course through leadership in clinical care, scholarship, education, and advocacy. Furthermore the Center’s vision is linguistically and culturally competent healthcare for Latinos that acknowledges the diversity of the Latino community and respects the dignity of each individual. Dr. Polk received her medical degree at Johns Hopkins and additional training at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Keynote presentation: Straddling Two Worlds – Latino Youth in the U.S.
Nominated by President Obama and confirmed by the United States Senate, Rafael López is the Commissioner of the Administration on Children, Youth and Families (ACYF) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. López is a results driven leader with experience in helping lead complex organizations in the public and social sectors where he has served in numerous roles at the city, county and state level focused on improving the lives of children, families and communities. From 2013-2015, López served as a Senior Policy Advisor at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy within the Executive Office of the President and with the Domestic Policy Council.
Prior to his service at the White House, López was an Associate Director at the Annie E. Casey Foundation, a private, national philanthropy devoted to developing a brighter future for millions of children at risk of poor educational, economic, social and health outcomes. Previously, López served as the President and CEO of The Family League of Baltimore City, Inc. where he was a member of the Baltimore City Mayor’s Cabinet. From 2006-2009, López was appointed by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to serve on his Cabinet as the Executive Director of the City of Los Angeles Commission for Children, Youth and Their Families. López previously served as the Deputy Director of the City and County of San Francisco Department of Children, Youth, and Their Families and as Senior Deputy for Health and Human Services for Los Angeles County Supervisor Gloria Molina. From 1999-2004, López served as the Founding Executive Director of First 5 Santa Cruz County where he launched the countywide implementation of the California Children and Families First Act-Proposition 10 and led innovative efforts to expand and create programs and services in health, school readiness, and family support including the creation of one of California’s first comprehensive health coverage programs for all Santa Cruz County children.
In 1999, López became the youngest person in the City’s history to serve on the Watsonville City Council where he led neighborhood based efforts to civically engage youth and immigrant families in the development of city services. He has worked closely with community based organizations as a volunteer, manager, executive, board member and founder and was sponsored by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation to serve as a fellow at Stanford University’s Center for Social Innovation at the Graduate School of Business Executive Program for Nonprofit Leaders. López was awarded a 2007-2008 Annie E. Casey Foundation Children and Family National Fellowship.
Born and raised in Watsonville, California, López is an alumnus of Vassar College and the University of California Santa Cruz where he graduated with honors in American Studies. He is a graduate of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government where he earned a Master in Public Administration and was named a Lucius N. Littauer Fellow. López and his wife, Rosa Ramírez-López, live in Washington, D.C. with their sons Adán Miguel and Mateo Gabriel.
Exel is a junior student at Patterson High School who is sharing his experience of living in the U.S. as a newly arrived kid.
Panel 1 Mental Health among Latino Immigrant Youth
Philip J. Leaf, Ph.D. is a Professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health with joint appointments in the Schools of Medicine, Nursing, Education, and Arts and Sciences. He is the Director of the CDC-funded Center for the Prevention of Youth Violence and the CDC-funded Center for Adolescent Health, and an NIMH-funded pre- and postdoctoral training program in Mental Health Services and Service System Research and serves as the Co-Backbone for theCONNECT/Baltimore City Opportunity Youth Collaborative. Dr. Leaf also is the Senior Associate Director of the University-wide Urban Health Institute. Dr. Leaf twice served as the Chair of the Mental Health Section of the American Public Health Association and has received the Special Section Award from that Association. In 2005, he received the Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Service Award from JHU. He also has received the Agus-Shehan Interfaith Leadership Award from the Central Maryland Ecumenical Council. In November, he will be receiving the Thurgood Marshall Legacy Award from the Baltimore City Chapter of the NAACP.
Dr. Marco Grados is a board-certified child and adolescent psychiatrist with expertise in anxiety disorders, in particular, pediatric obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), Tourette syndrome (TS). He trained in general psychiatry in the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, MI and completed a fellowship in Child & Adolescent Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins. His clinical work is focuses on anxiety disorders and working with Latino families at the Johns Hopkins Bayview Latino Family Clinic in the Community Psychiatry Program. He is clinical director of the Division of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry at Hopkins overseeing clinical services. He is also faculty advisor at the Colleges Advisory Program of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, working closely with medical students during their years at Hopkins.
Diego is co-founder of Identity and served as Deputy Executive Director from 2004 to July 2011, when he assumed the position of Executive Director. In this capacity, he guides the strategic direction of the organization, and its stewardship of a broad range of federal, state, local and private grants. Prior to co-founding Identity, Diego was a psychotherapist at various community-based organizations in the Washington, DC area that work with the Latino population. Diego participates in a several Montgomery County task forces and working groups: he is Co-Chair of the Latino Youth Collaborative Oversight Committee and of the steering committee of the Latino Health Initiative, and member of the steering committee of Nonprofit Montgomery and the Latino Public Safety Workgroup. He holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Belgrano in Argentina.
Program Manager for Foster Care, LIRS
Olivia began her role as a Children Services Program Specialist with LIRS in July 2013, focusing on the care and placement of UACs in transitional foster families or group home care. Olivia’s position has grown and she now manages a network of transitional, long term, and URM foster care programs. Prior to LIRS, Olivia worked with Hagar Cambodia, an international NGO, providing training and capacity building of local case management staff working with victims of trafficking and child abuse. Additionally, Olivia has six years of direct child welfare experience gained in the United Kingdom. During this time she worked with cases across the spectrum of child welfare from family preservation, child protection concerns, children in foster care, and adoption. Olivia spent three years with a specialized child protection team, conducting investigations and forensic interviews of children. Additionally, she worked in liaison with the UK Border Agency responding and assessing potential trafficking cases as well as working with migrant children and families seeking asylum in the UK. Olivia graduated with her BSW from Middle Tennessee State University in 2005 and gained her MSW in Global Social Work at Boston College in May 2013.
Rehabilitation and Treatment Coordinator, Child and Adolescent Services, Behavioral Health System Baltimore
Laurie Wollman, a native of New Jersey, holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Indiana University-Bloomington and a Master of Science in Psychiatric Rehabilitation from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. Laurie has provided behavioral health services to children and adolescents for over 15 years, working in a variety of settings including outpatient, educational, and residential. Upon joining Behavioral Health System Baltimore in 2014, Laurie has provided program oversight for many Baltimore City Child and Adolescent Providers in the Public Behavioral Health System including Targeted Case Management, School and Clinic Based Substance Use Providers, and the Unaccompanied Minors Project. Laurie also participates in the Local Care Team meetings and reviews Residential Treatment Center placements for Baltimore City youth and participates in the Child and Adolescent Coordinators meetings and Maryland Early Intervention Program meetings as the Baltimore City representative.
Protecting the Promise: Teen Pregnancy Prevention
Washington D.C. Metro Area - Director, Partnerships at The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy - The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy
Liany Elba Arroyo, MPH, CPH is the Director of Partnerships at The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy where she identifies strategic partnerships that strengthen initiatives to prevent teen and unplanned pregnancy in communities of color. In addition, she manages the Latino Initiative Advisory Group and the Personal Responsibility, Religion, and Values Advisory Group.
Prior to coming to The National Campaign, Liany spent over 13 years working in the government and non-profit sectors developing programs and promoting public policies that aimed to improve the health status of Latino communities. Most recently, Liany was the Associate Director of the Education and Children’s Policy Project at the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), where she worked on advancing policy solutions that addressed the social inequities faced by Latino children. She also served as Director of NCLR’s Institute for Hispanic Health where she conducted research on Latino health issues and developed and implemented various initiatives on diabetes, obesity, and reproductive health. Liany has published several pieces on children and Latino health and has been cited by Spanish and English media, including The New York Times, Newsweek, and Univision. Originally from Bridgeport, Connecticut, Liany resides in Landover, Maryland with her husband and daughter. She holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Wellesley College and a master’s degree in public health from Columbia University.
Panel 2 Informed Choices: Promoting Dialogue among Latino Youth on Reproductive Health
Rev. Debra Hickman is a lifelong Baltimore City resident and a recent recipient of her Masters of Divinity Degree from The Samuel DeWitt Proctor School of Theology on the campus of Virginia Union University. She is the proud daughter of Johnnie Hickman, Sr., who has been her rock since the early passing of her mother Hattie Hickman.
Rev. Hickman is the co-founder of Sisters Together And Reaching, Inc. (STAR) - a faith-based, non-profit, community-based organization that provides spiritual support and direct services and prevention education to HIV/AIDS infected, affected and at-risk African-Americans. Since its inception, she has served STAR in the capacity of President/CEO and has led a fledgling one-employee organization to a thriving 20-plus employee, nationally and internationally renowned organization.
Rev. Debbie is an ongoing consultant to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In 1999, she was selected to be among the first 40 CDC Leadership Scholars. Under the leadership of the former Mayor Martin O'Malley and past City Council President Sheila Dixon, Rev. Hickman was appointed to serve as a Commissioner for the Baltimore City HIV Commission and recently appointed by the White House Secretary of Health and Human Service Office to the Centers for Disease Control/Health Resource Services Administration Advisory Board. She is a lecturer in demand both locally and internationally.
She is the devoted and proud mother of Kelly Woolford, Randi Woods, and the Rev. Dr. Donté L. Hickman, Sr., a beautiful daughter in-law Danielle Hickman and the wonderfully blessed grandmother of Kiara and Kayla Woolford, Donté Jr. and Dawson Luke.
Rev. Hickman's favorite scripture is Psalm 34 and she attempts to carry this scripture out through a life that truly blesses the Lord by following his commands and sharing His love wherever she goes. Rev. Hickman is known as a visionary and her motto is, "Be Forward Focused and Not Past Possessed."
Dr. Jill Edwardson is the Medical Director of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinic at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. Dr. Edwardson earned a medical degree at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. She also received a master's in public health degree at the UCLA School of Public Health. She completed residency training at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. Her practice includes both general obstetrics and gynecology, with a special focus on adolescent health care and contraception. Dr. Edwardson also has a special interest in medical education, both in the U.S. and abroad. She is actively involved in resident education and mentorship.
Gina Baez is a native of Mexico and has lived in Baltimore since 1999. She holds a B.A. in teaching English as a Foreign Language from the University of Guadalajara, Mexico, and a Master’s degree in Intercultural Communications from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She has taught English and Spanish both in Mexico and the U.S. Gina has worked for the Baltimore City Health Department since 2002, where she directed a holistic teen pregnancy prevention program for Hispanic youth. Gina has extensive experience serving the Hispanic community in Baltimore, particularly recently immigrated Hispanic youth. She has focused on reproductive health education for students as well as parents. Gina provides cultural competency and language training to BCHD staff and serves as a liaison between the Hispanic community in Baltimore and the BCHD.
Vira David-Rivera is dedicated to improving reproductive and sexual health programs through data-driven strategies and population-level interventions. David-Rivera started her career in global health using data visualization techniques (such as mapping) to encourage programs to uncover gaps, locate key populations, and demonstrate impact. She has collaborated with partners in 12 countries and more than 20 organizations to build capacity and support evidence-based programming.
David-Rivera recently brought her global expertise to Baltimore City in her home state of Maryland. She currently leads the citywide Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative (TPPI) to improve the reproductive and sexual health of young people in Baltimore. The initiative ensures that young people have access to age-appropriate and evidence-based sexual health education, access to effective family planning and youth-friendly services and opportunities for young people to engage their communities and grow as civic leaders. She is most proud of the TPPI Youth Advisory Council members that keep the adults honest and drive the initiative.
David-Rivera earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from John Hopkins University and a Masters of Arts in Social and Economic Development from New School University.
Joanna Diamond is the Vice President of External Relations for Planned Parenthood of Maryland (PPM), where she oversees outreach, communications, marketing, development, and public affairs. Prior to her time at PPM, she directed an environmental non-profit in Maryland, which focused on policy and grassroots organizing. Previously, she was the Public Policy Associate for the American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland (ACLU), working on a wide range of civil rights issues in the Maryland General Assembly. Joanna has also worked on several political and issue campaigns, including the campaign in Wisconsin to recall Governor Scott Walker, President Obama's re-election campaign in Virginia, and directing the ACLU's marriage equality referendum campaign. Joanna received her bachelor's degree from the University of Maryland at College Park and a law degree from the University of Baltimore School of Law. During law school, Joanna practiced family law as a Rule 16 student attorney and, upon graduating law school, she was a judicial law clerk for the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland. Joanna started her career in reproductive justice as a hotline operator for the National Abortion Federation and began supporting PPM as a volunteer and donor to PPM's Annual Spring Gala. She is a lifelong Marylander and dog lover, who grew up in Baltimore County and now resides in the Hampden neighborhood of Baltimore with her partner, Ethan.
Children Don’t Migrate, They Flee
A project of the Alliance to End Slavery and Trafficking and Too Young to Wed, this exhibition includes photographs and commissioned assignments by award-winning photojournalists Katie Orlinsky, Kirsten Luce, Meridith Kohut, Estaban Felix, and Moises Castillo that portray the dire circumstances that compel unaccompanied children and families to flee their homes in the Northern Triangle in Central America.
The goal of this exhibition’s powerful visual imagery is to help give voice to the thousands upon thousands of children and families at the center of a humanitarian crisis that spans from the Northern Triangle in Central America, through Mexico and to our border.
In 2014, tens of thousands of unaccompanied children and families from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador arrived at the U.S. border. For many children and families, this journey was rife with violence, exploitation and trafficking. The risks were so great, but they were more tolerable than what they’d been forced to endure in Central America’s Northern Triangle.
Sadly, this humanitarian crisis shows no signs of abating. 10,500 unaccompanied children crossed the U.S.-Mexico border in October and November last year. And the root causes of this mass exodus—violence, corruption, poverty and a climate of impunity—remain unchanged and largely ignored by U.S. policymakers.
Living the Promise: Education for Latino Youth
Panel 3 The Road after High School for Latino Youth: Obstacles and Opportunities
Cassie was born and raised in Baltimore City and is a current City resident. She joined the CollegeBound Foundation as Executive Director in January 2014. Prior to joining CollegeBound, Cassie served as Deputy Chief of Staff to Governor Martin O'Malley. She had also served as Deputy Legal Counsel to Governor O'Malley and as the Interim Director of the Governor's Office for Children.
Cassie graduated from Dartmouth College and Yale Law School. Between college and law school, Cassie taught at a public middle school in the South Bronx, New York through Teach for America. After graduating from law school Cassie practiced law for several years in Washington -- prosecuting homicide and domestic violence cases as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, and serving as a Deputy Attorney General for the District of Columbia government, representing the city's child welfare and mental health agencies.
Cassie served on the University System of Maryland Board of Regents from June 2014 through March 2015. Cassie serves on the board of Catholic Charities and as board secretary for the KIPP Baltimore Schools.
Rudy Ruiz has served the Baltimore City Public Schools since July 2014 as the executive director of the Office of College and Career Readiness. Ruiz’s team is responsible for the City Schools’ divisions of college readiness, school counseling, career and technology education, and school scheduling. Ruiz brings a range of relevant experience, having also led college and career readiness efforts for the Milwaukee Public Schools, where he was an educator for 13 years. In addition to eight years as a high school mathematics and computer science teacher, Ruiz has served in school and district leadership roles, overseeing programs to support struggling students as well as advanced learners. Public and private partnership and collective impact are key to his improvement strategies. Ruiz earned his school and district administrative licensure from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. In addition, he has a masters of education in instructional technology from Cardinal Stritch University, where he studied as an NCAA and Pacific-10 Conference Post-Graduate Scholar, honors he earned upon completion of his bachelor’s degree at Stanford University. Ruiz is a member of the Johns Hopkins Graduate School of Education doctoral program Class of 2018, studying in the entrepreneurial leadership track. He was a member of the Greater Baltimore Committee’s Leadership Class of 2015 and was recently named a Maryland Daily Record ’40 Under 40’ Very Important Professional.
Nellie Pharr-Maletta is a career academic administrator in Higher Education, having worked in Admissions, Advising and International Student Services for the last 24 years at the University of Maryland College Park, the University of Maryland at Baltimore School of Pharmacy, the College of Southern Maryland and now the Community College of Baltimore County. Her passion is helping first generation and minority college students to graduate.
Nellie has a Bachelor’s’ in Business Administration from Howard University, a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Maryland College Park, and has completed all of the coursework for her Ph.D. in Education Policy and Leadership at the University of Maryland College Park.
She is a mother and daughter and loves life.
Jessica O’Keefe is an Assistant Director of Admission at The University of Baltimore. Jessica has been at UB for 3 years working closely with students in the Baltimore area. Previously, she worked at Salisbury University holding positions in the Registrar’s Office, Office of Admissions, as well as teaching in the Department of Health and Sports Sciences. Jessica holds a Master of Education in Post-Secondary Education and a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science from Salisbury University. She has experience working with and advising students in all stages of their academic career from prospective students to graduate and enjoys helping students navigate their path thru higher education.
Robert Wm. Blum, MD, MPH, PhD, is the William H. Gates, Sr. Professor and Chair of the Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He has edited two books, and has written nearly 300 journal articles, book chapters and special reports.
In July 2007, Dr. Blum was named the Director of the Johns Hopkins Urban Health Institute. He is a Past-President of the Society for Adolescent Medicine; has served on the American Board of Pediatrics; was a charter member of the Sub-Board of Adolescent Medicine is a past chair of the Guttmacher Institute Board of Directors and served as chair of the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Adolescent Health and Development. In 2006, The National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine elected Dr. Blum into membership. He is a consultant to The World Bank, UNICEF, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) where recently he authored the guidance on adolescent pregnancy, as well as the World Health Organization where he has served on the Technical Advisory Group of the Child and Adolescent Health Department as well as the Scientific and Technical Advisory Group of the Human Reproductive Program. He has been awarded the Society for Adolescent Medicine’s Outstanding Achievement Award (1993); and has been the recipient of the American Public Health Association’s Herbert Needleman Award “for scientific achievement and courageous advocacy” on behalf of children and youth. In 2010 he was awarded the Maternal and Child Health Bureau’s Vince Hutchins Award “…to a lifetime of distinguished service to improve the health of MCH populations.” In 2014 he received the American Public Health Association’s Martha May Eliot Award honoring “extraordinary service to mothers and children [and adolescents]” and in 2016 he received the distinguished alumnus Gaylord Anderson Award from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health.