2019 Keynote Sessions

We are thrilled to announce the 2019 conference keynote speakers! You won't want to miss these opportunities to play, celebrate success, and empower one another in the crucial work with young children in family child care.



Thursday, June 20th, 8:30 AM - 10 AM

Presented by Valora Washington, Ph.D.

What does "professionalizing" early care and education mean for family child care? How can we demonstrate respect for family child care providers? To what extent will family child care professionals be represented in conversations about change? How can the strengths of family child care be preserved? How can we minimize unintended consequences of change? This presentation addresses these questions in ways that celebrate family child care professionals!

About Valora Washington

With over 30 years of experience, Dr. Valora Washington is a recognized authority in early care and education. She has conceptualized, led, facilitated, and executed significant change initiatives. Spanning higher education; local, state, and federal government; organizational development; research; and advocacy, her efforts have led to strategic changes for policy, programs, and practice in philantrhopy, national organizations, and local initiatives. She was chosen in 2018 by Exchange magazine as Doyens (the most respected or prominent person in a field).

Washington, CEO of the Council for Professional Recognition, leads the largest credentialing program (CDA) for early educators in the USA. She is certified as an Association Executive and a Credentialing Specialist. Valora also co-founded Voices for Michigan's Children, the Early Childhood Funders Collaborative, and the CAYL Institute (a leadership development program for practitioners).



Friday, June 21, 8:30 AM - 10 AM

Presented by: Shannon Christian & a panel of family child care providers

Join us to dig in to the changing child care landscape in the U.S. and how family child care can thrive. The action matters to all of us as we work to meet the needs of children, families, and the child care workforce.

This session includes Shannon Christian, Director of the Office of Child Care at HHS' Administration for Children and Families. Following Shannon Christian's remarks, a panel of family child care providers will discuss the challenges they face every day and possible solutions.

About Shannon Christian

Shannon Christian serves as the Director of the Office of Child Care at HHS' Administration for Children and Families. She is a former Associate Commissioner of the former Child Care Bureau at ACF where she advanced President Bush's Good Start, Grow Smart early childhood initiative and shaped the office's research agenda to better support state policy and spending decisions.

Committed to effective prevention strategies, Shannon oversaw the launch of Illinois' home visiting program and was an active board member of Be Strong Families, a Chicago-based national nonprofit. Earlier in her career, Shannon was part of former Wisconsin Governor (and HHS secretary) Tommy Thompson's welfare reform team, serving as head of the planning section in the state Health & Social Services Department's Office of Policy and Budget, and as Senior Advisor to the Secretary of Workforce Development.

Shannon has an MPP from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, a certificate in nonprofit management from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Business, and an undergraduate degree in economics and international relations from California State University, Chico.



Saturday, June 22nd, 8 AM - 9:30 AM

Presented by Dr. Julie Wei

Most kids love dairy, sugar, and nearly all foods and drink that have both, like milk, mac and cheese, yogurt, and cookies. For millions, the new "normal" of a childhood diet in excess of dairy and sugar and adults supporting their "routine" of overconsumption is causing more than just a sugar rush--it's actually causing a "disease" not recognized by doctors and medical professionals.

As an internationally recognized, award-winning, Pediatric Ear, Nose, and Throat Surgeon, Dr. Wei spent years treating healthy children who suffered from chronic runny/stuffy noses, coughs, sore throats, snoring, poor sleep, constipation, and fatigue. Most have seen many doctors and prescribed medications that do not work because these symptons are not related to allergies. By asking her patient families what each child eats and drinks, she has discovered what and when children eat and drink is the real problem. She has "cured" thousands of children and restored their health with no medications or surgeries.

Learn how diet, dietary habits, and how the way we think and feed our children can directly impact their health. Dr. Wei will share how to reclaim health in misdiagnosed and overmedicated children through her "Health Kids Movement".

About Julie Wei

Dr. Julie Wei is an internationally recognized, award-winning, Pediatric Ear, Nose, and Throat Surgeon, speaker, and author of A Healthier Wei and co-author of Acid Reflux in Children. She currently serves as the Surgeon-in-Chief at Nemours Children's Hospital in Orlando, FL, and the Divison Chief of Pediatric Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgey, and Audiology. Dr. Wei is a Professor of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery at the University of Central Florida's College of Medicine and serves as the Chair of Otolaryngology Education.

A passionate children's health advocate, Dr. Wei has been highlighted on TEDx "The Hidden Dangers of the Milk and Cookie Disease" and on The Doctors TV Show, teaching audiences about how diet and dietary habits lead to acid reflux, which negatively impact children's health. She has appeard on various national and local news outlets including Fox News Online. A prominent peer-reviewed author, Dr. Wei's research has been published in scientific journals including Laryngoscope and the International Journal of Pediatric Otohinolaryngology. She is currently a board member and contributing author for ENT Today.




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*NAFCC does not endorse any product of our advertisers or sponsors. We believe each provider is able to make the best decision of products and curriculum for their program and the children in their care.