Social Work on the Frontiers of Change

March 28 – March 30, 2018 • Little Rock Marriot • Downtown Little Rock

Welcome to the 39th NASW Arkansas Annual Conference. This year’s theme recognizes that the social work profession is rapidly evolving. Social workers are quite literally on the “Frontiers of Change” happening at the local, state, and national level. Many of these changes are due to emerging policies and practices that threaten civil rights, advance structural racism, contribute to gender discrimination, and dismantle environmental protections currently in place. The changes to policies and practices play a significant role in exacerbating inequality among the most marginalized groups in our communities. As social workers we must work together to remain at the forefront of change, which means fighting for the rights of the individual, the well-being of communities, and addressing today’s discrimination and injustice. Invited sessions for the 2018 conference will address these challenges by offering information about current knowledge, skills, and practices being used to foster and advance change that coincides with the pillars of the social work profession.

Continuing Eduction and Conference Program will be available January 2018.

Conference Schedule

4:00 pm – 6:00 pm Early Check In/Registration/Exhibitor Set Up

7:00 am – 8:00 pm Registration/Information Desk/Exhibits Open
8:30 am – 10:00 am Plenary I (1.5 CEUs)

Resilience as Our Greatest Clinical Competency by Carla Cheatham, MA, MDiv, PhD, TRT

10:00 am – 10:30 am Morning Break with Exhibitors
10:30 am – 12:00 pm Concurrent Workshops – Session 1 (1.5 CEUs)

Giving Back to the Profession: Supervision – Nancy Streit, LCSW
Public Policy: The Ins and Outs, The Nuts and Bolts – Lisa M. Corrigan, PhD
Leadership in Social Work: Practice Doesn’t Always Make Perfect – Alishia Ferguson, PhD, LMSW
Clinicians and Treatment: Perceived Barriers to Psychotherapeutic Treatment of Rural Mental
Health Professionals – Cheryl Knight, PhD, LCSW
Marshallese Child Savings Account Program: A Snapshot of Parent Well-Being Outcomes
Marcia A. Shobe, PhD, LMSW, Yvette Murphy-Erby, PhD, MSW

12:00 pm – 1:30 pm Lunch on Your Own
1:30 pm – 5:00 pm Concurrent Workshops – Session 2 (3 CEUs)

Social Work Ethics: New Issues and Cases (ethics) – E. Christopher Lloyd, PhD, LCSW
Clinical Case Conference: Treatment Related to Autoimmune Encephalitis in a Mental Health Clinic – Libby L. Kay, MSSW, LCSW, ACSW
Chasing the Dragon – Kristin Agar, LCSW
Here, Now – A Present Moment Awareness Approach to Therapy – Jim Harper, LCSW, LMFT & Jan Dean, PhD
Trauma Informed Care: What the Research Tells us and Next Steps for Clinicians – Rev. Carla
Cheatham, MA, MDiv, PhD, TRT
Intention: Finding a Life More Remarkable – Matthew Knight, LPC

3:00 pm – 3:30 pm Afternoon Break with Exhibitors
5:30 pm – 9:00 pm Concurrent Workshops – Session 3 (3 CEUs)

Understanding Your Transgender Clients – Rev. Gwen Fry MDiv, BS Psy
Ethics and Risk Management in the New Era of Social Work (ASI)
Preparing for the Social Work Licensing Exam: Tips and Strategies – Lillian C. Wichinsky, PhD, LMSW
Navigating Childhood Grief – Karen D. Marks, LCSW
Permanency Is For Children of Color Too! – Kiana L. Peoples, Jennifer Turner, Raymond Adams
Overcoming Adversity: African-American Males’ Use of Psychological and Ecological
Resilience to Combat Negative Societal Expectations and Achieve Collegiate Success – Laura
Danforth, PhD, LCSW, Kim Anderson, PhD, LCSW, John Miller, Jr., PhD, MSW

“Does my hearing aid make me look fat?” Supporting adults with hearing loss – Catherine
Crisp, PhD, MSW

7:00 am – 5:00 pm Registration/Information Desk/Exhibits Open
8:30 am – 12:00 pm Concurrent Workshops – Session 4 (3 CEUs)

Beyond Tolerance: Cultural Humility in Care Giving (ethics) – Rev. Carla Cheatham, MA, MDiv, PhD, TRT
The Be SMART Program: Educating Clients and Communities on Safe Gun Practices – Johanna Thomas, PhD, LMSW
Children with Problematic Sexual Behaviors: Who are they and how can we help? – Benjamin A. Sigel, PhD
Becoming a Competent, Confident Couples Therapist – Chelsea Wakefield, PhD, LCSW

10:00 am – 10:30 am Morning Break with Exhibitors
12:00 pm – 1:30 pm Student Poster Presentations (1 CEU)

Lunch on Your Own
1:30 pm – 3:00 pm Plenary II – (1.5 CEUs)

Addressing the Opioid Crisis by Commander Karen Hearod, LCSW

3:00 pm – 3:30 pm Afternoon Break with Exhibitors
3:30 pm – 5:00 pm Concurrent Workshops – Session 5 (1.5 CEUs)

Moving the Needle on Understanding Homelessness from Research to Practice – Kevin M. Fitzpatrick, PhD
Building a Stronger Foundation with a Post Master’s Fellowship – Sherry Clements, LCSW, Chloe Smith-Ferguson, MSW, PSR Fellow
Changing Demographics: Intersection of Aging and Disability – Rosalie V. Otters PhD, D.Min, LCSW
Strategies for Home Visiting Safety – Jodie W. Dailey, LCSW, Felicia Loring, MS
The Development of Service Dogs for the Veteran Population: The Benefits for the Veteran, the Challenges, and the Rewards – Lynda Nash, LCSW, CCDP-D, Nathan Greer, PLSW, Ashley Gragg

5:00 pm – 6:30 pm Student Poster Presentation – Wine & Cheese Soiree (1 CEU)
6:30 pm – 9:00 pm 3 rd Annual Social Work Advocates Dinner (2 CEUs) (pre-registration required/ticketed event)
Reconnecting with Your Unconquerable Spirit (suicide prevention education) – Shelby Rowe
Moderated Panel Discussion – Shelby Rowe, CDR Hearod, Tyler West, Greg Adams, LCSW, Sarah Johnson

7:30 am – 4:00 pm Registration/Information Desk/Exhibits Open
8:30 am – 12:00 pm Concurrent Workshops – Session 6 (3 CEUs)

Ethics: The Ultimate Questions (ethics) – Matthew Knight, LPC
Trauma-Informed Juvenile Justice- Benjamin A. Sigel, PhD, Liam Costello, PLMSW, ADC
Preventing, Identifying & Treating Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) – David Deere, MSW, MTh, LCSW, Kristin Hamer, BS, Hanaa Madani, BSW
Professional Resilience and Burnout Prevention in Healthcare – Erick Messias, MD, MPH, PhD
Social Worker Safety – Debra Gage Hurd, PhD, LSW

Client Despair or Clinician Disparity – Jody Long, PhD, LCSW, Cheryl Knight, PhD, LCSW

10:00 am – 10:30 am Morning Break with Exhibitors
12:00 pm – 2:00 pm Annual Awards Luncheon (pre-registration required)
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm Concurrent Workshops – Session 7 (2 CEUs)

Ethical and Legal Considerations in Clinical Documentation (ethics) -Harold Dean, MSW, LCSW, OSW-C
Paradoxes in Grief – Greg Adams, LCSW, ACSW, FT
Changing the Conversation: VHA National Dissemination of Advance Care Planning via Group Visits – Jamie Jensen, LCSW
Colorblind Racial Attitudes Among Social Work Students: Exploration of Individual and Social Network Correlates – Laura Danforth, PhD, LCSW, Hsun-Ta Hsu, PhD, MSW, John Miller, Jr., PhD, MSW

* Schedule is Subject to Change

2018 Social Work Advocates’ Dinner

6:30 | DINNER


Reconnecting with Your Unconquerable Spirit

Suicide can affect anyone, even a suicide prevention professional. In this session, Ms. Rowe intertwines evidence-based suicide prevention best practices with her own experience as a suicide attempt survivor to discuss risk factors, address some of the barriers to help-seeking behavior, and challenge common stereotypes of who can be at risk for suicide. She walks us through her journey to recovery, shares the post traumatic growth that’s taken place, and shares her 6 steps to cultivating resiliency. A moderated panel discussion will follow Ms. Rowe’s keynote address.

Shelby Rowe is the youth suicide prevention program manager for the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, and previously served as the manager of education and prevention services for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Ms. Rowe has over 20 years of experience in public health, and has been a leader in the suicide prevention movement since 2007. She is a suicide attempt survivor who dedicates herself every day to fighting the prejudice and discrimination that affects those affected by suicide.

While in Arkansas, Ms. Rowe played a key role in the creation of the first Arkansas State Plan for Suicide Prevention in 2010 and cofounded the Arkansas Suicide Prevention Network, later renamed the Arkansas Suicide Prevention Initiative. As the
Executive Director for the Arkansas Crisis Center (2007-2011), Ms. Rowe expanded the statewide crisis hotline and helped make Arkansas one of the first states to offer online crisis chat services. She led the efforts of the Statewide Injury Prevention Center in Arkansas to coordinate comprehensive suicide prevention training for educators, mental health
professionals, first responders and health care providers.

Ms. Rowe formerly served on the board of directors for the National Association of Crisis Center Directors, and as a member of the Arkansas Mental Health Planning and Advisory Council. In 2016, Ms. Rowe was honored as the Chickasaw Nation Dynamic Woman of the Year. She holds a B.A. in Sociology and Philosophy from Oklahoma State University, and a M.B.A. from the University of Phoenix.

This session involves a plated dinner and attendees will receive 2 CEUs. This is our 3rd year to have the dinner and it has been well-received and well-attended by conference attendees and members of the community.

Invitations are extended not only to conference attendees, but to all members of the Arkansas State Legislature, other elected officials, community stakeholders, and other media. Seating is limited, and we encourage you to purchase your ticket with your conference registration.

Past Dinner Topics and Presenters

2017 Speakers

Dr. Terrence J. Roberts – member of the Little Rock Nine and Congressional Gold Medal recipient: Simple, Not Easy: Reflections on Community, Social Responsibility, and Tolerance Dr. Erick Messias (panelist)

Dr. John W. Miller, Jr. (panelist)
Tommy Norman (panelist)
Dr. Terrence J. Roberts (panelist)

2016 Speakers

U.S. Representative Marcia L. Fudge, 11 th Congressional District of Ohio: Combatting the Heroin and Prescription Opioid Overdose Epidemic

Dr. Erick Messias (panelist)
Dr. William H. Robinson, Jr. (panelist)
Dr. Shane Sparks (panelist)
Margaret Robbins, LCSW (panelist)

Student Poster Presentation

Join us at the NASW Conference and participate in the Student Poster Presentations and Competition! All BSW and MSW students are welcome to participate. This is a fun way to practice your presentation and networking skills in a supportive environment. This is also a good way for the social work programs around the state to highlight student accomplishments.

There will be designated times at the conference for you to present your work. The poster sessions will be held on Thursday, March 29, 2018. You will be asked to stand with your poster 2 times during the day for 1 hour each time to discuss your poster with conference attendees as they walk through the poster session.

Poster Categories

1. Innovative programs or interventions from field placement (internship) experience. Innovative is defined as new ways to address old problems. Programs or interventions may include therapeutic models, funding sources, partnerships, or other cutting edge ideas for helping social work clients or the social work profession.

2. Public policy that is current or relevant to social work practice. Public policy poster submissions must include the following: poster defines the social policy or issue clearly; poster states the policy as it currently is and analyzes its
strengths and limitations; poster identifies vulnerable and at-risk populations and specific ways in which these groups are impacted by the current policy; poster incorporates the six core values of the social work profession identified in the NASW Code of Ethics into the overall policy analysis; poster states at least five recommendations to improve current policy. These recommendations should incorporate all levels of social work practice and may include examples of how other states have
addressed this same policy issue.

3. Graduate research project or practice evaluation. This should be a completed project. This may be the student’s work OR something that a student worked on with a faculty member or community practitioner. (Masters students only)


Presentation Proposal Requirements

Submit a presentation proposal by February 23, 2018.

  1. The proposal must include:
    1. Your name and email address.
    2. Whether you are a graduate or undergraduate student.
    3. Poster category (see above) and title of presentation.
    4. Size of poster. Poster should be no smaller than 2x3 and no larger than 3x4.
    5. Three learning/educational objectives for people who view your poster and hear your presentation.
    6. 100 word abstract of presentation.

Should be hard backed and appropriate for display on an easel. Tri-fold poster boards are acceptable as these will display on an easel but note that a tri-fold does not display as well as a flat poster.


Benefits of Presenting

  1. Opportunity to show your work to peers and professional community.
  2. Opportunity to network with other social workers (students and professionals).
  3. Potential recognition of high quality work in poster competition. One winner will be selected from each category, in addition to an overal BSW winner and an overall MSW winner. Winners will be announced at the conference awards ceremony on Friday.



An award will be given in each of the three categories. For categories one and two, there will be an award for a BSW and MSW student or team. For category three, there will be an award for an MSW student or team. There will also be an award for overall best poster. The awards will be presented at the awards luncheon on Friday.


Other Items of Note

  • Presentations should be creative and interesting.
  • Be prepared to discuss your poster.
  • Please put your name and the name of your school of the back of the poster.
  • You may submit proposals for team presentations. Please limit teams to six members or less.
  • Proposals should be submitted to Holly Barron, Executive Director of NASW-AR at by February 23, 2018.
  • Direct questions to Elizabeth Fowler at

Save Money on Registration!

It pays to be a member of NASW Arkansas! Not only will you save $120 on your full conference registration, but you’ll have access to the free workshops and mini-conferences that we host around the state, online CEUs, free ethics consultations and much more. Join or renew your membership online today then come back and register for the conference as a member.

NASW Arkansas Annual Conference | Speakers

Ourselves First: Resilience as Our Greatest Clinical Competence

Opening Plenary
Wednesday, March 28, 2018
8:30 – 10:00 AM

Carla Cheatham, MA, MDiv, PhD, TRT

The uncertain financial and regulatory climate our industry faces can make our already stressful work that much more challenging. We cannot afford to ignore the impact these dynamics have on our personal health and families, our teams and even the patients and families we seek to serve. 

Much of this we are simply powerless to change, but we are not helpless to take action on our own behalf. We must be intentional about fostering our own resilience if we are to be the professionals we aspire to be. Doing so is not a luxury; it is our greatest clinical responsibility. 

The principles of resilience can teach us much about thriving, rather than simply surviving, through change and challenge and the attitudes and techniques that can support (or undermine) our clinical competence. 

After reviewing the data related to burnout and compassion fatigue, this presentation will provide immediately implementable strategies for instilling greater health and resilience in ourselves, our teams and our organizations for our sake and that of those for whom we care. 

Learning Objectives:  

  • Explore the research about and contributors of compassion fatigue
  • List the research behind and tenets of resilience
  • Analyze practical ways to leverage that information for the creation of healthier and more productive professionals and teams

Rev. Dr. Carla Cheatham began her career in social services with an MA in Psychology, certification in crisis counseling, and experience working in child and family therapy services and substance abuse treatment centers. She taught and researched on the interaction between spirituality and health at Texas A&M while receiving her PhD in Health & Kinesiology and earned her MDiv under the Charles and Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Fellowship at Southern Methodist University’s Perkins School of Theology.  

After serving faith communities and directing an interfaith non-profit supporting worker justice, Carla began her work as a hospice chaplain and bereavement coordinator in Austin, Texas. She is an Adjunct Professor at the Seminary of the Southwest, where she teaches about hospice and end-of-life care, and an Affiliate Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland, where she is helping to develop and teach the new MS in Palliative Care.

She is the Principal and Lead Trainer for Carla Cheatham Consulting Group, LLC and serves as a national speaker and consultant for professional caregivers of all disciplines and fields, specializing in boundaries and healthy teams, ethical spiritual and existential care, grief support, ethical conversations around medical aid in dying and VSED, and more. 

Carla is the Section Leader for the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization’s Spiritual Caregivers Section and a member of NHPCO’s Ethics Advisory Council. She also serves on the Board of Directors for Swan Songs, a not-for-profit that fulfills end-of-life musical wishes.

She is the author of Hospice Whispers: Stories of Life and its companion piece, Sharing Our Stories: A Hospice Whispers Grief Support Workbook. Her next book on the art of presence with those who are suffering is set for publication in 2017.  Carla is a guest blogger for Hospice Times, and publishes her own blogs at Carla Cheatham Consulting Group, LLC and Hospice Whispers

Addressing the Opioid Crisis

Thursday Plenary
Thursday, March 29, 2018
1:30 – 3:00 PM

Commander Karen Hearod, LCSW

Commander Hearod (U.S. Public Health Service) serves as the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Regional Administrator for Region 6, which includes Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma & Texas. SAMHSA is the agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that leads public health efforts to advance the behavioral health of the nation. Its mission is to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America’s communities, and its core values are that behavioral health is essential to overall health, prevention works, treatment is effective, and people recover. More than 2 million people in the U.S. have substance use disorders related to opioid pain relievers. One terrible consequence of this trend is that overdose deaths have more than quadrupled in the past decade and a half. In her role as Regional Administrator, CDR Hearod provides leadership in SAMHSA’s efforts to inform, alert, and educate the public, patients and their family members, and health care practitioners of the dangers of prescription drug misuse.

CDR Karen Hearod is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. Prior to accepting her new role as Regional Administrator, CDR Hearod served as the Indian Health Service Oklahoma City Area Acting Behavioral Health Consultant. In this position CDR Hearod had oversight over behavioral health and substance abuse programs across Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas providing services impacting 410,000 Native Americans. In addition to providing leadership as Chair for the IHS National Zero Suicide Advisory Committee, she served as a member of the National Suicide Crisis Policy Committee working to establish the first IHS national suicide care policy.

During her federal career, CDR Hearod has served as the Chief Behavioral Health Officer for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. In this role, Hearod oversaw a behavioral health system which spanned the area equivalent to the size of Vermont including 13 facilities and 90 staff. She was successful in seeking out and implementing multiple grants addressing substance abuse and suicide prevention, sexual assault forensic treatment and prevention, HIV and teen pregnancy prevention, and cardiovascular disease prevention. She led the creation of the Choctaw Nation Wind Horse Treatment Center providing family centered substance abuse prevention and treatment services for high risk families in an area with little access to care. She also facilitated the transition to a fully integrated Electronic Health Record for Behavioral Health with Choctaw Nation Health programs greatly improving continuity of care.

CDR Hearod joins the team of 10 Regional Administrators subsequent to the retirement of Mr. Michael Duffy who served in this position since its inception. SAMHSA’s Regional Offices provide expertise on behavioral health and a link between SAMHSA and other Federal agencies, States, behavioral health service providers, community-based organizations and others in the region.

2018 NASW Arkansas Community Service Project

Help CHANGE a Child’s Life

Spare change can change a child’s life! ACH is the only pediatric hospital in Arkansas and saw over 424,000 patient visits last year.

Patients rely on dedicated supporters like you to help. Your support and commitment to the Change Angel helps patients receive the care, love and hope they deserve.

Will you be the wings of our patients and sign up to be a Change Angel today?

Change Angels collect donations and spare change from family, friends, and colleagues. You can raise donations by sending a quick email to fellow social workers or you might even find some spare change under your couch! It’s so easy to help, and every gift is meaningful.

Change Angels are encouraged to collect change and donations from family and friends leading up to the 2018 NASW Arkansas Annual Conference. Donations can then be turned in during the conference or mailed to the NASW Arkansas Chapter office.

All proceeds benefit Arkansas Children’s Hospital, the state’s only pediatric medical facility. Your involvement will help provide care, love and hope to patients from across our state.

Thank You 2017 Exhibitors

Platinum Sponsors


Gold Sponsors


Silver Sponsors


Bronze Sponsors


Alzheimer’s Arkansas
Arkansas State University Social Work Department
Arkansas Therapist Connection
Bradford Health Services
Care IV Home Health
Compass Intervention Center

First Step, Inc.
Lakeland Behavioral Health System
Lakeside Behavioral Health System
Life Strategies Counseling, Inc.
Methodist Family Health
Mid-South Health Systems
Mirror Lake Recovery Center
Oasis Renewal Center

Perspectives Behavioral Health Management
Piney Ridge Treatment Center
Pinnacle Point Outpatient Services
Pinnacle Pointe
Preferred Family Healthcare
PTSD Consultation Program
Quapaw House Recovery & Wellness Center
Red River Youth Academy

The Bridgeway
UAMS Adult Sickle Cell Program
University of Arkansas
White River Medical Center Behavioral Health
Woodridge Behavioral Care
Youth Home, Inc
Youth Villages