2019 Speaker Biographies

Dr. Jennifer Baker, PsyD MFT  is a licensed clinical psychologist and marriage and family therapist. She is the Founder and Executive Director of Good Dads, a non-profit focused on helping fathers be more engaged with their children. Dr. Baker also served as an associate professor in marriage and family therapy and as the Director of the Murney Clinic, a community mental health clinic, in Springfield.  From 2003-2011 she provided leadership for two large federal grants serving persons living in 29 counties in southwest Missouri. In 2018, she was recognized as Entrepreneur of the Year by Springfield Business Journal. She also launched New Pathways for Good Dads, a program to help under-resourced dads overcome the barriers challenging their ability and opportunity to be good dads.

Seth Bauman serves as the Assistant Deputy Director for the Missouri Family Support Division. Seth helps provide executive leadership for strategic performance, change management, emergency management, privacy/security, customer relations and special projects for the Director’s Office. Prior to FSD, he was appointed the Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity (Chief Diversity Officer) for the Missouri Office of Administration and served on the State Personnel Advisory Board. Throughout his career, he has held various roles working with state and local officials to enhance positive outcomes for children, youth and families by reducing social and racial disparities. He is a co-founder of the Cole County Youth Day and active with the Governor’s Student Leadership Forum on Faith and Values, Jefferson City Public Schools Equity Council and other City Council Commissions and community activities. He obtained a Master of Public Administration from Mizzou and a B.A. in Religion from Central Methodist University where he was selected the 33rd Annual Gaddis Lecture Speaker and awarded the 2018 Young Alumni Award. Above all, he believes true success is the ability to create opportunity and success for others.

Dee Ann Davis has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from University of Central Missouri. Shas was hired in November of 1987 as a child support enforcement technician in the Rolla FSD office and promoted to a supervisor in 1996.  Dee Ann accepted a position with the MACSS Help Desk in 2013 as a Program Development Specialist working with Managed Reporting, Case Review, and OnBase systems.  In 2014, Dee Ann was promoted and currently serves as the Prosecuting Attorney Liaison and County Reimbursement Manager.

LaCrecia Day, MBA is the Financial Director/Programs Director at IMPACT Family Counseling. She has been with IMPACT for 12 ½ years. She helped start their current Fatherhood Program, UTurn and oversees its day to day operations and staff. She feels that she has been led to the non-profit arena because of her huge desire to help others in any way she can.

Vickie Endicott started her career with FSD in 2011 with the Child Support office in Jefferson County where she learned a wide variety of skills.  She spent the first 6 years in Jefferson County, as a Financials Specialist and loved it!  She is now a Child Support trainer whose main function is training Financials. One of the great things that Vickie brings to the Training unit is her love of financials and her creativity in incorporating fun into her trainings. She is very excited about being a speaker at MCSEA’s 43rd annual profession training conference!

Michelle Ferguson, M.A., CCJP, GCDF is employed as the DADS MATTER Project Manager with the Private Industry Council of Westmoreland/Fayette, Incorporated in Greensburg, Pennsylvania.

With a history of consistent excellence and extensive experience, Ms. Ferguson is a strategic and highly motivational driver of programs focused on education and training. She has facilitated diverse programs in public service agencies, youth shelters, and educational centers in southwestern Pennsylvania. Career-wide, Ms. Ferguson’s life accomplishments consist of an array of experiences which include nurturing the hearts of economically deprived children, managing the aggressive behavior of troubled adolescents, and providing supportive services for incarcerated at-risk adults. She has made significant contributions that have impacted the lives of many children and adults. Ms. Ferguson’s true passion encompasses motivating and educating people from all walks of life.

Jason Ford began his career with the Family  Support Division in 1992 as an enforcement worker in the Memphis office.  He transferred to the Interstate office in 1993.  Jason promoted to supervisor in 1998.  He accepted a position with the training unit in 2013 and became the Child Support Training Manager in 2017. Jason enjoys his job in the training unit, helping staff to understand their job so they can help the families of Missouri.

Lara Fors is a First Assistant Prosecuting Attorney of Greene County and currently serves as the Director of a multi-county prosecutors’ office in Springfield, MO where the staff judicially establishes and enforces IV-D child support orders in Greene, Christian and Taney counties.  Lara has spent her entire legal career in the IV-D program, and all but six months has been in the state of Missouri.  She has worked in the Kansas City, Jefferson City and Springfield areas.  Before returning to this Office in July 2011, she served as the IV-D Deputy Director of the Missouri Family Support Division.

Lara currently serves on the Honorary Board of the Eastern Regional Interstate Child Support Association (ERICSA) and is a past president of ERICSA (2014) and of Missouri’s state association, MCSEA (2007).  Lara has presented to numerous conferences and events including ERICSA, Western Interstate Child Support Enforcement Council (WICSEC), National Tribal Child Support Association (NTCSA), National Child Support Enforcement Association (NCSEA), Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association, the Christian County Bar Association, and the Missouri Bar.  Lara also serves as Treasurer of the Southern Missouri Women Lawyers Association.

Lara has been awarded the Springfield Business Journal’s 40 under 40 Award (2009), the MCSEA Honorary Life Member (2014), and the Missouri Lawyer’s Weekly Women’s Justice Award for Public Service Practitioner of the Year (2016).  Lara received her undergraduate degree at Central Methodist College (now University) in 1992 and received her J.D. from the University of Missouri-Kansas City in 1995.  She is a member of both the Missouri and Kansas Bars.

Jon Hensley is Deputy General Counsel to the Missouri Attorney General’s Office, where he advises executive leadership on legal issues facing the office and handles a wide range of matters and projects on behalf of the office. Jon has previously served as General Counsel to the Missouri State Treasurer’s Office and as Deputy Director of the Missouri Division of Workers’ Compensation.

Wade F. Horn, Ph.D., is a Managing Director at Deloitte Consulting where he is the Lead Client Service Partner (LCSP) for the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Health and Human Services (HHS) Marketplace Leader.  As LCSP for Deloitte’s CMS account, Dr. Horn is responsible for developing and maintaining senior client relationships, driving service excellence and managing risk, developing the account leaders and team, and delivering strong financial performance.  In his role as HHS Marketplace Leader, Dr. Horn drives market, brand and eminence for Deloitte’s work with federal and state Health and Human Service agencies.

Prior to coming to Deloitte, Dr. Horn served from 2001 to 2007 as the Assistant Secretary for Children and Families within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services where he oversaw over 60 federal programs with a total annual budget of $47 billion aimed at improving the well-being of children and helping families achieve self-sufficiency, including welfare, child welfare, child support, child care, and adoption.  As Assistant Secretary, Dr. Horn oversaw the development and implementation of numerous technology solutions designed to enhance service delivery, including technology-based solutions for integrated eligibility determination and coordinated health and human service delivery systems.

Dr. Horn also has served as Commissioner for Children, Youth and Families, and Chief of the Children’s Bureau within HHS, and as a member of the National Commission on Children, the Commission to Eliminate Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities, the National Commission on Childhood Disability, the President’s Commission on Special Education, the U.S. Advisory Board on Welfare Indicators, the U.S. Advisory Board on Kinship Care, and the U.S. Advisory Committee on Head Start Research and Evaluation.  Dr. Horn is also a co-founder and first President of National Fatherhood Initiative (NFI) whose mission is to improve the well-being of children by increasing the number of children growing up with involved, committed and responsible fathers, and has been an adjunct faculty at Georgetown University’s Public Policy Institute and an affiliate scholar with the Hudson Institute.

Dr. Horn also has extensive experience in the provision of direct services, including as Director of Outpatient Psychological Services at the Children’s Hospital National Medical Center in Washington, D.C., and co-director of Michigan State University’s Psychological Clinic.

Dr. Horn has written numerous articles relevant to children and family issues, including a weekly newspaper column entitled Fatherly Advice, and is the co-author of several books including The Better Homes and Gardens New Father Book (Meredith Books, 1998) and the Better Homes and Gardens New Teen Book (Meredith Books, 1999).  He is also the lead editor of The Fatherhood Movement: a Call to Action (Lexington Books, 1998).

Dr. Horn received his Ph.D. in clinical child psychology from Southern Illinois University in 1981.  He lives in Raleigh, North Carolina, with his wife of 40 years, and is the proud father of two adult daughters.

Joan Kuhn earned a Bachelor of Science in Sociology from Lincoln University. She was hired in August, 1997 as a child support enforcement technician in the Interstate Collections Unit (ICU) in Jefferson City and promoted to supervisor in that office in October, 2009 where she primarily supervised interstate financials. Joan promoted to her current position as a Program Development Specialist in the Child Support Policy Unit in November, 2014.

Charles H. (Chuck) Lonardo is a solo practitioner in Joplin, Missouri.  He earned his Bachelor of Science cum laude in Broadcast Journalism in 1977 and his J.D. in 1981, both from Syracuse University.  He practiced in Providence, Rhode Island for three years before becoming a member of The Missouri Bar in 1984.  He chairs the Find-A-Lawyer Advisory Committee (formerly the Lawyer Referral Service Committee) of The Missouri Bar, and is active in MoBar’s Lawyer Assistance Committee and Family Law Section.

He is also the Municipal Judge in Duenweg, Missouri and a Provisional Municipal Judge in Joplin.  He is on the Board of Directors of the Missouri Municipal and Associate Judges Association (MMACJA).  In his spare time, Chuck is a referee instructor, mentor and assessor for U.S. Soccer and the National Intercollegiate Soccer Officials Association (NISOA).

Reggie McElhannon assumed the role of Interim Director for the Family Support Division (FSD) of the Missouri Department of Social Services in July of this year. While there are a number of programs within the Division, the primary services include Child Support, Rehabilitation Services for the Blind, and Income Maintenance which is responsible for eligibility determination for a wide array of social service programs, including MO HealthNet and food stamps. Over 2700 team members are working within FSD.

Reggie returned to the Department earlier this year, serving as Assistant Deputy Director until named Interim Director of the Family Support Division. He has previously served as a legislative liaison on MO HealthNet initiatives and as chief of staff for a Missouri state senator and a Texas state representative. His many years in state government has provided him with an understanding of both the legislative and appropriations process.

Having earned a Master of Journalism degree from the University of North Texas, Reggie has many years of executive experience in Communications and Public Relations in settings such as a social service agency and a university.

Having spent his childhood in Alaska and graduating from high school in the Delta of southeast Arkansas, Reggie is grateful for his exposure to diverse life experiences. His upbringing fostered a desire to travel the backroads of America and a love of history. Having visited all 13 of the official presidential libraries and 49 states, he only has Hawaii left to fulfill his childhood dream of traveling to all 50 states. He has lived in Springfield since 2002.

Elia Moreno is the author of Permission to Rest and Living Intentionally, a book that depicts her own personal journey and hard earned insights on the importance of adding value to the lives of others in just 90 seconds. She currently serves as the Co-Executive Director of Texas Christian Community Development Network. In addition to her role as Co-Executive Director, Elia serves as Founder and CEO of Living Intentionally Ministries she is also the National Program Director for Beegle Communication Across Barriers and holds the position of National Director of Community Outreach for the No Excuses University Network of Schools, a growing network of 250 schools who promote college readiness for all students, especially those living in poverty.

Elia serves on many boards and committees. She is bilingual, and a master at assisting organizations and individuals who seek to implement fresh ways to connect with those living in poverty.

Elia was selected as a 2015 USA Characters Unites Award Winner by USA Network, the winner of the 2016 Suddenlink Community Impact Award as well as bestowed the privilege of being named the 2016 Amarillo Beta Sigma Phi Woman of the Year. Most recently she was honored with the 2017 Amarillo Hispanic Heritage Lifetime Achievement Award.

Kerensa Morrow-Kempf celebrated 20 years of service with Child Support in 2019.  She worked as a specialist for eight years then promoted to a Training Technician. She currently trains Establishment, and Modification, Mental Health First Aid and Prosecuting Attorney Staff. She thoroughly enjoys training and traveled to Spokane, WA in October 2019 to present at her first WICSEC conference. She joined the board of MCSEA because she is passionate about the child support program and the opportunity to make learning enjoyable.

James Murray is a Senior Advisor in the Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF). As an advisor, he develops strategic partnerships to increase OCSE’s positive impacts in the areas of responsible fatherhood and veterans outreach. Before joining OCSE, he was the Director of ACF’s Office of Regional Operations. There he provided executive leadership to ten regional offices on integrating and coordinating cross cutting, human service programs. Before joining ACF, James held positions in the education and non-profit fields, including positions with Early Head Start and the National Fatherhood Initiative. James has a MPA degree and a B.S in Human Development. He is also a prior recipient of the prestigious Judge David Gray Ross Award; as well as a Senior Fellow of the Partnership for Public Service, Excellence in Government program.

Richard (Rick) Pierce graduated from the University of Missouri, Columbia with a B.S. in Food Science and Human Nutrition in 1996 and received his Juris Doctorate degree in 1997 from the University of Missouri-School of Law, Columbia.  Rick has served as an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney in the Cooper County, Missouri, Prosecuting Attorney’s Office since 1996. Rick started his work in the area of Child Support in 1997 with a division of duties as assistant prosecutor, child support prosecutor, and attorney for the Cooper County Juvenile Office.  In 2000, he became the Administrator of the Boonville Regional Child Support Project working to establish paternity and enforce existing child support orders in the central Missouri Counties of Cooper, Howard, Chariton and Randolph.

Ellen Rutledge, Esq., YoungWilliams’ Professional Development Coordinator, uses her experience as a child support attorney and project manager to develop training and professional development activities. Her efforts support project managers and attorneys to grow and develop into leaders within the company and the child support community. Ellen graduated from the University of Missouri School of Journalism making her a member of the Mizzou Mafia. She is also a proud Wyoming Cowboy, having graduated from the university of Wyoming College of Law.

Dan Pingelton, Esq. is an attorney in private practice in Columbia, Missouri, concentrating on civil litigation and family law. From 1986 to 1998, he was a contract and part-time staff attorney for the Division of Child Support Enforcement.  He graduated from Arizona State University in 1981 with a degree in Journalism, and received his law degree from the University of Colorado in 1984. Mr. Pingelton wrote the first state-level administrative hearing decision for the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to be published in the national Education of the Handicapped Law Reporter. He served for 18 years as a hearing officer pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Some of Dan’s reported cases include Dye v. Missouri Division of Child Support Enforcement, 811 S.W.2d 355 (Mo.banc 1981) [constitutionality of administrative child support enforcement statutes]; Baird v. Baird, 843 S.W.2d 388 (Mo.App.E.D. 1992) [first Missouri case confirming use of a Qualified Domestic Relations Order to seize ERISA retirement funds for child support and maintenance arrears]; McCreary v. McCreary, 954 S.W.2d 433 (Mo.App.W.D. 1997) [multiple issues including proper standard for modification of custody; proper use of remedy of equitable accounting in a fiduciary relationship for child support; mandatory award of attorney fees; and liability for medical expense reimbursement]; and M.D. v. J.J., 30 S.W.3d 215 (Mo.App.W.D. 2000) [established Missouri precedent that an unmarried person can recover damages for negligent transmission of the herpes virus].

Dan has presented continuing legal education seminars for The Missouri Bar as well as child support professionals both in Missouri and throughout the country, including national IV-D law reviews for the NCSEA in 2002 (New Orleans), 2003 (Orlando) and 2004 (Palm Springs). He wrote two chapters for Missouri Family Law, 6th ed., published by the Missouri Bar: Marital Settlement and Separation Agreements and The Division of Child Support Enforcement. He has just completed the seventh edition of both chapters, including an extensive revision of “Family Support Division.” He is a Past President and Honorary Life Member of the Missouri Child Support Enforcement Association.

Francine Micheline Pratt is an accomplished Project/Program Director with over 30 years’ experience leading government, private, public and non-profit organizations. She currently serves as the Prosper Springfield Director and works with private, public and social sectors of the community to achieve two major community goals: Increase additional education beyond high school (postsecondary attainment) to 60% and reduce poverty by five percentage points – both by 2025. She was a former member of the Impacting Poverty Commission that led to the creation of the Prosper Springfield initiative.

She was recently appointed to the Board for the Missouri College Access Network and serves as a member on the Missouri Equity Project, a multi-year initiative that will define and drive a statewide agenda for equity in postsecondary attainment. She was the Project Director for Lumina Foundation’s Community Partnership Attainment grant. Through this grant, she led Springfield in scaling Cultural Consciousness and Diversity Training throughout the school district, higher education and with local businesses and government agencies. She was instrumental in having higher educational leaders, local community and government leaders and the school district understand the importance of using disaggregated data to make policy decisions that can increase access and inclusion for underserved populations of our community. She is married to Wes Pratt and they have a blended family of six adult children and nine grandchildren.

Commissioner Sherrill P. Roberts, J.D. has served as the Family Court Commissioner in Clay County, Missouri since 2005, where she presides over family law cases, including custody, child support (establishment, modification, and enforcement), paternity establishment, and related matters.  Prior to her appointment as Commissioner, she was a practicing attorney, concentrating her practice in matters of family law and representing children in litigation.  She is passionate about empowering and educating parents, particularly fathers, about the importance of being engaged, active participants in the lives of their children, and providing constructive opportunities for them to do so.  She constantly seeks to educate herself about family and parenting dynamics, in her efforts to foster and support healthy families.  Commissioner Roberts is committed to working with the community and other professionals to develop successful, collaborative, creative processes for enforcement and collection of child support in her Courtroom and sharing her vision for non-traditional methods of civil and criminal enforcement of child support obligations across the State of Missouri and beyond.

Jason Sax joined the US Navy out of High School. He served for close to seven years on the USS Fulton out of New London, Connecticut and the USS Blue Ridge out of Yokosuka, Japan. After his medical discharge, he taught conversational English at NOVA to Japanese students in Japan.

In 2004, Jason graduated from the University of Texas with a Bachelor of Arts in History. In 2005, he began working with the Department of Social Services as a Youth Specialist for the Division of Youth Services (DYS). Over the next eleven plus years, he worked through the ranks of DYS to the position of Service Coordinator Supervisor over the Cole County Service Coordinator Unit.

Throughout his professional life, Jason has taught, trained and led by example. He endeavors to provide a classroom environment that is engaging and affords the greatest opportunity for learning and the exchanging of ideas. Jason looks forward to meeting and working with you.

Martha Stewart joined the Iowa State University Child Welfare Research and Training Project in 2003. As an ISU Trainer, she has worked closely with the Iowa Child Support Recovery Unit to develop both online and in-person training resources, focusing primarily on customer service-related issues.

Jeffrey Stocks is a Program Specialist with the Federal Office of Child Support (OCSE) out of Kansas City, MO.  He has been with OCSE for 10 years and currently supports Missouri, Iowa, and the Meskwaki Tribe in Iowa.  Prior to joining OCSE, Jeffrey worked in the financial service industry as a programmer and manager.

Darlene Sullivan is a Program Development Specialist in the Family Support Division’s Child Support program. She studied at the University of MO before starting her career with the division 31 years ago by accepting a Clerk Typist I position in the Financial Resolutions Section (FRS) and working her way up to Supervisor before joining PDU three years ago. Darlene’s experience in financials has contributed to her knowledge in the PDU financials business area but there are many facets to the child support program she has yet to learn. She is grateful to have the opportunity to be a part of the development of the child support program.

Sharron Switzer graduated from Columbia College in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a dual major in Management and Accounting.  She joined the Family Support Division as a SOSA-K case opener with Child Support’s Alternative Care Collections Unit in January 2010.  She worked as a Child Support Specialist in financials for the Interstate Collections Unit, establishment for Alternative Care Collections, and financials for Jefferson City FSD before becoming a financials Child Support Supervisor for the Interstate Collections Unit. She joined the Policy Development Unit in January of 2016.

Leah Ann Tennis has a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice and an Associate in Law Enforcement from Missouri Southern State University. She was hired in August of 1997 as a child support enforcement technician in the Springfield FSD office and promoted to supervisor in 1998.   Leah Ann accepted a position with the Policy Unit in October 2018 as a Program Development Specialist.