Florida Children and Youth Cabinet
VISION: All children in Florida grow up safe, healthy, educated and prepared to meet their full potential.
MISSION: To ensure that the public policy of Florida relating to children and youth promotes interdepartmental collaboration and program implementation in order for services designed for children and youth to be planned, managed and delivered in a holistic and integrated manner to improve the self-sufficiency, safety, economic stability, health and quality of life of all children and youth in Florida.
David Wilkins, Chairman
On July 11, 2007, legislation was signed by the Governor that created the Children and Youth Cabinet. The members of the Children and Youth Cabinet consist of a chairman, the secretaries of the Department of Children and Families, the Department of Juvenile Justice and the Agency for Health Care Administration, as well as the directors of the Agency for Persons with Disabilities and the Office of Early Learning. Other members include the State Surgeon General, the Commissioner of Education, the director of the Guardian ad Litem Office, and the director of the Governor’s Office of Adoption and Child Protection. Additionally, the Governor appoints five members from around the state who are representatives of children and youth advocacy organizations, but who are not service providers. Rounding out the Cabinet are the five ex-officio members named in statute, or their designees. The Florida Children and Youth Cabinet members include:
Secretary David Wilkins
Department of Children & Families
Secretary Wansley Walters
Department of Juvenile Justice
Director Barbara Palmer
Agency for Persons with Disabilities
Surgeon General and Secretary John H. Armstrong, MD
Department of Health
Secretary Elizabeth Dudek
Agency for Health Care Administration
Commissioner Tony Bennett
Department of Education
Executive Director Alan Abramowitz
Guardian ad Litem
Chief Child Advocate and Director Zackary Gibson
Office of Adoption and Child Protection, Executive Office of the Governor
Director Shan Goff
Office of Early Learning
Youth Commission Representative
Chair, Early Learning Coalition of Duval County
David Lawrence, Jr.
Education and Community Leadership Scholar at the University of Miami’s School of Education and Human Development; President, The Early Childhood Initiative Foundation; and Chair, The Children’s Movement of Florida
Judy Schaechter, MD
Associate Professor of Pediatrics, University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine
Steven J. Uhlfelder, Esquire
Uhlfelder and Associates
Five Ex-Officio Members
Senator Eleanor Sobel
Designee of the Florida Senate President
Representative Gayle Harrell
Designee of the Speaker of the House
Justice Barbara Pariente, Esquire
Florida Supreme Court
Designee of Chief Justice Charles T. Canady
Berthy De La Rosa-Aponte
Designee of Attorney General Pam Bondi
Designee of Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater
The Cabinet is charged with promoting and implementing collaboration, creativity, increased efficiency, information sharing and improved service delivery between and within state agencies and organizations.
As directed by statute, in 2007 the Cabinet developed a shared vision and a Strategic Plan to guide the Cabinet in designing and implementing measurable outcomes and actions that promote collaboration and information sharing. The Children and Youth Cabinet’s Annual Report for 2012 is a section within the 2011 Annual Report of the Office of Adoption and Child Protection and provides more detail about these efforts.
- Child Death Review Teams Workgroup
- Community Services Delivery Models Workgroup
- Crossover Children Workgroup
- Early Child Care Workgroup
- Intervening in the At-Risk Cycle Workgroup
- Multi-System Children and Youth Workgroup
- Prevention Investment Strategy Workgroup
- Technology Collaboration Workgroup
- Youth Services Collaboration Workgroup
Operationalized Cabinet Initiatives:
- Every Florida Child has a Stable and Nurturing Family – Child Maltreatment Prevention.
- Every Florida Child is Healthy – Children with Health Insurance.
- Every Florida Child is Ready to Learn and Succeed – Kindergarten Readiness.
- Every Florida Child Lives in a Safe and Supportive Community – Children who Experience Homelessness.