Come experience practical teaching in a safe and supportive community as we work to equip families, churches, and professionals to better serve children impacted by adoption and foster care.
Featuring Trust-Based Relational Intervention® methods developed by Dr. Karyn Purvis and Dr. David Cross from the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development, this conference helps bring attachment and connection in families.
The nationwide participation in the Empowered to Connect Conference is a significant testament to the impact and work of Dr. Karyn Purvis. Read more about her legacy of hope and healing here.
David R. Cross, Ph.D., is the Rees-Jones Director of the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development at TCU, and a Professor in the TCU Department of Psychology. Dr. Cross leads the Purvis Institute in its triple mission of research, education, and outreach to improve the lives of children who have experienced abuse, neglect, and/or trauma.
He has authored many peer-reviewed publications about issues regarding at-risk children, including those who have experienced early trauma. David earned his B.S. from California State University Fresno with a major in Psychology, and then attended The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor for graduate study, beginning in 1980. He earned an M.A. in Psychology and an M.A. in Statistics. He later earned a Ph.D. in Education and Psychology. In 1985, he accepted a position as Assistant Professor in TCU’s Department of Psychology.
David’s wife, Trudy, is a retired Kindergarten teacher and a practicing Grandmother. His daughter graduated from TCU in 2003, and is an environmental project manager for CB&I. His son is a former USMC Captain, and is now studying history at UTA.
Amanda Hiles Howard is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Samford University. She came to Samford after serving as the Assistant Director of the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development at TCU for six years. Amanda earned her B.A. from The Ohio State University with a major in Psychology, and then attended TCU for graduate study under the mentorship of Drs. David Cross and Karyn Purvis. She earned an M.S. in Experimental Psychology with an emphasis on Quantitative Analysis, and then earned a Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology with an emphasis on Developmental Psychology. Her work integrates theory, research, and practice in a concentrated effort to increase understanding of the interpersonal processes underlying mental health and quality of life for youth in the child welfare system. Amanda and her husband John have two sons.
Daren Jones is a Training Specialist with the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development (KP ICD). As training specialist, Daren’s main focus is instructing professionals working with children who have experienced trauma, in Trust-Based Relational Intervention® (TBRI®). Since Daren joined the Purvis Institute in 2014, he has been an integral part of teaching and spreading TBRI® across the U.S. and throughout the world.
Daren earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. He began his career as a behavior instructor of a therapeutic day treatment program serving children and youth who could no longer function in a regular academic school setting. After serving as a behavior instructor, Daren decided to obtain his Masters in Social Work from Spalding University in Louisville, Kentucky. Daren spent 12 years serving youth and families within residential and foster care settings as a direct-care worker, residential group home supervisor and trainer, before beginning his work with the KP ICD. Daren is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Counseling & Counselor Education at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, TX, where he resides with his wife, daughter, and son.
Dan and Terri Coley are Show Hope founding board members who live in Franklin, Tennessee. Dan also serves on staff at Show Hope as the Senior Director of Programs and Growth Strategies. Terri serves on staff in pre and post adoption support. They have served as foster parents for more than 40 infants and birthmothers, and have adopted children domestically and internationally. Their family is multi-racial and includes children with special needs. It is their heart’s desire for every child to have a family.
Through personal experience, they have come to know the importance of understanding the challenges and needs of children from “hard places.” Dan and Terri are committed to helping educate and prepare families for the adoption journey and empowering them with the tools to help children heal while maintaining healthy families. The Coleys have nine children and ten grandchildren.
Ryan and Kayla North have six children through birth and foster care adoptions. They began their foster care journey in 2004 and welcomed close to thirty children in the foster care system into their home. Although their home is closed to foster care, they continue to support those who are walking this journey.
Ryan is the Executive Director of Tapestry, the Adoption and Foster Care Ministry of Irving Bible Church in the Dallas area. Tapestry serves to connect families in community, equip them for the journey, and encourage them along the way. In his capacity as the Executive Director of Tapestry, Ryan leads Empowered to Connect.
Kayla left the classroom, after a decade of teaching third grade, to stay home with their six children, five of whom she home schools. She oversees all ETC Parent Trainers and leads Tapestry’s crisis intervention efforts.
They are Empowered to Connect Parent Trainers, Trainer of Trainers, and write about the blessings and challenges of their parenting journey at One Big Happy Home and The Ryan Blog and contribute to both Empowered to Connect and the Tapestry blogs.
Casey is the Assistant Director at the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development, and a passionate advocate for vulnerable children and families. Her responsibilities include research, training, and outreach connected to TrustBased Relational Intervention®. Casey also teaches, advises, and mentors TCU students in the Child Development undergraduate and graduate programs.
Casey is a Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor and is a registered Circle of Security® parent educator. She has also received training in Theraplay® Level One and in scoring the Strange Situation Protocol. Casey has earned advanced degrees in elementary education, counseling, and developmental psychology. She is passionate about bringing trauma-informed interventions into systems of care, especially educational systems. Casey is married to a lieutenant in the Fort Worth Fire Department. They have two children, and reside in Fort Worth, TX.
Cindy specializes in providing counseling services for children, adolescents, and adults as well as crisis intervention services and substance abuse treatment. In an effort to better serve families experiencing relational trauma, Cindy completed TCU’s Institute of Child Development’s Trust-Based Relational Intervention (TBRI®) professional training program, developed by Dr. Karyn Purvis and Dr. David Cross. With permission from the Institute of Child Development, Cindy has conducted trainings to clinicians, spoken at conferences, and serves as a TBRI® Mentor at TBRI® trainings.
Realizing the healing value of TBRI®, Cindy co-founded the HALO Project and currently serves as the Executive Director. HALO (Healing, Attachment, Loving Outreach) is a 10-week intensive intervention program for children in foster care and/or children who have been adopted. HALO Project curriculum is based on the principles of TBRI® and has been life changing for families in need. HALO collaborates with occupational therapists, mental health clinicians, psychologists, speech pathologists, and medical professionals to meet the diverse needs of this population. HALO is a 501c3 nonprofit and partners with the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development to serve children from hard places.
In collaboration with Dr. Karyn Purvis and Dr. David Cross, Cindy has published a series of children books based upon the valuable lessons on TBRI®, including Baby Owl Lost Her Whoo, It’s Tough to Be Gentle: A Dragon’s Tale, Doggie Doesn’t Know No, The Penguin and the Fine-Looking Fish, The Elephant with Small Ears and The Redo Roo. Proceeds of the books are donated to the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development and HALO Project.
Additionally, Cindy has received training in the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI), Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TFCBT), Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT), Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR), Seeking Safety, Trauma Recovery and Empowerment Model (TREM), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Theraplay®, and Circle of Security™. Cindy has experience treating a wide variety of issues including child abuse and neglect, trauma, anxiety, eating disorders, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Dissociative Identity Disorder, Reactive Attachment Disorder, and addiction.
Cindy graduated with honors from Arizona State University with her Masters in Social Work in 1999 and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Cindy is licensed by the Oklahoma State Board of Licensed Social Workers as well as the Oklahoma Board of Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselors. Cindy resides in Edmond, Oklahoma, with her husband, children, and pets.
CE credits may be available in your area. More information regarding CE approval and registration can be found here.
The Empowered To Connect Conference features two days of practical teaching in a safe and supportive community as we work to equip families, churches, and professionals to better serve children impacted by adoption and foster care.
The conference content is beneficial for adoptive parents, foster parents, potential adoptive or foster parents, and professionals or ministry leaders serving children.
Each adoptive and foster parent will receive a certificate of attendance. The certificates will be handed out at the end of each day, per parent. Attendees are responsible for providing the certificate to their agency, and it is at the agency’s discretion whether or not to count participation toward training credits. To be eligible with your agency to receive training credits, each participant will need to turn in to their agency a copy of each certificate and it is beneficial to also provide them the schedule of the conference. There is no need to sign up for adoptive/foster training credit.
The conference runs from Friday morning through Saturday afternoon, though there are slight variations in time based on the event’s time zone. Simulcasts in the Central and Pacific time zones will run from 9am to 5pm, while those in the Eastern and Mountain time zones will be held from 10am to 6pm.
The Franklin event will be held from 9am to 5pm both Friday and Saturday. Check-in opens at 8am, and attendees will check in with their ticket or last name. Coffee, water and light refreshments will be provided during the morning and afternoon breaks. There will be a 1-and-a-half hour break scheduled for an off-site lunch each day. Handouts with local restaurant options will be available, if needed.
No, unfortunately childcare will not be provided. Please make arrangements for your children off-site.
Simulcast ticket fees vary by location. Please contact your local host for additional details.
The 2017 Empowered To Connect Conference will be held in Franklin, Tennessee. Live event registration is available here.
In addition to the live event, churches and other organizations will host a live simulcast of the event in communities around the world. Please visit the event map to find a location near you.
Please visit our registration site for CE approval information and registration. An additional registration will be required for all professionals seeking continuing education.
Continuing education is for licensed professionals only and is not the same as adoptive/foster training credits.
Unfortunately, no refunds will be granted.
We do not offer discounts or reduced fees for one day attendance. You must register for the full event. However, check-in will be open both days if you are only able to attend one day.
Continuing education credits may be available in your area. More information regarding CE approval and registration can be found here.
Certificates of Completion will be available to simulcast attendees.
Thank you for your interest in participating at the conference. We do not currently allow outside parties to set up booths in order to focus on the content presented at the event.