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Conference Schedule

Thursday, May 11

1pm - 4pm: Pre-Conference Workshop

Friday, May 12

8am - 9am: Registration

9am - 10:30am: Keynote Address

10:40am - 11:50am: Morning Breakouts (A-C)


1:10pm - 2:10pm: Afternoon 1 Breakouts (D-F)

2:20pm - 3:20pm: Afternoon 2 Breakouts (G-I)

3:30pm - 5pm: Networking Session

Conference Workshops

Morning Breakouts:

Visualizing Community: Using Social Network Analysis In Evaluation
10:40 AM - 11:50 AM (Workshop A; Case Study; Beginner, Intermediate)

Session Objectives:

  • Describe the basic elements of social network analysis
  • Illustrate how social network analysis is an effective way to evaluate group cohesion
  • Provide examples of how social network analysis can be leveraged for program planning and improvement

Jodie A. Galosy, Ph.D. Jodie Galosy is the Research Project Manager at the Knowles Teachers Initiative. Jodie is a member of the Research & Evaluation team at Knowles and assists the organization in data collection, analysis, and application of findings for program improvement. Jodie received her Ph.D. in Teaching, Curriculum, and Educational Policy from Michigan State University in 2005. Prior to coming to Knowles in 2010, Jodie worked in evaluation and teacher professional development on several NSF funded projects. Jodie’s evaluation interests include social network analysis, data visualization, and equity-focused evaluation.

Working With Community Organizations to Address Evaluation Gaps & Issues
10:40 AM - 11:50 AM (Workshop B; Lecture; Intermediate)

Session Objectives:

  • Gain knowledge and familiarity with quality frameworks and how they can be used as evaluation tools that engage stakeholders and surface values.
  • Highlight facilitators for connecting with various interdisciplinary networks to disseminate evaluation findings and raise awareness about issues important to communities.
  • Identify ways to work with communities to address limitations in the research and evaluation literature.

Valerie Marshall has over 14 years of applied research and evaluation experience in the non-profit, government, and private sectors, and has worked across a range of projects and initiatives. Her current work involves evaluation design and capacity building, data collection and analysis, and report writing and dissemination as an evaluator and research associate at The Evaluation Center at Western Michigan University (WMU), where she has worked since 2019. As a first-generation college graduate, she is a proud doctoral student in the Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program in Evaluation at WMU.

Jan K. Fields holds a PhD in Evaluation and an EdD in Educational Leadership. He also holds a master’s degree in management with an emphasis in organizational development and a bachelor’s degree in Respiratory Therapy. He has been a respiratory therapist for over 30 years and a massage therapist for over 20 years. He completed a two-year evaluation fellowship in 2016 with the National Asthma Control Program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and has now been the program evaluator for the Michigan Overdose Data to Action (MODA) program at Michigan DHHS since 2017.

Community Learning Partnership: Telling Stories of Institutional Transformation Using Fishbowl Discussions
10:40 AM - 11:50 AM (Workshop C; Case Study; Intermediate)

Session Objectives:

  • Identify and share the utility of fishbowl discussions as part of the planning process for developing tools in support of transforming institutions
  • Display the importance of fishbowl discussions in promoting student voices and fostering collaborative discussions.
  • Highlight a case study of how fishbowl discussions are being used in program planning and in evaluating the work of the community learning partnership and capturing the stories of students and faculty.

Felecia Bennett-Clark, M.A., is a Senior Project Manager at JFM Consulting Group, a firm that embraces a participatory approach in areas inclusive of evaluation, strategic planning, research, and assessment of impact. She has served as the Director of Evaluation and Research at a large multi-faceted service provider in Southwest Detroit. Felecia has been an adjunct faculty member at Macomb Community College for 20 years where she teaches Political Science, Leadership Development, and Organizing and Conflict Resolution as part of Macomb’s Community Leadership Program (CLP). The CLP is also part of a national initiative, where Felecia serves as an evaluator of one of their grant-funded initiatives designed to expand civic education to incorporate hyperlocal lessons and increase community engagement.

Afternoon 1 Breakouts:

Equitable Data Storytelling
1:10 PM - 2:10 PM (Workshop D; Lecture; Intermediate, Advanced)


  • Participants will learn to frame data findings in ways that identify equitable solutions
  • Participants will learn audience mapping techniques that will allow them to develop responsive data communication products for their audiences
  • Participants will learn to illuminate root causes and the role of systems and historical structures in individual & community contexts

Jennifer Marsack (MSW University of Michigan) Jennifer Marsack is a data designer and speaker. Jenny brings creative energy to making data intriguing and impactful, while helping partners transform the way they communicate their stories

Jenny is the Founder of Pivot Data Design, a consulting firm that provides data design and training services. In this capacity, they provide strategic direction and oversight for a portfolio of data design and capacity building projects within the philanthropic and nonprofit sectors. Pivot's work focuses on bringing research-based transformations to a range of deliverables including charts, slides, reports, infographics, and dashboards. Grounded in equity and data visualization best practices, they teach methods of data storytelling, reducing visual clutter, and ways to visually emphasize the most important point. Jenny is committed to revolutionizing the landscape of data reporting and to advancing greater equity by building authentic capacity with partners to share and visualize data. Pivot has worked with partners like Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, and the American Civil Liberties Union. Jennifer is the President of the Michigan Association for Evaluation.

Diving Into The Deep: Youth-Led Evaluation Design for GROWTH
1:10 PM - 2:10 PM (Workshop E; Workshop; Beginner)

Session Objectives:

  • Participants will see what it truly means to put equitable evaluation into action.
  • Participants will gain insight into how practicing equitable evaluation can improve their findings.
  • Participants will see an example of how equitable evaluation can alleviate cultural barriers to evaluation.

Nathan Browning is an independent consultant with Kiaer Research. He conducts evaluations, research projects, data analysis, and data visualization for clients around the globe, mostly not-for-profits.

Myla Jackson is a student at Southwestern Michigan College studying toward an associate's degree in criminal justice. She was part of the GROWTH Internship at Corewell Health South in 2021 and became the program coordinator and evaluation assistant in 2022. Myla was the 2022 Youth of the Year for the St. Joseph Boys and Girls Club, and graduated from St. Joseph High School in 2022.

Centering Humanity: Demographic Data Collection to Advance Equity
1:10 PM - 2:10 PM (Workshop F; Workshop; Beginner)

Session Objectives:

  • Participants identify new concepts/approaches to equitably collecting demographic data which may support their organization’s advancement of diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Participants have “line of sight” on potential headwinds encountered and opportunities to capitalize on in advancing this work.
  • Participants connect with another conference participant may serve as a “thought partner” in this work.

Jaime Hoffman’s approach centers equity at the core of her work. She believes change should be informed and shaped by lived experiences and by understanding communities and people. Jaime has over 5+ years of experience working in nonprofit management, alongside local nonprofits in Washtenaw County and metro Detroit. She believes change is possible through community-centered planning, strategy, and action. Jaime received her Masters in Social Work from the University of Michigan with a focus in the Management of Human Services, and Community and Social Systems.

Bridget Herrmann - As Principal for Praxis Thought Partners, Bridget helps grant makers and mission-driven organizations cultivate values-driven and equity-infused strategy. Her skill sets include meeting facilitation and community convenings; strategic planning; organization development; designing equitable, user-focused grant making processes, and equitable evaluation practices. For the past 15 years, she has worked for United Ways across the country using grant making, public policy advocacy, and community partnerships to achieve community impact. Originally from Miami, FL, she now calls herself a Michigander after surviving nine winters.

Afternoon 2 Breakouts:

Partners at Every Stage: An Implementation Evaluation of Project ECHO

2:20 PM - 3:20 PM (Workshop G; Case Study; Intermediate)

Session Objectives:

  • Identify dialectics or tensions in how to work “with” community at each stage of an evaluation so that a balance is achieved between engagement and bandwidth; inclusion and timeliness.
  • Compare and contrast the difference in community collaboration decisions and activities during the lifecycle of a multi-year, multi-site evaluation.
  • Develop strategies to maximize benefits and minimize challenges in designing an evaluation with people and not for people.

R. Sam Larson (Ph.D., Michigan State University) leads Diffusion Associates, an independent consulting group that works alongside social innovators and sponsors in the scale out of effective interventions. She has led and collaborated on numerous evaluations of educational and health programs supported by funders such as the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, The Wallace Foundation, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the State of Michigan, and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She was on faculty at Ohio University and the University of Denver, an internal evaluator director at Kaiser Permanente Colorado, and an administrator at Michigan State University.

Evaluation Foundations for Program Development Case Study
2:20 PM - 3:20 PM (Workshop H; Case Study; Beginner, Intermediate)

Session Objectives:

  • Participants will understand the importance of laying a strong foundation of evaluation from the beginning of a program's launch.
  • Participants will learn the value of incorporating their client's expertise into the evaluation metrics.
  • Participants will learn how to use the early evaluative data to successfully scale programs.

Mary Gladstone-Highland (Spark Group Consulting): Mary is a Certified Nonprofit Professional with seventeen years of experience leading organizations. Mary is a graduate of the Maxwell School of Citizenship & Public Affairs at Syracuse University. She holds a Master of Public Administration and a Certificate in Advanced Study in Conflict and Collaboration. She is also a Certified Fund Raising Executive and has raised over $4.5 million for numerous organizations over the past five years. Mary is skilled at analyzing large amounts of information to find creative solutions to complex problems. She strives to use an asset-based approach in every situation.

Christina Wichert (Spark Group Consulting): Christina Wichert is a mission-focused nonprofit professional with over a decade of working in multi-cultural environments, and seven years working internationally. She holds a Masters of Arts from American University in Washington DC, with a concentration in International Peace and Conflict Resolution. She also holds a graduate certificate in Sustainable Development from the American University in Cairo, Egypt. Her experience includes delivering conflict analysis, interactive conflict intervention, and facilitating Problem Solving Workshops as a conflict resolution strategy. As well she is skilled in dialogue facilitation; strategic planning for sustainability; and program design, development and evaluation. An avid animal lover, she and her family share their home with three spirited cats, and a large German Shepherd named Obama.

Connecting communities to build jail-based opioid use disorder treatment programs
2:20 PM - 3:20 PM (Workshop I; Lecture; Intermediate)


  • Session participants will be able to describe the Opioid Treatment Ecosystem and its purpose.
  • Session participants will understand the importance of engaging community partners in the creation of comprehensive treatment programs.
  • Session participants will engage in discussions surrounding the advantages and barriers of individualized evaluation structured to meet community specific needs.

Danielle Lenz - Danielle joined the Center for Behavioral Health and Justice (CBHJ) in February of 2019. She is a first-generation college graduate, graduating from Wayne State University with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology in May 2020. Currently, Danielle serves as a Project Coordinator on the Opioid Treatment Ecosystems Team. Her duties include working with statewide sheriff’s offices, community mental health associations, correctional healthcare providers, and community organizations to a) assist county jails in implementing MOUD programs into their facilities and b) to coordinate placements for free naloxone vending machines. Danielle is passionate about social justice and destigmatizing substance use.

Rahni Cason - Rahni joined the Center for Behavioral Health and Justice as a Project Coordinator in August 2019. Rahni’s passion was found in previous employment opportunities with the Michigan Prisoner Reentry Initiative (MPRI) and the Prisoner Education Initiative (PEI) at Jackson College. While direct work with inmates and parolees was rewarding, it was also eye-opening and strengthened Rahni’s resolve to direct her efforts to positively impacting systems changes affecting these populations. Rahni leads the implementation of an Opioid Treatment Ecosystem, as well Stepping Up technical assistance efforts within various counties across Michigan. 


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Michigan Association for Evaluation 2019

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