Judy Howard, LCSW, Assistant Director of Training, Development and Operations at the Provider Assistance & Training Hub (PATH), School of Social Work at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Judith Howard’s CANS (Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths) journey first started in the early 2000s when Illinois child welfare first adopted a version of the tool. Throughout her career, she has been involved in both the child welfare and behavioral health field throughout her career. Settings range from private agencies, academic and research to large state agency policy work, and has grown from direct service into senior-level administration and large-scale evaluations. 

Judith Howard is currently the Assistant Director of Training, Operations and Evaluation for the Provider Assistance and Training Hub (PATH) at the UIUC School of Social Work. When they started this partnership in 2018 with HFS and the University of Illinois, they were just a small CANS training office with 9 staff. They are now a 35 member strong behavioral health Training and Technical Assistance Center. Their mission has always been to support and implement a variety of behavioral health changes as part of Illinois’ commitment to improving services across the state. PATH has grown beyond simple implementation into coaching, support, training, and are beginning to move into data collection with the arrival of their CANS portal.

Judith has shared the Illinois implementation experience at TCOM conferences in 2018, 2019 and 2020, and other members of the PATH team have presented on a variety of TCOM related topics in 2020 and 2021.

Judith is now the Program Chairperson for the 2022 TCOM Conference: Managing Change and All that Jazz in New Orleans, LA. Judith describes this role as the “culmination of my CANS journey”; we are honored to have Judy lead our Program Committee in making this a wonderful and collaborative 18th Annual TCOM Conference.

We encourage you to read more about Judith Howard’s story and background in her blog post here.

If you would like to get in touch with Judith Howard, you can contact her at

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