Child Life Annual Conference

 Opening Keynote Speaker

Dr. Eytan Young, M.D., F.A.C.S.


Opening General Session - Breaking Down the Classic Child Life Paradigm

Dr. Young will address how child life services can adapt and evolve as healthcare continues to transition in the coming years. He will discuss how the Iowa ENT Center has been at the forefront of what may become a significant source of child life services - outpatient/non-hospital-based locations. He will demonstrate how they were able to implement outpatient child life services at all levels of their otolaryngology practice including cost and utilization challenges. Dr. Young will also discuss unexpected benefits including opportunities for research, expanding local awareness of child life services to the general public, and providing new career options.

Plenary Session Speakers

Judy Rollins, Ph.D., RN


Plenary Session - Being Heard: Empathetic Artistic Interpretations of the Personal Journeys of Young People with Serious Illness

Judy Rollins, PhD, RN, president of Rollins & Associates research and consulting, is adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Family Medicine with a secondary appointment in the Department of Pediatrics at Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC; and Adjunct Lecturer at the Center for Arts in Medicine at the University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida. She is a nurse with a fine arts degree in visual arts, a master’s in child development/family studies, and a PhD in health and community studies. She has developed arts in healthcare programming in hospitals, hospice care, and the community, including Studio G, the artists in residence program in pediatrics at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. Her writing and research interests include arts in healthcare, family-centered care, and psychosocial issues of care, with a focus on children with cancer. She is editor of Meeting Children’s Psychosocial Needs Across the Health-care Continuum, now in its second edition; editor of Pediatric Nursing; North America regional editor of Arts & Health; and a Scholar at The Institute for Integrative Health, Baltimore, MD. 

Daniel Davis, Ph.D.


Plenary Session - Caring for Children: An Imperative in Clinical and Social Ethics

Dan Davis is Geisinger’s chief bioethics officer and director of the system’s fledgling bioethics center.

A native of West Virginia, he earned his Ph.D. degree in the philosophy and ethics of medicine from Georgetown University in May 1996.  He also worked at Georgetown for more than 20 years, serving as director of strategic planning for the medical center (from 1988 to 1997) and then as associate dean for educational planning and evaluation at the medical school  (from 1997 to 2005).  At Georgetown's Center for Clinical Bioethics, he was a senior research scholar with varied responsibilities for teaching and research in bioethics; he also served as a senior ethicist on the ethics consultation service at Georgetown's hospital and as chair of Georgetown's institutional review board for psychosocial and behavioral research. 

From January 2006 to September 2009, he served as the executive director of the President's Council on Bioethics.  In October 2009, he was appointed senior advisor for bioethics and policy in the Office of the Director at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, where his portfolio included policy analysis and development in genomic ethics, biosecurity, Common Rule reform, and therapeutics development.  He served in that capacity until his recruitment to Geisinger in September 2012.

At Geisinger, in addition to his work in bioethics, he chairs a standing working group on patient engagement in research, discovery, and innovation and has served as the co-lead of an ad hoc working group founded in 2013 and organized around the goal of spurring Geisinger’s growth as a learning health care system.  His research interests include clinical ethics consultation; shared decision making, especially in the context of advanced illness; patient engagement in research and care; professional formation in the health professions; and, organizational culture and ethics in health care.

Plenary Session (Panel Discussion) - ICU Liberation: Child Life Specialists as Essential Collaborators for Success

Presented by:

  • Caroline Potter, MS, CCLS, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD 
  • Emily Carolton, CCLS, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD 
  • Sapna Kudchadkar, MD, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD 
  • Emily Warren , MSN, APRN, ACCNS/P, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD 
  • Yun Kim, MS, OTR/L, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD 

Closing Keynote Speaker

Laurie Strongin, CEO & Founder, Hope for Henry Foundation


Closing General Session

Laurie Strongin, Founder and CEO of Hope for Henry Foundation and Author of Saving Henry, will share her personal experience as the mother of a boy named Henry. Diagnosed with a rare illness at just two weeks old, Henry was Laurie and her husband Allen’s firstborn. His diagnosis challenged them to live life to its fullest while fighting every day to find a cure and make life better for all who followed in their footsteps.

Their journey took them to the leading edge of the medical frontier and to the middle of the raging stem cell debate. It also put them in the hands of child life specialists at hospitals around the country.

In her address at the ACLP conference, Laurie will share what happens to families like hers, families you meet every day and come to know as patients, but rarely hear from once they leave the hospital. She will talk about her family’s story not just of survival but of revival following Henry’s tragic death at age seven, and also what she has done to ensure that tens of thousands of children and families can also thrive. She’ll also introduce you to some of the children she has served through her organization, Hope for Henry.


Professional Development