Erika Van Buren

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Profile

Name

Erika Van Buren

Affiliation

Vice President of Evaluation and Learning, First Place for Youth

Biography

Dr. Erika Van Buren currently serves as Vice President of Evaluation and Learning for First Place for Youth, where she is responsible for leading the design, utilization, and maintenance of the organization’s performance management systems and learning infrastructure nationwide. She crafts and implements the internal and evaluation agenda for the agency, and works closely with program leadership to identify and roll-out best and evidence-supported strategies to improve practice and the organization’s impact on foster youth. Dr. Van Buren holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Yale University, and received her doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2004. With over 20 years of experience, she has cultivated expertise in the areas of school and community mental health program development and evaluation, quality improvement and performance management practices, ethnic identity development and promotion, and culturally and linguistically responsive service delivery to children, youth and families. Prior to First Place for Youth, Dr. Van Buren served as Director of Research for the Felton Institute of San Francisco, and Division Director over the Research & Evaluation Department, Quality Improvement Department and Training Institute for the District of Columbia’s Department of Mental Health. She has worked as a practitioner, consultant and trainer in a variety of academic and community settings, including community mental health clinics, schools, youth development centers and hospitals. Her contributions to the field of child and family mental health and child welfare can be found in technical and non-technical publications, book chapters and television appearances.

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