DCF Secretary-designee Amundson announces additional leadership team appointments

(MADISON) – Wisconsin Department of Children and Families (DCF) Secretary-designee Emilie Amundson announced a new round of appointments to hear leadership team today.

“I am excited about the leadership team we are building to best serve Wisconsin’s children and families,” Secretary-designee Amundson said. “We have assembled a talented group of people with diverse backgrounds, lived experiences, and skill-sets who are all committed to serving this agency and its stakeholders. Together, these individuals are well-poised to leverage the strengths of our agency to improve the lives of Wisconsin citizens.”

Nadya Pérez-Reyes has been named legislative policy advisor. Nadya previously worked as an attorney with the Wisconsin State Public Defender’s Juvenile and Mental Health Office, where she represented children in delinquency, waiver, children in need of protection or services (CHIPS), juvenile in need of protection or services (JIPS) proceedings, and parents in termination of parental rights (TPR) cases.  Nadya also worked in the State Public Defender’s Washington and Ozaukee County Trial offices, representing both adults and children. Before joining the Wisconsin State Public Defender, she worked at Legal Action of Wisconsin and the Government Accountability Board (now the State Elections Board).

Nadya has a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies, Spanish Language and Literature, and Latin American, Caribbean, and Iberian Studies; a Master of Arts in Latin American, Caribbean, and Iberian Studies with an emphasis on the African Diaspora; and a Juris Doctor from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Nadya loves to travel and on her last trip ventured to Italy, Egypt, and England.

Bianca Shaw has been named director of the Office of Urban Development. Bianca Shaw worked previously for the Department of Workforce Development in the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation as a business services consultant and in the Wisconsin State Legislature as a legislative assistant. She has served as a program director at the Frank Zeidler Center for Public Discussion, managing the police and resident program. Bianca also worked as a FoodShare assistant with Hunger Task Force, advocating to end hunger and food insecurities in Milwaukee.

Bianca has a deep appreciation for policy, organizing, and educating the community on relevant topics. She is a proud graduate of the Wisconsin Women’s Network Policy Institute and Emerge Wisconsin. She serves on the board of the Wisconsin Women's Network, Victory Garden Initiative, and Wisconsin Alliance for Women's Health. Bianca is also the proud mother of a beautiful daughter, Olivia.

Dr. Michelle Robinson has been named director of the Office of the Inspector General. Michelle brings over a decade of empirical and applied research, data, evaluation, and policy expertise. Most recently, Michelle held the role of research, data and policy associate for the Race to Equity Project at Kids Forward, a non-profit, non-partisan statewide child and family public policy and advocacy organization. There, she led research and evaluated existing programs and policies to develop models of community-engaged, culturally responsive, and participatory solutions to local challenges.

Michelle holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Sociology and Community and Environmental Sociology from the University of Wisconsin- Madison. As a graduate student, she was a fellow at the Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP), and a training fellow in Institutes for Education Sciences’ Interdisciplinary Training Program (ITP) housed at the Wisconsin Center for Education Research (WCER). Michelle’s dad and stepmom are foster parents of a family of six young children. She is passionate about cooking is known for her talents in the kitchen.

Thomas McCarthy has been named Director of Strategic Communications. Tom previously served as the communications director at the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) where he led a team charged with supporting the mission and vision of the state superintendent. He also worked as the communications officer at the DPI. Before joining the DPI, Tom worked in the Wisconsin State Legislature as a legislative assistant, research assistant, and committee clerk. There, he focused on connecting communications and policy to build more effective solutions and better serve impacted stakeholders.

Tom received his bachelor’s degree in History and Political Science from the University of WisconsinMadison. He is the proud father of a new baby girl and when he has free time, enjoys playing music.

Amundson will continue to announce appointments going forward. All leadership appointments can be found at www.dcf.wisconsin.gov/about-us/leadership. To learn more about DCF, visit www.dcf.wisconsin.gov and follow @WisDCF on Twitter.