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Equus Participates in The Forum 2020 Powered Virtually by NAWB


Equus recently had the opportunity to participate in an all-virtual edition of The Forum powered virtually by the National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB). As a Platinum Sponsor of the conference, the Equus leadership team met with thought leaders, shared industry perspectives, and gained new workforce insights into the current state of our nation’s workforce system.

Vice President, Service Delivery Debra Giordano said, “We used the conference as an opportunity to launch our new name and brand as Equus Workforce Solutions and conducted numerous live interviews with workforce experts from around the country through our Live@TheForum event that took place over three days. With so many important issues affecting our industry, it was incredibly valuable to come together and talk about our challenges, best practices, and the opportunity for our industry to be a healing force for so many communities. While we missed seeing our customers and fellow workforce professionals in person in Washington, D.C., this was a terrific alternative at a time when our industry really needed to come together.”

Equus hosted three workshops during the conference. One-Stop Operator Dr. Andy Huls presented on Compassion Fatigue. During his workshop, he taught attendees how to recognize symptoms of compassion fatigue. He also outlined the benefits of self-care and how taking care of yourself is one of the most effective ways to take care of your clients.

National Workforce Solutions Director Michelle Day was one of the presenters on the SNAP E&T Third-Party Partnerships workshop. This workshop provided an overview of how these partnerships are key to increasing capacity within the workforce system and also discussed funding guidelines, how to develop and expand a SNAP 50/50 program, and best practices for integrating SNAP 50/50 within your workforce system. There was also discussion around how to expand E&T funding to train more individuals under an employer-driven model resulting in improved outcomes for businesses and job seekers.

Regional Director DeWayne Street and Vice President, WeCARE Operations Rudy Racine led a special session on Marginalization, Serial Trauma, COVID 19, and the Impact on African-Americans. During their presentation, DeWayne and Rudy discussed the impact of recent events and how they affect individuals and communities including job seekers and businesses as well as workforce teams. They used Donald Schön’s influential theory in The Reflective Practitioner as the foundation for the session. Each participant was encouraged to conduct their own reflective practice and prompted to make incremental changes in their theories-in-use as they relate to African-Americans, a key marginalized population. The content also provided both real-time reflection and post-workshop reflection. The reading material for the session was selected with the intent of assisting the participants to re-frame the way that they see the history of African-Americans and consequently how they see contemporary African-Americans. The goal was for participants to be agents of change for their respective operations by sharing what they learned and leading both formal and informal dialogue sessions.

Equus leaders also spent time with several workforce industry partners during Live@TheForum to find out how they’re creating opportunities and changing lives in the midst of COVID-19. Live@The Forum is NAWB’s way of continuing the insightful and meaningful conversations from all Forum activities. Click on the links below to watch some of the Equus Live@TheForum interviews.

Special thanks to NAWB President Ron Painter and NAWB Executive Vice President Melanie Anderson for another great conference!