April Dinwoodie

April Dinwoodie is a nationally recognized thought leader on adoption and foster care. As Chief Executive of the Donaldson Adoption Institute (DAI), April is committed to improving adoption laws, policies and practices through research, education and advocacy. She is the creator of Adoptment, a specialized mentoring program where adopted adults mentor to young people in foster care. Before DAI, April was a marketing and communications executive for some of the most recognized fashion retail brands. April is a transracially adopted person who grew up in Rhode Island and shares her personal adoption journey via Born in June, Raised in April a podcast available on iTunes as well as various opinion pieces and personal narratives that can be found on Huffington Post and Medium.

Kimberly Paglino

Kimberly Paglino holds a BA in Psychology and a Masters in Social Work. Kimberly has prior experience in many areas of child welfare and has also prior served as an instructor in myriad areas relating to social welfare, including social welfare policy and services and human rights and social justice. Kimberly has a strong interest in education and has developed and presented educational seminars in a variety of areas of the adoption experience. She enjoys writing and has authored and co-authored many articles and opinion pieces on issues related to adoption and foster care. She is an advocate for adopted persons’ right to access their original birth certificate upon reaching adulthood. Kimberly’s other areas of interest in adoption and foster care include advocacy for LGBTQ families, citizenship for people adopted internationally, more education and supports for individuals and families connected to adoption, and the need for systemic changes in areas that impact the adoption and foster care community. Kimberly is an adopted person.

Keynote Proposal

Openness in Adoption-What a Concept!

Today, open adoption is increasingly the norm with research conducted by the Donaldson Adoption Institute (DAI) estimating that over 95% of agencies offer some type of open adoption. Although open adoption is more common, it doesn’t always mean it’s easy. Without preparation and the right supports in place, families may needlessly struggle. DAI is pleased to offer a keynote presentation that helps audience members think outside the box about these new, extended family relationships in their lives. Beginning with understanding the history of open adoption, helping families understand the facts that support this change in practice, and reframing this concept within relationship building terms, families will leave the session buoyed with the confidence needed to build strong extended family connections in adoption with their child at the center. Strong families build strong communities and this makes a better world for all of us!