Building a Stronger Tomorrow:
Youth, Communities, and Stakeholders
in Pennsylvania's Juvenile Justice System
The annual conference is attended by juvenile justice professionals (Judges, Probation Officers, District Attorneys, Defenders, Victim Services representatives, providers of residential and community-based services, and other vendors serving the juvenile justice system) from throughout Pennsylvania and nationally.
The training workshops focus on various topics and issues facing juvenile justice professionals, while also highlighting practices, programs, and initiatives that exemplify best-practices related to Pennsylvania's Balanced & Restorative Justice mission and Juvenile Justice System Enhancement Strategy (JJSES).
Wednesday, November 1st
1:00PM – 4:30PM
Judges/Hearing Officers Training
(Judges and Juvenile Court Hearing Officers Only)
"JJRA of 2018 & Other Issues Facing Regions of Our Commonwealth"
The Juvenile Justice Reform Act of 2018 (JJRA) reauthorized and substantively amended the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) of 1974. Pennsylvania is required by the federal Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) to provide for an effective system of monitoring secure and non-secure facilities to ensure compliance with the core requirements of the JJDPA. An informational session will be delivered regarding the JJRA, interest of justice determinations required by the Act, OJJDP reporting requirements, and other matters specific to the JJRA.
The training program will also include an opportunity for judges and hearing officers to assemble in regional groups and engage in a facilitated discussion. These "Juvenile Delinquency Roundtable" discussions, led by Juvenile Court Judges, will focus on issues facing each region, sharing strategies proven successful in the local jurisdictions, and to talk generally about shared matters of interest. Chief juvenile probation officers are invited to join in these regional discussions. Participants will be provided with select respective county data to raise awareness and contribute to data-informed discussions.
9:00AM – 5:00PM
Juvenile Defender Training
(Juvenile Defenders Only)
2:00PM – 3:30PM
Join with colleagues from within your juvenile justice system area of specialty to discuss issues of mutual concern and interest. Individual caucuses will be held for chief juvenile probation officers, juvenile probation supervisors, juvenile probation officers, service providers, and victim service providers. These facilitated caucuses will be highly interactive and offer participants the opportunity to discuss critical issues and needs for the future.
3:45PM – 5:00PM
Chief Juvenile Probation Officer/ Service Provider Forum
Youth Awards Program & Dinner
Lieutenant Thomas "Tom" L. Lenox of the Erie Police Department in Erie, PA, was born in Johnstown, PA and raised in Pittsburgh, PA before attending Gannon University where he received his bachelor's degree in criminal justice in 1997. Fueled by his own life experiences, Tom has a passion for working with at-risk youth and was employed as a Juvenile Probation Officer with the Erie County Juvenile Probation Department before joining the City of Erie Police Department in 2005. Tom is committed to creating stronger communities and building trusted relationships between citizens and members of law enforcement. Following a 40-year hiatus, Tom was instrumental in the reinstatement of the Police Athletic League (PAL) in Erie, beginning with just one school and only 35 youth in 2016. By 2022, the Erie PAL proudly served 14 schools and more than 800 youth.
Thursday, November 2nd
Conference Welcome & Morning Plenary
"Engaging the Community to Transform Young Lives"
The Thursday morning opening plenary session will be led by Chad Houser. Chad is the Founder, CEO, and Executive Chef at Café Momentum, a nationally recognized nonprofit restaurant and training program that provides paid internships for justice-involved youth. Café Momentum's mission is to transform young lives by equipping our most at-risk youth with life skills, education, and employment opportunities to help them achieve their full potential. In 2020, Chad co-founded Momentum Advisory Collective, a non-profit organization built to scale Café Momentum and the Momentum model for juvenile justice across the country. Currently, programs are running in Dallas and Pittsburgh with plans for expansion. Café Momentum Dallas has consistently been ranked as one of the top restaurants in Dallas since its opening in 2015. Café Momentum Pittsburgh recently opened in March of 2023. Mr. Houser will discuss how the unique Café Momentum model, works with the system and community stakeholders to provide environments where youth can gain self-confidence and learn marketable skills that lead to a successful future. The Café Momentum experience proves that something as simple as breaking bread can change the lives of our community's justice-involved youth.
10:30AM – Noon
Morning Session Workshops
(Offered in both the Morning and Afternoon)
- Meeting the Needs of Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders
- The Intersection of Childhood Trauma and Juvenile Justice
- Addressing Youth Competency to Proceed
- Engaging Justice-Involved Youth Through "Homegrown" Services
- From the Front Lines: Perspectives from Youth and Professionals on Gun Violence
- Creating Effective Partnerships: Black Girls Equity Alliance and the Allegheny County Juvenile Probation Department
- Advancing Effective Services for Victims
- The Juvenile Court's Role in Prevention
- Embracing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging: County Perspectives
- Best Practices for Providing Educational Services in Juvenile Justice Settings
- Youth and the Juvenile Justice System: Trends You Should Know
- Interest of Justice Determinations: What Juvenile Justice Professionals Need to Know
- Crisis Intervention Teams (CIT) for Youth
Noon – 2:15PM
Buffet Lunch & Afternoon Plenary Session
"Together We Can: Building Safe, Strong, and Healthy Communities"
A successful juvenile justice system advances accountability, competency development, and community protection by engaging system and community partners. Research demonstrates that when system activities are driven by a unified purpose through collaboration, outcomes are improved, including safer and stronger communities, fewer victims, reduced delinquency rates, and increased confidence in the juvenile justice system. In this session, a variety of system and community partners will participate in a panel discussion to describe their unique roles, programs, and strategies that contribute to the health, safety, and well-being of youth, families, and communities.
2:30PM – 4:00PM
Afternoon Session Workshops
(Offered in both the Morning and Afternoon)
5:00PM – 6:15PM
Annual Awards Program and Dinner
The Juvenile Court Judges' Commission will, once again, honor both individuals and programs for outstanding service to Pennsylvania's Juvenile Justice System.
Friday, November 3rd
8:00AM – 11:00AM
Resource Day with Continental Breakfast
The 2023 James E. Anderson Pennsylvania Conference on Juvenile Justice will once again conclude with Resource Day. Conference participants will have an opportunity to learn about new, innovative, and creative approaches to working with juveniles and their families. Individuals representing public and private residential and community-based programs, technological products, and other relevant services available to the juvenile courts in Pennsylvania will meet with conference participants during this informal session that concludes the conference.
We are pleased to announce the room block at the Hilton Harrisburg is open. Early reservations are encouraged to secure the contracted rates. Please see below for reservation details.
The room block will close on 10/13/2023. Rooms are available on a first-come basis. You may visit the customized link to book online, 2023 JCJC Annual Conference Room Block Booking, or call 717-233-6000 and identify yourself with the Conference using GROUP CODE: JCJC23. The hotel will confirm your reservation.
The room block will close on 10/11/2023. Rooms are available on a first-come basis. You may visit the customized link to book online, 2023 JCJC Annual Conference Room Block, or call 717-234-5021 and identify yourself with the Conference using GROUP CODE: CAL in the JCJC Call-In Block. The hotel will confirm your reservation.