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2024 NASW-Illinois Chapter Elections

The 2024 NASW-Illinois Chapter Elections will take place from April 1–30, 2024. Keep an eye on your e-mail for a link to the electronic ballot. Be sure to have your selections prepared before opening the electronic ballot.


PRESIDENT-ELECT (One-year term followed by two-year term as president)

LaTasha Roberson-Guifarro, MSW (Washington University in St. Louis), LCSW, CWEL

LaTasha Roberson-Guifarro (she/her) has been committed for the past 16 years to being a thought leader and executioner of achieving systemic results in human service & technology sectors through learning, creating, and implementing solutions in collaboration with children, families, communities and institutions. She has held direct service and progressing levels of leadership roles in child welfare, clinical services, training, policy development, advocacy, program & risk management, strategic planning, and continuous quality improvement (CQI). LaTasha currently serves as the vice president and chief strategy & innovation officer at one of the largest child welfare and adoption agencies in Illinois, Lutheran Child & Family Services. She also serves at the organization’s privacy officer. She describes her role within her organization as a call to inspire, challenge, and equip stakeholders to consistently ask, answer, and respond to: How are we doing? How do we know? How do we prove and/or improve our efforts and strategically achieve desired social impact results? She serves as a Council on Accreditation (COA) reviewer, Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) Board Member, Vice Chair of the IL Child Welfare Licensure Board, has served on the NASW-Illinois Chapter Board of Directors and Committees, and she is the leader/member of various other agency, state, and national advisory boards geared towards resource and systems transformation, children and family advancement, workforce professional development, credentialing and stability, race and LGBTQI+ equity and affirming care, social justice, and innovation. Tasha shares her ultimate aim is to electrify sustainable, collective power and capacity for evolving our tomorrows.

SECRETARY (Two-year term)

Diane D. Williams, AM (The University of Chicago), MSW (Columbia University)

Diane Williams is a social work advocate, researcher, and aging specialist focused on advancing social work practice for the older adult community. Diane is a dedicated professional who is committed to engaging our younger generations to invest in our diverse older adult communities. Currently Diane is adjunct faculty member and lecturer at Columbia University School of Social Work, teaching graduate courses focusing on aging, social policy, and research. Diane is fellow at the China Center for Social Policy focusing her research on The State of Chinese American Survey. Diane is also completing her PhD in social work focused on social integration and retirement in older adult populations, with specific attention to dimensions of discrimination. Diane's previous direct practice experience ranges from practicing social work in a middle school in the Bronx (New York) to consulting on the Ryan White Program for the Chicago Department of Public Health. Most recently, Diane worked on the Disrupt Disparities Report for the State of Illinois which focuses on racial disparities among older adults across topic areas of economic security, health equity, and connectivity. Diane is currently completing her term as Illinois Delegate in the NASW Delegate Assembly.

MEMBER AT-LARGE (Two-year term)

Anna Gamez, MSW (Aurora University), LCSW

Anna Gamez (she/her) has been a school social worker since 2002. During her time as a school social worker, she has supported the social-emotional development of (both regular and special education) children ages five to eleven within the school system through individual, small group, or classroom level of services. Along with direct student teaching and support, Ms. Gamez also assists families in navigating community based resources. Ms. Gamez is knowledgeable in the areas of the social-emotional learning standards, special education, trauma informed practices, crisis intervention, and restorative justice. Ms. Gamez has also been an internship supervisor to graduate level MSW students pursuing school social work and provided LCSW supervision for post MSW graduates. Along with her social work responsibilities, Ms. Gamez additionally serves as a union representative for her colleagues.

Michael F. Mallory, MSW (New York University), LCSW

Michael Mallory (he/him) has over a decade of experience working in various capacities at local non-for-profit organizations serving vulnerable populations. A bulk of his experience has directly involved his work within the homelessness services sector. Currently he serves as chief government relations officer at Connections for the Homeless. This role involves his oversight of their public funding portfolio, program development, and advocacy efforts. Michael also maintains his clinical practice through operating his own private practice serving individuals in Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan. In addition to his direct employment experience, Michael has served two terms as NASW-IL Chicago District Chair and is interested in maintaining his involvement on the NASW-IL Chapter Board of Directors by serving as chair of the Legislative Committee and seeking out a term as NASW-IL Member At-Large.


Rayne Stokes, Undergraduate, Bradley University

Rayne Stokes (she/her) is an undergraduate student with a passion for change and bettering the system. With the hopes of working for DCFS, she will be advocating for children and families that are underrepresented and do not have the proper access to needed resources. Being an active advocate, Ms. Stokes is involved with various on campus and community programs such as Big Brother Big Sister, OSF Volunteer, and many more programs. Being an involved community member, she is confident in voicing and addressing the concerns of the BSW students. Having previous experience on the board as last year's NASW-IL Undergraduate Student Representative, her new goal is to have effective and affordable programs and resources accessible for undergraduate members to receive the same skillset and knowledge she has developed through NASW. There is no doubt that Ms. Stokes will go beyond to accommodate all needs and concerns while effectively communicating the information through student organizations and the NASW-IL Student Network. Rayne Stokes is an excellent candidate for the Undergraduate Student Representative position as she aligns with the values and beliefs within the NASW-Illinois Chapter, fitting into the culture that aids in progression.

Tyler Josephine Thomas, Undergraduate, Bradley University

Tyler Josephine Thomas (she/they) is an undergraduate student looking to represent LGBTQIA+ students. As a peer-wellness advocate in Bradley University's H.E.A.T (Help, Empower, and Teach), she has taught college students from various backgrounds about topics such as safe sex and protection, drug and alcohol use on campus, and addressed mental health needs on campus. She has been a voice of support for students who are struggling with mental health or need to know where they can go for more support. Tyler wants to continue advocating for students that know that they need support and those who do not know where to start. She has successfully led presentations to students, making it clear that their voices matter. Tyler's support for her school has continued with her attendance at protests against removing diverse staff members and classes. She has also attended meetings on how to support diverse students on campus mental health, speaking out for students who cannot. Overall, Tyler has fought for and supported her peers and would continue to do so for students across Illinois.


Alnita Myles, MSW (Governors State University), LCSW

Alnita Myles (she/her) has over 23 years of combined direct and indirect experience in the field. She has worked in a variety of areas including, but not limited to, sexual assault, domestic violence, child welfare, and mental health, while seeking to advocate for change to provide more holistic approaches to the work. Alnita is passionate about joining with others on their journey to gain understanding and acceptance as well as striving to be the best person they can be. It is this passion that has driven her to have a strong sense of commitment to this field that she truly loves. Alnita is proud alumni and current adjunct professor at Governors State University. To be able to teach in a program that gave so much to her professionally is an honor and privilege that is not taken lightly. Alnita has the opportunity to work with students who have chosen the path that she has found truly rewarding. Alnita also works at UCAN/TPSN, a social service agency that supports DCFS/POS agencies while advocating on behalf of pregnant and/or parenting youth in care across the state of Illinois to ensure their rights are protected through education and advocacy daily. Alnita challenges herself each day to make it a great one while looking for more opportunities to learn and change the world with action.


Jasmine Chandy, MSW (Loyola University Chicago), LCSW

Jasmine Chandy (she/her) has worked within health equity initiatives and builds on this craft to enhance mental health equity. As the Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Program Coordinator at Rush University Medical Center, Jasmine learned the art of collaborating within the community to enhance resources and access for older adults on the micro, mezzo, and macro level. She took this stamina with her as she worked as the Sickle Cell social worker at Saint Louis Children’s Hospital. As a chronic condition affecting predominantly black Americans within the daunting health inequity landscape in Saint Louis, the most segregated state in the country, Jasmine introduced healthy equity initiatives and redefined the social work role to include community efforts to ensure lasting change. Jasmine implemented new programs to help children and families gain access, education, and resources that weren’t there prior. Jasmine also served as co-chair on the first Missouri Sickle Cell Initiative. After these years of experience, Jasmine started her own mental health practice in Chicago to define the quality of care provided and ensure the equitable delivery of these services. The practice models the standards of the social work profession and is included in the practice name itself: socialworkup Therapy. As the NASW-IL Chicago District Chair, Jasmine is motivated to understand the needs within the community, ensure social work values are infused in all efforts, and serve as a consistently accountable member of NASW leadership.


Skip Dettman, MSW (University of Central Florida), LCSW, CADC, ASCW

Skip Dettman (she/her) moved to northern Illinois in 2017 from Florida. She currently works as clinical director of behavioral health services for Lutheran Social Services of Illinois and has a small private practice. She is chair of the Whiteside County Healthier Partnership.


Staci M. Knox, LMSW (Stony Brook University, New York), LCSW

Staci M. Knox (she/her) serves as manager of psychological services at OSF Saint Anthony Health Services in Alton, IL, where she leads a department of more than 10 staff (therapists, counselors, support personnel) providing individual and group therapy programs. She has more than 17 years of experience working with individuals, couples, and families in New York, and as a licensed therapist in Missouri and Illinois. In addition to providing psychotherapy and serving in leadership positions, her special interests encompass working with children and adults who have experienced trauma, family violence, food insecurity, poverty, impact of addiction on systems, foster care, criminal justice reform and cultural competence. As a lifelong learner, Staci has completed numerous specialized post-graduate trainings and enjoys keeping abreast of research and active work in the social work field. Staci served as the Long Island Division Director for National Association of Social Workers, New York State Chapter from 2011–2013, which included a position on the board of directors.



Thalia Anderen, LCSW, PhD (she/her), is a licensed clinical social worker in Illinois, Connecticut, New York, and Alberta, Canada, with over twenty years' experience as a therapist. She is an EMDRIA-certified EMDR therapist and has experience working with trauma as well as disaster relief, including victims of 9/11, Hurricane Sandy, the Sandy Hook school shooting, and the 2013 Alberta, Canada, floods. Thalia has worked in multiple leadership and supervisory roles including clinical supervisor at Family Centers, Inc. in Connecticut and associate director of counselling initiatives at Calgary Counselling Centre in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. In addition, Thalia has extensive experience as a social work educator. She was previously program chair of an undergraduate social work program in Calgary, Alberta, which she developed and launched prior to relocating to the Chicagoland area in 2022. Currently, Thalia instructs MSW courses at The University of Chicago and MA psychology courses at Roosevelt University while maintaining her business, Anderen Counselling and Consulting, PLLC. She recently completed her PhD in social work through Memorial University’s School of Social Work in Newfoundland, Canada, focusing on post-secondary social work educators’ experiences with student-initiated confrontation, and hopes to continue further research in this area.

Vincent Cieslak, MSW, CDVP, CADC (he/him), has an established history of working with populations of domestic violence, substance use, trauma, mental health, and LGBTQIA+ within DuPage County. He is compassionate and empathetic and serves populations through a trauma-informed lens. He is a human services professional, a skilled problem-solver, an advocate, and a humanitarian. He seeks to align his values and beliefs as Illinois Delegate for the NASW Delegate Assembly. His goal is to gain knowledge, advocate, and collaborate with constituents to provide a trauma-informed lens for Illinois's social and professional policies. Residing in DuPage County, Vince works with community stakeholders to foster substance use prevention practices, domestic violence advocacy, stability for marginalized communities through community engagement, queer mental health provision, and actively works in partnership with other NASW members for a shared commitment to serve our community. His work, effort, and experience allow Vince the tact and emotional intelligence to campaign effectively, strengthen outreach for underserved populations, and diligently carry out the responsibilities of this position.

Adam L. Scheffler, MA, LSW, is an independent social worker, editor, writer, researcher, and analyst. He has worked in election administration, health care journalism, patient safety, behavioral health policy, addiction counseling, radio research, and television news writing and production. He completed the Population Health Career Pathways 2.0 Behavioral Health Certificate Program at Sinai Urban Health Institute in Chicago in March 2023 and became certified in Mental Health First Aid the same month. He also completed the Community Health Care Worker Basic Certificate Program at Malcolm X College in December 2022, including an 11-week internship with All Hands Health Network at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago. He worked as an Office Associate with the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners from 2018 to 2020, a Lyft rideshare driver from 2016 to 2017, a freelance copy editor and correspondent at American Medical News from 2007 to 2009, and a patient safety consultant and writer from 2000 to 2006. He served as a Chicago delegate to the National Writers Union Delegate Assembly in 2004. Earlier he worked as a Project Manager with the National Patient Safety Foundation, the Editor of Proceedings of Enhancing Patient Safety and Reducing Errors in Health Care, and a Policy Associate in the Office of Alcohol and Other Drugs at the American Medical Association. He began his career as a broadcast journalist with WTTW-TV (intern), ABC News in Chicago and New York, the NBC affiliate in Pittsburgh, CNN in Atlanta, and the Fox affiliate in Washington, D.C.

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