Our Mission

KSSWA Mission: KSSWA is a professional organization dedicated to promoting school social workers through advocacy, professional development and communication within the profession. 


KSSWA History

We were established in 1974 by a group of school social workers and their clients in the educational arena.

Our state association is part of the Midwest School Social Work Council, an eleven state regional organization that works to promote best practice and support social work in education.

KSSWA has a voice in developing policy at the state level, as well as regionally and nationally through our association with the Midwest School Social Work Council and the School Social Work Association of America.

KSSWA's executive board meets four times a year, and we hold a general membership meeting annually


Constitution and Bylaws

Current Board Members

President 
Tracie Chauvin


Tracie Chauvin, LSCSW is the Director of Student Support Programs for Kansas City Kansas Public Schools. 

Vice President  
Teresa Palmer

 

Past President
Cheri Koochel




Cheri was a SSW in the Manhattan/Odgen school district for 26 years at the elementary school level. Before that she worked with DCF for 8 years, She retired 5 years ago and currently lives in Salina. In her spare time she enjoys reading, gardening, traveling with her husband, and spending time with friends and family, especially her grandchildren. 

Secretary: 
Nicole Gilmore


Nicole Gilmore, LMSW, is an Assistant Principal at Winfield Scott Elementary in Fort Scott, Kansas. Previously, she was a Special Education School Social Worker with the SEK Interlocal #637 at The Learning Center (an alternative day school program) in Girard, KS servicing students K-12 across 13 districts for 6 years. 
She received her MSW from the University of Washington-Seattle, and her BSW from the University of Kansas. Additionally, she obtained her principal certification through Pittsburg State University.
She was the Social Work Speciality Team Member for KU Medical Center's Project ECHO for School-Based Mental Health Professionals for the 2023-24 school year, and is currently an Adjunct Instructor through the University of Kansas.
She serves as Secretary of KSSWA. 


Treasurer:  

Gerri Blaisdell


 


Gerri Blaisdell, LMSW, has been the School Social Worker at Chase County Elementary School, USD 284 for the last 5 years.  Prior to that she was an outpatient/in-home therapist, worked in child welfare, and as a Hospital Social Worker.  Outside of work Gerri enjoys spending time with her husband, 2 kids, and dogs, reading, spending time with friends, and taking naps.

Membership Chair: 
 Jessica O'Flannagan



 

Member-at-Large:  Julie Gomez



Julie (Julia) Gomez, LSCSW has been a School Social Worker since August, 2005.  Eighteen of those years at USD 321 Kaw Valley Schools,  and now starting her first year at USD 437 in Washburn Rural High School.  During this time she has also worked PRN for Hospice and the Crisis Stabilization Unit, both in Manhattan, KS.   Julie is serving on the Board as Member at Large and is excited to advocate for School Social Work.  

Communications Chair: Kasey Bossard




Legislative Chair: 
Sara Nowak  


Professional Development Chair: Shelby Burnett

 
 Shelby Burnett, LCSW, LSCSW, RPT, has been a passionate school social worker since August 2018. Shelby completed her Bachelor's and Master's in Social Work at the University of Kansas. She is working towards her Doctorate of Social Work degree, focusing on school social work leadership, expanding opportunities for social workers in the school system, and expanding youth mental health services in schools. Shelby has been on the KSSWA board since 2022, first serving as the Legislative Chair. In addition to her time on the board, Shelby was awarded the KSSWA Kansas School Social Worker of the Year in 2024 and serves as a member of the Deans Student Advisory Board at KU. When she is not doing social work things, she enjoys spending time with her husband, 3 kids, and her two dogs.

Northwest Representative: Karen Sullivan






Karen Sullivan, LMSW, is the NW Regional Representative. She works for Colby Public Schools USD 315 as a School Social Worker. Karen moved back to NW Kansas after completing her Masters in Social Work at Washburn University in 2008. She has worked in education as a School Social Worker since 2009.

Northeast Co-Representative:  

 If interested in being a student representative please e-mail KSSWA

Northeast Co-Representative: Annie Lindgren

 

Southwest Co-Representative: Lindsey Sill 

 

Southwest Co-Representative: 

 If interested in being a student representative please e-mail KSSWA

Southeast Co-Representative: Brenna Forbes