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A Road Trip For the Ages with ERICSA

It’s summertime and our thoughts turn to vacations, reunions, and scenic trips. Would you like to plan a road trip for approximately 900 people?  Sounds like an awful lot of work, right? But that’s just what the Eastern Regional Interstate Child Support Association (ERICSA) recently did. Luckily, it was a virtual road trip.  The theme was “On the Road Again” and over 900 people registered to hit the road with ERICSA from May 24th to 26th, 2021. 

The three-day conference featured plenary sessions and workshops providing learning experiences for child support practitioners.  Just as planned for in-person conferences, it featured entertaining breaks with names like Dance Party (great music!), Wellness Break (soothing and relaxing), and Photo Booth (fun and laughs.)  The attendance at all of the workshops and breaks was great--record-breaking, in fact!  The ERICSA program committee, led by President-Elect Tommy Howard, demonstrated that they could put on an informative and appealing road trip for the largest-ever crowd to participate in an ERICSA conference. 

Conduent’s own Kimberly Newsom Bridges was the plenary speaker on Day 2.  President Mike McGuire introduced Kim’s presentation on a Jon Gordon book entitled “The Energy Bus: 10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work, and Positive Energy.”  Using her review of the book as a guide, she took the audience of more than 650 participants through the steps needed to refuel your own bus with positive energy, a good attitude, and action.  The chat was active with comments demonstrating its value to the audience.  We all need our own buses filled with the right fuel. 

Conduent has been a sponsor and supporter of ERICSA since the inception of our child support business 30 years ago.  We were the Registration Sponsor for this conference and had the privilege of introducing six of the workshops and the final plenary, a popular annual event known as ERICSA Wars, which tests the participants on 40 to 50 questions related to the child support program and its history.     

Additionally, Robbie Endris and I serve on the organization’s Board of Directors, and we both take an active role in conferences. Robbie was a speaker on the Book Club workshop involving two leadership books by Simon Sinek. The Conduent child support team understands the important role organizations like ERICSA can play in the professional development and evolution of the child support program and our community. Events that bring together the child support community, either virtually or in-person, provide opportunities for individuals to exchange ideas and build on each other’s knowledge and successes—making us all stronger. 

The 2021 road trip came to an end, but everyone was encouraged to get ready for the 2022 trip.  It will be an actual in-person trip to an exciting destination – New Orleans, Louisiana!  In the meantime, child support practitioners will be working hard and serving well with new information and positive energy acquired on their virtual road trip.  Conduent is proud to be a partner, supporting state and local programs in doing the important work of serving children and families.