Kansas Children's Service League
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2020 Award Winners

Each year, KCSL recognizes friends and partners who have gone above and beyond to make Kansas communities a better place for families. Due to the pandemic, we were unable to hold our Annual Meeting Luncheon and Award Ceremony in 2020 and 2021. However, we would like to acknowledge our 2020 award winners.

Board Leadership
Dr. Stan Teeter

Dr. Stan Teeter Photo The KCSL Board Leadership award goes to a board member, past or present, who has provided long-term service and made a significant impact on the agency’s ability to serve children and families.

Dr. Stan Teeter has served as a KCSL Foundation Trustee since 2009. During his time on the Board, he has held a variety of leadership positions including Chair of the KCSL Foundation from 2014-2017. Dr. Teeter always volunteers wherever he is needed. He also encouraged his wife’s involvement at KCSL, and it is rare to not see her at events benefitting our organization.

Hilda Dyer Staff Achievement
Corey Lada

Corey Lada Photo Each year, KCSL recognizes a staff member, current or former, who through their service has made a lasting mark on the agency. The Staff Achievement award is named in honor of past KCSL employee Hilda Dyer, who during her 39 years of work for the agency extended herself far beyond her job description. Through her involvement with some 15,000 adoptions, she earned the right to refer to the adoptees as “my children.” Hilda Dyer passed away in 2001 at the age of 101. She was buried in Topeka’s Mount Hope Cemetery next to our medically fragile children who died during KCSL’s early years.

Corey Lada worked at KCSL for 15 years. During that time, he served as a recruiter initially for both foster and adoptive parents. His passion for adoption quickly developed as he became a clear advocate for the need of adoptive parents. Corey grew the Adopt Kansas Kids Klicks for Kids Heart Gallery into one of the most expansive in the nation, which led Adopt Kansas Kids to work with the National Heart Gallery for several years featuring the artistic work of our partnering photographers and their ability to capture a child’s spirit in a photo. Corey worked tirelessly to inform the general public about the need for adoptive parents through formal interviews and presentations, as well as just telling everyone he knew about how important it was to him personally. He became a leader within the state of Kansas through his work with Adopt Kansas Kids and built lasting connections with television stations for Wednesday’s Child segments, which are still intact today because of Corey’s intentional work to ensure these partnerships continued for Kansas children. Corey has continued his passion in adoption at the Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) where he works to improve the adoption process for ALL children available for adoption in Kansas.

Glenna VanMetre Outstanding Volunteer
Robin Osterhaus

Robin Osterhaus Photo This Hall of Fame award is named in honor of Glenna, a former KCSL volunteer in the Wichita office. A retired Wichita State University sociology professor, Glenna started volunteering on the Parent Helpline in 1988 contributing more than 26 years of service with more than 16,000 hours in the last 18 years alone.

Robin Osterhaus is a mother who was referred to KCSL when she was pregnant and struggling with addiction. With the help of KCSL, she was able to obtain treatment recovery services and has made tremendous changes in her life. She continues in recovery, maintains a stable home and employment, and is a loving, attentive mother. Since being in recovery, Robin has also been a wonderful volunteer for KCSL and is able to advocate for KCSL in a unique way, as a parent who has received services herself. Although it can be difficult and emotional for her to discuss, Robin is always willing to share her story and to advocate for other parents who struggle with addiction. Robin has been interviewed on the news and has spoken at multiple conferences and public events so others can learn from her experiences and learn about the benefits of KCSL’s services. She is motivated to let other parents know that they can ask for help and KCSL is available to them. Robin strives to be a voice for parents in recovery.

Distinguished Service to Kansas Children
Secretary Laura Howard and Deputy Secretary Tanya Keys

KCSL’s most prestigious honor, the Distinguished Service to Kansas Children Award is presented to a person or an organization that has done exemplary work for Kansas children with a lasting impact.

Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) and Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS) Secretary Laura Howard and DCF Deputy Secretary Tanya Keys were instrumental in the implementation of the Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA). Kansas was one of five states that began implementation in 2019. Under their leadership, 18 agencies from across the state were awarded with $13 million in Family First prevention grants. Additionally, they developed a qualified residential treatment program to ensure children in foster care are able to obtain the treatment they need when they need it. Secretary Howard and Deputy Secretary Keys have continued to lead the state in making changes to the child welfare system with a focus on children in foster care and on creating a child well-being system in Kansas that begins prior to a report of abuse or neglect.

Laura Howard PhotoSecretary Howard has spent more than 15 years of her career working in human services at the state and federal levels. Howard says she was drawn to the secretary position by the opportunity to make a real impact for the most vulnerable Kansans.

Her experience includes more than 30 years of government and human service work. She previously worked as a special assistant, deputy secretary and chief of staff for the former Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services. She also served as regional administrator for Region VII of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Most recently, she served as the Director of the KU Public Management Center. In that role, Howard had the opportunity to interact with KDADS staff through the Center’s Emerging Leaders and Certified Public Management programs. Secretary Howard holds a bachelor’s in public administration from Miami University and a law degree from the University of Kansas.

Tanya Keys Photo Deputy Secretary Keys has 30 years of experience in child and family well-being service delivery through frontline, supervision and leadership roles in program and policy development in the states of Kansas and Missouri. Keys was the Regional Director in the urban child welfare jurisdiction of Kansas City, Mo. for about seven years and enjoys project management and implementation planning of new innovations. As deputy secretary of programs at DCF, she has been an integral part of team implementation of the Kansas Practice Model - engaging community partners through FFPSA, early childhood collaborations and economic supports and services.
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