Organization, Leadership & Staff
Leon R. McCowan serves as the ACF Assistant Secretary’s representative for the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Region VI, Dallas, Texas. He provides executive leadership, direction, and coordination for achieving ACF’s key national goals, priorities, and special initiatives; advocates for and advances the priorities of the HHS Secretary and ACF Assistant Secretary, and facilitates Administration initiatives to improve outcomes for vulnerable children and families, special populations, and distressed communities. He manages and coordinates special sensitive and cross-cutting projects and initiatives such as Healthy Marriage, Fatherhood, and Faith-based Programs in the region, consisting of the states of Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. As Regional Administrator he helps achieve ACF’s key national goals and priorities by communicating ACF’s regional interests and concerns within HHS, with other Federal agencies, State human service departments and agencies, territorial and tribal governments, and with public and private local organizations that assist children and families. He serves as the Lead Regional Administrator for Positive Youth Development, Child Support Enforcement, Responsible Fatherhood, and ACF’s Effective Use of Technology.
With more than 41 years of professional federal service, Mr. McCowan began his career in the Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service. He has held various program and management positions within the Department of Health and Human Services, including: Regional Hub Director, West-Central Hub; Deputy Program Manager for the Office of Family Assistance; and as the Deputy Regional Representative for Child Support Enforcement.
In 2009, Mr. McCowan was awarded the Nancy H. Doherty Special Achievement Award – Federal Employee of the Year. In 2006, he was named “Outstanding Agency Administrator” by the Dallas/Fort Worth 2005 Combined Federal Campaign and presented a Certificate of Appreciation from the HHS Assistant Secretary for his role in the 2005 hurricane relief efforts. He received the HHS Secretary’s Award for Distinguished Service in 2005 for his work as a member of the African American Healthy Marriage Initiative Team and the HHS Assistant Secretary’s Partnering for Excellence Award as a member of the Positive Youth Development Team. In 2001, he was recognized with the prestigious “Presidential Rank Award” for Meritorious Executives. Mr. McCowan has been recognized throughout his career with numerous certificates and distinguished service awards for his Federal leadership and his service to the local community and other communities within the Region VI area.
Mr. McCowan received his B.A. in Sociology from Wiley College in Marshall, Texas, and his M.A. in Public Administration from the University of North Texas in Denton.
He is married to Curtistene McCowan; they have two married sons and three granddaughters.
Immediate Office of the Regional Administrator
The Office of the Regional Administrator is responsible for the administration's key national goals and priorities in our five-state area. The Regional Administrator (RA) provides executive leadership and direction to state, county, city, territorial and tribal governments, as well as to other public and private local grantees to ensure effective and efficient program and financial management.
The Regional Administrator, Leon R. McCowan, reports to the Assistant Secretary for Children and Families through the Director of the Office of Regional Operations.
Under McCowan’s direction, the Office of the Regional Administrator (ORA) leads the following activities:
- Promotes cross-cutting initiatives and interoperability among the ACF regional program offices
- Enhances regional interests with HHS and other federal agencies to facilitate more effective partnerships and improved customer service
- Coordinates ACF programs during regional emergencies (such as natural disasters, pandemic flu, or other disasters)
- Serves as the focal point for public affairs and media contacts
The Deputy Regional Administrator, also in the Dallas office, serves as the full deputy to the Region 6 Regional Administrator. The Associate Regional Administrator for Administration and Technology also shares in the responsibility for executive direction and has primary responsibility for administrative operations, staff development, strategic planning, performance monitoring and technology and automated systems programs.
Grants Management Regional Unit
The Grants Management Regional Unit is headed by the Regional Grants Management Officer and supports the Chief Grants Officer/Deputy Assistant Secretary for Administration.
The unit’s responsibilities include:
- Ensuring that business and financial responsibilities of grants administration are carried out
- Managing ACF’s discretionary, formula, entitlement and block grants in the region
- Directing all grants and cooperative agreements
- Ensuring compliance with applicable statutes, regulations and policies
- Performing audit resolutions
- Providing leadership and technical guidance to ACF programs on grant operations and grants management issues
Children's Bureau Regional Program Unit
The Children’s Bureau (CB) Regional Program Unit is headed by a Regional Program Manager who reports to the director of the Children’s Bureau within the Administration for Children and Families.
The unit is responsible for monitoring child welfare programs and providing technical assistance to states and tribes. In addition, the unit:
- Provides programmatic oversight and technical assistance to the Court Improvement Project and Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention grantees
- Collaborates with ACF CB Central Office, other Regional Program Units and other interested parties on all significant program and policy matters
OCSE Regional Program Unit
The Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) Regional Program Unit is headed by the Regional Program Manager who reports to the Deputy Director/Commissioner, OCSE.
The unit is responsible for providing program and technical administration of OCSE entitlement and discretionary programs and for collaborating with ACF Central Office, states, tribes and other grantees on all significant program and policy matters.
TANF Bureau Regional Program Unit
The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Regional Program Unit is headed by the Regional Program Manager who reports to the Associate Director, TANF, within the Office of Family Assistance.
The unit is responsible for providing centralized program and technical administration of the TANF block grant and for collaborating with ACF Central Office, states and other grantees on all significant policy matters.
Child Care Bureau Regional Program Unit
The Child Care Bureau (CCB) Regional Program Unit is headed by a Regional Program Manager who reports to the Associate Director, CCB within the Office of Family Assistance.
The unit is responsible for providing centralized program and technical administration of CCB block and discretionary programs and for collaborating with ACF Central Office, states and other grantees on all significant policy matters.
Head Start Regional Program Unit
The Head Start Regional Program Unit is headed by the Regional Program Manager who reports to the Program Operations Division in the Office of Head Start (OHS).
The unit is responsible for providing centralized program and technical administration of OHS discretionary programs and for collaborating with OHS State Collaboration Projects on all significant policy matters. The Regional Program Unit oversees the day-to-day management of Head Start grantees and the provision of technical assistance.