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Regional Administrator

Promotional imageCarlis V. Williams

Carlis V. Williams serves as the Southeast Regional Administrator for the Department of Health and Human Services/Administration for Children and Families (ACF) based in Atlanta, Georgia and was the former Chairperson of the Atlanta Federal Executive Board. The Southeast Region consists of eight states: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North and South Carolina, and Tennessee. ACF provides 60+ comprehensive and supportive programs for vulnerable children and families which include Head Start, Child Welfare, Foster Care Adoption, Child Care, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, Child Support, and Runaway and Homeless Youth. As the Regional Administrator, she provides executive leadership for cross-cutting program issues, emergency preparedness and response, Human Trafficking, Economic Upward Mobility, and the Homelessness Initiatives. She led the ACF National Healthy Marriage and Relationship Initiatives and co-founded the African-American Healthy Marriage/Relationship Initiative. Ms. Williams has also served as Senior Policy Advisor for Program Integration and Corporate Initiatives for the ACF Assistant Secretary in Washington, DC.

Before assuming her present position, Ms. Williams served as the Executive Assistant to the Governor for Health and Human Services in the State of Indiana. She was the Governor's chief policy advisor in these areas and had responsibility for five major agencies: Indiana Family and Social Services Administration, the State Department of Health, the Governor's Council on Disabilities, the Governor's Council on Protection and Advocacy and the Governor's Council on Sports and Fitness. Under her leadership, Indiana registered over 120,000 children during the first year of their Children’s Health Insurance Program, Hoosier Healthwise. She has served as Deputy Director for the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration, Division of Family and Children, and was responsible for programs related to family resources: Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Food Stamps, Medicaid, JOBS, Housing and Community Services, and had lead responsibility for the design and implementation of welfare reform in the state.

Among her many achievements, Ms. Williams recently received the “Points of Light” Lifetime Achievement Award from President Barack Obama and the Corporation for National and Community Service, in recognition of her commitment to building a stronger nation through her lifelong commitment to volunteerism; received the prestigious Governor of Indiana Council of the Sagamores of the Wabash Award for service to the citizens of Indiana; she is the recipient of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary’s Award for Distinguished Service and the Hurricane Disaster Response Team Award; Georgia State University’s National Center on Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Award for untiring efforts in support of grandparent-headed families; Spelman College Innovation Award for the professional development of Head Start and Child Care Teachers in Region IV; Jackson State University College of Public Service, School of Social Work Public Service Award; National Partnership for Community Leadership Judge David Gray Ross Award for Strengthening Families and Father Involvement in the Public Sector; Clark Atlanta University Dean’s Public Sector Award in recognition of her extraordinary achievements for the well-being of children and families in the southeast community; Administration for Children and Families African American Healthy Marriage Initiative Award for Excellence; the Mayor of the City of Atlanta, Georgia Phoenix Award and the Mayor of Atlanta, Georgia Award for Commitment to the Children & Youth of the City.

Ms. Williams is a graduate of Ball State University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology and Master of Art Degrees in Social Psychology and in Counseling and Guidance. She is a mother and grandmother and loves reading, music and the theater. If asked her philosophy of life, she will say, "Giving is better than receiving…if we all give, everyone wins!"

Last Reviewed: October 22, 2020

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