Laura Norton-Cruz, MSW, LMSW

Tuesday Morning Plenary

    Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and experiences of intergenerational and systemic trauma are common, increasing the risk of most leading health and social problems. No one service system or sector can solve the complex problem of preventing and healing from trauma in isolation, which is why cross-sector and collaborative solutions are so vital, as are local, community-led solutions that engage and empower families, organizations, governments, tribes, faith and cultural groups, and do work in a participatory and equity-focused manner.

    In this session, leaders of regional networks addressing ACEs and resilience and the statewide Alaska Resilience Initiative will engage participants in discussion about Collective Impact approaches to addressing ACEs. These discussions will be driven by participant interest, but will likely focus on participatory, equitable, culturally-responsive processes in networks; working effectively across sectors; community-based policy advocacy and systems change; and communications (framing of issues, materials, trainings, social media use, etc.).

    Laura Norton-Cruz, LMSW, has worked for two and half years as the Director of the Alaska Resilience Initiative, facilitating a statewide network of non-profit, government, tribal, and community entities working to reduce trauma and build resilience. She worked for over five years in the Alaska Tribal Health System, partnering with communities and regional tribal health organizations to create culturally-relevant resources and trainings, with a focus on violence and trauma. She has also taught breastfeeding and postpartum courses for parents and a University-level public health course, and she worked for years as a public-school teacher. She earned her Master’s in Social Work from the University of Michigan and her undergraduate degree in Critical Social Thought from Mount Holyoke College.