Northwood Professor DeLois Leapheart Speaks at Annual Adoption Forum

DeLois T. Leapheart
On May 9 Northwood University Professor DeLois Leapheart spoke at the 2013 Adoption & Permanency Forum in Grand Rapids. This program was sponsored by the Michigan Supreme Court- State Court Administrative Office and co-hosted by the Department of Human Services (DHS).

Leapheart took part in the presentation titled “Getting Everyone to the Table: The nuts and bolts of how to implement the permanency forum team.” This program was attended by 254 participants from 64 counties around the state.

The purpose of the event was to promote the use of cross-collaboration statewide in an effort to improve permanency outcomes for children in Michigan’s child welfare system. Other members of the panel included Faye M. Harrison, judge, 10th Circuit Family Division/Saginaw Probate; DHS County Director Rita Truss and her staff; Sandra M. Lindsey, CEO, Saginaw County Community Mental Health Authority; Sharon Berkobien, regional director Holy Cross Christian Services; and Barbara Hill, chairperson, Foster Care Review Board. Each panel member discussed how their organization is able to improve its service to children via collaboration with other service providers. All panel members agreed that cross-system collaboration is critical to success in child welfare.

Leapheart is the president and executive director of Adoption Option, Inc. in Midland. As well as her role as a professor at Northwood, she is the advisor to Northwood’s nationally ranked Mock Trial team.


Northwood University is committed to the most personal attention to prepare students for success in their careers and in their communities; it promotes critical thinking skills, personal effectiveness, and the importance of ethics, individual freedom and responsibility.

Private, nonprofit, and accredited, Northwood University specializes in managerial and entrepreneurial education at three full-service, residential campuses located in southern Florida, mid-Michigan and northern Texas. Adult Degree Programs are available in seven states with many course delivery options including online. The DeVos Graduate School offers accelerated, evening and weekend programming in Michigan, Texas and Florida. The Alden B. Dow Center for Creativity and Enterprise provides system-wide expertise in family enterprise, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and new business development. International education is offered through study abroad and in Program Centers in China (Changchun and Wuxi), Malaysia and Sri Lanka.