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DDP Worldwide transition update from Courtney Rennicke

13 March 2023
Courtney Rennicke

Dear DDP Community, 

I wanted to reach out to continue to share some of the accomplishments, works in progress, and lessons learned of the DDPI Board, DDP Worldwide Board Working Group, and DDPI’s committees and working groups. There are now collectively 56 DDP community members who volunteer their time away from work and family life to shape the culture and direction of our organization, as well as two phenomenal part-time staff members, Liz Tower, our Director of Communications, and Leila Caston, our Director of Operations. All of these evolutions I will be naming stand on their many, many thoughtful and generous shoulders. 

In the past year, there has been considerable work in the background to evolve our operations team, organizational structure and processes. One of our biggest visible accomplishments will be that as of April 1, 2023, DDPI will finally have transitioned completely to being based in a singular currency, the United States dollar (USD) across all countries. This has been a painstaking process that we hope allows us to grow more substantively and collectively in the future, as it streamlines our bookkeeping, budget and financial strategic planning. 

Most notably in our evolution, the 11 member DDP Worldwide Board Working Group has almost coming to a close of 1 year of hard work together to provide recommendations for the mission, vision and values and composition of the new incoming DDP Worldwide board, as well as guidance for a more equitable process to recruit and elect new board members in concert with the current DDPI Board of Directors. As we speak, DDP community members looking to be elected onto the new DDP Worldwide board are submitting their applications this month with the goal of the new DDP Worldwide Board being elected and seated by April 2023. 

In the process of creating guidance for the composition and election of the new DDP Worldwide Board, our working group has continued to learn a lot, make missteps, initiate repairs and continue to be humbled by the complexity and necessity of creating a more racially equitable and socially just organization. 

Recently after the Annual General Meeting (AGM) we received feedback from DDP members that the way we were handling the recruitment of LGTBQ+ community members created more barriers and a sense of unwelcomeness. Their feedback prompted the DDP Worldwide working group to continue to reflect, learn and gain more insights into a recruitment standard called positive action that we hope will be able to better deliver on the more equitable recruitment process we hope to engender not just for the LGBTQ+ members of our community, but all under-represented groups in our leadership positions. We want to thank again the DDP community members who spoke up and gave us the gift of their energies and feedback.

What all this collective hard work puts us on track for is an important inflection point in April 2023, the dissolution of the current DDPI Board of Directors and the election of the new DDP Worldwide Board that will serve as the leadership, guidance and strategic planning leaders in our global community. As this will also mark the end of my term as the Chair of the DDPI Board of Directors, I want to reiterate how proud I am of the work that has been done collectively in these past two to three years. I am indebted to the passion and energies of Shani Sephton, Randy Maldonado, and the entire Racial Equity and Social Justice committee, as well as Betty Brouwer, Joy Gamble and Alison Keith who have collectively led the DDP Executive and Operations team through these first awkward baby steps towards global integration.  

All of these changes are ultimately in service of the empowerment this organization to do what we all dream it can do, train and impact the lives of the therapists, social workers, psychologists, case managers who support the parents, children and families that we all passionately know deserve a chance to feel love, connection and dignity. We hope you all continue to move along with us into a very exciting new phase of our collective growth this year!


Courtney Rennicke
Outgoing Chair of the DDPI Board of Directors