Who we are
Two-month-old Ashley could have been saved if the professionals around her had accurate medical information and had worked together. Ashley had a small bruise on her cheek from being violently grabbed by her mother’s boyfriend. Ashley’s doctor reported the injury, but the investigation went nowhere because her doctor and the investigators did not work together or understand the serious implications of a seemingly minor bruise. One week later, Ashley died, violently abused by the mother’s boyfriend. Had a cohesive interdisciplinary model existed, Ashley might be alive today.

What is WI CAN? Formed in 2009, the Wisconsin Child Abuse Network (WI CAN) is an inter-disciplinary public-private partnership dedicated to improving the accuracy of child abuse investigations and is led by representatives of state departments, community-based organizations, professional associations, along with the state’s medical universities and children’s hospitals. Why WI CAN? Child maltreatment has immediate negative consequences for the child, family and society, and its lifelong impact on physical and mental health is devastating. Accurate detection of and effective intervention for all types of child maltreatment require a coordinated inter-disciplinary response by law enforcement and child welfare, usually with input from medical professionals. While the law enforcement and child welfare responses are statutorily mandated and funded, the medical response beyond making a mandated report is not. WI CAN has created a solution to improve the response to child maltreatment in Wisconsin by increasing access to evidence-based practices, education, and experts from key disciplines. WI CAN creates the environment where professionals work cooperatively to reach the ideal outcome for every child.

Ann E. Budzak M.D.

Pediatrician Medical Director, Gundersen National Child Protection Training Center Adjunct Clinical Professor, University of WI School of Medicine and Public Health Gundersen Health System
Dr. Budzak has practiced at Gundersen Health for 28 years, providing care to children with concerns of maltreatment. Other activities include development of a Foster Care Assessment Clinic as well as GunderKids, a model of care for infants born to parents with substance use disorder. She currently serves on the executive committee of the AAP Council for Child Abuse and Neglect. She is a member of the La Crosse Co. Child Death Review team. She works with Stepping Stones Children’s Advocacy Center in La Crosse, WI. She enjoyos teaching medical students and residents about child abuse and neglect.

Elizabeth Champion, MS

Executive Director - Child Advocacy Centers of Wisconsin


Amy Domaszek

Director of Statewide Prosecutor’s Education and Training (SPET) WI Dept. of Justice
Amy earned her B.A. in English from Luther College and an M.S. in Human and Community Resources from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. Amy has been professionally engaged in domestic violence advocacy and batterers treatment facilitation. Her background also includes wellness and professional development programming, community leadership, event planning, and property management.

Emily Erickson

Child Welfare Policy and Program Section Manager WI Dept. of Children and Families
Emily Erickson is a Licensed Professional Counselor and has worked in both child/family mental health as well as child protective services. Emily has a passion for supporting healthy children and families. She is particularly interested in the intersection of trauma, alcohol and other drug abuse, mental health and child maltreatment. Emily received her Bachelor of Science in Social Work from UW-Madison and her Master of Science in Community Counseling from Denver Seminary.

Thomas J. Fallon

Assistant Attorney General Child Abuse Resource Prosecutor WI Dept. of Justice
Tom Fallon is an Assistant Attorney General in the Criminal Litigation Unit and Wisconsin’s first-ever Child Abuse Resource Prosecutor. Before returning to the Attorney General’s office, Mr. Fallon was a Deputy (Supervising) District Attorney in Dane County District Attorney’s Office in Madison Wisconsin. Prior to assuming managerial responsibilities, Mr. Fallon had been an Assistant District Attorney in Dane County where he was the prosecution coordinator and interagency liaison for child abuse cases. He specialized in Sexually Violent Person proceedings, Sexual Assault, Murder and Child Abuse prosecutions.

Kristen Iniguez, DO

Pediatrician Marshfield Child Advocacy Center


Connie Klick, MSW

Director of Child Advocacy and Protection Services, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin Board Member, Child Advocacy Centers of Wisconsin
Connie is the director of Child Advocacy and Protection Services for Children's Hospital of Wisconsin. She oversees seven child advocacy centers (CACs) and two medical satellite offices across Wisconsin, one of the largest child advocacy networks in the country. She has experience working with victims of child maltreatment in both public and private agencies and is involved in state and national initiatives that address child maltreatment and family violence issues. Connie is also a Child Advocacy Centers of Wisconsin board member. This organization supports and promotes the development of CACs in Wisconsin in the effort to provide child-friendly locations to facilitate multidisciplinary team child maltreatment assessments.

Barbara L. Knox, MD

Child Abuse Pediatrician UW American Family Children’s Hospital Child Protection Program


Pennie Meyers

Executive Director Wisconsin Coalition Against Sexual Assault (WCASA)


Melodee Nugent

Statistician Quantitative Health Sciences Medical College of Wisconsin
I have over 20 years of experience of working with medical data as a biostatistician. Experience includes implementing statistical analyses and providing data management in support of projects. I have collaborated with physicians in the design and analysis of research data, provided essential scientific and technical expertise to develop scientifically and statistically valid study and project protocols; and analyzed and reported results in a statistically valid manner for section projects and studies.

Amanda Palm, PA-C, LCSW

Physician Assistant UW American Family Children’s Hospital Child Protection Program


Ray Przybelski

Director, Portage County Health and Human Services Department Vice President, Wisconsin Counties Human Services Association (WCHSA)


Lynn K. Sheets, MD

Medical Director, Child Advocacy and Protection Services Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin Section Chief, Child Advocacy and Protection
Dr. Sheets is a board-certified child abuse pediatrician who has over 25 years of experience in evaluating children suspected of being maltreated. She is a Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) and section chief of the Child Advocacy and Protection Division. She is also the Medical Director of Children’s Hospital and Health System’s Child Advocacy and Protection Services which provides services to children in foster care and children suspected of being maltreated.

Erica Stuckert

Manager Milwaukee Child Advocacy Center


Eric Swanson

Indian Child Welfare Supervisor Forest County Potawatomi


Lori L. Thompson

Statewide SANE coordinator WI Dept. of Justice
Lori graduated from Northern Illinois University with a BS in Nursing and University of Illinois with a MS in Nursing. As a nurse practitioner, Lori holds dual board certifications in Pediatrics and Forensics. She co-developed and was executive director of a child abuse response team in Northern Illinois that covered 15 counties. Last year, she assisted a child advocacy center in coastal North Carolina become accredited for the first time in their 14 year history. As an advance practice nurse, she has been qualified and testified as an expert in child abuse pediatrics in several states. Having held faculty positions at various educational institutions, she has taught general pediatrics and child abuse pediatrics to undergraduate; graduate nursing students, as well as, third and fourth year medical students.

Michelle Urban, MD

Medical Director Division of Milwaukee Child Protective Services WI Dept. of Children and Families


Rita Ventura, DNP, FNP-BC

Child Advocacy and Protection Services Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Dr. Ventura received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Marquette University, Master of Science from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee and Doctorate of Nursing Practice from Marquette University. She is a certified family nurse practitioner. She has been working in the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin Child Advocacy and Protection Services program since 2001. Dr. Ventura provides service to children in foster care and those suspected of being maltreated in both the Kenosha and Racine Child Advocacy Centers.

Michelle L. Viste

Executive Director, Office of Crime Victim Services WI Dept. of Justice


Jessica Wipperfurth

Social Worker UW American Family Children’s Hospital Child Protection Program


Jennifer Yates, MSN, FNP-BC

Child Advocacy and Protection Services Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Jennifer received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from UW-Madison and Master of Science in Nursing from California State University, Long Beach. She is a certified Family Nurse Practitioner and began working as a nurse practitioner at Miller Children’s Hospital in Long Beach, California providing medical management of children and families affected by HIV/AIDS. Jennifer started providing medical evaluations to potential victims of child maltreatment in 2006 at the Child Abuse Services Team in Orange County, California. Jennifer started working for Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin’s Child Advocacy and Protection Services Program in 2009 and provides medical evaluations to potential victims of child maltreatment at the Fox Valley Child Advocacy Center in Neenah and the Willow Tree Cornerstone Child Advocacy Center in Green Bay.

American Family Children's Hospital


Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Board

http://www.preventionboard.wi.gov/ The Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Board (CANPB) administers the Children’s Trust Fund and was created in 1983 to mobilize research and practices to prevent child abuse in Wisconsin. The Board’s vision is that every child in Wisconsin grows up in a safe, stable and nurturing environment.

Child Advocacy Centers of Wisconsin

http://www.cacsofwi.org/ Supports and promotes the development of child advocacy centers in Wisconsin and their efforts to provide child friendly locations to facilitate multidisciplinary team assessments with reported child victims. CACs also provide advocacy and support to alleged child victims and their family members.

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

http://www.chw.org/ We are the region's only independent health care system dedicated solely to the health and well-being of children. In Milwaukee and throughout the state, we provide kids and their families a wide range of care and support - everything from routine care for ear aches or sore throats to life saving advances and treatment options.

Medical College of Wisconsin

http://www.mcw.edu/MCW The Medical College of Wisconsin is dedicated to leadership and excellence in advancing Education and the preparing of physicians and scientists of tomorrow while enhancing the skills of today's health professionals.

University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health


Wisconsin Coalition Against Sexual Assault

http://www.wcasa.org/ The Wisconsin Coalition Against Sexual Assault (WCASA) is a statewide organization incorporated in 1985 to support and complement the work of Wisconsin’s community-based sexual assault service provider programs and other organizations working to end sexual violence.

Wisconsin County Human Service Association


Wisconsin Department of Health Services


Wisconsin Department of Justice