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Ronald C. Hughes, PhD, MSSA, LISW

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Dr. Ronald C. Hughes has been a thought leader in the child welfare/child maltreatment practice field for more than 4 decades. In 1977, he co-founded the Institute for Human Services (IHS) in Columbus, Ohio, with a mission to improve child welfare practice through large-scale capacity building and change efforts in the systems and organizations that serve maltreated children and their families. Dr. Hughes has been the Executive Director of IHS since its inception.

He is also the founder and Executive Director of the Center for Child Policy, with a mission of applying research and standards of best practice to promote cogent public policy that serves the best interests of maltreated children and their families.

Dr. Hughes is a widely published author on a variety of topics and controversial issues in the field of child abuse and neglect. He is co-author of the four-volume Field Guide to Child Welfare, historically the most widely used textbook in the child welfare profession. He has authored policy white papers on topics such as risk assessment and differential response, and articles and book chapters on a variety of child welfare practice issues. He is a primary architect of the Comprehensive, Competency-Based Inservice Training model of child welfare training, which has been adopted by a majority of states and provinces in North America as the foundation of their child welfare inservice training systems. Dr. Hughes also provides consultation and technical assistance to state, provincial, and local governmental and non-governmental child maltreatment organizations. In 2011-2013 he served as a member of the Civil Society Committee of the U.S. – Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission and was instrumental in planning and hosting three Russian-American Forums for Child Welfare Practice.

Dr. Hughes has been a member of the Board of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children since 2008, was Board President from 2010-2012 and is currently President Emeritus. He has served on the Board of the National Council on Crime and Delinquency (NCCD) since 2010 and was Board Chair from 2016-2018. Dr. Hughes served as Editor-in-Chief of the APSAC Advisor.

Dr. Hughes has a PhD in Developmental Psychology from the Ohio State University (1989); a Masters in Applied Social Sciences from Case Western University (1975), and degrees in philosophy and political science. He is a licensed psychologist and a licensed social worker.


Office:  614-251-6000

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