About ICF

Jessie Kendall

Senior Manager, Family Specialist
Jessica is a family specialist with nearly 20 years of experience helping federal, state, and local clients work with and improve services for children and families.

Jessica advises federal clients on best practices in trauma-informed approaches, social service, education, justice, and reentry systems. She has expertise in designing and delivering evidence-informed training and technical assistance, strategic meeting facilitation and trauma-informed organizational practices and approaches. Jessica led and provided expert support on issues relating to human trafficking, workforce development, reentry, and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) to various federal agencies. She works with the U.S. Department of State supporting the U.S. Advisory Council on Human Trafficking, which advises federal agencies on anti-trafficking programs and policies. Jessica also designs and delivers training to federal agencies on trauma-informed practices.

Previously, Jessica represented children of all ages in child protection cases and was a staff director at the American Bar Association with a focus on child welfare and juvenile justice systems. She has led efforts with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to design and deliver intensive, long-term technical assistance initiatives supporting state and local TANF programs relating to trauma-informed and coaching case management approaches, career pathways, and two-generation approaches.

Jessica has published over 40 articles, practice briefs, books, and book chapters on issues affecting children and families. She has been an active member of our Institutional Review Board since 2016. Jessica holds a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree, summa cum laude, from Catholic University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania, magna cum laude.

  • Trauma-Informed Also Means Taking Care of Yourself and Your Staff. In Focus. National Community Action Network (2019).
  • Establishing Coaching and Motivational Interviewing Practices in TANF Programs. Washington, DC: Administration for Children and Families, Office of Family Assistance (2017).
  • When Should Reentry Begin? Lessons from Employment Programs for Returning Citizens. Fairfax, VA: ICF International (2016).
  • National Standards for the Care of Youth Charged with Status Offenses. Washington, DC: Coalition for Juvenile Justice (2014).
  • “Creating Employment Opportunities for Our Most Vulnerable Youth: A Policy and Practice Framework.” Grantmakers for Children, Youth and Families: Insight Magazine (2013).
  • Victimization and Trauma Experienced by Children and Youth: Implications for Legal Advocates. Moving From Evidence to Action: The Safe Start Series on Children Exposed to Violence, Issue Brief #7. North Bethesda, MD: Safe Start Center, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice (2012).