Christopher J. "Chris" Card, Ph.D, Director
Chris Card holds a Bachelor's Degree in Economics from Oakland University. He received his Masters in Social Work from Wayne State University and his Doctorate of Social Work at the University of South Florida. Chris is a Leadership Florida graduate.
Chris has extensive experience in many arenas of social services including five years as a child welfare case manager and supervisor in Houston, Texas, five years managing an inpatient treatment center for children and adolescents, five years as a statewide advocate and association director for the Florida Network of Youth and Family Services, nearly a decade as a Community Based Care lead agency executive director, and six years as the South Regional Vice President for Providence Service Corporation.
Chris was a founder of Florida's child welfare reform called Community Based Care and has been appointed by Governors Lawton Chiles and Jeb Bush to a variety of positions of state leadership for children and families.
Chris was the primary architect and advocate for the system of care that has reformed Florida's child welfare system. Chris was the first executive of the pilot project in Sarasota County Florida that has been duplicated throughout the entire state of Florida. This reform included systemic redesign, data system development and implementation, transition from a state service delivery system to a community service delivery system, and significant policy and procedure reform. This reform has resulted in dramatic improvement in performance for all child welfare services including tripling the number of adoptions each year, a 40% reduction in the children in out of home care placements, over 25% reduction in caseloads, along with many other accomplishments.
Currently, Chris serves as the Chief Operating Officer for Lutheran Services Florida overseeing over $130 million in revenue and responsible for a wide range of social service programs throughout Florida.
Chris has served as a gubernatorial appointee to the board of the Healthy Kids Corporation (the Florida CHIP program), and currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Florida Children's Forum, Intervention Services Inc., Pivot Charter School (Florida), and Everyday Blessings Inc. Chris lives in Tampa, Florida with his wife and has two adult sons.
Peter Balitsaris, Vice Chairman
Peter Balitsaris brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Pivot board, as an advocate, attorney, and businessman. He has spent the last part of his career working to improve the lives of children in Palm Beach County. Prior to his retirement this year, he was the President of ChildNet, the not-for-profit agency that provides child welfare services to children in Palm Beach County under contract with the Florida Department of Children and Families. He also acted as a longtime volunteer guardian ad Litem while working on ChildNet's application to provide child welfare services, which was helped by his business and real estate background. From 1997-2001, Mr. Balitsaris served as Senior Vice President with Liberty Property Trust (the successor of Rouse and Associates), and prior to this he was the President of Legg Mason Real Estate Services, Vice President of DKM Properties, and a former partner at Rouse and Associates. Trained as an attorney, Mr. Balitsaris acted as the Associate Legislative Council for the National Association of Homebuilders and was an attorney advisor for the US Department of Housing and Urban Development. He earned a Master's Degree in City Planning from the University of Pennsylvania, a Juris Doctor from Georgetown University, and a Bachelor's Degree from Duke University.
Jeff Wood, Board Parent Liaison, Broward
cell (954) 646-1756
work (954) 763-6006
fax (954) 764-5367
Jeffrey S. Wood is a practicing attorney whose areas of concentration include business law, commercial litigation, adoption, and the representation of charter schools and related businesses. He is a current original Member of the Board of Directors of Charter School of Excellence and has served that school for eleven years. He has provided counsel and legal representation to various charter schools in the State of Florida for many years and has participated and assisted in the formation of several charter schools from their initiation, application stage and through opening.