John W. Shore
As a local Director of Social Services for Guilford County, North Carolina, John Shore has consistently focused his attention on the needs of children in his local community as well as those of all children. Since assuming the position of Director in 1998, the number of Guilford County children in legal custody has dropped from 892 in August 1998 to the current 506. In the past two fiscal years, Guilford County successfully has led the state in terms of the number of adoptions finalized: 305 children have been placed in permanent homes. Mr. Shore has served as chair of the North Carolina Association of County Director's Children Services Committee for the past two years. Through his leadership, he has supported the state in directing its focus on outcome measures and better performance indicators for child welfare services. He proved instrumental in the development and implementation of a statewide structured decision-making process in child welfare. Mr. Shore recognizes the value of community and other stakeholders in the protection of children. His agency, as part of North Carolina's Casey Initiative, led community building efforts with the Southside Neighborhood in High Point and the Eastside Park Neighborhood in Greensboro. Guilford County is one of ten counties involved in the Multiple Response Approach for Child Protective Services. This effort encourages more community involvement in service provision, provides a different approach for responding to child protective services reports, and works toward keeping families in poverty out of the child welfare system and safe in their homes and communities.