1/17/2014

The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) today announced Lisa Black as the new assistant commissioner for Child Protective Services (CPS).

Black has managed CPS operations in the Dallas-Fort Worth region for five years, consistently completing a higher percentage of cases on time and maintaining a higher caseworker retention rate than other metro areas. She also played a key role in the redesign of the state’s foster care system and earned praise for building a strong network of child welfare providers and advocates in her community.

"Lisa Black brings a wealth of experience and skill to one of the most challenging jobs in Texas," said DFPS Commissioner John Specia, Jr.  "She is a strong, capable manager who will bring innovation to CPS statewide and improve the safety net for children who suffer from abuse or neglect."

Black will oversee one of the largest CPS programs in the nation with more than 8,000 employees statewide. She starts her new job February 1, succeeding Audrey Deckinga who retired December 31.

Black is a 28-year veteran of CPS. Following in the footsteps of her mother, she became a CPS caseworker in 1986. She also has been a CPS supervisor and program administrator, as well as  an investigator for the Child Care Licensing program.

"I am very excited about this opportunity because I believe in Commissioner Specia's leadership," Black said. "My top priority is the safety and wellbeing of children both in the community and in foster care."

As the Dallas-Forth regional director, Black manages more than 1,300 employees in 19 counties. She also has served as acting CPS director in Harris County since September 2013. Black holds a masters of social work from the University of Texas at Arlington and completed her undergraduate degree at Texas Woman's University.