News Releases and Media Advisories

Fifth Annual Kansas Prevention Conference Scheduled for Next Week in Wichita; "Connect the Dots”

For Immediate Release
October 18, 2022

For more information, contact:
Cara Sloan-Ramos

Public Information Officer

Rae Levin
Communications Coordinator
Wichita State University

WICHITA, Kan. – The Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS) has partnered with the Kansas Prevention Collaborative (KPC) to host the fifth annual Kansas Prevention Conference October 27-28, 2022, with a pre-conference session October 26. This year’s conference, “Connect the Dots,” is in person after two years of successful virtual events. The conference welcomes two nationally recognized keynote speakers and breakout session speakers from across Kansas.

The KPC Conference will provide attendees with educational opportunities to increase awareness of emerging trends in prevention, build skills and knowledge to prevent suicide, alcohol, tobacco, and other drug misuse, and advocate for best practices. Participants in the conference will also learn ways to connect and network with their community and advocate for best practices in prevention.

“This year’s conference provides the opportunity for our partners and others across the state to network and strategize about how we can provide better prevention outcomes in the vital prevention work we all do as one piece of the larger public health conversations we are having in Kansas,” Secretary Laura Howard said. “The last few years have taught us that we must adapt to the way we approach prevention and how important it is to recognize the need for increased access to and a broader range of community-based mental health and substance use disorder services.”

The conference will kick off October 27 with a keynote address by speaker Chuck Klevgaard, a nationally recognized expert in substance misuse prevention, public health, and school-based health. Klevgaard’s presentation will cover the intersection of harm reduction and prevention.

Nicole Augustine, Founder & CEO of RIZE Consultants, Inc., will close the conference on October 28 with a keynote presentation, “Connect the Dots: Bringing Together Strengths and Strategies for Better Outcomes.” She will discuss how prevention professionals can “Connect the Dots” by assisting communities in developing strategies that promote equity and inevitably improved health outcomes.

KDADS’ Behavioral Health Services (BHS) Commission and the KPC are excited to provide this learning opportunity to communities across Kansas. To learn more about the conference, view the schedule and read more about the keynote speakers, visit

KPC is a group of six partner organizations funded by KDADS working to integrate and innovate behavioral health prevention efforts. This conference is part of KPC’s strategy to ensure that Kansans get the tools they need to prevent underage drinking, substance misuse, problem gambling and suicide. Partner organizations are KDADS, Kansas Suicide Prevention HQ, Wichita State University Community Engagement Institute, DCCCA, Learning Tree Institute at Greenbush, and Life Span Institute University of Kansas.

These six partner organizations along with these eight conference sponsors make this year’s event possible: RIZE Consultants, Inc., Stop Suicide ICT, Verde Environmental Technologies, Inc., Kansas Attorney General’s Office, Holland Pathways, Bel Aire Recovery Center, Opioid Response Network, and Valley Hope Addiction and Recovery.

About the Kansas Prevention Collaborative:

The Kansas Prevention Collaborative was created in 2015 to integrate and innovate behavioral health prevention efforts. A partnership of several different state, educational, and provider agencies, the KPC’s goal is to expand prevention efforts to be more inclusive of mental health promotion, suicide prevention, and problem gambling education and awareness, as well as to increase the availability of resources to adequately fund local-level prevention and promotion strategic plans. For interviews, media inquiries, or more information, please contact the Kansas Prevention Collaborative at [email protected].