Wendy Samford Ph.D.
Hello and welcome to my website. I am pleased and excited to share my work with you! Click on the link below my picture to learn more.
My passion has always been working with and for children. After spending my beginning professional experience in the field of business, I changed careers and moved toward teaching high school kids business courses. I was recruited to work in the central office of a nearby school district and quickly fell in love with working in the business side of schools. After obtaining my doctorate, I felt led to leave my position and write about the impact of over-testing in the United States. I wrote “Out of the Dark” and “Creating a Culture of Teacher Leadership” while working part-time for the state department to increase teacher leadership in Ohio.
After moving to Florida, I again changed direction and felt led to interview adults who grew up in the foster care system. "Bloom Where Planted" was published in 2019, and "The First Wrinkle" followed in 2021, showcasing stories of individuals who were raised in foster care and the experiences of those who work diligently to repair this broken system.
Presently I am working as a consultant for the Florida Handle With Care (HWC) program. HWC is simple. If the police are called to a home, and there are children present, they send a notice that says Handle With Care to the school so that the school personnel are aware that something traumatic happened to that child and to treat them accordingly. Being involved in this program has prompted my newest book, due out later this year, “How to Handle With Care,” which answers the question of how to implement HWC in your school, precinct, county, or state.
Interviews from people all over the U.S. offer guided information on program implementation. Look for this book later this year, and feel free to check out this amazing program for kids at www.handlewithcarewv.org. The HWC program is one step toward creating trauma-informed communities, and I am proud to assist in moving this program forward in our great nation.
In The Press
As a former child social worker, I wish I had read Bloom Where Planted to better understand the true struggles of a foster child, and the courage it takes to survive. I do not have personal experience living in a foster care environment, but this is one of the best memoirs I have read that gives a raw and real insight. I highly recommend this book to anyone with interest in discovering how to truly help foster children.
"Out Of The Dark" is Wendy Samford's cri de coeur mediated by mindset. From her experiential and gut reaction that much is wrong with the present system-standardization, lack of proactive leadership-to her identification of renewal and a call to action, there is much in this book for leaders to take forward into their own situations.
Michael Fullan, University Of Toronto