July 29, 2020 - FY21 Board of Directors Appointment Announcement


July 29, 2020

FY21 Board of Director Appointment Announcement


The Children’s Advocacy Centers of Illinois (CACI), a 501(c)(3) agency,  is a statewide membership organization dedicated to helping communities, through local child advocacy centers (40 CACs in Illinois), respond to allegations of child abuse in ways that are effective and efficient – and put the needs of child victims first.


The following are the CACI Board of Directors new appointment announcements beginning July 1, 2020.  The CACI board is made up of a diverse and talented group of individuals who are critical leaders and passionate of our mission to support and sustain Illinois' Children Advocacy Centers through leadership in Resource Development, Education and, Collaboration.


PRESIDENT - JOAN PERNECKE.   Joan is the former Chief of the Child Protection Division of the Juvenile Justice Bureau, within the Cook County State's Attorney’s Office. She has served long-term as Faculty for the DePaul University College of Law Trial Advocacy courses, as well as for the National College of District Attorneys in South Carolina, and the American Prosecutors Research Institute.


VICE-PRESIDENT - JEFFREY G. BROWN.   Jeff is an Assistant State's Attorney, Sex Crimes Unit for the Will County State's Attorney's Office. Jeff couples those duties with heading the animal cruelty unit; and tops that off with as a facility dog handler to a beautiful 5-year-old English Black Labrador Retriever, Kiwi, who is used in the court process for abused children at the Will County Children's Advocacy Center.


TREASURER - L. KAYE DESELMS DENT.   Kaye partners with her husband at Dent Law Offices, Ltd., where she provides an array of Elder Law and estate planning services, focusing on Nursing Home Planning and Special Needs Planning. She is also a member of her local bar associations, the Board of Directors for Heartland Human Services in Effingham, Illinois, serves on the boards of the Southeastern Illinois Community Foundation Advisory Board for Effingham County, the Effingham Child Development Center, Effingham Noon Rotary Chairs the Fifth Circuit Pro Bono Committee of the Public Interest Law Initiative.


SECRETARY - DR. CAREYANA M BRENHAM   Dr. Brenham is a board-certified Family Medicine Physician in Springfield Illinois working with the SIU Center for Family Medicine-Springfield. Dr. Brenham also has done extensive training and work in Child Maltreatment in particular in Child Sexual Abuse. She served on the Children’s Justice Task Force from 2006 – 2016. She held the role of Vice-Chair in 2007-2008 and then the role of Chair from 2008 -2009. Dr. Brenham also has served on the Child Death Review Team since 2013.  Dr. Brenham works with the Sangamon County Child Advocacy Center and other surrounding County Advocacy Centers to provide medical forensic exams and medical treatment for children that have been sexually abused. She sees children on a weekly basis on referral from the Child Advocacy Center, from private physicians, and from the police or DCFS services. Dr. Brenham also does case reviews for the Department of Children and Family Services and serves as an expert witness in court trials for child maltreatment cases.

March 23, 2020 - An Open Letter to Governer Pritzker

We're asking Governor JB Pritzker to support vital funding for the 40 CACs across Illinois.

Child sexual abuse thrives in isolation. As our necessary, long-term social distancing continues, children are vulnerable. At the same time, they are isolated from the social supports and mandated reporters who can help them. In the coming weeks, more children will need CACs. We are in critical need of funding to deliver vital care and protect children, while we keep all of these staff members, families and communities safe!

PLEASE SHARE to show your support of the important and necessary work that the Illinois CACs provide to our communities!

August 6, 2019 - New Billboard Campaign Launched

Statewide Billboard Campaign

Launched August 26, 2019

In FY19, 14,291 children walked through the door of an Illinois CAC where their voices were heard. On Monday, August 26, a new statewide billboard campaign was launched. The “Children Start To Heal The Moment They Are Heard” campaign is aimed at child abuse response and prevention. We understand that effective advocacy requires both information and action, therefore 14 billboards are being placed throughout Illinois.

The billboard campaign includes the CACI website: that provides comprehensive information regarding contact information for local CACs, signs of abuse, Illinois statistics, training opportunities and more.

Download the Press Release and Location Map Here

April 9, 2019 - Legislative Day

Each April, in honor of Child Abuse Prevention Month, CACI and CAC staff from around Illinois gather in Springfield at our State Capitol.

With our hands and minds full of informational materials, funding needs/issues, current and/or proposed bills and laws questions, concerns and/or ideas, we appreciated this opportunity to discuss them all with our Representatives and Senators!  

Take a look at some of the pictures from Legislative Day 2019! 



The Children's Advocacy Centers of Illinois is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and an accredited chapter member of the National Children's Alliance

Children's Advocacy Centers of Illinois 400 S. 9th St., Suite 101 • Springfield, IL 62701 • 217.528.2224