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Meet our Symposium 2018: On the Front Lines Keynote, Jackie Woodside, LICSW

Tuesday, March 6, 2018  
Posted by: Jamie Klufts
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Coffee and Conversation with Jackie Woodside

Symposium 2018: On the Front Lines Keynote Speaker


Each and every day social workers across the Commonwealth are on the front lines. This includes Jackie Woodside, LICSW, CPC, the keynote speaker for Symposium 2018. As a clinical social worker in Massachusetts for thirty years and a person who has depended on social workers to help her navigate personal traumas in the past, Jackie has a unique understanding of the challenges and opportunities social workers in our state face. To learn more about Jackie’s plans for her keynote speech, Jonas Goldenberg, NASW-MA’s Director of Clinical Issues and Continuing Education, and I “met” Jackie for a virtual coffee date in early December, before the chaos that accompanies holidays and snow days. 

Even from afar, Jackie’s presence radiates warmth and inspiration. She speaks clearly and purposefully, exuding calmness. Jackie’s personal mission is to expand the edge of human potential, and in speaking to her for just thirty minutes, we could see why she is so successful in this pursuit. Jackie’s long list of accomplishments includes being a TEDx speaker, an Amazon Bestseller of three books, and being the least stressed and most happily married person she knows. 

Some of you may already know Jackie from her wildly successfully intensive workshop at Symposium 2016. Here, Jackie discussed strategies for dealing with difficult people at work. Attendees praised Jackie’s ability to not only communicate material engagingly and humorously, but to teach the actual application of skills in a practical and hands-on way. Many attendees asked that we bring Jackie back, so we did. In a big way. 

Jackie’s Symposium 2018 keynote is designed to build on the success of her curriculum-turned-book “Calming the Chaos,” helping her social work colleagues feel empowered and better able to thrive in an increasingly fast-paced and demanding field. The talk, titled “Empowered Practice, Empowered Lives: Principles, to Enhance Peace, Purpose, and Productivity,” comes at a time when social workers and society at-large are grappling with vast political and cultural turmoil. 


This often stressful environment can create a chronic sense of feeling overwhelmed for social workers and clients alike. According to Jackie, at their core, social workers are courageous and display willingness, resilience, leadership, and passion. Through sharing her own lived experiences with mental health issues and addiction, coupled with in-depth, firsthand knowledge of the field, Jackie’s keynote will teach the necessary skills and mindset to enhance social worker effectiveness while reigniting these core social work qualities. 

Social workers have been there for Jackie at every turn. Now is her time to return the favor and empower her closest colleagues and allies, clinical and macro social workers alike, to return to the front lines with a renewed sense of hope and a call to action to create social change.  

In addition to her keynote, Jackie Woodside will also be leading an afternoon workshop on April 12 titled "Calming the Chaos: How to Elevate Performance, Productivity, and Peace of Mind in Social Work Practice (and your life!)."

For those interested in attending
Symposium 2018: On the Front Lines, the largest gathering of social workers in New England, you can learn more about the event's workshops, speakers, exhibitors, networking information, and more on our website:


This article was written by Jamie Klufts, NASW-MA's Communications Director. Jamie can be reached at


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National Association of Social Workers - Massachusetts Chapter
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