HELLO
MY NAME IS
Sharon Roszia
&
I'm an Adoption Expert

About Sharon

Roszia3-websize-smallerSharon Kaplan Roszia is an internationally known educator, presenter, and author who has devoted fifty years of her professional career to the institution of foster care and adoption. While working in public and private agencies as well as private practice venues, she has focused on crisis pregnancy; infertility; infant adoptions; placement of children from the foster care system, including sibling groups and teenagers, and search and reunion. The additional issues of international adoptions; trans-racial adoptions; gay and lesbian built families and traumatized children with attachment challenges have also become a specialty.

In the last twenty five years, Sharon has also paved the way in the world of open adoptions; believing in preserving connections over time.

Sharon has lectured extensively both domestically and abroad; written two books and contributed to dozens of others; produced training videos and written curriculum to teach both adoptive parents as well as professionals. She is respected for her conference opening addresses and her several days trainings both with people touched by adoption as well as professionals.

Sharon is the co-author, along with Lois Melina, of the Open Adoption Experience: A Complete Guide for Adoptive and Birth

Families from Making the Decision through the Child’s Growing Years (1993); Cooperative Adoption: The Official Handbook along withMarri Rillera (1985); contributor of Creating Kinship, U. of Southern Maine, Working With Older Adoptees: A Sourcebook of Innovative Models(1994); contributor to Siblings in Adoption and Foster Care; Traumatic Separations and Honored Connections ( 2009). Sharon has also published articles in Adoptive Family Magazine; PACT Press and Adoption Therapist; she has also been featured in newspapers and magazines across the country.

Sharon has been honored by the Congress as an Angel in Adoption; the American Adoption Congress; the North American Council on Adoption; ATTACh (The Association for Treatment and Training in the Attachment of Children); Annette Baran and Rueben Pannor Award for Outstanding Work in Adoption and many other recognitions throughout her career.

Sharon has also parented by birth, adoption and foster care and has watched her family grow to include seven Great Grandchildren. She has watched the powerful forces of genetics play out in her growing family and the impact of the life long implications of adoption on each family member.

Both as a professional and a family member, she was led to develop a prospective on these life long implications, along with friend and colleague Deborah Silverstein L.C.S.W., which have framed her life work into the Seven Core Issues of Adoption upon which trainings and writings have been based.

Sharon is semi-retired and consulting with AdoptionVoicesMagazine.com and Kinship Center; a member of the Seneca Family of Agencies.

Professional Services

hand_heartsProfessionals may choose to consult on cases, mentoring or training opportunities.

Individuals or couples may want to consult on any of the following:

  • Am I ready to adopt?
  • What kind of adoption do I wish to pursue?
  • How do I get started?
  • Adopting a child from the foster care system.
  • Parenting trans-racially.
  • Single parenting.
  • Gay families adopting.
  • A need for a referral for a therapist, book suggestions and connections to national organizations.
  • All aspects of open adoptions: Getting started; confronting fears; why do it;
  • problems that may arise; present problems in an open adoption relationship.
  • How to talk to children about adoption at different stages of their development.
  • How to prepare children in the family for an adoption.
  • Search and reunion questions and resources.
  • Treatment facilities for children; a big decision for families. Know what to look for and ask.

 
After fifty years in the field of foster care and adoption, there is nothing that will shock or surprise her — So ask away!!

References can be provided as needed.

Testimonials

Sharon Roszia Adoption Specialist - Testimonials “Doesn’t everyone long for a wise sage who can safely hold the center of one’s sorrow? Sharon Roszia, advocate for the adopted, is that gifted listener, road warrior and trustworthy companion on the greatest of journeys – the re-discovery of self. Time invested with Sharon has left me breathing deeper, exhaling more fully, relaxing more completely into my life.”Kathryn Shelley, Co-founder of Adoption Knowledge Affiliates

 

“Sharon Roszia is a ‘national living treasure’ to the field of adoption and foster care. Her work with families has spanned fifty years; she has touched the lives of 1000’s families and hundred’s of professionals. Sharon is an accomplished author, consultant and speaker on all issues related to both pre and post adoption and the Child Welfare system. She has enlightened communities both nationally and internationally. It is her work as a lecturer that elevates Sharon to a level of resplendency. The subject content about which Ms.Roszia speaks is often complicated and emotional, but Sharon’s authenticity and deep knowledge is very rare, and the clarity with which she shares facts, insight and experience is incomparable. I am honored and fortunate to be both a student of and colleague to this champion in her field.”Ellyn M. Gold, PhD

 

hands4“I feel very fortunate to have worked with Sharon Roszia in the field of Adoption. When I was hired to develop a home for pregnant women who were planning for adoption and needed a safe haven, I thought immediately of Sharon Roszia. Sharon’s experience in the field could not be matched. Author of many books in the field, lecturer and counselor; I knew that I could learn everything I needed to understand from Sharon. I was hopeful that she would lend me a little time and a lot of knowledge. Sharon did that and more. When I asked, she said that she would be willing to come to our Adoption home and counsel our residents on their rights and options. In addition, she helped them understand what was ahead for then, and helped prepare them for the tidal wave of emotions awaiting them. Sharon Roszia understands adoption more thoroughly than anyone else I have met. She has seen not only the birth mother and the prospective adoptive couples, but she has years of experience watching the children of adoption grow and understanding the family dynamics that evolve from the wonderful world of adoption. I learned so much from her and continue to do so. I recommend Sharon Roszia as your number one source if you want to understand Adoption.”Lissa Callaghan, Retired Executive Director of Casa Teresa

 

“An authority on core issues surrounding adoption, Sharon Roszia is a vibrant speaker and masterful trainer. We have benefited immensely from bringing this gifted expert to our state to educate our staff, community professionals and families across Montana. Intermountain’s clinical work with children and families has been strengthened by integrating her concepts and insights into our program.”Elizabeth Kohlstaedt, Ph.D., Chief Clinical Officer, Intermountain

 

hands1“Sharon Roszia has been a tremendous influence on our family. Her wealth of knowledge of the adoption process is unmatched. We like to call her Sharon “Open Adoption” Roszia. Sharon helped form our family. She matched us with our first two children and was there for us when things got rough. Her sage advice gave us the tools to make our new family work successfully. We would not be the wonderful family we are today without her.”Linda H.

 

“One of the greatest gifts we have received (as well as to many of the adoptive families we have worked with) has been to drink at the deep well of Sharon Roszia’s vast knowledge and experience in the field of adoption. Sharon Roszia and her team of professionals came to our boarding school each month for nearly a year to train our teachers and counseling staff in ACT ® (Adoption Clinical Training) in a very integrated way. Even though we had been successfully helping adopted adolescents for years nearly 20 years, this valuable training opened our eyes to ways we could be working with the whole adoptive family that were thoughtful, research based, and creative. We significantly enhanced our program services as a result of this Kinship Center training.

If you could speak with the grateful parents and adopted students who benefited from our in-depth training, they would tell you that they came to understand and support their family members better by understanding their role in the Core Issues of Adoption ®. The parents would share with you how their own unresolved issues surrounding adoption affected their child’s ability to resolve his/her issues; and that by addressing those the whole family was able to move on together. They would explain how understanding the maladaptive attachment spectrum helped them to identify how their own parent/ child relationship could become more secure. Students processed the loss issues of adoption in an open and honest way, which resulted in more self – acceptance. Students and families who wished to search and/or reunite with birth families were supported in ways to facilitate that process. I could go on for pages …

In short, the adoptive families we worked with received the premier adoption clinical services in a residential environment in the country, thanks to the training provided by Sharon Roszia and the Kinship Center. These families had unmatched opportunities to understand the needs of their adopted child and to respond in the most helpful ways.

We will always be grateful to this team of devoted Kinship professionals. Most specifically, we will always value our connection to Sharon Roszia as one of the most wise, knowledgeable, and heartfelt people we have had the privilege to know.” – Sharon and Alex Bitz

 

hands5“I heard about Kinship Center and Sharon Roszia through trainings offered by my employer, Department of Children and Family Services (Los Angeles County) around 2002. Having been in the department at that time since 1997, I was considered a “seasoned” Children’s Social Worker. Having taken any and all trainings that helped me deal with the immensely challenging job of child welfare, I was immediately taken by the trainings offered by Kinship Center and led by Sharon. I can still recall my reaction to the first of many trainings, I was in awe and amazed at the truth and wisdom of her words. I was not the only one who felt this way, when we returned to the office and put the knowledge and skills Sharon had shared into practice, we informally formed a small group of Sharon “followers”, we took every and all trainings offered by her and often joked how great and amazing it would be to have a “Sharon brain”. Sharon’s wisdom solidified and completed much of my instinctual feelings about my role and work in child welfare but that was often not supported or practiced in the day to day of a large bureaucratic system. Having worked with DCFS for 10 years and in all facets of foster-care adoptions (even voluntary infant adoptions), I can say with complete certainty and immense gratitude that the knowledge, skills and passion instilled by Sharon helped me positively affect the experience of the children and families I worked with.

Having been so impressed with Sharon and her representation of Kinship Center, and having made the decision years before working with DCFS that I would someday adopt, I contacted Sharon and asked her if I could become a prospective adoptive parent with Kinship Center. In late 2005, my husband and I became prospective adoptive parents and in June of 2006 we met our three (future) adopted children. Once again, Sharon’s knowledge and wisdom had an immense impact in helping us meet the needs of our children in a nurturing and practical manner and in dealing with a very challenging experience with the County foster care system. Sharon at the time was a program manager, yet many times was on the phone with us or at our home, doing everything in her power to support permanency for our children and support the emotional health of their prospective adoptive parents. And we were only one of many, many families she did this for! Having had contact with many Los Angeles area foster family agencies through my work as a Children’s Social Worker, I can honestly say that I feel that then and to this day, there is no other foster care agency that can compare to Kinship Center, in part because of Sharon’s presence and history with the agency. I cannot begin to imagine where my family would be now if we had not had the support of such an amazing agency.

Personally and professionally, I have become a better person because of Sharon’s influence. In the years before meeting Sharon, if someone had asked me if I believed in living angels I would have said “no” and perhaps laughed to myself that people could entertain such an idea. After experiencing what it is to parent a child with extreme RAD (reactive attachment disorder), two others with RAD, ADHD, PTSD, ODD (amongst a few other diagnosis), not feeling supported by the County foster care system and seeing my 12 year marriage hanging on by a very thin string…

I now believe in living angels, Sharon Roszia became ours. My husband, my four children and I are and will remain forever grateful to Sharon for having the passion, desire and knowledge to educate and support others.

P.S. I am still hoping to have a ‘Sharon Brain” someday!'” – Maria H.

 

“From the moment we met Sharon, we felt the warmth of her joyous spirit. She gently took our hands and lead us through the California adoption process in a professional and focused manner. Her knowledge and experience combined with her quiet confidence contributed to our faith in her. She leads by example and is offers support unconditionally. She connected us with our now daughters, Jennifer and Aurora, almost 15 years ago, and they continue to be among our greatest joys. We have remained in contact over the years and hold Sharon in the greatest esteem for her guidance and friendship.”Marybeth L.

 

hands7“After reading her work for years, I was blessed to be introduced to Sharon Roszia through La Familia Inc.’s collaboration with the Kinship Center to provide training to our staff members on adoption issues. We were incredibly impressed with and impacted by Sharon’s knowledge, compassion and integrity. She understands the perspective of adoptive parents and is adept at skillfully helping professionals and parents put the needs of children first. Through her focus on the 7 Core Issues of Adoption, Sharon provides a guide for exploring the difficult aspects of adoption while encouraging connection and sincere acknowledgement of the grief and loss shared by all members of the adoption constellation. Sharon pricelessly delivers hands-on, real life tools for parents and professionals that are cutting edge. Sharon’s training continues to help our staff deliver quality services to families across the state of New Mexico every day and we could not be more thankful.”Megan M. Walsh, LISW (Director of Adoption Services La Familia-Namaste, Inc.)

 

“From 1981 to 2006 my legal practice in Tustin, California was limited to private adoption and reproductive law matters. I met Sharon Roszia in 1981 when I began attending her seminars on issues surrounding adoption. Thereafter, I began referring all of my clients to Sharon for pre-adoption education and information and also any after-adoption needs. Sharon was also a great source of support, information and counseling for the birth parents I referred. I considered her services to all of my client invaluable.”Linda S. Nunez, Attorney

 

hands6“I first met Sharon in l980. My husband and I had adopted a baby girl a few weeks before and, somehow, I was able to leave my baby for a few hours to drive to Oakland to hear her speak. I had no idea who she was. My life changed after Sharon’s presentation. I knew that raising my daughter in a closed adoption was not in her best interests and began trying to figure out how to involve birth family in our lives. It took time and energy, but with two baby girls close in age, I was finally able to bring their birth families into openness.

After Sharon spoke and most had gone home, I lingered asking her questions about her work in the field of adoption. She was clear, articulate, and magical as she told stories about her work in this field with a shift from closed adoptions to open placements.

I had been adopted in a step parent adoption when I was age 30 and my records were sealed as a result! My husband had become a birth father when he was l9 in college. He had no knowledge as to what had become of his birth son, although he married the mother and had two subsequent children. I was a foster parent to one young boy for more than a decade —- The world of child welfare was everywhere I turned in my own family.

I had majored in Social Work at the University of Nevada in Reno and knew I would want to return to school and this field. Graciously, Sharon became my unofficial mentor as I began to “facilitate” semi open adoptions. I had a long way to go.

A University education in no way prepares one for the reality of working in this field day by day. Sharon recommended I become a licensed book seller which I did. When she would recommend a conference or organization to join, I did that as well. I devoured her knowledge and information and adoption became a passion for me.

I began to hone my speaking skills putting together workshops with her suggestions and input.

Sharon is the most highly honored (awards wise) and respected social worker in the field of child welfare. She is dearly loved by other professionals across the country and there are many “Ellen”s” who have had the privilege of her wisdom and knowhow. No other person had ever had such an impact on me professionally or privately.

My ethics and my knowledge all came from her willingness to teach and share. She has been a pioneer in this field seeing far beyond what textbooks thought was needed for children. Her common sense and humorous approach always delights her audiences. Her vision and insight are both unique and exceptional.

After enjoying a Sharon workshop, a Jewish client of mine once said: “Listening to Sharon speak is better than going with Moses to get the tablets.” Knowing Sharon has been my life’s greatest highlight-my gratitude is endless. I have been to the mountain!” – Ellen Roseman B.A. (Cooperative Adoption Consulting, San Anselmo, Ca 94960)

 

“As a clinical and forensic psychologist in my fortieth post-doctoral year, I have rarely, if ever, had the privilege to work with someone as knowledgeable in her field as Sharon Kaplan Roszia, MS. Many, many years ago, when I was practicing in California, she helped introduce me to the world of adoption, teaching me about birth parents, adoptive parents, and adoptees. Her wisdom, humor, experience, and solid professional knowledge facilitated my own growth as a clinician and forensic evaluator in child protection cases.

Without Sharon, I would not have been sensitive and capable enough to do the beneficial therapeutic work I did with children and families, or have the basic grounding to assist the Connecticut Superior Court for Juvenile Matters system in hundreds and hundreds of child protection cases over my thirty-plus years practicing in that state.”Dr. Barbara Berkowitz

Contact

Sharon is available for phone and SKYPE consultations by appointment only.

She can be reached at sharon@sharonroszia.com.

She does not accept insurance, but is flexible with her fees.

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