Who We Are

Kandace Thomas

Senior Program Officer

First Year with IHF


Focus Areas

Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health, Child Trauma, Domestic Violence, Reproductive Health and Justice, Diversity-Informed Practice


Ph.D., Child Development, Erikson Institute/Loyola University Chicago
M.P.P., University of Chicago
B.A. in Sociology and African American Studies, Wesleyan University

Kandace Thomas is a Senior Program Officer at the Irving Harris Foundation, where she leads the Foundation’s efforts to build developmentally appropriate, trauma-informed equitable systems of care for young children and their families. She manages grants and projects in the areas of infant and early childhood mental health, child trauma, domestic violence, and reproductive health and justice. She also provides vision and strategic direction for the Harris Professional Development Network, a collaborative impact network of national and international grantees working with or on behalf of young children and their families.  A leader in the creation of the Diversity-Informed Tenets for Work with Infants, Children and Families, a framework and approach for integrating diversity, equity and inclusion in programs, organizations and systems that work with children and their families, Kandace is a member of and manages its expert working group. Kandace sits on local and national advisory groups related to children’s social-emotional development and well-being.