Christian A. Akiwowo, Ph. D.
Dr. Christian A. Akiwowo is Chief Executive Officer of Ibukun Comprehensive Community Services – a private, non-profit, residential and mental health agency in metropolitan Chicago, Illinois. He was the first recipient of the “Minority Business Man of the Year” given by the Rich Township Business Association in 2002.
Dr. Akiwowo has been involved in clinical, academic and research work since 1975. He is an official member of the International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN) Expert Faculty and was co-chair of the Pre-Congress Seminar of ISPCAN’s 9th International Congress held in Chicago in 1992.
A counseling psychologist with clinical expertise and more than thirty years of experience working with children and their families, he served consecutively as Director of Behavioral Sciences for the Pediatric Ecology Program at both Mt. Sinai and Grant Hospitals in Chicago from 1987 through 1995 where he conducted and supervised more than 2,000 evaluations of child abuse cases referred by the Illinois Department of Children & Family Services (IDCFS) per year.
Christopher Akiwowo, MBA Deputy Executive Director
Christopher has over 20 years of leadership experience working in both the mental health and financial industries in the areas of finance, management and operations.
Christopher began his career as a Clinical Case Manager working with Youth in Care that were victims of abuse and neglect and eventually promoted to several leadership roles as an Operations Manager, Human Resources Manager and Finance Director.
Christopher has a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) Lewis University and a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology and Social Work from Governors State University.
David brings over 25 years of experience working with organizations and programs focusing on the care of youth with mental health deficiencies. The bulk of his experience was at the administrative level, monitoring and providing consultation to agencies of all sizes across the state of Illinois. More recently, his work on the ground level as Program Director leverages that experience as part of the management team with more responsibility in day-to-day operations at AYO Group Home.
Ibukun Comprehensive Community Services (ICCS) is a licensed Illinois not-for-profit (501) C 3 Child Welfare Agency with a 14-year history of community-based behavioral healthcare experience. Its services range from prevention through education and other therapeutic services for youth victims of child abuse and neglect and their families.
Ibukun believes that people can achieve and maintain strong psychological growth, develop pro-social values necessary for sustaining positive relationships that foster meaningful and mutually beneficial human co-existence.
IBUKUN Comprehensive Community Services recognizes that caring for children demands an inter-disciplinary effort. IBUKUN encourages a collaborative effort between its professional staff (social workers, therapists, psychologists, and psychiatrists), professionals outside the agency (teachers, nurses, pediatricians, judicial personnel, law enforcement, and state agencies), the child and his/her parents; to provide accurate information necessary for treatment.
"The time in which I spent in Ayo's Therapeutic Group Home, I can honestly say was not useless. Half of the things I'm asked to do these days, are exactly the same things that the staff use to ask of me, while I stayed there. Life skills play a very critical role in my life today, and I use to have a mindset that I knew everything and there was nothing important and useful that I could learn from Ayo. Fortunately, although the experiences that come with being a DCFS ward are infinite and very useful, God works in strange ways and one thing I've learned was to be patient. Ed's way, isn't always the right way. Thank you to all those who contributed to making Edward T. a better man."
"At the age of thirteen I came to Dr. Akiwowo in Chicago Heights, at first I was trying to figure out a way to just leave and be on my own, but after a couple of weeks I realized that it wasn't that bad I was the youngest boy there so it was like I was the little brother the way that is was set up with the group meetings and activities made it more of a family based event. Doc gave us the opportunity to be individuals and not uniform like we were detainees, he made sure that we all had a voice of opinion and he did not look over what was important to our living status if we didn't like something he reasoned with us he was involved with us. I may have been a little misguided by the streets but with my ability to listen and take knowledge into consideration I learned alot and kept things I was taught in mind and I used them to become an entrepreneur, and now I'm on my way to being another black inventor so I would like to thank Doc for being a father figure to me and not just a program director. So for any new additions to docs group home settings know that it's not about where you are it's about where your planing to go.
As Dr. Akiwowo once said," let your head guide you feet to its destination!"
- Timothy P.
Rene Chandler is the Supervisor at our residential group home (IBUKUN Comprehensive Community Services). He brings over 25 years of executive, managerial and direct behavioral health service experience. Rene Chandler has spent his entire social work career, serving in poverty-stricken communities throughout the Chicagoland metropolitan area.
He is a graduate of the Communities Partnering 4 Peace (CP4P) 1st cohort of certified street outreach workers. Also a trauma informed trainer and has several certificates of completion in the areas of violence prevention, youth advocacy and community outreach.
He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Social Work from Central State University, Ohio and a master’s degree in Pastoral Counseling from Central Christian University, Ark.