Elisabeth Burke has spent 7 years in foster care in New Jersey and 2 years in Tennessee. She is currently in extended care.

Elisabeth experienced multiple placements in two states. She credits some families she stayed with as helping her to build appropriate relationships. Placement in extended care is helping her to be successful in her studies at Tennessee State University. 

Passionate about improving the child welfare system, Elisabeth is a youth advocate in partnership with the Department of Children’s Services (DCS), where she works on policy that affects young people in care. She is also an active Youth Leadership Board member with TN DCS;  a member of the Leadership Council with the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse; and has testified before the Children’s Bureau on behalf of Tennessee DCS.

Elisabeth hopes to become a lawyer, and she also wants to be a foster parent for teens.

“I give back because I do not want kids to feel like I did while I was in care. I do not want them to give up. I want to use my personal experiences and my voice to improve the system.”

Team(s) or Cohort(s)
2019 Outstanding Young Leaders