Connie Belciug, PhD

Connie Belciug, PhD

Executive Director

Connie was born in the Republic of Moldova (Eastern Europe), during the Soviet Union. Raised during Perestroyka and the collapse of the Soviet Empire, Connie learned first-hand what poverty and oppressive systems felt like. Her childhood experiences led her to dedicate her life and career to serving vulnerable children and families.

Belciug earned her Bachelor’s degree in foreign languages in 2003, and speaks Romanian, Russian, French and German. In 2008, she went back to school to pursue a graduate degree in Social Work. In the same year, she was appointed National Program Director for Children’s Emergency Relief International (CERI) in Moldova. Five years later, her quest for solutions and effective interventions for children, youth and families at risk led her to UT Austin's School of Social Work. She graduated from UT with her PhD in December, 2016.

As CERI's Executive Director, Connie pursues the implementation of best practices and cutting-edge interventions that further CERI's global mission of providing a family environment as the first and best option for children to grow in.

“The most rewarding moments in my career have been those when I realized how much a child had transformed and healed, from the moment I had met them in an orphanage, to the moment I saw them surrounded by a loving family. Family heals children from the effects of their trauma. The love of a family is truly life changing. ”

Connie's passion for social justice and the children served by CERI is fueled by her faith in God and her belief that God had created children to be raised in families and families as the perfect environment for children.