Department of Family Services

CONTACT INFORMATION: Monday–Friday 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
703-324-7500 TTY 711
12011 Government Center Parkway, Pennino Building
Fairfax, VA 22035
Michael A. Becketts

About Family Services

cartoon org chart with facesDFS Organizational Chart



The Department of Family Services (DFS) strengthens the well-being of our diverse community by protecting and improving the lives of all children, adults, and families through assistance, partnership, advocacy, outreach, and quality services.


Fairfax County is a community where everyone lives their success story and thrives.


Values are the guiding principles that shape our behavior and actions. Together with our Mission and Vision, they serve as the foundation for the Department of Family Services from which structures are built, plans are developed, and services are provided.

People-Focused graphic magnify glass over people

People-Focused graphic magnify glass over people Meeting People Where They Are.

Each employee of the Department of Family Services focuses on the people we serve to make a positive impact on their lives and communities in which they live. We recognize that individuals are the experts in their own lives and with empathy and compassion, we work in partnership with each individual to resolve challenges.

People-Focused graphic magnify glass over people Welcoming Every Voice.

This people-focused approach guides workforce development and employee engagement. Each DFS team member is engaged as a valued partner in our work. Each voice is vital to the success of the organization no matter what role a person has in the Department. Each employee actively contributes to a culture of mutual respect, dignity, and service.

People-Focused graphic magnify glass over people Investing in Employee Growth and Development.

Investment in employees’ success, professional growth, and development is central to the success of our organization. By making this investment, the department is committed to ensuring that employees have the tools to be successful in their roles, are supported in mastering their roles to provide exemplary service, and have opportunities to learn and employ new skills.

Equity word graphic scale balancing

Equity graphic graphic scale Embracing Collective Action.

We are compassionate toward every individual we are privileged to serve and work with. While our core principle of teamwork solidifies and strengthens our relationships, we need to move beyond empathy and solidarity to embrace the power of collective action. We recognize that if we are to make significant strides towards true equity and physical and psychological safety for our workforce and for every person we serve, there are operational changes and action steps that must be taken.

While we realize our individual efforts may be awkward and unchartered, we have long fought to secure equal footing for those we serve. We are well-positioned to create and operationalize steps to reduce inequities and address systemic oppression which hampers the growth and wellbeing of our communities. As a part of the broader County government, DFS is a supporter of the One Fairfax initiative and policy. Under this policy DFS has authored this Equity Impact Statement:

Consistent with the principles of the county’s One Fairfax policy, the Department of Family Services (DFS), recognizes systemic oppression and institutional racism have contributed to disparities in opportunities for county residents. In recognition of race as a defining social construct in America that gives birth to all of the other “-isms”, we are committed to addressing institutional racism as a component of our charge to support the safety, health, and wellbeing of residents of our community. Our team intentionally creates, implements, and revises existing policies, practices, and procedures to alleviate disparities in service delivery and to promote equitable outcomes for those receiving our services.

We unequivocally reject racism, violence, and bigotry in all its forms, including the systemic oppression directed at people of color and other marginalized identities that have been woven into the fabric of our policies, procedures, and practices. While we have specifically called out some forms of bigotry such as racism and xenophobia, we intentionally and collectively advocate for each person’s right to physical and psychological safety, justice, and access to opportunity.

The goal of our equity focused work is to improve outcomes for all people, regardless of singular or intersecting identities. Addressing racial equity, social equity, and rejection of bigotry in all its forms allows DFS to develop goals and outcomes that will result in improvements for all people, and centers strategies based on equitable practices. DFS is committed to advancing beyond its oppressive, systemic underpinnings to critical self-examination and reflexive practice.

Equity graphic graphic scale Rejecting Oppression.

We unequivocally reject racism, violence, and bigotry in all its forms, including the systemic racism directed at people of color which has been woven into the fabric of our policies, procedures, and practices. We further reject the criminalization of people of color, both native-born and immigrant. While we have specifically called out some forms of bigotry such as racism and xenophobia, we intentionally and collectively advocate for each person’s right to physical and psychological safety, justice, and access to opportunity. We are committed to moving the system away from its oppressive underpinnings through critical self-examination and reflexive practice.

Accountability word graphic clipboard checklist

Accountability graphic clipboard checklist Practicing Good Stewardship.

We are dedicated public servants and exercise great care in our efficient and effective management of County resources.

Accountability graphic clipboard checklist Acting with Integrity.

We always serve with honesty and transparency and pride ourselves in doing the right thing.

Accountability graphic clipboard checklist Taking Ownership.

We accept responsibility and ownership for our work, our decisions, our successes, and our shortcomings. We engage in proactive communication and use our voices to elevate challenges and actively seek solutions.

Accountability graphic clipboard checklist Managing with Data.

We engage in data-driven decision making, making sure our work is achieving the desired results, and monitoring and adjusting our approach and business processes accordingly.

Partnership word graphic connecting people

Partnership graphic connecting people Embracing Partnership and Alignment.

We recognize that to achieve our mission and make our vision a reality, we must not make system-level nor client-level changes in isolation. Strategic partnerships at all levels – with clients, co-workers, within and across departments, and with community partners and other jurisdictions are required. We seek opportunities to collaborate, plan and align our work at all levels for the benefit of our community members.

To move toward true partnership, in dialogue, planning, and management, the following Principles of Partnership are understood, integrated, and acted upon within the department, across county agencies, with community organizations, and with families. We recognize that true partnership requires:

  • operating from a place of mutual respect.
  • empathically listening.
  • focusing on the strengths of those involved.
  • critically analyzing the situations under consideration and reserving judgement.
  • acknowledging power differentials in relationships and ensuring that all voices are heard in the transactions.
  • recognizing that achieving true partnership is a process and moving toward true partnership must always be intentional.

Partnership graphic connecting people Expecting the Diversity of Perspectives.

We are dedicated to ensuring a diversity of voices and experiences. We are strengths-focused and strive in our inclusiveness to create the best outcomes for our community and its residents.

Innovation word graphic bulb over people

Innovation graphic bulb over people Striving for Learning and Continuous Improvement.

We challenge the status quo and advocate for new and innovative approaches to advance the effectiveness of our work and the wellbeing of our community. As a learning organization, we embrace failing forward – taking risks, learning from mistakes, and building on successes. We are bold and creative in problem solving. We encourage and empower employees to take measured risks.

Innovation graphic bulb over people Embracing New opportunities.

We constantly seek to enhance existing partnerships and create new partnerships, funding sources and service improvements. We adjust to changes in our environment with flexibility and agility.

Innovation graphic bulb over people Encouraging Diversity of Perspectives.

We will genuinely encourage and listen to all ideas without judgement. We will actively seek input from and encourage full engagement of people from all different levels and perspectives. Employee involvement is intentional, with representation across impacted areas.

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Health and Human Services System logoAbout the Health & Human Services System

This agency is a part of the Fairfax County Health & Human Services System (HHS). The HHS System is a network of county agencies and community partners that support the well-being of all who live, work and play in Fairfax County. Learn more about Fairfax County HHS.

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