As a Regional Coordinator for the Center for Child and Family Studies at WestEd, Johnston-Chiszar works in collaboration with the California Department of Education to involve early childhood educators, institutions of higher education, and governmental and community-based organizations in the implementation of the California Infant and Toddler Learning and Development System and WestEd's Program for Infant/Toddler Care (PITC).
Johnston-Chiszar was instrumental in the start up of the PITC Demonstration Program at Merced College, where he continues to provide technical assistance and conduct tours. As a result of Johnston-Chiszar's work, child care programs in Arizona and California have implemented a Reflective Action Planning (RAP) process he helped develop, making an impact in outcomes for thousands of young children and their families.
Since joining WestEd in 2005, Johnston-Chiszar has trained participants nationwide, and coordinated the work of PITC Partners for Quality Infant/Toddler Specialists in providing participants with individualized professional development services, on-site technical assistance, and academic instruction across central California.
Johnston-Chiszar's work is key to helping participants strengthen connections with families and improve the quality of care and education children receive in their care.
Johnston-Chiszar produced Framing the Infant Toddler Curriculum, a documentary-style DVD that shows infant care teachers using documentation to reflect on their observations of children’s development. The DVD is a resource for providing policymakers nationwide with accurate information about the need for high-quality child care. After being presented at the ZERO TO THREE National Training Institute in 2008, copies of the DVD were distributed within the PITC Partners for Quality Regional Support Network.
As a member of the State Partnerships for Prevention team in collaboration with ZERO TO THREE, Johnston-Chiszar helps reduce the risk of maltreatment of very young children. He accomplishes this by facilitating community-based training and seminars in the prevention of child abuse and neglect.
Prior to joining WestEd, Johnston-Chiszar was a program director and training and curriculum specialist in the military child care system. He addressed gaps in service delivery for children with disabilities and special needs throughout southern Germany as the command-appointed chairperson for the 6th Area Support Group Local Interagency Coordinating Council, United States Army – Europe (USAREUR).
Johnston-Chiszar regularly presents at statewide and national conferences, and has presented at conferences and symposiums in Europe.
He received a BA in child development from New College of California and an MA in human behavior from City University.