Jana Pressley


Dr. Jana Pressley is an Associate Professor and the Director of Clinical Training for the Clinical Psychology PsyD program at Wheaton College Graduate School in Wheaton, IL. In addition to administrative duties and leading student clinical seminar groups, Dr. Pressley teaches a course in professional development and ethics and a course on treating complex trauma in children and adults. In her academic role, Dr. Pressley also leads a research group focused on qualitative analysis related to complex trauma impact and adaptation, and is currently collecting data on a project interviewing young adult, court-involved men and women in urban Chicago about the impact of trauma history and community violence on relationships, coping, and resilience. Clinically, Dr. Pressley is working at a local outpatient counseling center that provides services in a low-income community, where she is engaged in the treatment of individuals, couples, and leads a trauma recovery group. Prior to her transition to Wheaton College in 2011, Dr. Pressley served at Richmont Graduate University (Chattanooga, TN) as an Assistant Professor, Assistant Dean of Students, and the Founder/Director of the Richmont Community Counseling Center (RCCC). At Richmont, Dr. Pressley designed and launched the Trauma Counseling specialization track for MFT and MA counseling students, in close collaboration with the Trauma Center senior leadership.

Stephen Porges

PhD, Ph.D., Professor

Kinsey Institute, Indiana University and Department of Psychiatry at the University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill

Stephen W. Porges, PhD, is Distinguished University Scientist at Indiana University, where he is the founding director of the Traumatic Stress Research Consortium within the Kinsey Institute.  He holds the position of Professor of Psychiatry at the University of North Carolina and Professor Emeritus at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the University of Maryland. 

Dr. Porges served as president of both the Society for Psychophysiological Research and the Federation of Associations in Behavioral & Brain Sciences and is a former recipient of a National Institute of Mental Health Research Scientist Development Award.  He has published more than 300 peer reviewed scientific papers across several disciplines including anesthesiology, biomedical engineering, critical care medicine, ergonomics, exercise physiology, gerontology, neurology, neuroscience, obstetrics, pediatrics, psychiatry, psychology, psychometrics, space medicine, and substance abuse.

In 1994 Dr. Porges proposed the Polyvagal Theory, a theory that links the evolution of the mammalian autonomic nervous system to social behavior and emphasizes the importance of physiological state in the expression of behavioral problems and psychiatric disorders. The theory is leading to innovative treatments based on insights into the mechanisms mediating symptoms observed in several behavioral, psychiatric, and physical disorders.

He is the author of The Polyvagal Theory: Neurophysiological foundations of Emotions, Attachment, Communication, and Self-regulation (Norton, 2011), The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory: The Transformative Power of Feeling Safe (Norton, 2017) and co-editor of Clinical Applications of the Polyvagal Theory: The Emergence of Polyvagal-Informed Therapies (Norton, 2018).

Dr. Porges is also the creator of a music-based intervention, the Safe and Sound Protocol™, which currently is used by more than 1000 therapists to improve spontaneous social engagement, to reduce hearing sensitivities, and to improve language processing, state regulation, and spontaneous social engagement.

Speaker Disclosure:

Financial: Stephen Porges is a Distinguished University Scientist at Indiana University; and a professor at the University of North Carolina. Dr. Porges has intellectual property rights, and receives royalties from Integrated Listening Systems (now Unyte). In addition, he holds patent rights licensed to NeuralSolution for the technology embedded in PhysioCam and in technologies embedded in products marketed by Unyte. He is an author for W. W. Norton and receives royalties. Dr. Porges receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Non-financial: Stephen Porges has no relevant non-financial relationship to disclose.

Alexandra Cook


​Alexandra Cook, Ph.D. has been with the Trauma Center since 1995. Dr. Cook graduated from Yale University with a B.A. in Psychology and then obtained her M.A. and Ph.D. at Boston University. After completing her post-doctoral fellowship at the Trauma Center, she went on to become the Director of Children's Services from 1997 until 2004. Dr. Cook has a special interest in trauma evaluations and psychological testing. She has co-authored a book, With the Phoenix Rising: Lessons form Ten Resilient Women Who Overcame the Trauma of Childhood Sexual Abuse, and been the lead author on a White Paper, Complex Trauma in Children and Adolescents.

Elizabeth Hopper


Program Director of Project REACH, Dr. Hopper received her Ph.D. from Saint Louis University and completed her Clinical Psychology internship at the Medical College of Virginia. Dr. Hopper is the Director of Project REACH, a program that serves victims of human trafficking throughout the United States. Dr. Hopper has conducted national outreach on traumatic stress and complex trauma, focusing on cross-discipline training. She provides trauma-informed consultation in homeless shelters and to community-based clinicians. Dr. Hopper is currently a staff psychologist and supervisor at the Trauma Center.

Patricia D. Wilcox


Patricia D. Wilcox, LCSW, Vice President of Strategic Development, Klingberg Family Centers, New Britain, Connecticut specializes in treatment of traumatized children and their families. She created the Restorative Approach, a trauma- and relationship-based treatment method.

She is a Faculty Trainer for Risking Connection and an Adjunct Faculty at the University of CT School of Social Work. She travels nationally to train treaters on trauma-informed care, specializing in improving the daily life of treatment programs. She is the author of Trauma Informed Care: The Restorative Approach published by NEARI Press, and in 2011 was Connecticut Social Worker of the Year.

Elizabeth Warner


Elizabeth Warner, Psy.D., has had a psychotherapy practice in Brookline for the last 20 years. Her specialization is in the area of child development, and the treatment of children and families. Special interests include adoption and adoptive families, the special nature of that attachment and implications for development and the development of new treatments for complex trauma in young children. She spent 15 years working with severely disordered children including traumatized children and their parents, using innovative methodologies and the use of videotape study at the Language & Cognitive Development Center. In addition, she has worked in psychiatric inpatient and outpatient settings at Boston University Medical Center, schools and mental health clinics, providing therapy, teaching and consultation.

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Elizabeth Warner is the project director for SMART for children and adolescents at the Trauma Center in Boston.

Nonfinancial: Elizabeth Warner has no relevant nonfinancial relationship to disclose.

Anne Westcott


Anne Westcott is a licensed clinical social worker, psychotherapist and trainer.  A graduate of Columbia University’s School of Social Work, with over 25 years of mental health experience in direct practice, supervision, consultation and program development. She is a faculty member of the Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute and a supervisor and program developer at the Trauma Center in Boston. Anne trains regularly in the United States and Canada on the impact and treatment of trauma and attachment disturbance on children, adolescents, adults, and the surrounding caregiver systems. She has worked in outpatient clinics, public schools, home and community based programs in both multicultural, urban centers as well as affluent, suburban communities.  She maintains a thriving private practice continuing to develop and refine effective treatment interventions for trauma and attachment related challenges. 

Matthew Sanford

Matthew Sanford, yoga teacher, founder of Mind Body Solutions, and a paraplegic for the last 39 years.  Sanford is the author of Waking: A Memoir of Trauma and Transcendence. He teaches people around the US living with trauma, loss, and disability how to re-inhabit their bodies. www.mindbodysolutions.org

Frances Grossman


Frances K. Grossman, Ph.D., ABPP, has been a supervisor and faculty member at the Trauma Center since spring of 2002. She received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Yale University in 1965, was on the faculty at Yale from 1965-1969 and has taught at Boston University since 1969. Currently she teaches Ethics in Psychology in the graduate program at Boston University and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Assessment and Treatment in the Masters in counseling psychology at Lesley University. She and some colleagues wrote with the Phoenix Rising; Stories from 10 Resilient Women Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse (Jossey Bass, 1999) as well as more recent journal articles on resilient men abuse survivors.

Jennifer Lefebre

Psy.D., RPT-S

Jennifer Lefebre, Psy.D., RPT-S, TCTSY-F, is a clinical psychologist, registered play therapist supervisor, and trauma-sensitive yoga facilitator. She is the president-elect for the New England Association for Play Therapy. Her clinical and research interests focus on the assessment and treatment of children, adolescents, adults and families whose lives have been impacted by complex trauma. Dr. Lefebre has extensive experience working with young children (0-5), adult survivors of severe childhood abuse and neglect, first responders, and combat veterans.

Dr. Lefebre is the clinical director at Healing the Child Within, a holistic trauma center in northwestern Connecticut which integrates psychotherapy, yoga, play, and expressive arts therapies into the treatment of complex trauma. She also provides clinical supervision and play therapy consultation throughout New England and online, and an adjunct faculty member at several universities, teaching both at the undergraduate and graduate level. In addition to being an experienced play therapist and professor, Dr. Lefebre is a sought-after expert for speaking engagements, podcasts and webinars on the topics of play therapy and complex childhood trauma.


Speaker Disclosures: 

Financial: Jennifer Lefebre is in private practice. She receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc. 

Non-financial: Jennifer Lefebre is a member of the Association of Play Therapy.


Richard C. Schwartz

Ph.D., Owner

The Center for Self Leadership

Richard Schwartz, Ph.D., earned his Ph.D. in marriage and family therapy from Purdue University, after which he began a long association with the Institute for Juvenile Research at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and more recently at The Family Institute at Northwestern University, attaining the status of associate professor at both institutions. He is co-author, with Michael Nichols, of Family Therapy: Concepts and Methods, the most widely used family therapy text in the United States.

Dr. Schwartz developed Internal Family Systems in response to clients’ descriptions of experiencing various parts – many extreme – within themselves. He noticed that when these parts felt safe and had their concerns addressed, they were less disruptive and would accede to the wise leadership of what Dr. Schwartz came to call the “Self.” In developing IFS, he recognized that, as in systemic family theory, parts take on characteristic roles that help define the inner world of the clients. The coordinating Self, which embodies qualities of confidence, openness, and compassion, acts as a center around which the various parts constellate. Because IFS locates the source of healing within the client, the therapist is freed to focus on guiding the client’s access to his or her true Self and supporting the client in harnessing its wisdom. This approach makes IFS a non-pathologizing, hopeful framework within which to practice psychotherapy. It provides an alternative understanding of psychic functioning and healing that allows for innovative techniques in relieving clients symptoms and suffering.

In 2000, Richard Schwartz founded The Center for Self Leadership in Oak Park, Illinois. Dr. Schwartz is a featured speaker for many national psychotherapy organizations and a fellow of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, and he serves on the editorial boards of four professional journals. He has published four books and over 50 articles about IFS. His books include Internal Family Systems Skills Training Manual (with Frank Anderson, M.D. and Martha Sweezy, Ph.D) (PESI, 2017), Internal Family Systems Therapy (Guilford Press, 1997), Introduction to the Internal Family Systems Model (Tarcher, 2001), and The Mosaic Mind (with Regina Goulding) (Trailheads, 2003), as well as Metaframeworks (with Doug Breunlin and Betty Karrer) (Jossey-Bass, 1997). Dr. Schwartz lives and practices in Brookline, MA and is on the faculty of the Department of Psychiatry, Harvard School of Medicine.

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Richard Schwartz is the Founder of The Center for Self Leadership. He receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Non-financial: Richard Schwartz is a Fellow and member of the American Association for Marital and Family Therapy.

Deborah Korn


Deborah L. Korn, Psy.D., has been an EMDR facilitator and instructor with the EMDR Institute for the past 25 years. She resides in the Boston area where she maintains a private practice and serves as a faculty member at the Trauma Center. She is a co-investigator in an NIMH-funded study of EMDR vs. Prozac in the treatment of PTSD with Bessel van der Kolk, M.D. and lead author on the article "Preliminary Evidence of Efficacy for EMDR Resource Development and Installation in the Stabilization Phase of Treatment of Complex Posttraumatic Stress Disorder", in the Journal of Clinical Psychology. Dr. Korn is an EMDRIA-approved consultant in EMDR and a past board member of the New England Society for the Treatment of Trauma and Dissociation. She is a member of the EMDRIA Clinical Advisory Board and on the Editorial Board of the Journal of EMDR Practice and Research. She presents and consults internationally on the treatment of adult survivors of childhood abuse and neglect and other EMDR-related topics. 

Michele Henderson


Michele Henderson, LICSW, provides individual therapy for children, adolescents and adults, parenting support, supervision and consultation. She is trained specifically in trauma related dyadic therapy, and attachment disorders. She earned her undergraduate degree from Colorado College then her graduate degree from the University of California at Berkley.

Ainat Rogel


Ainat Rogel, Ph.D., is a BCIA certified neurofeedback provider and supervisor, a cofounder and co-director of Boston Neurodynamics, and affiliate of the Trauma Center and the Trauma Research Foundation.

Jon Ebert


Jon Ebert is a licensed clinical psychologist with extensive clinical and consultation expertise in the assessment and delivery of services to children and families who have experienced traumatic stress and mental health challenges. Ebert is Clinical Director of the Vanderbilt Center of Excellence for Children in State Custody (COE) which is part of a statewide network funded under an agreement with the State of Tennessee to improve the public health by enhancing the quality of services provided to children in or at-risk of entering the Tennessee child welfare or juvenile justice systems. In his work with the Vanderbilt COE, Ebert provides ongoing leadership and training for the Tennessee statewide best practice initiative in the dissemination of Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), Attachment, Self-Regulation, and Competence (ARC), and Teen Outreach Program (TOP). He has published on the dissemination of evidence based practices and presented nationally on systems-level approaches to managing children and youth with sexual behavior problems, family reunification, trauma-informed treatment cultures, and the role of leadership in the adoption of evidenced-based practices. Ebert co-teaches the Family Therapy Seminar for the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship program and is a primary supervisor for Psychology Interns working in the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Outpatient Clinic (CAPOC) as part of Vanderbilt’s APA-approved, Pre-doctoral Psychology Internship Consortium.

Steven Gross


A pioneer in utilizing exuberant, joyful play to promote resiliency in children and a leader in the field of psychological trauma response, Steve Gross, MSW, is committed to the healthy development of children facing the most difficult circumstances. Recognizing that "children need food, water, and medicine to survive, but if you want them to truly live, they gotta play,” Steve founded Project Joy in 1989 so that a playful, joyous childhood was no longer out of reach for hundreds of Boston’s poorest children.

Stephan Wolfert


Stephan Wolfert, MFA, is a military veteran and internationally acclaimed actor. He founded the DE-CRUIT program to treat the effects of trauma through the integration of Shakespeare and science.

Ruth Lanius

MD, Ph.D.

Ruth Lanius, MD, PhD, Professor of Psychiatry is the director of the posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) research unit at the University of Western Ontario. She established the Traumatic Stress Service and the Traumatic Stress Service Workplace Program, services that specialize in the treatment and research of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and related comorbid disorders. She currently holds the Harris-Woodman Chair in Mind-Body Medicine at the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry at the University of Western Ontario. 

Her research interests focus on studying the neurobiology of PTSD and treatment outcome research examining various pharmacological and psychotherapeutic methods. She has authored more than 100 published papers and chapters in the field of traumatic stress and is currently funded by several federal funding agencies.  She regularly lectures on the topic of PTSD nationally and internationally. She has recently published a book The Impact of Early Life Trauma on Health and Disease with Eric Vermetten and Clare Pain.

Lorraine Freedle

Lorraine R. Freedle, PhD, ABPdN, CST-T is a pediatric neuropsychologist, international sandplay therapy teacher (STA/ISST), and trainer in the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics (NMT). She is the Clinical Director of Pacific Quest, a holistic outdoor behavioral health program in Hilo, Hawaii where she also maintains a private practice, Black Sand Neuropsychological Services. She is on faculty at Southwestern College in Santa Fe, NM. Dr. Freedle has published numerous professional journal articles and chapters, and is an award-winning researcher for her studies of sandplay therapy with adults with traumatic brain injury and youth with co-occurring trauma and addiction. She currently serves as Research Editor for the Journal of Sandplay Therapy.

Tarah Kuhn


Dr. Tarah Kuhn is a licensed clinical psychologist and has been a member of the faculty since 2005. Areas of expertise include juvenile justice, trauma and attachment. She serves as the Clinical Director for the Vanderbilt Center of Excellence for Children in State Custody (COE) providing ongoing consultation, training and dissemination of best practice. The COE is part of a statewide network funded to enhance the quality of services provided to children in or at risk of entering the Tennessee child welfare or juvenile justice systems. Dr. Kuhn’s background includes clinical work with children and families with histories of complex trauma. An additional focus has been on multi-systemic collaboration to improve services and advocate for the clinical needs of children and families. She has published and presented nationally on issues related to child and adolescent sexual development, management of sexual behavior problems and treatment for youth with disruptive behavior disorders. Dr. Kuhn co-teaches the Family Therapy Seminar for the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship program and provides ongoing clinical training and supervision for doctoral and master's level psychology students.

Ilya Yacevich


Ilya Yacevich, MA, LMFT, is founding director of the Global Trauma Project, (GTP) based in Nairobi, Kenya. Ms. Yacevich is developer of the “Trauma-Informed Community Empowerment” (TICE) framework, which is currently being used as a foundation in supporting Nationwide Trauma Healing Initiatives in South Sudan and Somalia. The framework is also being used in Kenya and Ethiopia in strengthening school systems and community-based programs.


For over two decades, Ms. Yacevich has specialized in working with children and families with histories of complex and inter-generational trauma, and provided organizational consultation/ program development in a variety of settings, including clinics, residential treatment centers, shelters, schools, NGOs, and community-based programs. She is an Ashoka Fellow, and an American- Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (New York State), and holds as master’s degree from St. Mary’s University, USA and post-graduate training in International Trauma Studies and Traumatic Stress Studies. She has special interest in international/ cultural issues pertaining to mental health, and in strengthening trauma-informed supports with communities where infrastructure is lacking.

Anita Shankar


Anita Shankar, MPH, believes access to relevant mental health resources is a social justice issue. As Senior Director of the Global Trauma Project, she utilizes the Trauma-Informed Community Empowerment (TICE) Framework to build the capacity of community leaders and government officials. Ms. Shankar’s 20 years of public health experience is influenced by the fields of popular education, youth development, harm reduction, and positive sexuality. She earned her Master’s degree in Public Health from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, USA and Bachelor’s in International Development from the University of California, Berkeley, USA.

Margaret Blaustein


Margaret E. Blaustein, Ph.D., is a practicing clinical psychologist whose career has focused on the understanding and treatment of complex childhood trauma and its sequelae. Dr. Blaustein is co-developer of the Attachment, Self-Regulation, and Competency (ARC) treatment framework (Kinniburgh & Blaustein, 2005), and co-author of the text, Treating Complex Trauma in Children and Adolescents: Fostering Resilience through Attachment, Self-Regulation, and Competency(Blaustein & Kinniburgh, 2010). 


Dr. Blaustein’s work has been hailed as “a landmark for understanding and treating traumatized children” by world renowned trauma expert Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, and has been embraced by over 300 agencies and/or child-serving systems in the U.S. and abroad who use the ARC framework. 


She has provided extensive training and consultation to providers worldwide. Dr. Blaustein is the director of the Center for Trauma Training in Needham, MA, and is actively involved in local, regional, and national collaborative groups dedicated to the empathic, respectful, and effective provision of services to this population.



Speaker Disclosures:


Financial: Margaret Blaustein is the director of training and education at the Trauma Center in Boston. She is an author and receives royalties from Guilford Publications.


Nonfinancial:  Margaret Blaustein has no relevant nonfinancial relationship to disclose.

Gary Bailey


Gary Bailey, MSW, ACSW is a native of Cleveland, Ohio. He received his BA from the Eliot Pearson School of Child Study at Tufts University in 1977 and his MSW from Boston University School of Social Work in 1979.


He is currently an Associate Professor at Simmons College Graduate School of Social Work where he chairs the Dynamics of Racism and Oppression foundation sequence. He is a member of the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) Hartford Foundation Gero Education Initiative to infuse gerontological content into curriculum. Professor Bailey is the Chair of the Simmons College Black Administrators, Faculty and Staff Council (BAFAS); and Chairs the School of Social Work (SSW) Awards committee. He is a member of the President's Inaugural Committee.



Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Gary Baker is a professor at Simmons College. He receives a consulting fee from Fenway Health. He receives an honorarium from The Trauma Center, Inc. Dr. Baker receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.


Non-financial: Gary Baker is a member of the Council on Social Work Education; the National Association of Social Workers; and the Association of Black Social Workers. 

Diana Martinez


Diana Martinez, MD, MSc, PhD, BNC, is a medical doctor with a specialty in Neurorehabilitation. She received her medical degree from University of Aguascalientes, Mexico in 2002, Fellowship in Neurological Rehabilitation from IAHP, Philadelphia, USA in 2006; M.Sc in Neurological Rehabilitation in 2009, Fellowship iNeurophysiology from University Hospital, Cleveland, USA in 2012 and PhD from De Montfort University from Leicester, UK in 2018. She has 15 years of experience treating severe brain injured patients in United States, Mexico, Spain, Italy, China, Brazil, Colombia and Honduras. She developed, along with other professionals, an integrative intervention to rehabilitated neurological conditions including neurofeedback and other non-invasive brain stimulation techniques.

She is the CEO (since 2012) of Neocemod (Neuromodulation Center), Mexico City and Aguascalientes, Mexico, with experience treating patients with epilepsy, learning disorders, behavioral disorder, mood disorders, sleep disorders, TBI and CP. She has extensive experience in neurophysiology, EEG/qEEG/ERP interpretation. Also, she is an international consultant for Neurofeedback professionals and currently she combines clinical work, and research; which lead to study the effects of Neurofeedback in epilepsy for her PhD thesis. She continues received invitations to give lectures and workshops for ISNR, BFE, NRBS and SMNB (Mexican Neurofeedback society) and other international neurological and neurophysiology societies.

Bessel van der Kolk


Bessel A. van der Kolk, M.D., is a clinician, researcher and teacher in the area of post-traumatic stress.  His work integrates developmental, neurobiological, psychodynamic and interpersonal aspects of the impact of trauma and its treatment.

Dr. van der Kolk and his various collaborators have published extensively on the impact of trauma on development, such as dissociative problems, borderline personality and self-mutilation, cognitive development, memory, and the psychobiology of trauma.  He has published over 150 peer reviewed scientific articles on such diverse topics as neuroimaging, self-injury, memory, neurofeedback, Developmental Trauma, yoga, theater, and EMDR. 

He is founder of the Trauma Center in Brookline, Massachusetts, and President of the Trauma Research Foundation, which promotes clinical, scientific, and educational projects. 

His 2014 #1 New York Times best seller, The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Treatment of Trauma, transforms our understanding of traumatic stress, revealing how it literally rearranges the brain’s wiring – specifically areas dedicated to pleasure, engagement, control, and trust.  He shows how these areas can be reactivated through innovative treatments including neurofeedback, somatically based therapies, EMDR, psychodrama, play, yoga, and other therapies.

Dr. van der Kolk is the past president of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, and professor of psychiatry at Boston University Medical School.  He regularly teaches at conferences, universities, and hospitals around the world.

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Bessel van der Kolk is a professor of psychiatry at the Boston University School of Medicine.  He receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Non-financial:  Bessel van der Kolk has no relevant non-financial relationship to disclose.