Upcoming Speaker Bios
Ralph Carson, PhD
Dr. Carson has been involved in the clinical treatment of eating disorders for over 40 years. His unique background in health science and medicine (BS Duke University and B. H. S. Duke University Medical School) coupled with nutrition and exercise (BS Oakwood College, Ph.D. Auburn University) has prepared him to integrate neuropsychobiological intervention and proven psychotherapeutic treatment.
Dr. Carson has honed his skills in communication and often-complicated science into enjoyable, practical, and informative workshops. He is currently Vice President of Science and Innovation for the Eating Recovery Center’s BETR Program for loss of control eating in Chicago, IL and consultant for the Pinegrove Behavioral Health and Addiction Center in Hattiesburg, MS.
Ralph Carson, PHD has consulted with numerous addiction and eating disorder treatment centers throughout the country as well as being a highly sought-after speaker at various conferences and workshops. Additionally, Dr. Carson has set up several eating disorder programs and corporate wellness programs. He is an active board member of the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (IAEDP). He authored several popular books on nutrition, lifestyle practices, good health and the brain: Harnessing the Healing Power of Fruits and The Brain Fix: What’s the Matter with Your Gray Matter? (205)
Colin A. Ross, MD
Colin A. Ross, M.D completed medical school at the University of Alberta and his psychiatry training at the University of Manitoba in Canada. He is a Past President of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation, and is the author of 200 papers and 29 books. He has spoken widely throughout North America and Europe, and in China, Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand. He has been a keynote speaker at many different conferences, and has reviewed for over 30 different professional journals.
Dr. Ross is the Director of hospital-based Trauma Programs in Denton, Texas, Torrance, California and Grand Rapids, Michigan. He provides weekly cognitive therapy groups at all three locations, in person in Texas and by video-conference in Michigan and California. He has been running a hospital Trauma Program in the Dallas area since moving to Texas in 1991.
Dr. Ross has published a series of treatment outcome studies in peer-reviewed journals, which provide evidence for the effectiveness of Trauma Model Therapy. Many of his papers involve large series of cases, with original research data and statistical analyses, including a paper entitled ‘Trauma and Dissociation in China” in the American Journal of Psychiatry.
See more of his work at The Colin A. Ross Institute
Paul W. Miller, MD, DMH, MRCPsych
Professor Paul W. Miller, MD, DMH, MRCPsych, is a psychiatrist; accredited EMDR Trainer-in-training within EMDR Europe and an EMDR institute facilitator. He has served as Chair of the training subcommittee, EMDR UK and Ireland Association and introduced EMDR therapy to psychiatry in Northern Ireland’s National Health Service. In January 2011 he founded Mirabilis Health – a private psychiatrist-led clinic specializing in EMDR therapy.
Professor Miller is a popular international speaker on topics including EMDR therapy for psychosis. He is currently Visiting Professor, Faculty of Life and Health Sciences, School of Nursing and is exploring the use of EMDR therapy within The Centre for Maternal, Fetal and Infant Research (MFIR).
Eli Somer, PhD
Eli Somer, Ph.D., is a full clinical professor of psychology at the University of Haifa School of Social Work and director of the Maladaptive Daydreaming Research Laboratory. He is founder and scientific advisor of Trauma and Dissociation Israel (TDIL), associate-founder and past president of the European Society for Trauma and Dissociation (ESTD).
Dr. Somer is also past president of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD). He has published over 100 scientific publications in the field.
Gaia Polloni, MSc, CPsychol.
Gaia Polloni is a Chartered Clinical Psychologist and Psychotherapist with the Italian Psychotherapy Society, a Chartered Clinical Psychologist and Associate Fellow with the British Psychological Society, a registered Clinical Sexologist with the Italian Federation of Scientific Sexology, and a Chartered European Psychosexologist. She is a teacher at the following Psychotherapy and Sexology schools: Centro Terapia Cognitiva in Como; Centro Terapia Cognitiva in Turin; and Associazione Italiana Sessuologia Psicologia Applicata in Milan.
She is also an EMDR Therapist and a member of the following professional organizations: Italian Society of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy; Accademia dei Cognitivi della Marca; European Federation of Sexology; European Society for Sexual Medicine; Associazione Italiana Sessuologia Psicologia Applicata, and European Society for Trauma and Dissociation. Gaia lived in England for a number of years and is fluent in English.
Jennifer J. Freyd, PhD
Jennifer J. Freyd, PhD, is a Professor of Psychology at the University of Oregon. Freyd is a widely published and nationally-renowned scholar whose work focuses on studies of betrayal trauma, institutional betrayal, and sexual violence, as well as minority discrimination, gender and sexual orientation, trauma and disclosures of abuse. She received her PhD in Psychology from Stanford University. The author or coauthor of 200 articles, Freyd is also the author of the Harvard Press award-winning book Betrayal Trauma: The Logic of Forgetting Childhood Abuse. Her book Blind to Betrayal, co-authored with Pamela J. Birrell, was published in 2013, with seven additional translations.
In 2014, Freyd was invited two times to the U.S. White House due to her research on sexual assault and institutional betrayal. Freyd has received numerous awards including being named a John Simon Guggenheim Fellow, an Erskine Fellow at The University of Canterbury in New Zealand, and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In April 2016, Freyd was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Society for the Study of Trauma & Dissociation. Freyd currently serves as the Editor of The Journal of Trauma & Dissociation. You can follow Dr. Freyd on Twitter at @jjforegon.
Sushma Persaud, MSW, RSW
Sushma Persaud is a registered social worker who practices at Women's College Hospital in the Trauma Therapy Program located Toronto, Canada. She co-facilitates a variety of trauma-focused groups and provides individual trauma therapy as well. Her full bio will be available soon!
Dana Ross, MD, MSc, FRCPC
Dana Ross, M.D. is a psychiatrist in the Trauma Therapy Program at Women’s College Hospital in Toronto, Canada. The Trauma Therapy Program specializes in treating those who have experienced childhood interpersonal trauma. She practices trauma-focused individual and group therapy, and is a lecturer in the Division of Equity, Gender and Population at the University of Toronto.
Dr. Ross completed her psychiatry residency in Ontario, Canada, at the University of Toronto and at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. She completed a Master of Neuroscience degree at the University of Calgary, in Calgary, Alberta and finished her undergraduate degree in psychology at York University in Toronto. She recently began her first term on the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD) Board of Directors.
She has had numerous speaking engagements across North America with a focus on trauma, education, and psychotherapy. Dr. Ross co-chairs the Trauma Talks conference (www.traumatalks.ca) in Toronto which is a conference focused on the concept and practice of trauma-informed care.
Steven Frankel, Ph.D. J.D.
Steve Frankel is Board Certified Clinical and Forensic Psychologist and an Attorney at Law, who practices both professions in San Francisco’s East Bay. A past Director of Clinical Training and current Clinical Prof. of Psychology at USC, he began recognizing childhood trauma in his adult patient case-load in 1980 and has specialized in working with that population ever since. He joined the Int’l. Society for the Study of Trauma & Dissociation in the 1990s and was the consultant to the Trauma Program at Del Amo Hospital from 1993 until 2001. He was President of the ISSTD in 2002 and has been active in developing and teaching courses in trauma treatment as well as publishing chapters in books and professional journals in the trauma field.
As an attorney, he represents health care professionals involved in licensing board actions and consults with mental health colleagues facing a variety of legal challenges. He developed Practice Legacy Program, LLC, for transitioning practices of colleagues upon retirement, death or disability, and has spearheaded an effort to protect health care professionals who suffer from degenerative neuro-cognitive disorders from ending their careers with licensing board actions.
Leah Keating, Ph.D., C.Psych. (Supervised Practice)
Leah Keating is completing the York University Postdoctoral Fellowship program under the supervision of Dr. Robert Muller. She also works as a clinician in two private practices under the supervision of Dr. Jane Dalton and Dr. Carmen Weiss. She completed her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at York University. Dr. Keating has trained at trauma-informed programs, including the Trauma Therapy Program at Women’s College Hospital and the Traumatic Stress Service at the London Health Sciences Centre. Her clinical work is focused on complex trauma, LGBTQ2SIA issues, emotion regulation, and eating disorders. Her research has focused on LGBTQ2SIA people’s experiences of trauma, on the queer community’s mental health care needs, and on disordered eating. She is committed to developing training initiatives based on her academic and clinical experience, she has presented her work at international conferences, and she has published her research in peer-reviewed journals.
Jenna MacKay, MA, MSW, RSW
Jenna MacKay is a Toronto-based qualitative researcher and therapist. Jenna has completed a MSW (2017, University of Toronto) and a MA in Psychology (2012, Carleton University). Jenna has thirteen years of rich, diverse work experience in academic, non-profit, hospital and government settings. Her work has focused on trauma and health equity, with a focus on women and LGBTQ people’s experiences of mental health. Jenna is dedicated to improving mental health care, and to increasing our understanding of the impact of violence and discrimination on people’s lives. As a researcher, Jenna has worked with the Re:searching for LGBTQ Health <http://lgbtqhealth.ca/> team since 2013. She is an award winning qualitative researcher and published author, and she has presented her work internationally. As a registered social worker, Jenna is an early career therapist who completed her clinical training at two trauma-informed organizations (i.e., Women’s College Hospital, The Jean Tweed Centre). Prior to her MSW training she worked as a community-based peer mental health worker supporting survivors of sexual assault, as well as youth and adults who were recently in crisis.
Frances S. Waters, DCSW, LMSW, LMFT
Frances S. Waters, DCSW, LMSW, LMFT, is an internationally recognized educator, trainer, consultant, and clinician in the area of childhood trauma, abuse, and dissociation, and has presented extensively, including training programs in Europe, Africa, South American, and North America. She has specialized in the field of child abuse for almost 40 years.
Ms. Waters is the past President of The International Society for the Study of Trauma & Dissociation (ISSTD) and has served on many committees with ISSD, including currently co-chair of ISSTD’s Child & Adolescent Committee, and Faculty Director of the Child Adolescent Psychotherapy Training Programs. She also serves on Editorial Board of the Journal of Child & Adolescent Trauma, contributing guest editor for the Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, and on the national Advisory Board of the Leadership Council on Child Abuse and Interpersonal Violence.
Ms. Waters is author of Healing the Fracture Child: Diagnosing and Treating Dissociative Youth (2016) and has published four chapters in The Dissociative child: Diagnosis, treatment & case management, and chapters in Dissociation in children and adolescents: Theory and clinical intervention, and EMDR and adjunct approaches with children: Complex trauma, attachment and dissociation. She also has published numerous articles on childhood trauma and dissociation and forensic evaluation of children. Ms. Waters is the executive producer of two training videos, The Traumatized Child: Understanding and Parenting the Traumatized Child, and Trauma & Dissociation in Children, that is geared toward child forensic evaluators and prosecutors.
Ms. Waters received the 2008 Media Award from American Professional Society on Abuse of Children for her production of Trauma and Dissociation in Children, and ISSTD’s Presidential Award for her faculty directorship of ISSTD’s Psychotherapy Training Course on Child & Adolescent Trauma and Dissociation. She is a fellow of ISSTD. She maintains a private practice in Marquette, MI.
Ana Gomez, MD, LPC
Ana M. Gómez, MC, LPC, is the founder and director of the Agate Institute in the US. Ana is a trainer and a trainer of trainers for the EMDR Institute and EMDR-IBA. She is also a researcher and a national and international speaker on the use of EMDR therapy with children and adolescents with complex trauma, attachment injuries and dissociation. Ana is the author of “EMDR Therapy and Adjunct Approaches with Children: Complex Trauma, Attachment and Dissociation” and several books, book chapters and articles on the use of EMDR therapy with children and adolescents with complex trauma and dissociation.
She was the recipient of the 2011 “Distinguished Service Award” from the Arizona Play Therapy Association and the 2012 Sierra Tucson “Hope Award”. Ana has developed several programs and protocols that include the EMDR-Sandtray protocol and the attachment-informed EMDR program to heal intergenerational trauma among others. Ana Has been the keynote speaker at numerous conferences in the US and around the world.
J. Douglas Bremner, MD
J. Douglas Bremner, M.D. is Professor of Psychiatry and Radiology and Director of the Emory Clinical Neuroscience Research Unit (ECNRU) at Emory University School of Medicine and the Atlanta VA Medical Center in Atlanta, Georgia. He spends one day a week seeing soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and performing assessments on other veterans with mental health complaints. He has a long history of experience in the field of PTSD and trauma dating back to his role as the Medical Director of the first inpatient unit for PTSD at the National Center for PTSD in West Haven, Connecticut.
His research on changes in the brain and symptoms of trauma, dissociation, and PTSD are amongst the most highly cited in his field. He is the author of several best-selling books including Does Stress Damage the Brain? and Before You Take That Pill as well as the personal narrative The Goose that Laid the Golden Egg. His most recent book is You Can’t Just Snap Out of It: The Real Path to Recovery From Psychological Trauma. This book reviews ways that people can help themselves on the road to self recovery from trauma and introduces a program for self-healing called START-NOW. Dr. Bremner lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife. He has a teenage son who is currently an exchange student in Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy, and a daughter who is a senior at the University of Chicago.
John N. Demos, MA, LCMHC, BCIA-EEG
John Demos earned his Master’s degree in Mental Health counseling in 1994 from Vermont College of Norwich-University. He was licensed by the state of Vermont as a Clinical Mental counselor in 1997; certified by the National Registry of Neurofeedback Providers in 1999; certified by the Biofeedback Certification International Alliance (BCIA) in EEG in 2002; published Getting Started with Neurofeedback in 2005; and was accredited as a BCIA didactic instructor in 2006. He has introduced hundreds of professional students from eight different countries to the science and art of neurofeedback.
John’s book Getting Started with Neurofeedback is required reading for all candidates who are aspiring to become certified by BCIA. His book emphasizes the importance of QEEG assessments. In it, the EEG pattern for each of the following clinical disorders is illustrated by means of compressed spectral arrays, two dimensional graphs, topographical maps and brain wave morphology: ADHD, anxiety, depression and Asperger’s syndrome.
John’s career in neurofeedback started in 1998. Attending most of the International Society for Neurofeedback Research (ISNR) conferences since 2004 has assisted him in learning the importance of data-led neurofeedback training. He has been a member of the ISNR since 1999.