Speaker Bios for Changing the Paradigm 2015

Speaker Bios for Changing the Paradigm 2015
November 20, 2014 Echo



Bessel A. van der Kolk, M.D. has been the Medical Director of The Trauma Center in Boston for the past 30 years. He is a Professor of Psychiatry at Boston University Medical School and serves as the Director of the National Center for Child Traumatic Stress Complex Trauma Network. He is past President of International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies. Though he identifies himself primarily as a clinician, he has published well over 100 peer reviewed scientific articles on various aspects of trauma, including his current projects: 1) yoga for treating PTSD, funded by the National Institutes of Health; 2) the use of theater for violence prevention in the Boston public schools, funded by the CDC; 3) the mechanisms of EMDR; 4) sensory integration; and 5) the use of neurofeedback in PTSD.  He participated in the first neuroimaging study of PTSD, in the first study to link Borderline Personality Disorder with childhood trauma; was co-principal investigator of the DSM IV Field Trial for PTSD and is chair of the NCTSN DSM V workgroup on Developmental Trauma Disorder. He has written extensively about using neuroscience research to identify appropriate treatments for PTSD and completed the first NIMH-funded study of EMDR. He has taught at universities and hospitals around the world.



Daniel J. Siegel received his medical degree from Harvard University and completed his postgraduate medical education at UCLA with training in pediatrics and child, adolescent and adult psychiatry.  He served as a National Institute of Mental Health Research Fellow at UCLA, studying family interactions with an emphasis on how attachment experiences influence emotions, behavior, autobiographical memory and narrative. Dr. Siegel is currently clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine where he is on the faculty of the Center for Culture, Brain, and Development and the founding co-director of the Mindful Awareness Research Center. An award-winning educator, he is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and recipient of several honorary fellowships. Dr. Siegel is also the Executive Director of the Mindsight Institute, an educational organization, which offers online learning and in-person lectures that focus on how the development of mindsight in individuals, families and communities can be enhanced by examining the interface of human relationships and basic biological processes. His psychotherapy practice includes children, adolescents, adults, couples, and families. He serves as the Medical Director of the LifeSpan Learning Institute and on the Advisory Board of the Blue School in New York City, which has built its curriculum around Dr. Siegel’s Mindsight approach.


Heather T. Forbes, LCSW
, is the owner of the Beyond Consequences Institute.  She is an internationally published author on the topics of raising children with difficult and severe behaviors, understanding the parent’s reactivity when challenged in the home, and working with challenging children in the classroom. Forbes lectures, consults, and coaches parents throughout the U.S. and internationally with families in crisis working to create peaceful and loving families. She is passionate about supporting families and professionals by bridging the gap between academic research and “when the rubber hits the road” parenting. Much of her experience and insight on understanding trauma, disruptive behaviors, developmental delays, and adoption-related issues comes from her direct mothering experience of her two internationally adopted children.

Vincent J.  Felitti, MD, is a noted physician and researcher on how adverse childhood experiences affect adults.  He is co-principal investigator of the internationally recognized Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study, a long-term, in-depth, retrospective, and prospective analysis of over 17,000 adults that revealed a powerful relationship between our emotional experiences as children and our physical and mental health as adults, as well as a strong link to the major causes of adult mortality in the United States. Dr.  Felitti is clinical professor of medicine at the University of California and a Fellow of The American College of Physicians.  He is senior editor of The Permanente Journal and on the international editorial board of the Swiss medical journal Trauma and Gewalt.  He founded the Department of Preventive Medicine for Kaiser Permanente in San Diego, California, in 1975 and served as chief of preventive medicine until March 2001.



Stephanie S. Covington, PhD, LCSW, is an internationally recognized clinician, author, and organizational consultant.  With over thirty years of experience, she is noted for her pioneering work in the design and implementation of gender-responsive and trauma-informed treatment services for women and girls in public, private, and institutional settings. She is the author of numerous books and therapeutic programs, including A Woman’s Way through The Twelve Steps (1994, 2009), Beyond Trauma: A Healing Journey for Women (2003), and Helping Women Recover: A Program for Treating Addiction (1999, 2008 [revised edition]), with a special edition for the criminal justice system. For the past twenty years, Dr. Covington has worked to help institutions and programs in the criminal justice system develop effective gender-responsive services. She has provided training and consulting services to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the National Institute of Corrections, the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the Correctional Service of Canada, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and many state and local jurisdictions. In addition, she helped to design women’s services at the Betty Ford Center and was the featured therapist on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) TV show entitled Breaking Down the Bars.  She is the co-director of the Center for Gender & Justice located in La Jolla, California.



Jane Ellen Stevens is founder and editor of ACEsTooHigh.com, a news site for the general public, and its accompanying community of practice social network, ACEsConnection.com. The sites focus on research on adverse childhood experiences, and practices based on that research. The sites are supported by funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The California Endowment. A long-time health, science and technology journalist, Stevens has written for the Boston Globe, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times and National Geographic.


Bette Lamont, M.A./D.M.T., Bette Lamont, M.A./D.M.T is a certified counselor with degrees in education, neurological reorganization, and movement analysis. She has worked with children and adult learning and behavioral issues throughout her career. Bette has specialized in providing services for neurologically traumatized children adopted from orphanages, abused and abandoned by parents, children of failed abortions and alcoholic mothers, and has worked with approximately 5,000 children since 1987. She has served as a Developmental Movement Practitioner since 1986, and is Founder and Executive Director of Developmental Movement Consultants in Seattle, Washington. She has been a Registered and Certified Counselor in Washington State since 1994.



Ruth Beaglehole, MA, was born in New Zealand where she gained a B.A. in Education and a Diploma in Preschool Teaching. After she settled in the U.S., Ruth founded a preschool for the children of working people in Echo Park and then became a parent educator for the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). After going back to school to earn her M.A. in Marriage, Family and Child Therapy, Ruth established a model program for teen parents within LAUSD, which she ran for 16 years. When Ruth retired, she founded the Center for Nonviolent Education and Parenting (now doing business as Echo Parenting & Education) to continue her work teaching parents and professionals nonviolent child-raising. Ruth retired from her position as Executive Director of Echo Parenting & Education in 2013 and now travels internationally to teach and speak on nonviolence in child-raising.

Dr. Jennifer Jones
is a nationally acclaimed psychologist and expert in the science of success, relationships, and happiness. In particular, her expertise lies in helping executives and entrepreneurs realize their potential. She has been featured on national television and travels internationally as a featured speaker. In her psychotherapy practice, she has a unique approach which allows her to manifest rapid results. Her upcoming book “Entrepreneur Shift: Mastering the Art of Authentic Power” teaches how to develop your full potential and release fear.


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