Member News – Spring 2017

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Division 56 Member News

Compiled by Ilene Serlin and Lesia M. Ruglass

Judith Alpert, PhD and Elizabeth R. Goren, PhD co-edited a book entitled: Psychoanalysis, Trauma, and Community: History and Contemporary Reappraisals. It was published by Routledge.

Ibrahim Kira, PhD co-authored an article with H. Shuwiekh, I.A. Kira, & J.S. Ashby called “What Are the Personality and Trauma Dynamics That Contribute to Posttraumatic Growth?” in International Journal of Stress Management.

Madelyn Milchman, PhD gave a recent presentation on trauma called “Parental Alienation and Child Sexual Abuse Allegations” at the Institute on Violence, Abuse, and Trauma in San Diego in August of 2016 and had a recent publication entitled “Forensic implications of changes in DSM-5 criteria for responses to trauma and stress” in International Journal of Law and Psychiatry.

Kathleen carterMartinez, EdD’s new book Permission Granted: The Journey from Trauma to Healing from Rape, Sexual Assault and Emotional Abuse was released on May 14, 2017. Permission Granted is particularly timely and relevant given the current social turmoil with respect to sexual assault and sexual harassment within the political and social media communities. It speaks to the aftermath of trauma and healing journey to recovery. The release of Permission Granted also is the starting point of opening the CheyWind Center for Trauma and Healing. This center is currently the topic of a GoFundMe campaign to help raise funds to do so.

Jamie Aten, PhD is a new member to Division 56. He was one of 11 individuals to receive an Individual and Community Preparedness Award by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for outstanding efforts to prepare communities for emergencies at a White House awards ceremony in September, 2016. Aten is an associate professor of psychology, as well as the founder and executive director of the Humanitarian Disaster Institute (HDI) at Wheaton College (IL). His work through HDI—the first social science research center in the United States devoted to the study of faith and disasters—prepares churches and faith-based organizations (FBOs) for disaster and emergency response and recovery in their communities. In 2016, HDI put on a four-day Disaster Ministry Conference, an event equipping leaders of FBOs for effective disaster ministries, on the theme of “Resilience.” FEMA Regional Administrator Andrew Velasquez III said, “FEMA is proud to honor Dr. Aten’s innovative work in making our country safer, stronger, and more resilient to disasters.” Aten was honored in the award category for Community Preparedness Champions. Articles on the award can be found: and

Kathy Dardeck, EdD is a long time Div 56 member, and core faculty in clinical psychology at Walden University. She is the former Disaster Response Network (DRN) coordinator of the Massachusetts Psychological Association (co-chaired & then chaired that committee for 17 years before retiring from that post a few years ago), served appointed terms of the Governor’s committee for disaster mental health in Massachusetts, served as the Massachusetts liaison to APA DRN for 16 years, and have been involved in disaster response work and research in multiple capacities for several decades. She received two different APA Presidential Citations for her disaster work and leadership in the early 2000s. In addition, she, along with her former student Nuriel Mor, PhD recently published an article entitled “Mitigation of Posttraumatic Stress Symptoms From Chronic Terror Attacks on Southern Israel” in the Journal of Social, Behavioral, and Health Sciences.

Anne Speckhard, PhD in 2015 formed the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism (ICSVE), a nonprofit research org, and started the Breaking the ISIS Brand — the ISIS Defectors Interviews Project Since then she (along with other ICSVE staff) have interviewed 45 ISIS defectors/returnees and prisoners from Syria, Iraq, Western Europe, Central Asia and the Balkans, 12 European parents of those who went to ISIS, and two terrorist ideologues. Most of the interviews were recorded on video. The ICSVE team has been editing the videos of defectors denouncing the group into short video clips to upload on the Internet to fight ISIS’s online recruiting.  The video clips are subtitled in the 21 languages ISIS recruits in and have been focus tested with success in Central Asia, the Balkans, Western Europe, Jordan and the US.  Our research fellows are currently focus testing them for prevention and intervention purposes, specifically with ISIS endorsers, promoters and followers on Facebook and in Telegram chat rooms.  ICSVE is dedicated to breaking the ISIS brand and flooding the Internet with counter narratives to fight with what ISIS is saying about the ISIS “Caliphate” and introducing alternatives to the narratives employed by the terrorist group to attract recruiters.  The project has been lauded by the White House, the US Senate, US State Department and many foreign governments as well as been covered by the Washington Post, Time magazine and in many other news networks and print outlets. ICSVE currently trains police and NGO’s globally to fight ISIS. Anne Speckhard, Director of ICSVE has over the past 15+ years interviewed nearly 500 terrorists, extremists, their family members, close associates and even hostages—studying terrorist trajectories into and out of terrorism and motivations for being involved.  The Breaking the ISIS Brand counter-narrative project is being used in multiple countries to fight extremist recruitment in youth and adults—in targeted interventions with foreign fighter returnees and to monitor drivers of radicalization. Its hope is to offer a powerful tool to delegitimize terrorists groups and their ideologies and diminish social support for them globally. Dr. Speckhard is currently an Adjunct Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Georgetown University School of Medicine and can be reached at Her papers can be found at

Carolyn Yeager, MS is a relatively new member of Division 56 and is currently a PhD student in Clinical Psychology at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.  She is also a computer scientist, and is interested in developing effective eHealth interventions for trauma recovery.  Recently, she was awarded the Frank W. Putnam Research Award at the 2016 International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies (ISTSS) annual meeting. Recipients of the award are selected based on a research proposal deemed to have the potential to make the greatest contribution to the field of traumatic stress. Her proposal aims to further understand how individuals engage in eHealth interventions for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). In particular, She is interested in identifying how PTSD symptom clusters might predict how individuals differentially engage in eHealth interventions. The goal of this proposal is to understand what mechanisms would help providers tailor unique interventions for clients based on their symptom presentation. She may be reached at

Sereta Robinson, PhD announced her retirement on April 27th after nearly 40 years of service.

Katy Maher, PhD is the new psychologist for the Trauma Surgery department at the Virginia Commonwealth University Trauma Surgery and Evans-Haynes Burn Center. She was hired in November to provide support to Trauma and Burn Surgery inpatients post trauma. She is currently seeing patients inpatient but looking towards building an outpatient clinic for post discharge referrals for mental health support, including PTSD treatment. She looks forward to being a bigger part of this division in the future!

Richard B. Gartner, PhD edited three books, which are due out in 2017.  They are all being published by Routledge as part of its Psychoanalysis in a New Key series.  Trauma and Countertrauma, Resilience and Counterresilience: Insights from Psychoanalysts and Trauma Experts are a series of essays by trauma experts and senior psychoanalysts in the field about how working with trauma has affected their personal lives. The contributors include Sandra Bloom, Christine Courtois, Sheldon Itzkowitz, Rich Chefetz, Elizabeth Howell, Judith Alpert, Karen Saakvitne, Karen Hopenwasser, Steve Gold, Phil Kinsler, and Kathy Steele, among others. The other two books, Understanding the Sexual Betrayal of Boys and Men: The Trauma of Sexual Abuse and Healing Sexually Betrayed Men and Boys: Treatment for Sexual Abuse, Assault, and Trauma are companion books that together constitute a 20-year follow-up to his 1999 book Betrayed as Boys: Psychodynamic Treatment of Sexually Abused Men. When he wrote that book, the field of male sexual victimization was barely nascent. He is proud to say that by now the field has developed to a point where there a number of subspecialties.  He has asked experts in these areas to write about their fields.  The result is a wide-ranging book that covers such diverse topics as rape of adult men; treatment of sexually abused boys; treatment of Veterans assaulted in the military; sex trafficking of boys; working with couples where one partner is a man with a sexual abuse history; experiences of female therapists working with male survivors; covert seduction of boys by parents; sexual addictions and substance abuse treatment of male survivors; profiling predators; treatment and countertransference issues related to men who were victims and have gone on to offend; treating male survivors in therapeutic communities; body awareness work; neurobiology and brain circuitry; research; socioeconomic and cultural considerations; sexual and orientation aftereffects and concerns; male survivors’ relationships with their physicians; and so on. Richard is also going to be speaking to all these topics at the spring symposium of the IITAP (International Institute of Trauma and Addiction Professionals), where he will be a Keynote Speaker in May 2017.

Serena Wadhwa, PsyD edited two volumes entitled: Stress in the Modern World: Understanding Science and Society (Greenwood Press). The books can be found at

Amy Ai, PhD is a new fellow. She will lead an interdisciplinary delegate to a university in Shanghai to help establish their institute for research on disaster and trauma in May.

Michael Eigen, PhD will be part of a Schreberthon scheduled for May 20. An evening dedicated to Judge Paul Schreber, his madness, creativity, and challenges. He will amplify parts of his chapter on Schreber in The Psychotic Core. The event is sponsored by Unbehagen in Manhattan. Many people will perform and speak simultaneously.  Mike’s talk will be about 10-15 minutes. He will be giving a longer solo talk June 2 on Aspects of Pain and his new book Under the Totem: In Search of a Path. It will be at NPAP, 40 W 13th Street 7-9 PM. You can read his recent graduation talk by going to and scrolling down.

Ani Kalayjian, PhD received the Distinguished Lecturer Medal for her lecture at Fordham University on 9/16/2016, on “15 years later: What is the legacy of 9/11?” A wonderful group of students, faculty, and community members gathered, and a lively Q&A followed.She also published an article with her research team: Toussaint, L. L., Kalayjian, A., Herman, K., Hein, A., Maseko, N., & Diakonova-Curtis, D. in September 2016 called “Traumatic Stress Symptoms, Forgiveness, and Meaning in Life in Four Traumatized Regions of the World” in International Perspectives in Psychology: Research, Practice, Consultation.  Dr. Kalayjian is in Armenia on a Meaningfulworld Humanitarian Mission working with Syrian refugees, some Iraqi refugees and Karapagh refugees. The preliminary findings show a severe trauma symptoms in Syrian refugees, a lot of hopelessness, and economic hardship, no housing, no employment, psychosomatic severe symptoms. The 7-step Integrative Model has been a miracle sent.

Ilene Serlin, PhD just returned from a 2-day training in Beijing, and a 5-day training in Yunnan province, China. At APA in August she will be on a Div. 56 panel with Drs. Lillian Comas-Diaz, Thema S Bryant-Davis, Ani Kalayjian, and Nadine Kaslow called Healing Trauma with Cultural and Creative Expression. On May 20, she will do a training for students at Palo Alto University on The Arts and Trauma. She has edited three volumes published by Praeger called Whole Person Healthcare.

Maureen O’Reilly-Landry, PhD  is the Co-chair of Div. 39 (Psychoanalysis)’s Committee on Psychoanalysis and Healthcare and will be presented a paper entitled “Psychological Trauma in the Medical Setting” at the Div. 39 Annual Spring Meeting in April. On the same panel, they invited a physician from Columbia University to present psychologically/behaviorally challenging cases from her practice to be discussed by a medically-knowledgeable (former nurse) psychologist/psychoanalyst. This panel is important because it brings a useful, but often neglected, modern Psychoanalytic perspective to medical trauma and also breaks down the academic silos between psychology and medicine by involving an MD and PhD/PsyDs in the same clinical discussion. The title of the panel is “A Meeting of Minds…And Bodies.”  She will also conducted an APA-sponsored webinar for dialysis patients on strategies for coping with (the trauma of) chronic dialysis on May 11.

Meredith Weber, PhD, NCSP co-authored a book with Erica Burgoon, PhD entitled Disruptive Behavior Disorders in Children (published by Momentum Press). Here is a link to the publication:

She will also be presented two “mini skills workshops” at the National Association of School Psychologists convention in February 2017 in San Antonio. One workshop is titled “Let’s Talk Safety: Managing Child Sexual Behavior Problems in Schools” along with a student and another presenter.  The other workshop is titled “Increasing Capacity to Report Child Abuse”