Emily Beckman is a lawyer who has worked as a public defender for over 10 years representing indigent clients accused of criminal offenses. As a public defender, Ms. Beckman represents clients with complex trauma histories and interacts with families experiencing instability and stress as a result of her clients’ legal troubles. Ms. Beckman represents many clients who are not citizens of the United States, and has worked with many families facing separation and reintegration challenges related to immigration. Ms. Beckman is also a parent volunteer with the Montgomery County Council of Parent Teacher Associations (MCCPTA). Ms. Beckman currently serves as a Walter Johnson Cluster Coordinator for the MCCPTA. As a PTA volunteer, Ms. Beckman has presented testimony to the Montgomery County Board of Education and Montgomery County Council. She also spearheaded the creation of a “sister school” relationship between Kensington Parkwood Elementary School and Arcola Elementary School. Ms. Beckman is the mother of two secondary school students.
Dr. Lisa Berghorst
Lisa Berghorst, Ph.D., founded Cognitive Behavioral Growth, LLC, a psychotherapy practice in Chicago that specializes in evidence-based treatment for anxiety, OCD, and mood disorders in children, adolescents, and young adults. She is also on faculty at Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine, where she lectures and mentors graduate students in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Prior to returning to Chicago, she gained clinical and research experience at Alvord, Baker & Associates, LLC; the Center for Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Research at McLean Hospital; the Affective Neuroscience Laboratory at Harvard University; and the Pediatric and Developmental Neuropsychiatry Branch at the National Institute of Mental Health. Dr. Berghorst has a B.S. in Psychology and Neuroscience from Duke University, and a Masters and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Harvard University.
Dr. Matthew Biel
Matthew Biel, MD, MSc is Chief of the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and Professor of Clinical Psychiatry and Pediatrics at Georgetown University School of Medicine. He co-directs the Early Childhood Innovation Network, a citywide effort to improve developmental outcomes for children and families in Washington, DC. Dr. Biel was selected as an Aspen Ascend Fellow in 2018. His work addresses the impact of adversity and stress upon children and families, with research centering on reducing health disparities, improving access to mental health care for underserved children and families through projects based in primary care and school settings, and developing clinical interventions focusing on trauma and resilience, anxiety, and autism. His clinical efforts focus on children and adolescents with anxiety and stress disorders, trauma-related conditions, autism spectrum disorders, and complex medical illnesses. He has published numerous articles and book chapters and is involved nationally in psychiatric education and advocacy for children’s mental health. Dr. Biel received his medical degree and a master’s degree in Community Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. He trained in general psychiatry and child and adolescent psychiatry at New York University School of Medicine.
Mike Durso had a 44-year career in public education that included being a high school principal in Washington, D.C., Arlington, VA, and Montgomery County, MD. Following retirement in 2009, he was elected to the Montgomery County Public Schools Board of Education serving two four-year terms. From 2016 – 2018, he was the BOE President.
Phyllis is the school counselor at Sheridan School in Washington, DC, a therapist who works with kids and families in private practice, and an author and journalist. She’s the author of “Middle School Matters” and a frequent contributor to the Washington Post. She also writes for Psychology Today, Working Mother, U.S. News & World Report and Your Teen, and her ideas have been shared in outlets including The New York Times, The Atlantic, The New Yorker and NPR. Phyllis lives in Bethesda, MD with her husband and three children.
As Founder and Chief Growth Officer of Private Prep, Steve initiates and manages strategic partnerships. Steve also leads growth into new geographic markets and additional services. Since founding Private Prep in 2006, the company has become recognized as one of the leading personalized education services in the NY Tri-State Region, the DC-Metro Area, South Florida, Los Angeles and Internationally. Private Prep has made the Inc 5000 list for fastest growing privately-held companies, for five consecutive years, ranking as one of the top growing companies in the education industry. Additionally, Private Prep has been recognized as one of the 100 best places to work in New York by Crain’s Magazine. In addition to a MA in education from the Steinhardt School at New York University, Steve brings over 20 years of tutoring experience and a deep love of learning and connecting with students. He is focused on maintaining the high level of personalized care students and families have been experiencing since he began tutoring students himself. After over a decade in NYC, Steve now lives In Bethesda, MD with his wife, Lauren, who was integral in the launch of Private Prep, and their children Spencer, Poppy & Dylan.
Dr. Nitin Gogtay
Dr. Nitin Gogtay received his MD from BJ Medical College in India, where he also received formal training in pathology and neuropathology. Subsequently, Dr. Gogtay spent several years in basic neuroscience research at Karolinska Institute in Sweden, Sydney University in Australia, and later at National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, before joining Psychiatry Residency at Cornell. He then joined the Child Psychiatry Branch in 2000 and lead the childhood onset schizophrenia and pediatric brain development projects for the next 15 years. During this period he did seminal studies on normal brain development as well as on brain development in psychosis in children. He has written treatment guidelines for treating children with psychosis and was also asked by the FDA to serve on committee to approve medications for treating children as an ad hoc member. Dr. Gogtay was recruited to develop and lead the NIMH Office of Clinical Research to provides oversight of the clinical trials funded by the NIMH which he lead for about 6 years. Dr. Gogtay joined the APA as Chief, Division of Research and Deputy Medical Director in March 2020. In this role he oversees the development and maintenance of the DSM and also the APA’s PsychPRO registry along with several research functions conducted by the Research Division.
Dr. Anne Hayes
Dr. Anne Hayes is a Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist in private practice in Bethesda, MD. Dr. Hayes completed medical school, residency, and fellowship training at Georgetown University. She worked in the Community Mental Health setting for many years before transitioning to a full-time private practice. Her hope is to bring the Resilience Builder Program into the juvenile justice system in some capacity in the future.
Laura Howell is the founder of Laura Howell Social Coaching, LLC, which she launched after nearly three decades as an early childhood educator at Georgetown Day School in Washington, DC. While teaching third grade, she also served as a social-emotional liaison between students, staff, and faculty. In her current role as a social coach, she practices the Social Thinking methodology, working with students in both small groups and 1:1 settings to support their social learning. When teaching social competencies, Laura focuses on the whole child, incorporating their interests and strengths into her lessons to foster strong personal connections and an atmosphere of success. She believes that all children would benefit from learning more about the complicated social world. Laura earned her B.A. in Psychology and a Master of Arts in Early Childhood Education from Tufts University.
Lisa Kehayias-Farhi earned her B.S. in Human Development from University of California, Davis studying cognitive development and cross-cultural child resilience under Dr. Emmy Werner. She received her California teaching certification from UCLA, under Dr. Madeline Hunter. At Hood College she received her Master of Arts in Educational Leadership. Lisa was an elementary classroom teacher for 25 years. At MCPS she modeled and supported novice and underperforming teachers as a consulting teacher. She trained faculty on equity, inclusion and curriculum updates as a staff development teacher. As an instructional specialist in the central office, Lisa provided county-wide trainings. As an assistant principal at a Title 1 school, Lisa was responsible for school operations and built strong relationships with families in an underserved community. Recently retired, Lisa is a member of the City of Rockville’s Education Commission as well as a thrilled grandmother of three.
Dr. Eileen Kennedy-Moore
Eileen Kennedy-Moore, PhD is the creator of Open Door for Parents, a free online subscription service offering 2-minute videos and Q&A posts for parents about children’s feelings, friendships, and mental health. She is an author, psychologist, and mom of four, based in Princeton, NJ. Dr. Kennedy-Moore has written many books about children’s feelings and friendships, including Moody Moody Cars (for ages 4-8), Growing Friendships (for ages 6-12), and Kid Confidence (for parents). She is a professor for Wondrium and has been a featured expert for The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Live with Kelly and Ryan. Her blog, Growing Friendships on Psychology Today, has over 4.5 million views.
Dr. Giorgio Kulp, medical director and founder of Metropolitan Pediatrics, LLC (founded May, 2004), and current President of Mid Atlantic Pediatric Partners, LLC, a 13 provider, 2 division pediatric conglomerate, was raised just outside San Francisco, California. He received his B.A. in behavioral sciences from the University of Chicago and graduated from the George Washington University School of Medicine, after which he received his residency training in Pediatrics at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. He is board certified in Pediatrics and has a special interest in developmental/behavioral health.
Dr. Stephanie Mayrant
Stephanie Mayrant, MD is a board certified adult and child and adolescent psychiatrist. She joined Inova Kellar Center in 2011 and provides pediatric psychiatric evaluations, medication management, consultations, and developmental guidance. Her areas of interest includes Anxiety Disorders, Eating Disorder and expertise in Autism Spectrum Disorders. She enjoys working with culturally and neuro diverse children and families. Dr. Mayrant received her medical degree from Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, GA. She completed her residency at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, and her fellowship in child and adolescent psychiatry at Children’s National Medical Center, Washington, DC. She served as chief resident for the 2010-11 academic year.
Anne McGrath McManus
Anne McGrath McManus is a journalist who recently retired as Executive Editor at U.S. News & World Report in Washington, D.C., where she oversaw events programming and several annual special issues in higher education and medicine, including Best Graduate Schools, Best Colleges, and Best Hospitals. She served for a number of years as health editor for both the weekly news magazine and usnews.com, and, as a reporter, wrote extensively on education, personal finance, and investing. Previously, she worked at Forbes magazine in New York. She earned her degrees at St. Lawrence University and Syracuse University and lives in Silver Spring, MD.
Renae McPherson, M.Ed, is an educator, currently serving as a Pupil Personnel Worker in the state of Maryland. In this role, she provides service and assistance to students and families by acting as an advocate, consultant, and community liaison to support student success and achievement. Renae earned her B.A in Elementary Education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and her M.Ed in Human Development from the University of Maryland, College Park. She also currently serves as the Chair on the Commission on Children and Youth through the Montgomery County (MD) Council.
Dr. Charles B. Nemeroff
Charles B. Nemeroff, MD, PhD is Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Dell Medical School, University of Texas at Austin. He also directs the Institute for Early Life Adversity Research within the Department of Psychiatry as part of the Mulva Clinic for the Neurosciences. Prior to joining Dell Med, Dr. Nemeroff was chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and clinical director of the Center on Aging at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine in Miami, Florida. He received his medical degree and doctorate degrees in neurology from the University of North Carolina (UNC) School of Medicine. He is President-elect of the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA).
Dr. John O’Flahavan
Dr. John O’Flahavan is Associate Chair in the Department of Teaching and Learning, Policy and Leadership, in the College of Education, University of Maryland, where he teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in literacy education and learning and schooling. His research interests include PK-12 literacy teaching and learning, peer discussion about text, comprehensive school-wide literacy programs, continuous school improvement and teacher preparation.
Dr. Anna Ordóñez
Anna E. Ordóñez, M.D., M.A.S., is the Director of the Office of Clinical Research at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). She received her M.D. from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, in Bogotá, Colombia and her Adult Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry training at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). She is board certified both in adult and child & adolescent psychiatry. She has also completed postdoctoral research fellowships both at the NIMH and UCSF, and a master’s degree in Advanced Sciences in Clinical Research (M.A.S.) at UCSF. Prior to returning to NIMH, she held a faculty position at UCSF, where among other duties, she was the Medical Director of the Division of Infant, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. She has engaged in research studies of typical and atypical brain development and of evidence based psychosocial interventions to enhance psychological resilience in the United States, Costa Rica and Colombia.
Throughout her career, Dr. Ordóñez has been actively involved in activities to increase diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility both in the delivery of clinical care, as well as in biomedical research. She has provided clinical care services to Spanish speaking and underprivileged populations, as well as mentored numerous individuals interested in pursuing careers in mental health research from Latin America, the U.S. and globally. At the NIH, she is also involved with UNITE initiative to identify and address structural racism. She is co-chair of the UNITE E committee that is charged with evaluating and changing NIH policies, cultures, and structures to promote diversity in research
Dr. Daniel Pine
Dr. Daniel Pine is Chief, Emotion and Development Branch in the National Institute of Mental Health Intramural Research Program. Dr. Pine moved to this position in 2000, after 10 years of training, teaching, and research at Columbia University. Since graduating from medical school at the University of Chicago, Dr. Pine has been engaged continuously in research on pediatric mental disorders, as reflected in more than 600 peer-reviewed papers. Currently, his group examines the degree to which pediatric mood and anxiety disorders are associated with perturbed neural circuitry function. Dr. Pine served as the Chair of the Psychopharmacologic Drug Advisory Committee for the Food and Drug Administration, Chair of the Child and Adolescent Disorders Work Group for the DSM-5 Task Force, and President of the Society of Biological Psychiatry. He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine, a Distinguished Investigator, and he has received many other awards.
Dr. Rachel Ritvo
Rachel Z. Ritvo, MD, retired in 2020 after more than 30 years in the private practice of child and adolescent psychiatry and psychoanalysis in Kensington, MD. A Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at George Washington University, she continues to teach “The Use of Play in Child Psychiatry” at Children’s National Medical Center. A longtime advocate for psychodynamic psychiatry at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP), Dr. Ritvo currently is a co-chair of the Leadership Team of the Psychodynamic Faculty Initiative at AACAP. Dr. Ritvo was first exposed to psychoanalysts’ deep respect for the inner lives of children as a two-year-old at the Yale Child Study Center Nursery School. She attended Radcliffe College at Harvard University majoring in Folklore and Mythology. After graduating from Yale Medical School, Dr. Ritvo completed a residency in Family Practice at Fairfax Family Practice/MCV, did a fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Children’s National Medical Center and completed her psychiatric training at St. Elizabeth Hospital. She is a graduate of the Baltimore-Washington Psychoanalytic Institute in both adult and child and adolescent psychoanalysis. Married for 47 years, Dr. Ritvo is the mother of two and grandmother of four.
Marnie Weinstein is the Founder and CEO of Weinstein Educational Consulting where she applies decades of experience as an educator, advisor, and mother to support and guide families through various educational needs. She is a strong advocate and works with both schools and families to ensure the correct supports are in place for student success. Marnie attended Brandeis University and received her master’s degree in early elementary education from Wheelock College in Boston before moving back to Bethesda where she lives with her husband and three children.