NCTSN Advisory Board 2013
Thomas A. Bornemann, Ed
Director of Mental Health Programs
The Carter Center
Dr. Thomas H. Bornemann became the director of mental health programs at The Carter Center under the leadership of former First Lady Rosalynn Carter on August 1, 2002. Prior to this appointment, he served as senior adviser for mental health in the Department of Mental Health and Substance Dependence of the World Health Organization. Dr. Bornemann has spent his entire career in public mental health, working in all aspects including clinical practice, research, research management, policy development, and administration at the national level. At the National Institute of Mental Health he served as chief of refugee programs in the Office of International Health, where he was one of the leaders in developing a national mental health program for refugees.
In 1994 Dr. Bornemann was appointed deputy director of the Federal Center for Mental Health Services in the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). During his tenure at the center, he provided leadership in the development of the first-ever Surgeon General's Report on Mental Health. A career public health officer, Dr. Bornemann retired at the rank of assistant surgeon general.
Earlier in his career, he held an academic appointment at the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University.
Vice President for Outreach Initiatives and Partners
Lynn Chwatsky is vice president of outreach initiatives and partners for Sesame Workshop, overseeing the execution of various initiatives that reach beyond television into local communities, schools, and health and childcare settings to address the unmet needs of children and the people who care for them. She develops and maintains key relationships with project advisors and strategic partners to help guide projects from inception to integration within their respective communities across the United States. Ms. Chwatsky oversees such large-scale initiatives as Sesame’s Military Families project, providing bilingual multimedia resources and support world-wide to military families, whose young children are coping with such challenges as their parents’ deployments, combat related injuries, or death. In 2012 Ms. Chwatsky was awarded the Outstanding Civilian Service Medal by the United States Army.
Ms. Chwatsky formerly was a Project Director at Sesame Workshop, responsible for the development, launch, and branding of new Workshop properties including Dragon Tales, Sagwa, The Chinese Siamese Cat, and Tiny Planets, as well as the Marketing Manager for the Workshop’s Online Group. Prior to joining Sesame Workshop, she was an Account Executive at Grey Advertising managing multiple clients including Merck and Procter and Gamble. Ms. Chwatsky holds a BA in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
CAPT Robert DeMartino, MD, USPHS
Chief of Staff, Office of the Surgeon General
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Health
Department of Health and Human Services
CAPT Robert DeMartino is responsible for the direction and management of the Office of the Surgeon General (OSG), including Science and Communications and Systems Integration. CAPT DeMartino plans, implements, and evaluates management operations of the OSG to ensure that program objectives are met, and he provides advice and recommendations on United States Public Health Service (PHS) Commissioned Corps policy and operations to the Surgeon General, the Deputy Surgeon General, and the Assistant Secretary for Health. In addition, CAPT DeMartino represents the Surgeon General and Deputy Surgeon General at regional, national, and international health and professional meetings and collaborates and communicates on matters regarding OSG activities with federal agencies and offices within and outside the US Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).
Prior to being selected as the Chief of Staff to the Surgeon General, CAPT DeMartino served as the director of the Behavioral Medicine Division in the Office of the Chief Medical Officer, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs, Department of Defense (DoD). As the DoD chair for the DoD/Veteran’s Administration Psychological Health/Traumatic Brain Injury Work Group, CAPT DeMartino led joint departmental efforts to improve access to care and the quality, effectiveness, and efficiency of mental health services for Active Duty and Reserve Component members, veterans, and their families.
While working for DHHS, CAPT DeMartino received the Surgeon General’s Exemplary Service Medal for developing and authoring the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention: Goals and Objectives for Action, the first such comprehensive plan created in the United States. He received his BS in Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts and earned his medical degree from Tufts University School of Medicine. Before entering federal service, CAPT DeMartino worked with war-traumatized refugees, those with serious mental illness, and persons ordered by the Massachusetts courts for psychiatric evaluation.
Cofounder and Interim Executive Director
Barbara Feaster is cofounder and interim executive director of uFOSTERsuccess, a nonprofit organization whose membership is composed entirely of former foster care youth. Ms. Feaster has more than fifteen years' experience working to make a positive difference for children in foster care. A survivor of child sexual abuse by her father, she was rescued at age 16 by Utah's West Valley City Police Department and successfully placed in the state's Independent Living Foster Care Program at age 17. Ms. Feaster has served in leadership roles on a number of councils and boards in Utah including vice chair of the Out-of-Home Care Advisory Council, co-chair of a Foster Care Citizens Review Board, chair of the Salt Lake Child Abuse Prevention Team (and coordinator of the organization's annual child abuse prevention event three consecutive years), co-chair of the planning committee for Utah's 1st Annual Youth Leadership Summit and of the Utah Child Abuse Prevention Task Force. Ms. Feaster was also on former Governor Olene Walker's Transition to Adult Living Implementation Team and co-chaired the Youth Leadership Task Group for the team; and was a governor-appointed member of Utah's Board of Child and Family Services and vice chair of the board in 2009. In 2004 Ms. Feaster received the annual "Jennifer Jayne Memorial CASA Bear Award" from Utah's Office of Guardian Ad Litem and CASA, and in 2001 she received "A Source of Pride 4 Utah" Award from News 4 Utah.
Ms. Feaster's proudest accomplishment is being a loving and devoted mother. She knows firsthand that all children from tragic personal circumstances have enormous potential to contribute and thrive in life. She wants all children and teens in foster care to know that they are just as important and valuable as are the children of royalty!
James M. Hmurovich, MA
President and CEO
Prevent Child Abuse America
James Hmurovich is president and CEO of Prevent Child Abuse America. Prior to the appointment he had held this position on an interim basis for ten months. He was also a juvenile probation officer for Monroe County, Indiana; and worked for twenty years at the Indiana Department of Correction, serving as state parole officer, state director of probation, director of administration, deputy commissioner, and director of planning. Hmurovich was then appointed director, Division of Family and Children for the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration. During his nine-year tenure the administration was awarded seven federal high-performance cash bonuses for successes in welfare reform and child welfare, and received national recognition as a leader in the State Children's Health Insurance Program and for the Healthy Families Program, a voluntary home visitation program. He is the recipient of the Sagamore of the Wabash, which is the highest award that can be given to an Indiana citizen for leadership and accomplishment. Hmurovich also managed his own consulting business for five years after thirty years of public service. Hmurovich has been an adjunct faculty member at Indiana University for more than 18 years, where he earned undergraduate degrees in psychology and sociology, and a master's degree in counseling.
Colleen Horton, M.P.Aff.
Policy Program Officer
Hogg Foundation for Mental Health
Colleen Horton is the policy program officer at the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health, part of the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin. Prior to moving to the foundation in 2010, Ms. Horton spent ten years as the director of public policy at the Texas Center for Disability Studies at The University of Texas. She has a graduate degree in public policy from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas.
In addition to managing mental health policy grantmaking for the foundation, Ms. Horton works extensively with state agencies, legislators, legislative staff, and other advocates on issues affecting adults and children with physical, developmental, and mental health disabilities. She is currently a member of the Promoting Independence Advisory Committee (Texas Olmstead Advisory Committee), the Medical Care Advisory Committee, and the Money Follows the Person Advisory Committee. She also served on the Texas Children’s Policy Council for ten years, chairing the council for five of those years.
Tasneem Ismailji, MD
President and Cofounder
Academy on Violence and Abuse
Dr. Tasneem Ismailji is the current President and cofounder of the Academy on Violence and Abuse (AVA), an academic, interprofessional, health organization with the mission to advance health education and research on the prevention, recognition, and treatment of the health effects of violence and abuse. In 2010 as a member of http://nhcva.org/, Dr. Ismailji presented at a congressional briefing on Capital Hill.
After twenty years as a practicing pediatrician, Dr. Ismailji has been educating health professionals on the health effects of violence and abuse through local and national presentations and workshops. She has served on many nonprofit and advisory boards.
Dr. Ismailji received her MBBS from the FJMC, University of Punjab, in Lahore, Pakistan and her pediatric training from Rochester General Hospital and Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY. She received her MPH from the School of Public Health, Berkeley, CA. As a Visiting Scholar at Stanford University, she initiated research on the therapeutic benefits of expressive writing in survivors of intimate partner violence. She has published numerous peer-reviewed publications on this and other work.
The Honorable Michael L. Howard, JD
Stark County Family Court
Juvenile and Domestic Relations Divisions
Judge Michael Howard was elected to the Stark County Court of Common Pleas in 2004. He presides in Family Court in both the juvenile and domestic relations divisions. In the juvenile division approximately 4,200 cases—including abuse, neglect, dependency, and unruly and delinquent youth—are heard annually. In his role as a community convener Judge Howard has focused on increasing community awareness of trauma and its impact, and has promoted community-wide adoption of evidence-based treatment for trauma victims. He has mobilized development of effective resources for children and families impacted by trauma, and has incorporated trauma screening in Stark County's juvenile court. Judge Howard has been instrumental in developing the Stark County Traumatized Child Task Force and serves as its chair.
A member of NCTSN's advisory board and Justice Consortium, he has also served on the Ohio Department of Mental Health Childhood Trauma Task Force. Judge Howard has lectured nationally on childhood trauma and is coauthor of "Children Who Have Been Traumatized: One Court's Response," published in the 2008 autumn edition of the Juvenile and Family Court Journal. In response to requests generated by that article, he has contributed to trauma reference guides to be used on the bench by judges. Judge Howard is secretary of the Stark Education Partnership, a public school reform organization; and he is an active community volunteer, focusing primarily on programs that help children achieve success and avoid delinquent behavior. Among the boards and committees Judge Howard serves on are the Ohio Supreme Court Board of Character and Fitness, which oversees admission to the bar in Ohio; the Ohio Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Domestic Violence; and the Stark County Bar Association Family Law and Citizenship committees.
Teresa Huizar, MA
National Children's Alliance
Teresa Huizar is executive director of National Children's Alliance (NCA), the national association and accrediting body for children's advocacy centers, having previously served the organization on five boards of directors and four committees. She has worked in senior management and executive positions in the nonprofit sector for fifteen years. Prior to her tenure with NCA, she was project director of the Western Regional Children's Advocacy Center, a technical assistance and training center for children's advocacy centers in thirteen Western states. Ms. Huizar has been involved with the children's advocacy center movement since 1993 including serving in Colorado as executive director of two children's advocacy centers, director of fund distribution for United Way of Weld County, and coordinator of the Colorado Children's Alliance. She has a special interest in public policy in the child welfare arena and was instrumental in the passage of four pieces of legislation involving children's advocacy centers in Colorado, and has also contributed to the successful passing of other legislation and of policy initiatives on local, state, and national levels.
Ms. Huizar frequently presents on children's issues at local, regional, and national training sessions and conferences. She has published reports and technical assistance manuals on organizational development for children's advocacy centers, a gap analysis of service coverage for children's advocacy centers in the western region and of the United States, and a cost-benefit analysis of the children's advocacy center model. Ms. Huizar has a BS in psychology from Evangel University and a master's degree in public policy from the University of Denver.
Vivian H. Jackson, PhD, LICSW
Senior Policy Associate
National Center for Cultural Competence
Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development
Dr. Vivian Jackson is a senior policy associate and member of the faculty of the National Center for Cultural Competence (NCCC) at the Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development in Washington, DC. She provides technical assistance and consultation related to cultural and linguistic competence for the Children's Mental Health Initiative of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Dr. Jackson is a social worker with more than thirty years of experience as a practitioner, supervisor, manager, and trainer in health, mental health, substance abuse, child welfare, managed care, system reform, and cultural competency.
Earlier in her career, Dr. Jackson served as director of the Office of Policy and Practice at the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and as child welfare advisor for the National Resource Network for Children's Mental Health at the Washington Business Group on Health. Her publications include Cultural Competence in Managed Behavioral Health Care (Manisses Communications Group, 1999), and Getting Started...and Moving On: Planning, Implementing and Evaluating Cultural and Linguistic Competency for Comprehensive Community Mental Health Services for Children and Families (NCCC, 2003). Dr. Jackson is currently a member of the NASW's National Committee on Racial and Ethnic Diversity and the NASW's Presidential Diversity Task Force.
President and CEO
Child Welfare League of America
Christine James-Brown became president and CEO of the Child Welfare League of America (CWLA) in April 2007, assuming the leadership of the nation's oldest and largest membership-based child welfare organization.
Prior to joining CWLA, Ms. James-Brown served as president and CEO of United Way International where she was responsible for the efforts of the organization’s network of United Way non-profit member organizations that serve communities in 45 countries and territories.
Prior to her leadership role at United Way International, for ten years she served as president and CEO of United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania (UWSEPA) based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. During her decade of leadership at UWSEPA, Ms. James-Brown directed a staff of 130 in managing an annual fundraising effort of over $50,000,000, and distributed funds to over 2,500 community-based agencies.
Throughout her career, Ms. James-Brown has worked tirelessly to help nonprofit health and human service organizations grow and expand their ability to serve children and families through foundation and corporate philanthropy.
Active in the community Ms. James-Brown has served on a number of non-profit, corporate and foundation boards and commissions.
A native Philadelphian, Ms. James-Brown holds a BA in Cultural Anthropology from Rutgers University. In 1996, Drexel University awarded her an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.
Irwin Redlener, MD
Director, National Center for Disaster Preparedness
Mailman School of Public Health
Dr. Redlener is president and co-founder, with singer-songwriter Paul Simon, of the Children’s Health Fund (CHF), a philanthropic initiative created to develop health care programs in some of the nation’s most medically underserved communities. CHF programs are now active in 25 urban and rural disadvantaged communities around the United States, providing comprehensive medical care to more than 80,000 children each year. In his role as pediatrician-child advocate, Dr. Redlener has published, spoken, and testified extensively on the subjects of health care for homeless and indigent children and national health policy.
Dr. Redlener is director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, which works to understand and improve the nation's capacity to prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters. He is a nationally recognized expert on disaster preparedness policies, pandemic influenza, the threat of terrorism in the US, the impact and consequences of major natural disasters, and related issues. Following Hurricane Sandy, he was appointed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to co-chair the NY State Ready Commission, tasked with finding ways to ensure that critical systems and services are prepared for natural disasters. Dr. Redlener also recently served as one of the ten members of the congressionally-established National Commission on Children and Disasters. He is the author of Americans at Risk: Why We Are Not Prepared for Megadisasters and What We Can Do Now, published in August 2006 by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.
Dr. Redlener received his MD degree from the University of Miami School of Medicine and pediatric training at Babies Hospital of the Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center in New York City, the University of Colorado Medical Center and the University of Miami-Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami. He holds honorary doctoral degrees from Hunter College of the City University of New York and Hofstra University, among numerous awards and honors. He has testified before Congressional committees and is widely published in the professional literature.
Futures Without Violence
National Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health
Sandra Spencer is executive director of the National Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health, which is dedicated exclusively to helping children in the United States with mental health needs and their families achieve a better quality of life. Ms. Spencer has served in numerous advocacy roles including leading the first grassroots family-run organization in Eastern North Carolina that advocates for families and children with mental health challenges. This organization—With Every Child and Adult Reaching Excellence—eventually became the state's first statewide chapter of the National Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health. She has been a planner for the Federation's annual conferences, as well as for the biannual federal System of Care (SOC) Community Meetings sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Center for Mental Health Services. Other advocacy work includes being a peer mentor for SOC communities across the United States; developing a parent-involvement curriculum at East Carolina University; and helping to establish an SOC for children with serious emotional disturbances in Greenville, NC.