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Faculty & Staff

Dean

  • Patrick Bordnick

    Dr. Bordnick is the Dean of the Tulane University School of Social Work.  Dr. Bordnick is a pioneer in the use of virtual reality for substance abuse assessment and intervention. The hallmark of his work has led to improvements in teaching, research therapies and integrated healthcare.

    In 2018, as part of the Not Impossible Awards, Dr. Bordnick was awarded the Blue Cross-Blue Shield Association sponsored Faces of the Fearless Healthcare Innovation Award. The submissions, named VR-Project Δ (Delta) and VR-Qualis Est Vita (Quality of Life), are being developed by Dr. Patrick Bordnick, dean and professor from the Tulane School of Social Work. VR-Project Δ will put patients into realistic virtual worlds using smartphone-based virtual reality, recreating situations that identify and trigger cravings akin to drug and alcohol addiction. This tool allows for individualized patient diagnostics and aids in treatment by teaching coping mechanisms to avoid relapse. The other application, VR-Qualis Est Vita, uses virtual reality to help people with autism develop interpersonal skills.

    Quote:  “This is not rocket science, we have the technology and the evidence based interventions, now let’s work together to use VR to improve quality of life for millions of people!”   Bordnick, 2016

  • Patrick Bordnick, PhD, MPH, LCSW

    Dean

    Dr. Bordnick is the Dean of the Tulane University School of Social Work.  Dr. Bordnick is a pioneer in the use of virtual reality for substance abuse assessment and intervention. The hallmark of his work has led to improvements in teaching, research therapies and integrated healthcare.

    In 2018, as part of the Not Impossible Awards, Dr. Bordnick was awarded the Blue Cross-Blue Shield Association sponsored Faces of the Fearless Healthcare Innovation Award. The submissions, named VR-Project Δ (Delta) and VR-Qualis Est Vita (Quality of Life), are being developed by Dr. Patrick Bordnick, dean and professor from the Tulane School of Social Work. VR-Project Δ will put patients into realistic virtual worlds using smartphone-based virtual reality, recreating situations that identify and trigger cravings akin to drug and alcohol addiction. This tool allows for individualized patient diagnostics and aids in treatment by teaching coping mechanisms to avoid relapse. The other application, VR-Qualis Est Vita, uses virtual reality to help people with autism develop interpersonal skills.

    Quote:  “This is not rocket science, we have the technology and the evidence based interventions, now let’s work together to use VR to improve quality of life for millions of people!”   Bordnick, 2016

  • bordnick@tulane.edu

Executive Team

  • Reggie Ferreira

    Dr. Ferreira joins the faculty from the University of Louisville, where he completed his dissertation focusing on Louisiana's disaster resilience pre and post Hurricane Katrina. He earned a BSW degree and his masters degree (cum laude) from the University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa and a Ph.D. in social work from the University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky. Reggie has worked on several international research projects related to disaster risk reduction in Africa, Europe and the United States. His main research focus is on disasters, focusing on social vulnerability and disaster resilience. His other research interests include international social work, evidence-based practice research and pet loss. Dr. Ferreira, is a third generation social worker, and a second generation Ph.D. from South Africa.

  • Reggie Ferreira, PhD

    Director of DRL Program and Assistant Professor

    Dr. Ferreira joins the faculty from the University of Louisville, where he completed his dissertation focusing on Louisiana's disaster resilience pre and post Hurricane Katrina. He earned a BSW degree and his masters degree (cum laude) from the University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa and a Ph.D. in social work from the University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky. Reggie has worked on several international research projects related to disaster risk reduction in Africa, Europe and the United States. His main research focus is on disasters, focusing on social vulnerability and disaster resilience. His other research interests include international social work, evidence-based practice research and pet loss. Dr. Ferreira, is a third generation social worker, and a second generation Ph.D. from South Africa.

  • rferrei@tulane.edu
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  • She earned her Ph.D. from the Tulane School of Social Work in 2009, and her MSSW degree from the University of Tennessee. Since 1999, Dr. Gillis has focused her teaching efforts on field education, methods of practice, learning and research for practice, and preparing students to complete the professional project. Students at the Tulane School of Social Work have to complete 990 hours at a field placement in order to receive their master's degree. Heather coordinates not only the placement process but also works with community organizations to ensure they are paired with the correct student to meet both of their needs. Dr. Gillis is a licensed clinical social worker and a board-approved clinical supervisor who has worked in direct practice for more than 20 years.

  • Heather Gillis, PhD, MSSW

    Clinical Assistant Professor at the Tulane School of Social Work

    She earned her Ph.D. from the Tulane School of Social Work in 2009, and her MSSW degree from the University of Tennessee. Since 1999, Dr. Gillis has focused her teaching efforts on field education, methods of practice, learning and research for practice, and preparing students to complete the professional project. Students at the Tulane School of Social Work have to complete 990 hours at a field placement in order to receive their master's degree. Heather coordinates not only the placement process but also works with community organizations to ensure they are paired with the correct student to meet both of their needs. Dr. Gillis is a licensed clinical social worker and a board-approved clinical supervisor who has worked in direct practice for more than 20 years.

  • hgillis@tulane.edu
  • Sheila Gold is a licensed clinical social worker specializing in play therapy and administrator.  Sheila has worked as a clinician in school social work and clinical practice since 1999.  She has presented at multiple conferences both locally and nationally on the topics of child development, play therapy and school counseling. She has contributed articles to NOLA Baby and Family Magazine as well as Parenting for Moral Growth Magazine, and she published a character education curriculum for elementary and middle school counselors in 2012.  Sheila is a proud Tulane alumna receiving her Bachelor's degree from Newcomb College and her MSW from the Tulane School of Social Work.

  • Sheila Gold, LCSW, BACS, RPT

    Executive Director of Admissions & Student Affairs

    Sheila Gold is a licensed clinical social worker specializing in play therapy and administrator.  Sheila has worked as a clinician in school social work and clinical practice since 1999.  She has presented at multiple conferences both locally and nationally on the topics of child development, play therapy and school counseling. She has contributed articles to NOLA Baby and Family Magazine as well as Parenting for Moral Growth Magazine, and she published a character education curriculum for elementary and middle school counselors in 2012.  Sheila is a proud Tulane alumna receiving her Bachelor's degree from Newcomb College and her MSW from the Tulane School of Social Work.

  • sgold@tulane.edu
  • 504-862-3488
  • Mel'isa Morel

    Born and raised in Canada, Mel’isa has lived in several states before moving to Louisiana in 2009 from California where she spent seven years supporting the head of the behavioral health division of United Health Care.  Upon arriving in Louisiana, Mel’isa joined the Department of Surgery at Tulane, first as the Chairman’s assistant and then as the resident coordinator for nearly two years. She was been with the School of Social Work since December 2016.  Mel’isa lives in Slidell with her husband, JP.

  • Mel'isa Morel

    Executive Assistant to the Dean

    Born and raised in Canada, Mel’isa has lived in several states before moving to Louisiana in 2009 from California where she spent seven years supporting the head of the behavioral health division of United Health Care.  Upon arriving in Louisiana, Mel’isa joined the Department of Surgery at Tulane, first as the Chairman’s assistant and then as the resident coordinator for nearly two years. She was been with the School of Social Work since December 2016.  Mel’isa lives in Slidell with her husband, JP.

  • mmartin1@tulane.edu
  • 504-862-3497
  • Arturo Rodriguez has worked in higher education for over 20 years. Prior to coming to the Tulane School of Social Work, Arturo served in a range of administrative positions at the University of Miami, Florida International University and Claremont Graduate University. Arturo’s core expertise includes full strategic and operational control over budget development and management, expenditure control and forecasting, financing activities, accounting, reporting, enterprise risk management, audits, sponsored research, policy development, administrative services, on-campus business services, business planning and decision support. Arturo earned his B.A. in anthropology from the University of Miami, and subsequently completed his M.P.H. in epidemiology at the University of Miami School of Medicine. Arturo continued his studies at Florida International University where he earned his Ph.D. with a concentration in health promotion and disease prevention. Afterwards, he earned his M.B.A. with concentrations in management and strategy from the Peter Drucker School of Management at Claremont Graduate University.

     

  • Arturo Rodriguez, PhD, MPH, MBA

    Assistant Dean of Finance and Administration

    Arturo Rodriguez has worked in higher education for over 20 years. Prior to coming to the Tulane School of Social Work, Arturo served in a range of administrative positions at the University of Miami, Florida International University and Claremont Graduate University. Arturo’s core expertise includes full strategic and operational control over budget development and management, expenditure control and forecasting, financing activities, accounting, reporting, enterprise risk management, audits, sponsored research, policy development, administrative services, on-campus business services, business planning and decision support. Arturo earned his B.A. in anthropology from the University of Miami, and subsequently completed his M.P.H. in epidemiology at the University of Miami School of Medicine. Arturo continued his studies at Florida International University where he earned his Ph.D. with a concentration in health promotion and disease prevention. Afterwards, he earned his M.B.A. with concentrations in management and strategy from the Peter Drucker School of Management at Claremont Graduate University.

     

  • arodriguez4@tulane.edu
  • 504-247-1451

Faculty

  • Richard D. Ager, PhD, LCSW, Associate Professor - Tulane School of Social Work

    Dr. Ager's major areas of interest and research expertise are substance abuse, treatment outcome, family practice, and teaching/training counselors and students in evidence-based practices. As Director of the Porter Cason Institute, Ager facilitates the development and provision of training in advanced family practice to students, faculty and community practitioners. As Director of the Center for Life Long Learning, Ager brings in expert speakers to provide workshops to help social workers keep abreast of current practices in the field. Ager's current research interest focuses on adapting an evidence-based practice employed in substance abuse to intimate partner violence. Dr. Ager's teaching background includes clinical and community practice, organizational theory, family practice, human behavior and the social environment, qualitative research, and addictions.

  • Richard D. Ager, PhD, LCSW

    Associate Professor

    Dr. Ager's major areas of interest and research expertise are substance abuse, treatment outcome, family practice, and teaching/training counselors and students in evidence-based practices. As Director of the Porter Cason Institute, Ager facilitates the development and provision of training in advanced family practice to students, faculty and community practitioners. As Director of the Center for Life Long Learning, Ager brings in expert speakers to provide workshops to help social workers keep abreast of current practices in the field. Ager's current research interest focuses on adapting an evidence-based practice employed in substance abuse to intimate partner violence. Dr. Ager's teaching background includes clinical and community practice, organizational theory, family practice, human behavior and the social environment, qualitative research, and addictions.

  • ager@tulane.edu
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  • Dr. Baus has practice experience in clinical social work, clinical supervision, research and administration. She currently teaches in the areas of critical thinking, team building, evidence-based practice, knowledge generation in social work (qualitative and quantitative research methods), data analysis and preparing students to complete the professional project. Her primary research interests are adult cognitive development and learning innovations in social work education, and curriculum development and evaluation.

  • Stephanie Baus, PhD, MSW

    Clinical Assistant Professor

    Dr. Baus has practice experience in clinical social work, clinical supervision, research and administration. She currently teaches in the areas of critical thinking, team building, evidence-based practice, knowledge generation in social work (qualitative and quantitative research methods), data analysis and preparing students to complete the professional project. Her primary research interests are adult cognitive development and learning innovations in social work education, and curriculum development and evaluation.

  • sbaus@tulane.edu
  • Download CV
  • Dr. Burnette was drawn to health disparities research related to Indigenous Peoples (e.g. Native American, American Indian, Alaska Native, and/or Native Hawaiian in the U.S.) due to many of the distinct strengths demonstrated by these peoples as well as the high disparities related to violence, mental, and physical health. Her work began with an exploration on how a non-Indigenous person, such as herself could work as an ally to contribute toward culturally sensitive, beneficial, and ethical research with these peoples. After conducting research on “how to conduct culturally sensitive research” she began working with tribes of the Southeast to address disparities in violence, mental health, substance abuse and health. Her work now extends cross-nationally. Given there has been a lack of culturally relevant frameworks to explain disparities, she has worked in collaboration with tribes to develop the ecological “Framework of Historical Oppression, Resilience, and Transcendence”, which identifies and organizes culturally relevant risk and protective factors across community, family, and individual levels to understand how, despite experiencing centuries of historical oppression and trauma, Indigenous peoples recover from, demonstrate resilience in response to, and transcend oppression and other forms of adversity.

    Since coming to Tulane in 2013, she has published over 25 peer-reviewed journal articles, and presented at over 30 national and international conferences on such topics. She is a recipient of the National Institutes of Health loan repayment program and has been involved in federally-funded research to address violence and health disparities using culturally relevant intervention approaches.

    Interests

    After completing extensive grant-funded cross-tribal research to identify culturally relevant risk and protective factors related to violence and health disparities, Dr. Burnette now works to develop a culturally adapted evidenced-based program (EBP) to prevent substance abuse and violence among Indigenous peoples using a family resilience and culturally grounded intervention program. She hopes to evaluate the effectiveness of this program, providing culturally grounded EBPs for Indigenous peoples. She also works to identify social and cultural determinants of health related to the health disparities of diabetes and related disorders (e.g., cardiovascular disease), cancer, in addition to mental health and substance abuse. Dr. Burnette approaches this work using a wellness approach, incorporating mental, physical, social, and spiritual aspects of health. Implications for Theory, Research, and Practice: This research will develop innovative, culturally relevant, and culturally grounded intervention programs to prevent and treat the epidemic rates of violence, substance abuse, mental, and physical health disparities experienced by U.S. Indigenous populations. By focusing on risk and protective factors across societal/community, familial, and individual levels, a holistic understanding will be gained. Finally, by developing an intervention model of family resilience, this research aligns with the centrality of family in Indigenous support systems, and builds upon existing strengths within this underserved population.

    Scholarly Works

    Burnette, C. E. (In Press). Family and Cultural Protective Factors as the Bedrock of Resilience for Indigenous Women Who Have Experienced Violence. Journal of Family Social Work

    Haigh, S. & Burnette, C. E. (In Press). Closing the Indigenous Australian health gap: Clarifying causes, identifying solutions. Journal of Australian Indigenous Issues

    Burnette, C. E. & Hefflinger, T. S. (2017). Identifying historical and community risk factors for violence against Indigenous women using a framework of historical oppression. Journal of Community Psychology (Advance Online Publication), 1-14 doi: : 10.1002/jcop.21879

    Burnette, C. E., & Sanders, S. (2017). Indigenous women and professionals’ proposed solutions to prevent intimate partner violence in tribal communities. Journal of Ethnic & Cultural Diversity in Social Work (advance online publication), 1-18. doi:10.1080/15313204.2016.1272029

    Figley, C. R. & Burnette, C. E. (2017). Building bridges: Connecting systemic trauma and family resilience in the study and treatment of diverse traumatized families. Traumatology, 23(1). doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/trm0000089

     

     

    Areas of Expertise

    Health Disparities Individual Resilience Family Resilience Community Resilience Substance Abuse Intervention Research Wellness and Holistic Approaches to Health Historical Oppression and Historical Trauma

    Courses

    Family Trauma, SOWK 2100(online course and hybrid versions), Tulane University School of Social Work, New Orleans, LA, 2016-2017 Diversity and Social Justice Theory & Practice, SOWK 7130, Tulane University School of Social Work, New Orleans, LA, 2014-present Theory II:  Theories of Human Behavior II, SOWK 7220, Tulane University School of Social Work, New Orleans, LA, 2014-present Theory I:  Theories of Human Behavior I, SOWK 7210, Tulane University School of Social Work, New Orleans, LA, 2013-present

    Education and Affiliations

    PhD, School of Social Work, University of Iowa MSW, School of Social Work, University of Iowa BA, Department of Psychology, University of Iowa

  • Catherine Burnette, PhD, LMSW

    Assistant Professor

    Dr. Burnette was drawn to health disparities research related to Indigenous Peoples (e.g. Native American, American Indian, Alaska Native, and/or Native Hawaiian in the U.S.) due to many of the distinct strengths demonstrated by these peoples as well as the high disparities related to violence, mental, and physical health. Her work began with an exploration on how a non-Indigenous person, such as herself could work as an ally to contribute toward culturally sensitive, beneficial, and ethical research with these peoples. After conducting research on “how to conduct culturally sensitive research” she began working with tribes of the Southeast to address disparities in violence, mental health, substance abuse and health. Her work now extends cross-nationally. Given there has been a lack of culturally relevant frameworks to explain disparities, she has worked in collaboration with tribes to develop the ecological “Framework of Historical Oppression, Resilience, and Transcendence”, which identifies and organizes culturally relevant risk and protective factors across community, family, and individual levels to understand how, despite experiencing centuries of historical oppression and trauma, Indigenous peoples recover from, demonstrate resilience in response to, and transcend oppression and other forms of adversity.

    Since coming to Tulane in 2013, she has published over 25 peer-reviewed journal articles, and presented at over 30 national and international conferences on such topics. She is a recipient of the National Institutes of Health loan repayment program and has been involved in federally-funded research to address violence and health disparities using culturally relevant intervention approaches.

    Interests

    After completing extensive grant-funded cross-tribal research to identify culturally relevant risk and protective factors related to violence and health disparities, Dr. Burnette now works to develop a culturally adapted evidenced-based program (EBP) to prevent substance abuse and violence among Indigenous peoples using a family resilience and culturally grounded intervention program. She hopes to evaluate the effectiveness of this program, providing culturally grounded EBPs for Indigenous peoples. She also works to identify social and cultural determinants of health related to the health disparities of diabetes and related disorders (e.g., cardiovascular disease), cancer, in addition to mental health and substance abuse. Dr. Burnette approaches this work using a wellness approach, incorporating mental, physical, social, and spiritual aspects of health. Implications for Theory, Research, and Practice: This research will develop innovative, culturally relevant, and culturally grounded intervention programs to prevent and treat the epidemic rates of violence, substance abuse, mental, and physical health disparities experienced by U.S. Indigenous populations. By focusing on risk and protective factors across societal/community, familial, and individual levels, a holistic understanding will be gained. Finally, by developing an intervention model of family resilience, this research aligns with the centrality of family in Indigenous support systems, and builds upon existing strengths within this underserved population.

    Scholarly Works

    Burnette, C. E. (In Press). Family and Cultural Protective Factors as the Bedrock of Resilience for Indigenous Women Who Have Experienced Violence. Journal of Family Social Work

    Haigh, S. & Burnette, C. E. (In Press). Closing the Indigenous Australian health gap: Clarifying causes, identifying solutions. Journal of Australian Indigenous Issues

    Burnette, C. E. & Hefflinger, T. S. (2017). Identifying historical and community risk factors for violence against Indigenous women using a framework of historical oppression. Journal of Community Psychology (Advance Online Publication), 1-14 doi: : 10.1002/jcop.21879

    Burnette, C. E., & Sanders, S. (2017). Indigenous women and professionals’ proposed solutions to prevent intimate partner violence in tribal communities. Journal of Ethnic & Cultural Diversity in Social Work (advance online publication), 1-18. doi:10.1080/15313204.2016.1272029

    Figley, C. R. & Burnette, C. E. (2017). Building bridges: Connecting systemic trauma and family resilience in the study and treatment of diverse traumatized families. Traumatology, 23(1). doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/trm0000089

     

     

    Areas of Expertise

    Health Disparities Individual Resilience Family Resilience Community Resilience Substance Abuse Intervention Research Wellness and Holistic Approaches to Health Historical Oppression and Historical Trauma

    Courses

    Family Trauma, SOWK 2100(online course and hybrid versions), Tulane University School of Social Work, New Orleans, LA, 2016-2017 Diversity and Social Justice Theory & Practice, SOWK 7130, Tulane University School of Social Work, New Orleans, LA, 2014-present Theory II:  Theories of Human Behavior II, SOWK 7220, Tulane University School of Social Work, New Orleans, LA, 2014-present Theory I:  Theories of Human Behavior I, SOWK 7210, Tulane University School of Social Work, New Orleans, LA, 2013-present

    Education and Affiliations

    PhD, School of Social Work, University of Iowa MSW, School of Social Work, University of Iowa BA, Department of Psychology, University of Iowa

  • cburnet3@tulane.edu
  • Download CV
  • Dr. Buttell has extensive experience in providing social work intervention services to clients in community-based correction programs and in evaluating the effectiveness of these social work interventions. He teaches courses in clinical practice, HBSE, and research methods. Buttell's latest research interests focus on improving family functioning through the elimination of domestic violence and his primary research interest is on improving the effectiveness of batterer intervention programs.

  • Fred Buttell, PhD, LCSW, MSW

    Professor

    Dr. Buttell has extensive experience in providing social work intervention services to clients in community-based correction programs and in evaluating the effectiveness of these social work interventions. He teaches courses in clinical practice, HBSE, and research methods. Buttell's latest research interests focus on improving family functioning through the elimination of domestic violence and his primary research interest is on improving the effectiveness of batterer intervention programs.

  • buttell@tulane.edu
  • Download CV
  • Dr. Figley was named the Paul Henry Kurzweg Chair in Disaster Mental Health at Tulane University in 2008 when he joined the faculty as its senior professor from Florida State University. At FSU Professor Figley served as the senior professor in the area of trauma and Director of the PhD Program in Marriage and Family. Dr. Figley brought his Traumatology Institute to Tulane, which was recognized as the best program of its kind by the University Continuing Education Association in 2000.

    Dr. Figley attained full professor status in 1983 at Purdue University with a joint appointment as professor of psychological sciences. Dr. Figley established the renowned Purdue University Family Research Institute and established two Journals as Founding Editor, the Journal of Psychotherapy and the Journal of Traumatic Stress. In 1995 became Founding Editor of Traumatology, the International Journal. Also Dr. Figley is founding editor several book series (e.g., the Innovations in Psychology book series with Taylor & Francis).

    Currently, Dr. Figley is editor of the oldest book series on trauma (established in 1978), the Psychosocial Stress Book Series. He has published more than 200 scholarly works including 26 books and 130 refereed journal articles. Collectively, his work reports on more than 37 research projects focusing primarily on traumatic stress and resiliency of individuals, families, and communities. This latest book published in 2013, First Do No Self Harm: Understanding and Promoting Physician Stress Resilience (Oxford University Press) was highly praised by the American Psychological Association. He is working on two more books with contracts from Columbia University Press and Oxford University Press, both to be published in 2019.

    He is an elected fellow of five of the leading national professional associations and received many other honors in recognition for his scholarship.

    Dr. Figley is the recipient of numerous lectureships and other honors throughout the world including Northern Ireland, South Africa, England, Australia, Canada, and universities through the United States. He was awarded a senior Fulbright Research Fellowship to conduct research in Kuwait in 2004 and follow-up on work that was started in 1992, shortly after the liberation from and end of the occupation by Iraq. In 2004, Dr. Figley was named lifetime Alumni Fellow by the Pennsylvania State University, the highest honor awarded to its graduates. Most recently, Figley was honored by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York with an honorary degree in June 2014 in recognition of his career-long achievements in social justice for the traumatized.

  • Charles R. Figley, PhD

    Kurzweg Distinguished Chair in Disaster Mental Health and Distinguished Professor

    Dr. Figley was named the Paul Henry Kurzweg Chair in Disaster Mental Health at Tulane University in 2008 when he joined the faculty as its senior professor from Florida State University. At FSU Professor Figley served as the senior professor in the area of trauma and Director of the PhD Program in Marriage and Family. Dr. Figley brought his Traumatology Institute to Tulane, which was recognized as the best program of its kind by the University Continuing Education Association in 2000.

    Dr. Figley attained full professor status in 1983 at Purdue University with a joint appointment as professor of psychological sciences. Dr. Figley established the renowned Purdue University Family Research Institute and established two Journals as Founding Editor, the Journal of Psychotherapy and the Journal of Traumatic Stress. In 1995 became Founding Editor of Traumatology, the International Journal. Also Dr. Figley is founding editor several book series (e.g., the Innovations in Psychology book series with Taylor & Francis).

    Currently, Dr. Figley is editor of the oldest book series on trauma (established in 1978), the Psychosocial Stress Book Series. He has published more than 200 scholarly works including 26 books and 130 refereed journal articles. Collectively, his work reports on more than 37 research projects focusing primarily on traumatic stress and resiliency of individuals, families, and communities. This latest book published in 2013, First Do No Self Harm: Understanding and Promoting Physician Stress Resilience (Oxford University Press) was highly praised by the American Psychological Association. He is working on two more books with contracts from Columbia University Press and Oxford University Press, both to be published in 2019.

    He is an elected fellow of five of the leading national professional associations and received many other honors in recognition for his scholarship.

    Dr. Figley is the recipient of numerous lectureships and other honors throughout the world including Northern Ireland, South Africa, England, Australia, Canada, and universities through the United States. He was awarded a senior Fulbright Research Fellowship to conduct research in Kuwait in 2004 and follow-up on work that was started in 1992, shortly after the liberation from and end of the occupation by Iraq. In 2004, Dr. Figley was named lifetime Alumni Fellow by the Pennsylvania State University, the highest honor awarded to its graduates. Most recently, Figley was honored by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York with an honorary degree in June 2014 in recognition of his career-long achievements in social justice for the traumatized.

  • figley@tulane.edu
  • Download CV
  • Samantha Francois - Tulane School of Social Work

    Samantha Francois, PhD is an Assistant Professor at Tulane University’s School of Social Work with a specialization in adolescent development and vulnerability and resilience in African American populations. Her research interests include microsystem influences (specifically, neighborhoods and schools) on life-stage outcomes in African American youth, macrosystem influences (specifically, forms of structural, institutional, and systemic oppression) on community violence, and African American cultural assets that promote resilience. More specifically, her work examines the relationships between multi-system risk contributors and protective factors and mental health, educational, and quality of life outcomes for African Americans in urban geographies. Dr. Francois has a PhD in psychological sciences from Tulane University.

  • Samantha Francois, PhD

    Assistant Professor

    Samantha Francois, PhD is an Assistant Professor at Tulane University’s School of Social Work with a specialization in adolescent development and vulnerability and resilience in African American populations. Her research interests include microsystem influences (specifically, neighborhoods and schools) on life-stage outcomes in African American youth, macrosystem influences (specifically, forms of structural, institutional, and systemic oppression) on community violence, and African American cultural assets that promote resilience. More specifically, her work examines the relationships between multi-system risk contributors and protective factors and mental health, educational, and quality of life outcomes for African Americans in urban geographies. Dr. Francois has a PhD in psychological sciences from Tulane University.

  • sfrancoi@tulane.edu
  • 504-862-3496
  • Download CV
  • Maurya Glaude is an assistant professor at Tulane School of Social Work. She attended Texas Southern University for her undergraduate studies in psychology and completed her MSW at Tulane School of Social Work. For almost seven years, she provided behavioral and administrative social work services in non-profits and parish government in the Greater New Orleans area. She served as a mental health responder after Hurricane Katrina and was instrumental in developing and implementing protocols for evacuation and sheltering of St. Charles Parish residents in response to Hurricanes Rita, Gustav and Ike. After completing her Ph.D. studies at the University of Houston with support from a SAMHSA funded Council on Social Work, MFP doctoral fellowship, Glaude returned to New Orleans. Her research interests include adolescent mental health, improving accessibility of continuing care services for adolescents experiencing substance use disorders, and innovative social work teaching methods.

  • Maurya Glaude, PhD, MSW, LCSW

    Assistant Professor

    Maurya Glaude is an assistant professor at Tulane School of Social Work. She attended Texas Southern University for her undergraduate studies in psychology and completed her MSW at Tulane School of Social Work. For almost seven years, she provided behavioral and administrative social work services in non-profits and parish government in the Greater New Orleans area. She served as a mental health responder after Hurricane Katrina and was instrumental in developing and implementing protocols for evacuation and sheltering of St. Charles Parish residents in response to Hurricanes Rita, Gustav and Ike. After completing her Ph.D. studies at the University of Houston with support from a SAMHSA funded Council on Social Work, MFP doctoral fellowship, Glaude returned to New Orleans. Her research interests include adolescent mental health, improving accessibility of continuing care services for adolescents experiencing substance use disorders, and innovative social work teaching methods.

  • gmaurya@tulane.edu
  • 504-247-1456
  • Download CV
  • Dr. Lewis' program of research focuses on the development of culturally valid research methods and measures of racism-based stress during pregnancy, Colorism in African American families, and parental acceptance or rejection of children. Specifically her basic and applied research includes:

    1. Basic research on racism-based stress as an unrecognized factor in racial disparities in perinatal infant outcomes in African American women.
    2. Applied research using narrative therapy techniques and measures to strengthen African American family intergenerational relationships based on issues of Colorism as a legacy of the historical trauma of slavery.
    3. The prevention and reduction of child abuse and neglect and strengthening parent-child attachment through the use of the hair combing task, and a parent-education curriculum, Talk, Touch & Listen While Combing Hair, for use with a community-based parent support group using visualization methods and peer support, infant mental health concepts and techniques.
    4. The development of an evidenced-based tool for use by individuals, organizations, and groups on the topic of Diversity, Privilege and Oppression.
  • Marva L. Lewis, PhD

    Associate Professor

    Dr. Lewis' program of research focuses on the development of culturally valid research methods and measures of racism-based stress during pregnancy, Colorism in African American families, and parental acceptance or rejection of children. Specifically her basic and applied research includes:

    1. Basic research on racism-based stress as an unrecognized factor in racial disparities in perinatal infant outcomes in African American women.
    2. Applied research using narrative therapy techniques and measures to strengthen African American family intergenerational relationships based on issues of Colorism as a legacy of the historical trauma of slavery.
    3. The prevention and reduction of child abuse and neglect and strengthening parent-child attachment through the use of the hair combing task, and a parent-education curriculum, Talk, Touch & Listen While Combing Hair, for use with a community-based parent support group using visualization methods and peer support, infant mental health concepts and techniques.
    4. The development of an evidenced-based tool for use by individuals, organizations, and groups on the topic of Diversity, Privilege and Oppression.
  • Mlewis@tulane.edu
  • Download CV
  • Dr. Marks served as dean of the School of Social Work at Tulane University from 2001 to 2016 where he has been a professor for more than 30 years. Prior to becoming dean, he served in various capacities at the School including associate dean and director of the MSW program, director of the doctoral program and director of the gerontology center. Dr. Marks has supervised over 30 master's theses and chaired and served on over 25 doctoral dissertations. Many of his publications are studies of community based social service programs in the areas of adolescent life, homelessness, and family and aging services addressing the stress associated with providing care to frail aging relatives.

    His Ph.D. is in social welfare from the School of Social Work at the University of Pittsburgh. He also has an MSW and a masters degree in public health.

    For the past 15 years, Dr. Marks has been working with Tibetan refugees in North India as he teaches a month-long elective on the subject in India.

  • Ronald Marks, PhD, MPH, MSW

    Dean Emeritus & Associate Professor

    Dr. Marks served as dean of the School of Social Work at Tulane University from 2001 to 2016 where he has been a professor for more than 30 years. Prior to becoming dean, he served in various capacities at the School including associate dean and director of the MSW program, director of the doctoral program and director of the gerontology center. Dr. Marks has supervised over 30 master's theses and chaired and served on over 25 doctoral dissertations. Many of his publications are studies of community based social service programs in the areas of adolescent life, homelessness, and family and aging services addressing the stress associated with providing care to frail aging relatives.

    His Ph.D. is in social welfare from the School of Social Work at the University of Pittsburgh. He also has an MSW and a masters degree in public health.

    For the past 15 years, Dr. Marks has been working with Tibetan refugees in North India as he teaches a month-long elective on the subject in India.

  • rmarks@tulane.edu
  • 504-862-3485
  • Dr. Parquet is a Professor at the Tulane University School of Social Work where he has taught for the past 19 years. He has taught graduate courses in research, professional development, advanced practice methods, human behavior theory, youth violence, diversity and social justice, capstone, and field practicum. Dr. Parquet also teaches two undergraduate courses, “Guns and Gang” and “Booze, Pot, Coke, Crystal Meth: PolyDrug Abuse among College & Inner-City Residents,” that are the two largest classes on Tulane’s campus. Dr. Parquet has served as Superintendent of Louisiana Training Institute-East Baton Rouge, the largest juvenile correctional facility in the state of Louisiana, Director of the Division of Institutions, Office of Juvenile Justice and statewide Director of the Mental Health Rehabilitation Program. He is a licensed clinical social worker, board approved clinical supervisor, and has over thirty-eight years of experience in the field of behavioral health providing clinical, administrative, and programmatic leadership. He has been designated a court expert witness in mental health and substance abuse. He serves on numerous boards and committees and has had multiple program responsibilities for designing, implementing, evaluating, managing, and overseeing statewide programs. His current research interests are in community mental health, substance abuse, youth violence, and mental health issues affecting at-risk populations utilizing a strengths perspective and capacity building.

  • Reginald Parquet, PhD, MSW

    Clinical Assistant Professor

    Dr. Parquet is a Professor at the Tulane University School of Social Work where he has taught for the past 19 years. He has taught graduate courses in research, professional development, advanced practice methods, human behavior theory, youth violence, diversity and social justice, capstone, and field practicum. Dr. Parquet also teaches two undergraduate courses, “Guns and Gang” and “Booze, Pot, Coke, Crystal Meth: PolyDrug Abuse among College & Inner-City Residents,” that are the two largest classes on Tulane’s campus. Dr. Parquet has served as Superintendent of Louisiana Training Institute-East Baton Rouge, the largest juvenile correctional facility in the state of Louisiana, Director of the Division of Institutions, Office of Juvenile Justice and statewide Director of the Mental Health Rehabilitation Program. He is a licensed clinical social worker, board approved clinical supervisor, and has over thirty-eight years of experience in the field of behavioral health providing clinical, administrative, and programmatic leadership. He has been designated a court expert witness in mental health and substance abuse. He serves on numerous boards and committees and has had multiple program responsibilities for designing, implementing, evaluating, managing, and overseeing statewide programs. His current research interests are in community mental health, substance abuse, youth violence, and mental health issues affecting at-risk populations utilizing a strengths perspective and capacity building.

  • rparque@tulane.edu
  • Download CV
  • Leia Saltzman - Tulane School of Social Work

    Leia Y. Saltzman joined the Tulane community in 2017 after completing her post-doctoral training as an  Azrieli International Post-Doctoral Fellow at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. She earned her MSW and PhD in Social Work at Boston College. Trained in both qualitative and quantitative methods, Dr. Saltzman’s research uses mixed methodology to explore the process of adaptation in the context of trauma, community violence, and mass disaster. Her previous research has focused on positive adaptation trajectories such as resilience and posttraumatic growth. Currently, Dr. Saltzman’s work explores the role of time in the process of adaptation, with the goal of developing time-informed and sustainable mental health interventions. She is interested in community based research that influences mental health policies and clinical practices with trauma-affected populations in order to promote well-being, build stronger families, and more cohesive communities that can withstand the impact of mass disaster, trauma, and violence.

  • Leia Saltzman, PhD, MSW

    Assistant Professor

    Leia Y. Saltzman joined the Tulane community in 2017 after completing her post-doctoral training as an  Azrieli International Post-Doctoral Fellow at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. She earned her MSW and PhD in Social Work at Boston College. Trained in both qualitative and quantitative methods, Dr. Saltzman’s research uses mixed methodology to explore the process of adaptation in the context of trauma, community violence, and mass disaster. Her previous research has focused on positive adaptation trajectories such as resilience and posttraumatic growth. Currently, Dr. Saltzman’s work explores the role of time in the process of adaptation, with the goal of developing time-informed and sustainable mental health interventions. She is interested in community based research that influences mental health policies and clinical practices with trauma-affected populations in order to promote well-being, build stronger families, and more cohesive communities that can withstand the impact of mass disaster, trauma, and violence.

  • lsaltzman@tulane.edu
  • 504-247-1452
  • Download CV
  • Dr. Thurman has a Masters of Public Health and PhD in International Health & Development. Dr. Thurman specializes in the areas of program design, evaluation methodologies, operations research and capacity building pertaining to initiatives for highly vulnerable children. She serves as Director of the Center for Research on Highly Vulnerable Children, a multi-disciplinary initiative dedicated to compiling an evidence base for programs serving disadvantaged children. She currently resides in South Africa as Country Director for the Tulane International office while directing several major USAID-funded longitudinal evaluation studies focused on in-country programs for orphans and vulnerable children (OVC). Her activities in South Africa extend beyond rigorous evaluations to include participation in the development of individual case studies of OVC program models supported by PEPFAR, with 36 in press to date, along with ongoing technical assistance to community and government OVC stakeholders. Also in sub-Saharan Africa, she led the first and largest U.S. government-funded series of OVC public health evaluations in Kenya and Tanzania, and played a central role in the longitudinal evaluation of a mentoring program for youth-headed households in Rwanda. Her focus on highly vulnerable children is complemented by her prior research on AIDS-related issues, such as a sexual violence study in Lesotho, Priority Local AIDS Control Studies (PLACE) in Lesotho and Malawi, and an evaluation of a case management program for people living with HIV/AIDS in Rwanda. Her experience pertaining to vulnerable children extends beyond Africa to include efforts to strengthen the design, monitoring and evaluation of programs for street children and child prostitutes within Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Closer to home, Dr. Thurman served as an evaluation specialist analyzing the impacts of a school-based psychosocial program for elementary school students affected by Hurricane Katrina. Beyond the methodological rigor of these activities, each of the projects she leads is carefully geared toward improving policy and programming for vulnerable children.

  • Tonya Renee Thurman, PhD, MPH

    Research Associate Professor

    Dr. Thurman has a Masters of Public Health and PhD in International Health & Development. Dr. Thurman specializes in the areas of program design, evaluation methodologies, operations research and capacity building pertaining to initiatives for highly vulnerable children. She serves as Director of the Center for Research on Highly Vulnerable Children, a multi-disciplinary initiative dedicated to compiling an evidence base for programs serving disadvantaged children. She currently resides in South Africa as Country Director for the Tulane International office while directing several major USAID-funded longitudinal evaluation studies focused on in-country programs for orphans and vulnerable children (OVC). Her activities in South Africa extend beyond rigorous evaluations to include participation in the development of individual case studies of OVC program models supported by PEPFAR, with 36 in press to date, along with ongoing technical assistance to community and government OVC stakeholders. Also in sub-Saharan Africa, she led the first and largest U.S. government-funded series of OVC public health evaluations in Kenya and Tanzania, and played a central role in the longitudinal evaluation of a mentoring program for youth-headed households in Rwanda. Her focus on highly vulnerable children is complemented by her prior research on AIDS-related issues, such as a sexual violence study in Lesotho, Priority Local AIDS Control Studies (PLACE) in Lesotho and Malawi, and an evaluation of a case management program for people living with HIV/AIDS in Rwanda. Her experience pertaining to vulnerable children extends beyond Africa to include efforts to strengthen the design, monitoring and evaluation of programs for street children and child prostitutes within Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Closer to home, Dr. Thurman served as an evaluation specialist analyzing the impacts of a school-based psychosocial program for elementary school students affected by Hurricane Katrina. Beyond the methodological rigor of these activities, each of the projects she leads is carefully geared toward improving policy and programming for vulnerable children.

  • tthurma@tulane.edu
  • Download CV

Instructional Staff

  •  Candice C Beasley, DSW, LCSW, Administrative Assistant Professor - Tulane School of Social Work

    Professor Candice C. Beasley, LCSW, earned her MSW from the University of Oklahoma at Tulsa in 2011, and has been a social work practitioner for more than 10 years. Candice has publication and curriculum creating experience, having recently co-created the Ubuntu Program for Emotional Wellness, through Pfizer and Take Action For Health, with Dr. Marva L. Lewis of Tulane University.  Candice has extensive experience in Child Welfare, Social Work and the Courts, Domestic Violence and Medical Social Work. Candice is also a 2017 Doctorate of Social Work graduate from TSSW. Candice lives in New Orleans with her 4-year-old son, Cameron.

  • Candice C Beasley, DSW, LCSW

    Administrative Assistant Professor

    Professor Candice C. Beasley, LCSW, earned her MSW from the University of Oklahoma at Tulsa in 2011, and has been a social work practitioner for more than 10 years. Candice has publication and curriculum creating experience, having recently co-created the Ubuntu Program for Emotional Wellness, through Pfizer and Take Action For Health, with Dr. Marva L. Lewis of Tulane University.  Candice has extensive experience in Child Welfare, Social Work and the Courts, Domestic Violence and Medical Social Work. Candice is also a 2017 Doctorate of Social Work graduate from TSSW. Candice lives in New Orleans with her 4-year-old son, Cameron.

  • cbeasley@tulane.edu
  • 504-862-3492

Staff

  • Heidi Breaux

    Heidi Breaux, LCSW-R received her BASW from   Rutgers University in 2004 and her MSW from New York University in 2005. Since then she’s worked in the field of substance abuse, for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, at APICHA CHC (an Asian and Pacific Islander health clinic in Chinatown NYC), and as Associate Director of Adult Services at the New York City Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center. Most recently Mrs. Breaux was an Adjunct Professor at New York University’s Silver Graduate School of Social Work and managed a team of clinical social workers in the Sexual Health Clinics for the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Heidi is passionate about helping others provide services to the TGNC community, particularly undocumented immigrants and trans women of color. She enjoys spending time with her wife and family, and is a strong advocate for reproductive justice.

  • Heidi Breaux

    Program Manager and Online Field Education

    Heidi Breaux, LCSW-R received her BASW from   Rutgers University in 2004 and her MSW from New York University in 2005. Since then she’s worked in the field of substance abuse, for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, at APICHA CHC (an Asian and Pacific Islander health clinic in Chinatown NYC), and as Associate Director of Adult Services at the New York City Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center. Most recently Mrs. Breaux was an Adjunct Professor at New York University’s Silver Graduate School of Social Work and managed a team of clinical social workers in the Sexual Health Clinics for the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Heidi is passionate about helping others provide services to the TGNC community, particularly undocumented immigrants and trans women of color. She enjoys spending time with her wife and family, and is a strong advocate for reproductive justice.

  • hbreaux@tulane.edu
  • 504-247-1455
  • Sheila Gold is a licensed clinical social worker specializing in play therapy and administrator.  Sheila has worked as a clinician in school social work and clinical practice since 1999.  She has presented at multiple conferences both locally and nationally on the topics of child development, play therapy and school counseling. She has contributed articles to NOLA Baby and Family Magazine as well as Parenting for Moral Growth Magazine, and she published a character education curriculum for elementary and middle school counselors in 2012.  Sheila is a proud Tulane alumna receiving her Bachelor's degree from Newcomb College and her MSW from the Tulane School of Social Work.

  • Sheila Gold, LCSW, BACS, RPT

    Executive Director of Admissions & Student Affairs

    Sheila Gold is a licensed clinical social worker specializing in play therapy and administrator.  Sheila has worked as a clinician in school social work and clinical practice since 1999.  She has presented at multiple conferences both locally and nationally on the topics of child development, play therapy and school counseling. She has contributed articles to NOLA Baby and Family Magazine as well as Parenting for Moral Growth Magazine, and she published a character education curriculum for elementary and middle school counselors in 2012.  Sheila is a proud Tulane alumna receiving her Bachelor's degree from Newcomb College and her MSW from the Tulane School of Social Work.

  • sgold@tulane.edu
  • 504-862-3488
  • Deidre Hayes

    Deidre Hayes has been a licensed clinical social worker in New Orleans for over 20 years. She has an undergraduate degree in psychology from Loyola University of the South, a Masters’ in Social Work from Tulane University and a Doctorate in Social Work from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. She has extensive experience with individuals and families, specializing in mental health, substance abuse, domestic violence and sexual assault. Her private practice specializes in custody evaluations and individual, children and family interventions. Dr. Hayes has been an integral part of many start-up initiatives including, Covenant House New Orleans, the New Orleans Drug and Mental Health Courts, and the New Orleans Family Justice Center. She currently serves on the leadership team for NHS Louisiana and is the clinical consultant for NHS’ New Orleans programs including the Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) teams and the Coordinated System of Care (CSOC) wraparound initiative. She also provides clinical supervision and guidance for the dedicated NHS social workers who serve the most vulnerable members of the community. She serves as both supervisor and mentor for those seeking licensure. In addition, she is the clinical consultant for the Federal Court Eastern District of Louisiana Reentry Program. Trainings provided include: Child Advocacy, Mental Health, Ethics, and Case Management.

  • Deidre D. Hayes, DSW, BCD, LCSW-BACS

    Program Manager, Poverty and Social Justice Program

    Deidre Hayes has been a licensed clinical social worker in New Orleans for over 20 years. She has an undergraduate degree in psychology from Loyola University of the South, a Masters’ in Social Work from Tulane University and a Doctorate in Social Work from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. She has extensive experience with individuals and families, specializing in mental health, substance abuse, domestic violence and sexual assault. Her private practice specializes in custody evaluations and individual, children and family interventions. Dr. Hayes has been an integral part of many start-up initiatives including, Covenant House New Orleans, the New Orleans Drug and Mental Health Courts, and the New Orleans Family Justice Center. She currently serves on the leadership team for NHS Louisiana and is the clinical consultant for NHS’ New Orleans programs including the Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) teams and the Coordinated System of Care (CSOC) wraparound initiative. She also provides clinical supervision and guidance for the dedicated NHS social workers who serve the most vulnerable members of the community. She serves as both supervisor and mentor for those seeking licensure. In addition, she is the clinical consultant for the Federal Court Eastern District of Louisiana Reentry Program. Trainings provided include: Child Advocacy, Mental Health, Ethics, and Case Management.

  • dhayes6@tulane.edu
  • 504-862-3490
  • Mel'isa Morel

    Born and raised in Canada, Mel’isa has lived in several states before moving to Louisiana in 2009 from California where she spent seven years supporting the head of the behavioral health division of United Health Care.  Upon arriving in Louisiana, Mel’isa joined the Department of Surgery at Tulane, first as the Chairman’s assistant and then as the resident coordinator for nearly two years. She was been with the School of Social Work since December 2016.  Mel’isa lives in Slidell with her husband, JP.

  • Mel'isa Morel

    Executive Assistant to the Dean

    Born and raised in Canada, Mel’isa has lived in several states before moving to Louisiana in 2009 from California where she spent seven years supporting the head of the behavioral health division of United Health Care.  Upon arriving in Louisiana, Mel’isa joined the Department of Surgery at Tulane, first as the Chairman’s assistant and then as the resident coordinator for nearly two years. She was been with the School of Social Work since December 2016.  Mel’isa lives in Slidell with her husband, JP.

  • mmartin1@tulane.edu
  • 504-862-3497
  • Ms. Patteson is a trauma informed mental health practitioner, transformational leader, and community organizer with 15 years of experience working with diverse and vulnerable populations in settings ranging from small non-profits to large healthcare systems. She has experience working with individuals with substance abuse/dual diagnosis, and psychiatric diagnoses, prevention and treatment in gender-based violence, LGBTQI issues, HIV/AIDS, homelessness, in the reproductive justice movement, and Latinx communities. Ms. Patteson holds multiple advanced degrees including a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of North Carolina Greensboro, a Master’s in Social Work and Certificate in Disaster Mental Health and Trauma Studies from Tulane University, and a Master’s of Science in Disaster Resilience and Leadership from Tulane University. She is an active advocate within her community. She volunteers with Evacuteer, the Reproductive Justice Action Collective, and other community based organizations.

  • Catherine Patteson

    Online Program Manager

    Ms. Patteson is a trauma informed mental health practitioner, transformational leader, and community organizer with 15 years of experience working with diverse and vulnerable populations in settings ranging from small non-profits to large healthcare systems. She has experience working with individuals with substance abuse/dual diagnosis, and psychiatric diagnoses, prevention and treatment in gender-based violence, LGBTQI issues, HIV/AIDS, homelessness, in the reproductive justice movement, and Latinx communities. Ms. Patteson holds multiple advanced degrees including a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of North Carolina Greensboro, a Master’s in Social Work and Certificate in Disaster Mental Health and Trauma Studies from Tulane University, and a Master’s of Science in Disaster Resilience and Leadership from Tulane University. She is an active advocate within her community. She volunteers with Evacuteer, the Reproductive Justice Action Collective, and other community based organizations.

  • cpatteso@tulane.edu
  • 504-862-3483
  • Tona Zwanziger is the Program Manager for the Disaster Resilience Leadership Academy at Tulane University. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of New Orleans with a major in Sociology and Minor in Psychology. She completed ten years of service as a combat medic and first aid trainer with the US Army National Guard where she was activated for several hurricane-related missions. Following hurricane Katrina, she served as the Lead Administrator for the engineering firm managing the Recovery Program for the City of New Orleans. Tona received her Master of Social Work degree with a certificate in Disaster Mental Health as well as a Masters of Science degree in Disaster Resilience Leadership from Tulane University where she was awarded the Tulane 34 Award for her academic and service achievements. Her research work includes evaluating resilience and recovery following the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and she published her graduate thesis, Resilience and the Knowledge of PTSD Symptoms in Military Spouses. Tona holds the LMSW licensing credential and provides psychotherapy services in a private practice setting a few hours each week. She is a Reviewer for the Journal of Traumatology, serves as Adjunct Faculty for the MSW and DRLA programs as well as for the undergraduate Trauma Series.

  • Tona Zwanziger, MS, LMSW

    Program Manager

    Tona Zwanziger is the Program Manager for the Disaster Resilience Leadership Academy at Tulane University. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of New Orleans with a major in Sociology and Minor in Psychology. She completed ten years of service as a combat medic and first aid trainer with the US Army National Guard where she was activated for several hurricane-related missions. Following hurricane Katrina, she served as the Lead Administrator for the engineering firm managing the Recovery Program for the City of New Orleans. Tona received her Master of Social Work degree with a certificate in Disaster Mental Health as well as a Masters of Science degree in Disaster Resilience Leadership from Tulane University where she was awarded the Tulane 34 Award for her academic and service achievements. Her research work includes evaluating resilience and recovery following the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and she published her graduate thesis, Resilience and the Knowledge of PTSD Symptoms in Military Spouses. Tona holds the LMSW licensing credential and provides psychotherapy services in a private practice setting a few hours each week. She is a Reviewer for the Journal of Traumatology, serves as Adjunct Faculty for the MSW and DRLA programs as well as for the undergraduate Trauma Series.

  • tzwanzig@tulane.edu
  • 504-247-1453

Adjunct Lecturer

  • Marvin Clifford

    Professor Clifford, a practicing social worker for 40-plus years, works with children, adolescents, families, adults, couples and groups focusing on the treatment of mental health, addictions and co-occurring disorders at Ochsner Clinic. He received his MSW from Portland State University, and PhD from TSSW in 1988. Professor Clifford has served as an adjunct with TSSW for more than 20 years, and has taught Methods II, Methods III, Theory I and Theory II along with group work-related courses.

  • Marvin W. Clifford, PhD, LCSW

    Professor Clifford, a practicing social worker for 40-plus years, works with children, adolescents, families, adults, couples and groups focusing on the treatment of mental health, addictions and co-occurring disorders at Ochsner Clinic. He received his MSW from Portland State University, and PhD from TSSW in 1988. Professor Clifford has served as an adjunct with TSSW for more than 20 years, and has taught Methods II, Methods III, Theory I and Theory II along with group work-related courses.

  • mcliffo@tulane.edu
  • Download CV
  • Professor Irwin has been a practicing social worker since 1975, specializing in individual, couple, family and group therapy. He also specializes in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder and domestic violence. Professor Irwin serves as a consultant at the Children's Bureau of New Orleans and is the president of the No-Abuse Coalition, LLC. Professor Irwin has taught at TSSW since 1989, received his master's in Divinity from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and his MSW in 1979 from TSSW. He teaches Methods II, Methods III, and co-teaches Spirituality and Social Work.

  • Lou Irwin, BCD, LCSW

    Professor Irwin has been a practicing social worker since 1975, specializing in individual, couple, family and group therapy. He also specializes in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder and domestic violence. Professor Irwin serves as a consultant at the Children's Bureau of New Orleans and is the president of the No-Abuse Coalition, LLC. Professor Irwin has taught at TSSW since 1989, received his master's in Divinity from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and his MSW in 1979 from TSSW. He teaches Methods II, Methods III, and co-teaches Spirituality and Social Work.

  • louirwinlcsw@yahoo.com
  • Download CV
  • Amy Lesen, Ph.D

    Dr. Amy E. Lesen is Research Associate Professor in the ByWater Institute at Tulane University in New Orleans. Lesen works on the coast and in urban estuaries. The overarching theme of her work is the interrelatedness between ecosystem function and human social dynamics in coastal cities and coastal communities, and how those systems are influenced by climate and environmental change. Most of her current work focuses in New Orleans and southeastern Louisiana. Lesen is also interested Science and Technology Studies (STS) and the sociological aspects of biophysical science practice, and her work in these areas includes research and writing about scientific public engagement, science communication, participatory research, and interdisciplinarity.

  • Amy Lesen, Ph.D

    Dr. Amy E. Lesen is Research Associate Professor in the ByWater Institute at Tulane University in New Orleans. Lesen works on the coast and in urban estuaries. The overarching theme of her work is the interrelatedness between ecosystem function and human social dynamics in coastal cities and coastal communities, and how those systems are influenced by climate and environmental change. Most of her current work focuses in New Orleans and southeastern Louisiana. Lesen is also interested Science and Technology Studies (STS) and the sociological aspects of biophysical science practice, and her work in these areas includes research and writing about scientific public engagement, science communication, participatory research, and interdisciplinarity.

  • alesen@tulane.edu
  • 504-314 7808
  • Kathleen McGraw

    Dr. Kathleen McGraw is the President and CEO of McGraw and Associates, LLC, a mental health, forensic, life coaching, substance abuse, crisis intervention, and alternative dispute resolution (ADR) firm. Dr. McGraw works with children and their families through three programs in the Metropolitan New Orleans, the Bayou Region, and the River Region areas. The three programs are the Collaborative ADR Institute of Louisiana, the Employee Assistance Behavioral Health Institute, and the Institute for Families, Parenting, and Children. She has a PhD and a Master of Social Work (MSW) from Tulane’s School of Social Work. She has a Master of Public Health (MPH) in Maternal and Child Health and Community Health Sciences from Tulane’s School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), a Licensed Addiction Counselor (LAC), and a Licensed Prevention Professional (LPP).

    Dr. McGraw is certified in military / post-combat behavioral health and specializes with deployment and reintegration issues. She is a qualified juvenile, delinquency, family, and custody mediator trained by Loyola Law School's Mediation Program. She has provided mediation services through numerous programs, including the Louisiana Supreme Court’s Children Advocacy Mediation Project. She is a qualified child custody evaluator and parenting coordinator (PC). She was appointed by the Louisiana Supreme Court to the Louisiana State Law Institute’s Parenting Coordination Committee, and co-wrote the Louisiana statutes for parenting coordination. She was also on the committees, which revised the mediation statutes for domestic and family mediation (L.R.S. 9:334) and juvenile and delinquency mediation (Children Code 439) in Louisiana. She is trained in the collaborative divorce model and has provided services as a child specialist and a coach. She has been honored to be listed in the Louisiana State Bar Association's Journal titled, "Who's Who in ADR" numerous times including the years of 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016.

    Dr. McGraw has facilitated workshops focused on the trauma recovery process for adults, children, and communities after a disaster. She has worked extensively with families, school teachers and counselors, first responders, and community organizers in the areas of conflict and dispute resolution, anger management, relationships, and communication skills needed after life traumas. She has also facilitated several city-wide meetings in New Orleans organized by AmericaSpeaks and the United New Orleans Plan (UNOP) to aid in the recovery and rebuilding of New Orleans and the surrounding communities after hurricanes and flooding events.

    Dr. McGraw wrote and contributed chapters to 2 books, “A Guide to Getting Vibrant and Lasting Relationships” and “101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life, Volume 2.” 

     

  • Kathleen Oquelí McGraw, PhD, MPH, LCSW, LAC, LPP

    Dr. Kathleen McGraw is the President and CEO of McGraw and Associates, LLC, a mental health, forensic, life coaching, substance abuse, crisis intervention, and alternative dispute resolution (ADR) firm. Dr. McGraw works with children and their families through three programs in the Metropolitan New Orleans, the Bayou Region, and the River Region areas. The three programs are the Collaborative ADR Institute of Louisiana, the Employee Assistance Behavioral Health Institute, and the Institute for Families, Parenting, and Children. She has a PhD and a Master of Social Work (MSW) from Tulane’s School of Social Work. She has a Master of Public Health (MPH) in Maternal and Child Health and Community Health Sciences from Tulane’s School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), a Licensed Addiction Counselor (LAC), and a Licensed Prevention Professional (LPP).

    Dr. McGraw is certified in military / post-combat behavioral health and specializes with deployment and reintegration issues. She is a qualified juvenile, delinquency, family, and custody mediator trained by Loyola Law School's Mediation Program. She has provided mediation services through numerous programs, including the Louisiana Supreme Court’s Children Advocacy Mediation Project. She is a qualified child custody evaluator and parenting coordinator (PC). She was appointed by the Louisiana Supreme Court to the Louisiana State Law Institute’s Parenting Coordination Committee, and co-wrote the Louisiana statutes for parenting coordination. She was also on the committees, which revised the mediation statutes for domestic and family mediation (L.R.S. 9:334) and juvenile and delinquency mediation (Children Code 439) in Louisiana. She is trained in the collaborative divorce model and has provided services as a child specialist and a coach. She has been honored to be listed in the Louisiana State Bar Association's Journal titled, "Who's Who in ADR" numerous times including the years of 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016.

    Dr. McGraw has facilitated workshops focused on the trauma recovery process for adults, children, and communities after a disaster. She has worked extensively with families, school teachers and counselors, first responders, and community organizers in the areas of conflict and dispute resolution, anger management, relationships, and communication skills needed after life traumas. She has also facilitated several city-wide meetings in New Orleans organized by AmericaSpeaks and the United New Orleans Plan (UNOP) to aid in the recovery and rebuilding of New Orleans and the surrounding communities after hurricanes and flooding events.

    Dr. McGraw wrote and contributed chapters to 2 books, “A Guide to Getting Vibrant and Lasting Relationships” and “101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life, Volume 2.” 

     

  • kmcgraw1@tulane.edu