hi Team | Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma

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Trinley Palmo

Trinley Palmo, MPH, was born and raised in India to Tibetan refugee parents. She holds a Bachelors in Science and Education from the Regional Institute of Education, India. She then received a Masters of Public Health and an advanced graduate certificate in health communications from the State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY under the Fulbright Program. She has been working for the last...
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Laura McDonald

Laura McDonald has a PhD in Public Health (Psychiatric Epidemiology) from the Bloomberg School of Public Health where she focused her doctoral research on the relationship between joblessness and depression in post-conflict Bosnia-Herzegovina.  The foundation of her interest in international studies began during her undergraduate work at the University of Pennsylvania.  This interest was...
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Kirsten Reimer

Kirsten Reimer, MLIS, is the Head of Documentation at the DIGNITY Documentation Center and Library at DIGNITY – Danish Institute Against Torture in Copenhagen, Denmark. For more than two decades she has collected, registered and disseminated information and literature on the subjects of torture, organized violence and traumatized refugees. During this period many users of different professional...
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Taiwo Lateef Sheikh

Taiwo Lateef Sheikh, MB.BS, M.Sc, FWACP, is a Neuro-Psychiatrist and presently the Medical Director/CEO of Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Barnawa, Kaduna in Northern Nigeria. He is also a Reader (Associate Professor) at the Department of Psychiatry, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria. He is a member of the National Action Committee on Mental Health in Nigeria, where he participated in...
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Sondra Crosby

Sondra Crosby, MD, is an Associate Professor of Medicine and Public Health, at the Boston University Schools of Medicine and Public Health, in the Departments of Medicine, and Health Law, Bioethics, and Human Rights, and a member of the Section of General Internal Medicine at Boston Medical Center. Her clinical practice focuses on care of asylum seekers, asylees, and refugees. Dr. Crosby has...
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Nisha Sajnani

Nisha Sajnani, PhD, RDT-BCT is a member of the HPRT faculty. She has expertise in the role of the arts in global mental health with an emphasis on theatre practice. Dr. Sajnani hosts an international network on the arts and displacement and is a recipient of the Corann Okorodudu Global Women’s Advocacy Award from the Society for the Psychology of Women from the American Psychological...
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Ranieri Guerra

Ranieri Guerra, MD, was in the role of Science and Technology Attaché at the Embassy of Italy, Washington, D.C. until recently, when he was appointed Director General of Preventive Health and Chief Medical Officer at the Ministry of Health of Italy. Dr. Guerra is also the former Director of URE, External Relations Office, the President’s cabinet for the Istituto Superiori di Sanità, the...
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Elizabeth DiStefano

Elizabeth DiStefano, MBA, is HPRT’s financial manager.
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Sonia Graziano

Sonia Graziano, PsyD, is an HPRT Research Coordiantor in Italy. She is a Psychologist, specialized in Clinical Psychology. Her main interest is for childhood, adolescence and family. She completed her education at “La Sapienza University of Rome” and attended the Mastery in Global Mental Health: Trauma and Recovery Certificate Program organized by the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma (HPRT)....
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Jerry Pfeffer

Jerry Pfeffer is a semi-retired Information Technology professional who started out in the early 1970’s as a COBOL programmer, though he spent the majority of his career through 2009 managing software projects and professionals for an educational publishing company.  His specialties are in the areas of financial systems, data analysis and business requirements analysis, but in his career, at...
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Noor Omar Amawi

Noor Omar Amawi, PsyD, earned her BA in Psychology and Sociology from Wichita State University in Kansas; she later moved to Boston and completed her PsyD in the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology.  In addition, she completed a Harvard Medical School- Department of Continuing Education certificate-training course (HMS-DCE) in Global Mental Health and Trauma Recovery. Dr. Noor...
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Frederick J. Streets

Rev. Jerry Streets, M.Div.,DSW, LCSW Frederick J. (Jerry) Streets is Visiting Professor in the Department of Social Work and Latino Community Practice at the University of Saint Joseph in West Hartford, CT. He is an Associate (adjunct) Professor of Pastoral Theology at Yale University Divinity School and Columbia University School of Social Work in New York City.  He was the Chaplain of Yale...
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Giampaolo Nicolais

Giampaolo Nicolais, PhD, Clinical psychologist, is Associate Professor of Developmental Psychology at Sapienza University, Rome, Italy. He received his B.A. in Psychology from Sapienza University, where he also completed his postgraduate education with a Psy.D. training in child, adolescent and adult clinical psychology and psychotherapy, and a Ph.D. in clinical child psychology. He has been...
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Massimo Ammaniti

Massimo Ammaniti, MD, a child psychiatrist & psychoanalyst of the International Psychoanalytical Association, Honorary Professor at the Sapienza University of Rome. He served as a professor of Developmental Psychopathology and chairman of the Faculty of Infant and Adolescent Clinical Psychology at University La Sapienza, in Rome, Italy. Additionally, he served as a member of the Board of...
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Giovanni Muscettola

Giovanni Muscettola, MD, is Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry, University Medical School “Federico II”, Napoli, Italy. Dr. Muscettola has been a full professor of psychiatry at the University Medical School in Napoli since 1996. Additionally, he is the author of more than 100 publications in the fields of biological psychiatry and...
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In Memoriam: Franco Paparo

Franco Paparo, MD, trained in Neurology and psychiatry, was assistant Professor at University of Rome La Sapienza. He was for many years a full member of the Group-analytic Society (London) and training group-analyst in Rome. He was  an associate member of the International Psychoanalytic Society and a pioneer in the psychiatric reform in Italy as Director of Unit 17 for severely disturbed...
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Robert Brooks

Robert Brooks, PhD, is currently the Director of RTB Consulting specialising in Research, Evaluation and Project Management. As the former Research Director for the Australian Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Healing Foundation, he conducted research on ‘healing’ and evaluated the funded programs. Prior to this he worked as Senior Research Officer, Centre for Population Mental Health,...
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Peter Polatin

Peter B. Polatin, MD, MPH, is a Professor of Psychiatry and Director of Global Mental Health at the George Washington University School of Medicine and the senior health advisor for the DIGNITY Institute Against Torture, located in Copenhagen, Denmark. He has prior specialization in community and disaster mental health, pain management, clinical outcomes research, and addictionology. From 2007 to...
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Eugene F. Augusterfer

Eugene F. Augusterfer, LCSW, is the Director of Telemedicine for the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma (HPRT) and a core faculty member of HPRT’s Global Mental Health: Trauma and Recovery Program.  At HPRT, he has helped develop HPRT’s innovative model that addresses the need for sustainable care in post-disaster areas through the use of telemedicine, including mobile technology or mHealth....
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Svang Tor

Svang Tor is a Senior Clinician and Consultant/Liaison for HPRT. She has over twenty years of experience in the field of refugee mental health. Ms. Tor, a survivor of the Khmer Rouge killing fields, began working as a Senior Mental Health Specialist for the Indochinese Psychiatry Clinic in 1987. Between 1994 and 1999, she developed the curriculum for and helped to implement training projects in...
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James Lavelle

James Lavelle, LICSW, is the Director of International Programs and Community Organizing for the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma (HPRT). As Co-Founder of HPRT, he has spent the past 33 years working as a clinician, educator, researcher, and community organizer helping to pioneer the field of refugee mental health. With his HPRT colleagues and their in-country partners, James participated in...
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Richard F. Mollica

Richard F. Mollica, MD, MAR is the Director of the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma (HPRT) of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. He received his medical degree from the University of New Mexico and completed his Psychiatry residency at Yale Medical School. While at Yale he also trained in epidemiology and received a philosophy degree from the Divinity School. In 1981, Dr....
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