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Youth Worker Conference 2014 - Speaker Bios
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Brenda Anderson, BA, LSW

Brenda has spent 16 years working with families and children within the Child Protection System.  Brenda uses this knowledge of the “system” to help navigate children/youth out of foster care and help them form permanent loving connections with family and important people through the Intensive Permanence Specialist program with Anu Family Services.  Brenda specializes in grief, loss, trauma and promoting practices that diminish secondary traumatic stress for social workers. Brenda has presented training at the National Foster Family Association Conference and MCMAH and MSSA.  Topics include:  grief, loss and trauma and self-care in the social work profession.

Adam Arnold, MA, LMFT, LADC

Adam is a licensed psychotherapist, and holds a Master of Arts in Counseling & Psychotherapy from Adler Graduate School, and an Addiction Studies Certificate from the University of Minnesota. He has worked as a psychotherapist in several residential and day treatment centers, in the addiction and domestic violence fields, and in private practice at Enliven Psychotherapy. Adam is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor. He serves on the board of Interfaith Children's Advocacy Network. Adam also serves as Executive Artistic Director for blank slate theatre, a personal growth-oriented theatre for youth, was awarded "Outstanding Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist" by the Minnesota Association of Marriage and Family Therapy, and received the "Alumni Association Leadership Award"
from Adler Graduate School. Adam served as Conference Chair of "Safe Schools, Safe Students Conference" in March of 2014, and frequently serves as a featured speaker on issues of bullying and childhood aggression.

Lisa Becking 

Lisa has been a DOC inspector for the past 9 years. She has been with the MN DOC for the past 21 years and has experience as a juvenile probation agent, adult probation agent and foster parent.

Jon Brandt, MSW, LICSW

Jon Brandt has been providing assessments, treatment, and supervision to adolescents who have sexually offended for 30 years; currently as the Director of Mapletree, and previously through the PHASE program in St. Paul, and as a social worker with PATH foster homes.  
Recent presentations include “Normative Adolescent Sexual Behavior” at the 2012 National Adolescent Perpetrators conference in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and on “Controversies and Ethics with Sexual Offenders” at the 2012 state conference of the Minnesota chapter of ATSA. 
Jon is a clinical member with ATSA and writes a blog on the treatment and management of sexual offenders for ATSA’s journal, Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment. 

Kathy Flaminio, MSW

Kathy is the founder of 1000 Petals LLC, a holistic health well-being training and consulting company on the science and practice of mindfulness and movement.  Kathy holds a master’s degree in social work with more than twenty years of experience in regular and special education settings.  As the National Director of Training Development for Yoga Calm™, Kathy has guided over 4,000 individuals on how to integrate yoga-based movement, mindfulness and social/emotional skills into classroom and therapeutic settings, impacting over 60,000 youth every day.

Charles Fai, BA, MA

Charles has a BA in Education and an MA in Counseling Psychology. He is a cultural diversity trainer at Woodland Hills. He has worked at Woodland Hills for three years beginning as a mental health practitioner and moved into a therapist role within six months. Prior to his employment at Woodland Hills, Charles studied and worked in Oregon.

Tina Feigal, M.S., Ed.

Tina is the Director of Family Engagement at Anu Family Services/Center for the Challenging Child. A former school psychologist, Tina is the mother of three wonderful sons, and grandmother of a 1-year-old grandson. Tina’s passion is bringing peace to homes and schools, by helping adults to heal challenging child behavior with the specific, highly effective Present Moment Parenting and Teaching.  Since 2000, she has operated her business, the Center for the Challenging Child, now a branch of Anu Family Services. She coaches parents, trains parent coaches, and presents for schools, professional conferences (including MCCCA in the past), and church groups.  As a coach and trainer, Tina supports adults in applying the techniques in her books “The Pocket Coach for Parents” and “The Pocket Teacher Coach”.

Jennifer Fox, MSW, Safe Harbor Regional Navigator (West Central MN)

Jennifer has recently accepted the West Central Regional Navigator position, working for Heartland Girls Ranch.  Previously Jennifer worked as a case manager for trafficked girls in the Rochester, MN area.  In Rochester, she worked to raise awareness and to create a network of referral and service providers to increase services available for sexually exploited youth.  Jennifer is a member of the MN Human Trafficking Task Force and has been trained as an advocate for victims of sexual assault.

Rebecca Gelderman

Rebecca has worked as a probation officer in Anoka County for 3.5 years.  Prior to this, she spent 4.5 years with the Wilder Foundation, facilitating pre-release/transitional programming for adult offenders within the MN Department of Corrections. Rebecca has also previously worked with MCCA as a co-chair for their education/training committee.

Rebecca Goffman, Psy.D, LP

Rebecca is a New Yorker who moved to Minnesota in 1995 to expand her career and family.  She earned  a master’s degree in Deaf Education from a joint program between the University of Rochester and the National Technical Institute for the Deaf in 1992 and a doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from the Minnesota School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University in 2007.   She worked as a psychologist and program manager of the Volunteers of America Mental Health Clinics Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program in Minnesota for 9 years.  In addition to conducting therapy and psychological assessments with individuals and families, she managed the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program that provided school-based and clinic-based mental health therapy, home-based family interventions, and maltreatment prevention services.  She has recently opened a private practice focusing on psychological assessments.  Areas of interest include mental health services with deaf and hard of hearing populations, psychological assessment, culturally affirmative services, chemical dependency, and DC:0-3 work.

Dean Grace, Ed.D

Dr. Grace is the Director of Training and Development for Northwood Children’s Services in Duluth. He has over 40 years of experience serving at-risk youth and their families. He also serves as the Executive Director of the North Shore Children’s Mental Health Collaborative and is adjunct faculty at St. Scholastica’s school of Social Work.  In 2008, he developed and tested the first strength-based counseling model for at-risk youth.  Dr. Grace is a published author and frequent presenter at conferences on issues related to the treatment of troubled youth.

Kari Gustafson, MS

Kari graduated from St. Cloud State University, MN with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Criminal Justice and a Master of Science in Criminal Justice Administration. She has worked both juvenile and adult institutions as well as juvenile field services. She is currently employed as a Juvenile Probation Officer for Anoka County Corrections.

Chris Harnack, MA., LP, LMFT

Chris has over 35 years of experience developing, managing and clinically supervising mental health programs for children, adolescents and their families across the continuum of care; outpatient, in-home, group home, residential treatment, and chemical dependency settings.  Chris is currently the Director of Staff and Service Development at Therapeutic Services Agency (TSA).   Chris participated in a national Trauma Informed Care Learning Community lead by the National Council for Behavioral Health and is invested in providing Trauma Informed Care and developing Trauma Information Organizations and Systems in Minnesota.  She is interested in behavioral health quality improvement initiatives with a focus on helping organizations become trauma-informed and culturally sensitive.   Chris is dedicated to insuring that quality and innovative mental health services are available, accessible and culturally sensitive for children and their families.  She serves on the Governor’s Subcommittee for Children’s Mental Health.   Christine is actively involved in the Strengthening Families Affected by Incarceration Collaborative working to raise awareness, educate the public and provide resources and support to children of those incarcerated, their parents and their caregivers.  Chris is an instructor for Youth Mental Health First Aid.

Andrea Hendel, MA, LMFT

Andrea is the Clinical Director of Catholic Charities Residential and Day Services, including St Cloud Children’s Home.

Tracy Hilke

Tracy is the Clinic Manager for the Child Guidance Clinic and Southeast Asian Services at the Wilder Foundation. She has 25 years of experience working extensively with children and families, of diverse populations, who have experienced significant abuse, neglect, attachment concerns, high risk behaviors and trauma, in both residential treatment and out-patient settings.  She is a leader within the Wilder Foundation’s Trauma Informed Organizational efforts, including providing training and co-facilitation for Wilder’s internal teams and work groups, as well as serving as a Trauma Consultant to the St Paul Public Schools, focusing on supporting teachers and administrators on their journey to become more Trauma Informed.  Tracy also provides trauma trainings and consultation to various community based mental health and social service organizations throughout the twin cities.    

Michelle Kimman, LMFT

Michelle is currently a Clinical Supervisor at Mille Lacs Academy which is a residential treatment center for youth with sexually harmful behaviors. Mille Lacs Academy is part of the Nexus Corporation.  She currently oversees the program that is designed to help older adolescents’ males with special needs.  She specializes in sand try therapy and is a trained TF-CBT therapist. She has worked in residential treatment for 18 years focusing on program development, milieu management, trauma work and ways to implement a trauma informed approach to a residential setting.  She graduated with a Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from St Cloud University and in a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with the state of Minnesota.

Keith Kozerski, MSW, LISW  

Keith currently serves as the Director of Children and Family  Services at Catholic Charities.  Prior to joining Catholic Charities in April 2007, Keith gained over 16 years of experience in a variety of social service arenas.  He has worked in hospitals, residential treatment, public child welfare and community-based settings.  Keith has also served as an adjunct faculty member in the Human Services program at Upper Iowa University. He holds a BS in Social Work and a Master’s Degree in Social Work.  Keith currently serves as President of The Minnesota Council of Child Caring Agencies and a Board Member of Free Arts Minnesota.  Keith also participates in a number of community groups including the Hennepin County Children’s Mental Health Collaborative and the Minnesota Children’s Mental Health Partnership.

Sherri Kriesel

Sherri is a 23 year career agent with Anoka County. In addition to being a YLS/CMI trainer, she has over 35 years of teaching group fitness classes. She is passionate about youth, paying it forward through volunteerism and karma agent for the Universe!

Mechele Pitt, BS, MSSW, LCSW, LICSW

Mechele is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker in Minnesota and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Wisconsin. Mechele has been working in the child welfare field since 1992 and has more than 20 years of experience working with youth in a variety of out-of-home care settings. Mechele completed the Post-Graduate Permanency and Adoption Competency Certificate at the University of Minnesota, Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare and has taught graduate and undergraduate level courses in the areas of social work supervision, child development, individual and family counseling, cultural diversity, work and family issues, and child and adolescent counseling.  Mechele has presented training at the National Foster Family Association Conference, University of Wisconsin-Minnesota, St. Louis County Conference and MCMAH.  Topics presented include:  permanence focused supervision, grief, loss and trauma and self-care in the social work profession.

Kate RickfordMA, LP

Kate has 14 years in the field of children’s mental health through school-based and parent-focused programs. Kate currently supervises the Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care program at St. David’s Center and has a small private practice focused on psychotherapy and parenting assessments. Her areas of interest include trauma, intergenerational transmission of parenting practices and the development of self-regulation. Kate is a Licensed Psychologist who earned her master’s degree in Counseling & Psychological Services from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota. She also completed the Trauma Studies certificate from the University of Minnesota.

Julie Snyder

Julie has been a DOC inspector for the past 20 years. Prior to that she was a Juvenile probation agent for 14 years.

Dana Hurley Swayze, MSW

Dana Hurley Swayze is a Juvenile Justice Analyst in the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Office of Justice Programs, where she has worked since 2006. Prior to her employment with the state, Dana worked at the county level in a secure juvenile facility and as a juvenile probation officer. Her experience providing direct services to youth includes community supervision, cognitive-behavioral treatment, truancy intervention, community-based group facilitation, and youth program development and implementation.
In her current position, Dana compiles and disseminates data related to youth in the Minnesota juvenile justice system for federal reports, legislative initiatives and public consumption. Areas of professional interest include addressing the overrepresentation of youth of color in the juvenile justice system, best-practices in serving justice system involved youth, and researching the availability and quality of services for high-risk youth in the state. Dana possesses a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice, Political Science, and Social Science from the University of St. Thomas (1997), and a Master of Social Work in Community Practice from the University of Minnesota (2007).     

Jessica Sweeney, LGSW

Jessica has worked at Woodland Hills for the last four years in different capacities.  She began her career as a Youth Care Counselor, then moved into the Recreation Manager position and recently began a position as a therapist in the Day Treatment program. She is a certified First Aid/CPR trainer.

Cynthia (CeCe) Terlouw, Executive Director, Heartland Girls Ranch

On staff for over 20 years, CeCe accepted the role of Executive Director in 2008, and under her leadership, HGR has become a model program recognized throughout the state for at-risk & trafficked girls. CeCe is an expert on trauma-informed care and gender responsive programming for girls.  She is also an active member of the MN Human Trafficking Task Force and serves on the Safe Harbor Director Advisory Committee. She is certified in the My Life, My Choice curriculum and has also written her own curriculum, "The Game" developed specifically for sexually exploited girls.

Erin Wall, BSW, MSW, APSW

Erin has approximately 15 years of experience working with children and families.  Erin has experience in adoption, foster care and specializes in utilizing integrative healing practices to assist youth in healing from the trauma they have experienced.  Erin has presented training at the National Foster Family Association Conference and MACMH and MSSA.  Topics include:  grief, loss and trauma and self-care in the social work profession.

Deb Weinand

Deb is the Department of Corrections (DOC) PREA Coordinator.  She previously had the responsibilities for the Juvenile Standards prior to becoming the Agency’s Coordinator.  She began in the DOC as an officer.  She was an investigator for the DOC’s Office of Special Investigations (OSI), and an OSI Deputy Director.  She has worked with Juveniles, Adult Females and Adult Males at all custody levels.  Deb is also a PREA Auditor, Certified through the Department of Justice.

Richard Wolleat, MSSW, LICSW

Richard is currently President/CEO of Northwood Children’s Services, a multi-service agency in Duluth serving children with significant mental health challenges and their families. He has over 36 years of experience in the field, has worked as a youth counselor, supervisor, therapist, and program director. Subsequently, he has had ample opportunity to put crisis management concepts into action.

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