Annual Awards

ISSTD 2020 Annual Awards

Due to the cancellation of the ISSTD Annual Conference, the Annual Awards Dinner was not able to take place. Below we would like to honor the recipients of this year’s awards.

ISSTD Fellows

To be considered for ISSTD Fellow status, a person must have at least five years’ membership in ISSTD and must present evidence of outstanding contributions to the field of dissociation in two or more of the required categories.

Joanne Twombly

Joanne H. Twombly, MSW, LICSW is in private practice in Waltham, MA where she works extensively with people with complex PTSD and Dissociative Disorders. In addition, she provides trainings and consultation in EMDR and Internal Family Systems. She has had several book chapters published on EMDR, EMDR and Internal Family Systems, and on working with Perpetrator Introjects. Her commitment to providing the optimal space for healing has resulted in her becoming an EMDR Trauma and Recovery HAP Facilitator, a Certified Consultant in EMDR, Internal Family Systems Certified, and an American Society for Clinical Hypnosis Consultant. She is the past president of the New England Society for the Treatment of Trauma and Dissociation, served on various ISSTD committees and the board. In 2010 she was awarded ISSTD’s Distinguished Achievement Award.

Joanne is being recognized for her extensive dedication to ISSTD’s treatment guidelines, trainings, conferences, and more. Her work with EMDR and dissociative techniques and international presentations on the same are an exemplary representation of her dedication and value to the field of trauma and dissociation. 

Our second fellow award this year is a posthumous award to a most deserving ISSTD member whose loss is keenly felt.

Susie Farrelly

Dr Susie Farrelly was a long-time member of the ISSTD attending numerous international conferences over many years, and being on the organizing committee of the first ISSTD Australia-New Zealand regional conference in 2015. She was also a very active member of the social committee for the 2019 Christchurch regional conference and very sadly died several weeks before the conference was held, so was unable to see the joy of attendees engaging in the activities she was heavily involved in planning. She was a psychiatrist in Auckland, New Zealand, and fought a battle over many many years to have DID accepted in the psychiatric culture of New Zealand’s largest city. She educated countless colleagues and was involved in writing several book chapters about DID and related issues, including one in Dell & O’Neil’s edited tome, Dissociation and the dissociative disorders: DSM-V and beyond. Her legacy lives on in a growing awareness of DID in New Zealand and colleagues who continue to promote her message about the importance of assessing for DID and treating it. Dr Farrelly was also a great advocate for the voice of patients in mental health services, something which endeared her to those negatively impacted by a system that often rendered them visible or voice-less.

Richard P Kluft Best Article Award

In 2014 the Journal of Trauma & Dissociation publisher, Taylor and Francis established the Richard P. Kluft Award for Best Article.

This year’s winner is: Paul F. Dell (2019) Reconsidering the autohypnotic model of the dissociative disorders, Journal of Trauma & Dissociation

This article addresses what the author argues is a long-standing conceptual error about the relationship between dissociation and hypnotizability. Dell makes a cogent argument for autohypnosis as an important contributor to the development of DID. As such, this paper redefines and elaborates the trauma model of dissociation and DID.

Media Award: Audio Visual

The Media Awards are given to an individual or organization for the best-written media (e.g., books, newspapers) and best audiovisual media (e.g., films, television, videos) that deal with dissociation and/or trauma.

Dr. Emily Christensen

Dr. Christensen earned her B.S. in Human Development, her M.S. in Professional Counseling, an MDiv in Pastoral Counseling, and her PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy. She works as licensed clinical counselor and as a community and hospital chaplain, as well as now with the ISSTD as the training coordinator. As a licensed clinical counselor, she has been in private practice since 2004, with additional experience in ER triage, inpatient psychiatric, residential treatment, school-based, and outpatient settings. She currently is the international clinical coordinator for humanitarian aid organizations offering counseling and trauma resiliency training to government leaders, humanitarian aid workers, and first responders in war zones and natural disaster sites. She is married to Nathan Christensen, a musical theater writer, and together they are raising six special needs children adopted from foster care. In her spare time, she uses a search engine pseudonym to present the podcast “System Speak: A Podcast about Dissociative Identity Disorder” in effort to share her lived experience with DID and to bridge the gap between the clinical and survivor communities.

Dr. Christensen is receiving this award for her development of the System Speak podcast, which has over 40,000 subscribers in more than 60 countries. This is a unique resource of support and information for people with DID and their friends and families. The podcast provides information about DID while also talking about what she is learning in therapy.

Media Award: Written

Michael H Keller and Gabriel J.X. Dance

Michael H. Keller is a reporter and data journalist specializing in technology on the investigative team. Before joining The Times, he worked at Bloomberg News, Al Jazeera America, Newsweek and was a fellow at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University.

He has a masters degree in journalism from Columbia University and graduated with honors in Comparative Literature and Psychology from Georgetown University.

Gabriel J.X. Dance is the deputy investigations editor at The New York Times where he works with a small team investigating all things technology – from online child sexual abuse imagery to the companies that trade and sell our data. Previous to The Times, he was a founding managing editor at The Marshall Project where his work focused on the criminal justice system and the death penalty in particular. Before that, he was interactive editor for The Guardian, where he was part of a group of journalists who won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for public service for coverage of widespread secret surveillance by the N.S.A.

Michael Keller and Gabriel Dance have published to date two ground breaking investigations into the epidemic of online child sexual abuse material, with a strong focus on victim rights and impact. Their work has exposed the failure of governments and the technology industries to identify and remove images of abuse, and the ease with which child sexual abusers can exploit online technologies to abuse children and share abuse images. These articles are driving international change in technology companies and pushing governments to focus on the rights and safety of victims of child sexual exploitation.

Peter Fox for “Walking Towards Thunder”

Peter Fox joined the NSW Police Force in 1978. After becoming a detective, Peter left Sydney for the Hunter Valley. He there met his wife, Penny, together raising their three children.

Outside policing, Peter and his wife became involved with running youth refuges and establishing children’s court diversion programmes.
He led many major criminal investigations, a number of which featured on television documentaries. Peter regularly spoke at the NSW Police Academy and various university science and medical faculties.

Promoted to Detective Chief Inspector in 2007, Peter’s strongest trait was his care, empathy and support of victims, particularly those sexually abused as children.

After more than a decade investigating child sexual abuse within the Maitland/Newcastle Diocese of the Catholic Church, Peter uncovered widespread concealment of those crimes. In 2012 when his urgings to investigate and prosecute persons for those offences was rejected, Peter breached protocol by speaking publically in support of a Federal Child Abuse Royal Commission. He wrote an open letter to the NSW Premier and spoke to various media. Days later Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced a Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Over 4 years more than 15,000 family members and survivors of institutional abuse spoke with the Royal Commission. 1,200 witnesses gave evidence at public hearings resulting in 2,575 referrals to police.

Peter retired from the NSW Police Force in 2014, publishing his book, Walking Towards Thunder in 2019. He continues travelling Australia as an advocate and ambassador for child abuse support organisations.

Peter’s momentous decision to become a whistleblower, and his famous appearance on the nationally broadcast ABC current affairs program, “Lateline”, helped trigger Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s historic decision to establish a far-reaching five-year Royal Commission examining institutional responses to child sexual abuse.

It would have been very difficult for Peter Fox to foretell what his speaking up would unleash. His dedication and focus cost him his police career and affected his health. He and his family were threatened. Former friends shunned him. “Walking Towards Thunder” reveals the cover-ups and the way in which sexual predators were moved around. A notable reviewer of the book, Paul Kennedy, who himself has reported fearlessly on the Catholic Church child abuse scandal, reviewed the book thus, “Peter Fox stood up to the abuse of power and gave many thousands of Australians a voice. His courage and honesty will blow you away.”

Pierre Janet Writing Award

Given to an individual for the best clinical, theoretical or research paper in the field of dissociative and/or trauma within the past year.

Dr. A.A.T. Simone Reinders

Dr A.A.T. Simone Reinders is a leading neuroscientist and international expert on the brain imaging correlates of dissociative identity disorder disorder (DID). Simone studied Applied Physics and Artificial Intelligence at the University of Groningen (The Netherlands), where she also obtained her doctorate in Medical Sciences with the highest Dutch distinction Cum Laude. She received the most prestigious grant for young investigators (a VENI-grant from, only awarded to the top 5% most promising researchers in the Netherlands. This allowed her to successfully lead a multi-center neuroimaging project investigating the neural correlates of DID. Simone’s current work entitled “Neuroimaging the Aetiology of DID” aims to provide objective data to aid the debate on the aetiology of DID. Simone’s pioneering research was the first to show identity-state-dependent blood-flow patters in the brain in individuals with DID. Follow-up research showed that these patterns cannot be simulated.

Simone is developing her research line to disseminate neurobiomarkers of trauma-related dissociation. ​Her team showed that DID and PTSD share trauma-related neurobiomarkers. Her latest paper receiving this award is entitled “Aiding the diagnosis of dissociative identity disorder: pattern recognition study of brain biomarkers” and was published in The British Journal of Psychiatry. This paper is of high clinical relevance and sets a new level of scientific understanding showing that DID can be diagnosed on a biological level through brain markers.

Dr. Cathy Kezelman and Pam Stavroplous

“Dr. Cathy Kezelman AM is a medical practitioner, mental health consumer advocate, and President and Executive Director of the Australian national organisation: Blue Knot Foundation National Centre of Excellence for Complex Trauma.

Under her stewardship Blue Knot Foundation has grown from a peer support organisation to a National Centre of Excellence combining a prominent consumer voice with that of researchers, academics and clinicians advocating for socio-political trauma-informed change and informed responsiveness to complex trauma. The organisation has helped drive the national trauma-informed policy and practice agenda in Australia. and is a prominent provider of direct services, professional development training, supervision and consultancy services.

She is co-author of multiple seminal Blue Knot Foundation documents including the recently published Practice Guidelines for Clinical Treatment of Complex Trauma. “

Pam Stavropoulos, PhD is an educator, consultant and psychotherapist who is Head of Research with the Blue Knot Foundation (formerly Adults Surviving Child Abuse). A former Fulbright Scholar, she is a member of the Advisory Board of the ISSTD Scientific Committee and co-author of the nationally and internationally endorsed `Practice Guidelines for Treatment of Complex Trauma and Trauma Informed Care and Service Delivery’ (Blue Knot Foundation; 2012, 2019). Pam has held lectureships at Macquarie University and the University of New England, Australia, and is a former Program Director of the Jansen Newman Institute, Sydney. The author of `Living under Liberalism: The Politics of Depression in Western Democracies’ (Florida: Universal, 2008) she has written research reports in the community health sector and is a clinical supervisor who specializes in complex trauma-related issues.

Dr Cathy Kezelman and Dr Pam Stavropoulos took on the highly demanding task of authoring the Blue Knot “Practice Guidelines for Clinical Treatment of Complex Trauma” (2019). This 270 page large format book, which is a comprehensive update of their 2012 Guidelines is freely available as a download, and it carries the endorsements of the Board of the ISSTD and many other colleagues in the trauma and dissociation field.

Sándor Ferenczi Award

The Sandor Ferenczi Award is given for the best published work in the realm of psychoanalysis related to trauma and dissociation in adults and/or children.

Dr Felicity de Zulueta was born in Colombia, the grand-daughter of a Spanish political refugee and daughter of a refugee when her father had to flee “la Violenza”. She was brought up learning 5 languages in Borneo, Switzerland, Uganda and Lebanon where she took the French Baccalaureat in Philosophy. In 1966, she went to England and obtained a degree in Biology at the University of East Anglia followed by a Medical degree in Cambridge and Sheffield before specialising in Psychiatry and Psychotherapy at the Maudsley Hospital in London.

With a training in Group Analysis, Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, Systemic Family Therapy, EMDR, and Lifespan Integration, Dr de Zulueta first developed and headed the Department of Psychotherapy in Charing Cross Hospital in 1984. In 1997, she was appointed to develop and head the Traumatic Stress Service in the Maudsley Hospital. She developed a specialised service for survivors of childhood abuse, domestic violence and refugees suffering from severe complex PTSD and other dissociative disorders. It became internationally known with referrals from across the UK and abroad. She retired from her clinical work in the NHS in 2011 and is now an Emeritus Consultant Psychiatrist in Psychotherapy in the Maudsley Hospital.

She is a freelance lecturer and author focusing on bilingualism, the origins of violence with her book “From Pain to Violence, the traumatic origins of destructiveness”. She is a founder member of the International Attachment Network, the WAVE Trust and the current London ACEs Hub, is married and has one son and two grandchildren (250). For the last thirty years ,Dr de Zulueta , as a British psychoanalyst, psychiatrist and psychotherapist has aided victims of trauma and dissociation through her teaching, writing , and treatment programs and research. As a consultant at the leading psychiatric teaching and treatment hospital in the U.K., The Maudsley, she has been profoundly influential throughout the U.K. and her relational attachment-based research on outcomes continue to spread influence.

Her seminal book, Zulueta, de F. (2006). From Pain to Violence, the roots of human destructiveness. Chichester: John Wiley and Sons, Ltd. Continues to aid a humane understanding of trauma and dissociation.

Thérèse O Clemens

This award is given in honor of and dedicated to Thérèse O Clemens who served as the ISSTD Executive Director for 9 years, guiding us through some of our most difficult times. Her leadership and tireless efforts helped to stabilize and ensure the future of our organization.

This award is presented to the lay individual or organization outside of the field of psychiatry or psychotherapy who, through their continuing efforts and dedication, has advanced the Mission and Vision of the ISSTD.

Joanne McCarthy

Joanne McCarthy was born and raised on the Central Coast of NSW, the eldest of 11 children. She attended Catholic and public schools and started nursing training at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney. She became the Gosford Star newspaper’s first cadet journalist in 1980, and eventually worked for the Central Coast Express Advocate until 2002 – when she joined the Newcastle Herald.

From 2006 she started writing about child sexual abuse in institutions, primarily the Catholic Church. She won the Graham Perkin Award for Journalist of the Year in 2012, the Gold Kennedy Award for NSW Journalist of the Year in 2013, the Gold Walkley Award in 2013, and the Sir Owen Dixon Chambers Law Reporting of the Year Award in 2013 for her writing on institutional child sex and campaign for a royal commission – which contributed to the establishment of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Joanne McCarthy’s stories in The Newcastle Herald helped spark a world-first Royal Commission.

In what she described as ‘‘the very final moments’’ of her three years and three days as Australia’s 27th prime minister, Julia Gillard drafted a letter to Newcastle Herald journalist Joanne McCarthy.

‘‘Thanks in large measure to your persistence and courage, the NSW Special Commission of Inquiry and the federal Royal Commission will bring truth and healing to the victims of horrendous abuse and betrayal,’’ Ms Gillard wrote.

Ms Gillard announced the Royal Commission in November 2012, days after NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell announced a more limited inquiry into events in the Maitland-Newcastle Diocese of the Catholic Church.

Julia Gillard said Ms McCarthy’s efforts in uncovering clergy abuse within the Maitland-Newcastle diocese was on her mind before she announced the royal commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse.

‘‘Everything that was happening in Newcastle was at the forefront of my thinking as we decided to move to the stage of having a national royal commission,’’ Ms Gillard said.

‘‘So she’d been a real impetus for what I think will be a very profound change about how our nation thinks about keeping our children safe.”

‘‘She’d sent me correspondence and I’d wanted to answer it, wanted to answer it, and knew that if this wasn’t the moment I answered it then the moment was going to go by.’’

President’s Award of Distinction

The President’s Award is given to an individual who has given outstanding service to the Society. This year ISSTD President Christa Krüger selected four individuals for recognition that have helped to advance the mission of ISSTD and ensure the Society continues to provide expert trainings and resources to this community.

It is our privilege this year to recognize a trio of outstanding Student and Emerging Professional Members of the Society. Students and Emerging Professionals now make up more than 15% of our membership, and these individuals are a shining example of the bright future of the field.

Ricky Kriete and Courtenay Crucil

Ricky Kriete is an attachment-oriented psychotherapist and trauma specialist training in experiential forms of therapy including: AEDP, ISTDP, EMDR, and Clinical Hypnosis. Ricky is a phenomenologist at heart. Specifically, he is interested in the phenomenology of change in the body as it is processed within the context of a safe relationship. Ricky has been co-chair of ISSTD’s Student and Emerging Professionals Committee since 2018 with Courtenay Crucil. In 2019 Ricky was featured in the September edition of the organization’s SEP Month for his work in a community based public hospital in Brooklyn, NY. He serves a bi-lingual (Spanish/English) population who has survived childhood sexual abuse, domestic violence, terrorism, homicide, and ritual abuse. Ricky works extensively with complex trauma and dissociative disorders many with co-morbid character pathology, substance abuse, and developmental disabilities. Ricky is a strong advocate for refuges, asylum seekers and immigrant populations. He is passionate about bringing structural change by offering effective experiential psychotherapy to marginalized communities. Ricky is vehement about teaching and improving access to education about C-PTSD and dissociation to students in higher education programs through ISSTD’s SEP Committee.

Courtenay Crucil is a psychotherapist, nature-based therapist and herbalist practicing (and playing) on the traditional territory of the Tsimshian Nation in Northern British Columbia. Her passion lies in supporting people to boldly embody their deepest sense of Self and purpose through collaboration with the Earth, body, mind and spirit. She is an attachment-based, experiential psychotherapist training in Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), and nature-based approaches to healing. Courtenay is the co-chair of the ISSTD’s Student and Emerging Professional committee alongside her clinical co-conspirator, Ricky Kriete. She is also the editorial assistant for the ISSTD’s Clinical Journal, Frontiers in the Psychotherapy of Trauma and Dissociation. Courtenay works in private practice and has been developing a specialty in complex trauma with a particular interest in complex grief. She is continuously in awe of the resilience, strength and courage of the folks that she serves and she feels incredibly grateful to be in the role of therapist and healer.

Ricky and Courtenay are being recognized for their extensive work as co-chairs of the ISSTD Student and Emerging Professional Committee. Under their leadership the committee held its most extensive SEP month in September of 2019, featuring discussions with luminaries in the field, free webinars, and resources for those who make up the future of this field. Their dedication and passion are an exemplary testament to the field.

Abigail Percifield

Abigail Percifield is a therapist living in Chicago, Illinois. She earned her Masters of Art in Clinical Psychology and is completing her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in traumatic stress studies at Adler University. Her research interests are primarily in the areas of sexual violence, social determinants, policy, and advocacy. Abigail is currently completing her advanced practicum training at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center where she delivers individual and family therapy in general outpatient and in women’s health settings. In addition to her clinical work, Abigail is passionate about advancing social justice and she volunteers as a Medical Advocate with Resilience, a crisis center in Chicago working with survivors of sexual violence. She has also facilitated community training in trauma-informed care to educators, medical providers, and mental health professionals and assisted in the management of a grant funded program aimed at improving trauma-informed treatment for underserved students in Chicago. Abigail has been a member with the International Society for Trauma and Dissociation for three years and serves on the Board of Directors, as the Membership Committee Co-Chair, and on the Conference and Student and Emerging Professionals Committees.

Abigail is being recognized for her dedication to the ISSTD as the Membership Committee Co-Chair and member of the Conference and SEP Committees. Abigail’s dedication to volunteering at ISSTD conferences and contributing to the Society’s efforts are to be commended.

Diane Clare

“Diane Clare BA, MA (Hons) Dip. Clin. Psych. AFBPsS., MNZAP is a registered clinical psychologist who trained at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand. She has worked in mental health and counselling services since 1981 first as a grief and relationship counsellor then as a psychotherapist before she registered as a clinical psychologist in 1993. She has worked in a range of services in NZ and in the UK and with leadership and Director level roles in a range of clinical services. This includes primary care, adult mental health, forensic, intellectual disability and tertiary student services. While in the UK in 2005 she developed the Alternatives to Self-Harm program and the APEX model that underpins it. She has presented her work internationally since 2012. Outcome trends show demonstrated effectiveness for decreasing risk and increasing hope for those who engage in Non-Suicidal Self Injury. Now based in Nelson New Zealand, she is a seasoned presenter and provides a range of workshop training through GROW Ltd. with an emphasis on practical solutions for clinical staff. She has a specialist interest in working with people with complex trauma and dissociation.

Diane is being recognized today for her incredible efforts as the Chair of the Organizing Committee for the hugely successful 2019 ISSTD Otautahi Christchurch Regional Conference in New Zealand. Diane’s work to integrate cultural aspects and promote the conference resulted in one of the most successful regional conferences in recent history.

Morton Prince Award

The Morton Prince Award is given to an individual who has made outstanding cumulative contributions to research in the area of dissociative disorders.

Lauren Lebois

Lauren Lebois, PhD, is a cognitive psychologist / cognitive neuroscientist focusing on the biomarkers of trauma-spectrum disorders as the Co-Director of the Dissociative Disorders and Trauma Research Program at McLean Hospital / Harvard Medical School. Overall, her work aims to scientifically examine the adaptability of the human mind and body to ultimately help those impacted by childhood abuse. Currently, she employs functional magnetic resonance imaging, neuroimaging-genetic, and behavioral techniques to better understand the mechanisms of trauma-related dissociation and recovery. She has a particular interest in self-processing related to PTSD and DID. In the long run, she hopes her work will reduce the stigma surrounding these experiences and improve the quality of assessment and treatment that people receive. She feels privileged to be able to dedicate her time to this work, and she is deeply grateful to the lab’s participants and funding sources for their support.

Lauren has established a federally-funded research program at McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School that is devoted to the study of dissociation and DID. This various funding opportunities support a neuroimaging, pre-post study of dissociation in individuals with PTSD/PTSD Dissociative subtype undergoing trauma-focused treatment for PTSD, a study to identify the neurobilogical mechanisms of traumatic dissociation in patients with PTSD, PTSD-dissociative subtype and DID, and a study using a neuroimaging protocol developed by Dr. Lebois to privide key training in clinical assessment of DID, fMRI, eye-tracking, and online crowd-sourced data.

Cornelia B Wilbur Award

The Cornelia B. Wilbur Award is given to an individual for outstanding clinical contributions to the treatment of dissociative disorders. Examples are (a) furthering the availability of diagnosis and treatment of dissociative disorders , (b) clinical research in diagnostic or treatment modalities, including treatment outcome, (c) advances in diagnostic instruments or diagnostic criteria, (d) diagnostic studies in various populations, or (e) new treatment techniques.

Steven N Gold

Steven N Gold, PhD is a Professor at Nova Southeastern University’s (NSU) College of Psychology and Director of NSU’s Trauma Resolution & Integration Program (TRIP), which he established in 1990. He served as President of the American Psychological Association (APA) Division of Trauma Psychology (56) in 2009, as inaugural editor of Division 56’s scientific journal, Psychological Trauma, from 2008 through 2014, was 2014 recipient of the Division 56 Award for Outstanding Service to the Field of Trauma Psychology, and served Division 56 on the APA Council of Representatives from 2014 through 2019. In 2004 Dr. Gold served as President of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD). He is a Fellow of ISSTD and of APA. He has published over 100 articles in professional journals and chapters in edited volumes and made numerous presentations at professional conferences. He is Editor-in-Chief of the APA Handbook of Trauma Psychology, and authored the books Not Trauma Alone and Contextual Trauma Therapy, the latter scheduled for release in April, 2020. Dr. Gold was founding co-editor of the Journal of Trauma Practice, and guest edited a special issue of the APA journal Psychotherapy on the assessment and treatment of trauma. He has been an invited speaker throughout the U.S. and in Canada, Colombia, Argentina, Spain, and Austria. Dr. Gold maintains an independent psychology practice in Plantation, Florida and has regularly been retained as an expert witness in legal cases in which trauma and dissociation were relevant issues.

Dr. Gold has treated many trauma survivors over 30 plus years. He has shared his clinical acument with graduate students and clinicians who are both new and experienced in the field. His wealth of clinical experience is always presented with widom and empathy, and he is has expertise in working with male survivors. He is being honored for his clinical expertise, experience and dedication to trauma-focused treatment for as many survivors as he can reach.

Agnieszka Widera-Wysoczańska

Agnieszka Widera-Wysoczańska prepared her doctorate of clinical psychology at the University of Saskatchewan in Canada and defended it at the University of Silesia, Poland. For over 30 years, she has been working as an assistant professor at the Department of Clinical Psychology and Health at the University of Wroclaw, Poland. She founded the Institute of Trauma Psychotherapy where she conducts psychotherapy for traumatized children, adults and perpetrators and has created training and educational programs for professionals. She is a court expert in cases of domestic violence.

She has published 50 scientific, several dozen popular articles, and 5 books on the topic of interpersonal trauma, which includes emotional, physical, sexual and alcohol-related violence. Her biggest achievement is the development of a risk factor model of transmission of sexual abuse in the family from generation to generation in the context of the life-span.

She has developed questionnaires to measure risk factors for the multigenerational transmission of sexual abuse throughout the life span, the somatic consequences of abuse, and parental attitudes in dysfunctional families.

She has written and presented about the role of dissociation in the assessment and treatment of these families, parental dissociation as a risk factor for children’s symptoms, and the impact of rules and roles in incestuous families on the development of dissociation.

She is recognized in Poland as a specialist in the diagnosis and treatment of victims of interpersonal trauma and is a frequent guest speaker. She has been a frequent presenter and learner at ISSTD conferences since 1998.

Distinguished Achievement Award

The Distinguished Achievement Award is given to individuals who have distinguished themselves within the ISSTD

Su Baker and Joan Turkus

Su Baker, counsellor-psychotherapist in Montreal, QC, Canada, joined the ISSTD in 1990, after realizing that she was treating someone with MPD. She attended her first annual conference in 1991, and made her first presentation in 1996. She has attended every conference since 1991, and has presented at every conference since 1996, except for this year. In 1992, together with her husband, John O’Neil, Su founded the Montreal Study Group on Trauma and Dissociation, which continues to meet monthly. Su was ISSTD Treasurer from 1998 to 2004. In 1999, she Co-chaired the Annual Conference, and discovered a few months later that the Society, close to bankrupt, could not afford to host it. And so, together with a number of other unpaid volunteers, she took over organizing the conference for the next 7 years.

In 2002, Su began teaching the DDPTP (now PTP), first, the original “Standard” course in Montreal and Vermont, and subsequently the added Advanced and Basic courses. Then, together with Joan Turkus, she took on the task of re-working and updating the adult courses of the PTP, developing the curriculum and creating methodology that encourages the development of clinical thinking and wisdom by applying theory to fictionalized cases, over the course classes.

Su was Chair of the Professional Training Program, from 2017-2019, and is now Past Chair.

She has also sat on various ISSTD committees. She continues to be an active clinician and consultant in the field. ISSTD is her professional family.

Joan A. Turkus, M.D. maintains a consulting and clinical practice in psychiatry and traumatology in McLean, Virginia. She is the Medical Director, TraumaSci: Complex Trauma Disorders Program at Dominion/HC A Hospital in Falls Church, Virginia and Co-Founder/past Medical Director of The Center: Posttraumatic Disorders Program at the Psychiatric Institute of Washington, D.C. Dr. Turkus has years of experience in the trauma field and maintains a national profile with teaching and consultation. She is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in pharmacy and graduated from The George Washington University School of Medicine with honors. She is a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and a Fellow of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation, of which she is a Past President. She has been awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award, the Cornelia Wilbur Award for clinical contributions, and a Distinguished Achievement Award by the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation. She is a Diplomate of both the American Board of Psychiatry and the American Board of Forensic Psychiatry. She is trained in psychiatry, traumatology, clinical hypnosis and EMDR. She maintains a keen interest in neurobiology and psychopharmacology, particularly in their application to the complexity of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder.

Su Baker and Joan Turkus have both spent an enormous amount of time and effort in constructing and maintaining our Professional Training Program. Joan and Su have spent a great deal of their professional careers dedicated to the field of complex trauma and dissociation. This dedication can be seen within the quality and passion that have been spent on developing these world class courses. Spending hundreds of hours ensuring that the ISSTD provided excellent foundation education to clinicians. Currently they have just completed our advanced adult course on dissociation.

Congratulations to all of our 2020 Award Winners!