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Upcoming Events

Understanding The Neuroplasticity Of The Brain: How We Can Maximize The Brain's Ability To Adapt When Addressing Child Abuse And Neglect

TRANSFORM has chosen the theme of resiliency for this year’s webinar series. We are hoping to shed light on how science and practice come together to help us better prevent and address child abuse and neglect. For our first webinar, we will be discussing neuroplasticity of the brain. When children face difficult experiences, their brains can change and adapt and often develop flight or fight responses. Dr. Darcy Mahoney will share her work with children and explore how we can maximize on the amazing capabilities in a child’s early life to promote brain growth and language.


Dr. Darcy Mahoney, PhD, NNP is a neonatal nurse practitioner and researcher, who has advanced nursing research, education, and practice, with a focus on neonatology, infant health, and developmental pediatrics. Her innovative work has led to the creation of programs that improve infant health and developmental outcomes for infants. As the director of infant research at George Washington University’s Autism and Neurodevelopmental Institute, she also advances the body of research in infant health and developmental outcomes in high-risk infants with a focus on understanding the early brain and development trajectories in this population. Her research leverages her knowledge in neonatal nursing, behavioral and cognitive assessment and training in neuroimaging to inform an understanding of multimodal social learning and social perception among high-risk infants and toddlers. NIH, Office of Minority Health, HRSA, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, United Way, and Macy Foundation have funded her work, and she has published in high-quality peer-reviewed inter-professional journals. As a fellow of the American Academy of Nurses, and a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Nurse Faculty Scholar Alumna, we are lucky to have her participation for this important webinar.

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Past Events

The Cycle of Violence, Victimization, and Trauma: Exploring Mechanisms for Thriving and Healing for BIPOC People and Providers

This panel includes three clinician scholars who will give “lightning talk” style presentations on Black males’ experiences with trauma, Latinx providers’ vicarious trauma and healing centered interventions with Black girls. This panel will enable the attendees to review the impacts of violence, victimization and trauma among Black and Latinx populations, as well as providers. The facilitators will use their applied research and practice with communities to share strategies about how the quality of life for these populations and providers can be enhanced. This webinar addresses the urgent need for providers, educators, and other researchers to center populations who have been traditionally neglected.


Dr. Camille Quinn is an Assistant Professor in the College of Social Work at The Ohio State University. She is a juvenile justice expert and has nearly 20 years’ experience as a clinician and administrator in social and health services. Dr. Quinn is a licensed social worker in Illinois and Ohio, which informs her program of research. Dr. Quinn conducts mixed methods research with a collaborative spirit to engage community, university and government partners in her work. 

Dr. Henrika McCoy is an Associate Professor and Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Student Services at Jane Addams College of Social Work, University of Illinois Chicago. Dr. McCoy’s research has predominately focused on strengthening the screening of mental health needs for youth who have juvenile legal system involvement and examining the intersection of mental health and juvenile delinquency, particularly for African American boys ages 12 to 17. Her work also focuses on the violent victimization experiences of Black males, ages 18 to 24. 

Dr. Kathryn Bocanegra is an Assistant Professor at Jane Addams College of Social Work at University of Illinois Chicago. She is a licensed clinical social worker and also serves as Senior Advisor to Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul on crime victim and violence prevention issues. Dr. Bocanegra has over 15 years of community-based mental health and violence prevention experience and specializes in working with survivors of violent crime. 

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Early Life Adversity and Adolescent Development: A Focus on Brain Development and Substance Use

Caregiving deprivation and maltreatment during childhood have impacts on adolescent development, including neural and behavioral development. This webinar reviews what has been discovered in research examining the impact of institutional orphanage care and child maltreatment on brain development and the development of substance use and disorder.  These findings will then be discussed in the context of adolescence and how this developmental period is a crucial time of risk and opportunity following early life adversity.

Presenters: Elizabeth Handley, Ph.D., Director of Research at Mt. Hope Family Center and an Assistant Professor at the University of Rochester.  Max Herzberg, Ph.D., post-doctoral research scholar in the Department of Psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

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Crisis as Opportunity: Building Community Bridges to Address Trauma

Housed in both Minneapolis, MN and Rochester, NY, the Transform Research Center recognizes that our communities and our nation have been struggling with many challenges that have been vividly highlighted over the past year. Across the United States communities have been suffering from the consequences of the pandemic. Black communities and communities of color have been grappling with the collective trauma brought on by systemic and institutional racism.

Learn about the impacts of these traumas on our communities, and about ways to work towards community resilience. To address the many complex issues facing our communities we must work across systems, sectors, and disciplines, to build bridges to foster solutions.

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Child-Centered System Change: Improving Mental Health For Kids In The Child Welfare System

Click here to view a recording of this forum (Communities of Practice breakout …

Click here to view the Improving the Mental, Behavioral and Emotional Health for Kids Involved with the Child Welfare System fact sheet
Click here to view the Communities of Practice discussion notes

The TRANSFORM Research Center led a virtual cross-sector forum exploring ways to improve mental, emotional and behavioral health for kids involved with the Child Welfare System in Rochester, NY. We invited U.S. Congressman Joseph Morelle and Director, Monroe County Systems Integration Project (SIP), Laura Gustin to provide an overview of SIP’s efforts to be an interconnected human centered delivery of services system. The Forum spotlighted SIP’s Youth Behavior Health Pilot and provided space for cross-sector Community of Practice breakout discussions regarding community needs and possible collaboration.

Responding to Child Abuse and Neglect: What’s Race Got to Do With It?

Webinar archive

Dr. Natalie A. Cort, provided information regarding the role of race in screening, assessing, referring and treating child abuse and neglect (CAN). She shared strategies for diversifying the professional landscape of adults (e.g., mental health counselors, psychologists) that children interact with.

Achieving Social Impact By Bridging Research and Policy

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Learn how to demystify the gap between research and policy and hear about an approach aimed at supporting researchers in creating a better bridge with policymakers.

Taylor Bishop Scott is a Research Assistant Professor in the Edna Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center, with a doctorate in community psychology from the Health Psychology Program at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Her research interests include broad-based promotion of well-being and success among at-risk children via community-based programs and public policy. Her research aims to understand ways to support policymakers’ use of research evidence.

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Communities of Practice

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Learn how to create a Community of Practice - a concept for sharing, managing, and creating knowledge - in your area. 

Marilyn Gisser, who has over 20 years of experience in Washington State Public Health and is part of the Essentials for Childhood initiative team.
Teresa Posakony,  a leadership and organization development consultant focusing on building healthy, resilient communities and organizations using a trauma and resilience-informed approach.
Kody Russell, the executive director of Kitsap Strong with over 10 years of experience working with children and families in the child welfare system and who is one of 25 Washington State certified trainers in the NEAR sciences curriculum.

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Crossing Silos: How to work collaboratively across systems to prevent child abuse and neglect

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Learn about innovative ways to work collaboratively across systems to prevent child abuse and neglect.

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TRANSFORM x Lawline with Kate Cerulli

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Our very own Catherine Cerulli sits down with Lawline to talk about TRANSFORM!

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Best Practices in Forensic Interviewing

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Learn about the latest research in best practices in forensic interviewing of children who have experienced trauma.

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