Events | Trainings

2018 MACMH Conference Featured Speakers
Monday & Tuesday Keynotes


Monday • April 16 • 9:00 – 10:00 am

Dorothy L. Espelage, Ph.D

Dorothy L. Espelage, Ph.D., is Professor of Psychology at the University of Florida. She is the recipient of the APA Lifetime Achievement Award in Prevention Science and the 2016 APA Award for Distinguished Contributions to Research in Public Policy, and is a Fellow of APS, APA, and AERA.  She earned her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Indiana University in 1997. Over the last 22 years, she has authored over 180 peer-reviewed articles, six edited books, and 70 chapters on bullying, homophobic teasing, sexual harassment, dating violence, and gang violence. Her research focuses on translating empirical findings into prevention and intervention programming and she has secured over ten million dollars of external funding. She advises members of Congress and Senate on bully prevention legislation. She conducts regular webinars for CDC, NIH, and NIJ to disseminate research. She authored a 2011 White House Brief on bullying among LGBTQ youth and attended the White House Conference in 2011, and has been a consultant on the stopbullying.gov website and consultant to the National Anti-bullying Campaign, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). She has presented multiple times at the Federal Partnership to End Bullying Summit and Conference. She is a consultant to the National Institutes of Health Pathways to Prevention Initiative to address bullying and youth suicide. Dr. Espelage has appeared on many television news and talk shows and has been quoted in the national print press.

Bullying & School Violence: Research-Informed Strategies for Prevention & Intervention

Dr. Espelage’s translational research keynote address will include a discussion of youth bullying; including face-to-face bullying, cyberbullying, gender-based bullying and harassment, and teen dating violence among middle and high school students. Prevalence, definitions, and underlying risk and protective factors (e.g., individual, family, school, peers) associated with these behaviors will be presented. School-based interventions will be discussed, including social-emotional learning approaches, bystander interventions, and programs that address bias-based bullying. Programs that are evidence-based will be highlighted, and promising programs (e.g., restorative practices) will also be discussed.

Learning Objectives:

(1)  To understand prevalence, types, and developmental timing of bullying and other forms of aggression.

(2)  To understand the links between bullying and gender-based harassment.

(3)  To be familiar with research evidence on what works to prevent these behaviors.


Tuesday • April 17 • 9:00-10:00 am

Sam Simmons

Sam Simmons, AA, LADC, has over 27 years of experience working as a behavioral consultant specializing in culturally-sensitive trauma-informed work with African American males and their families, with a focus on addressing chemical dependency, interpersonal violence and historical trauma. An Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) Interface Trainer in Minnesota, Sam spent nine years managing a project that engaged African American males to promote healthy relationships, to end violence against women and girls, and to end community violence. He was awarded the 2009 Governor’s Council on Faith and Community Service Initiatives Best Practices Award for his work with the Minnesota Department of Veterans Outreach Services, with prison reentry projects and within the African American community. Sam received the 2016 Healing the Hidden Wounds of Racial Trauma Award and the Black Tear Drop Award for his vision and leadership in culturally-sensitive trauma-informed work in the community and around the country, and in 2017 he received the Champions for Children Award recognizing his work with children from Minnesota Communities Caring for Children. He is co-host of “Voices” radio show on KMOJ FM that addresses challenges experienced by those in urban communities, and is co-creator of the Community Empowerment Through Black Men Healing conference called “Groundbreaking and Visionary.”

Mr. Simmons’ keynote speech is, “A Family Story, From Intergenerational Trauma to Thriving.” In his presentation, Sam will use his family story to address how increasing awareness regarding the impact of intergenerational trauma can change community practices and engagement, particularly for underserved and minority men and their families. He will discuss practical, culturally-sensitive, trauma-informed initiatives which have been demonstrated to be successful in improving health outcomes within these communities.

Back to conference homepage.