The Speakers

Whitaker Headshot 2017

Keynote: Robert Whitaker

Robert Whitaker is the author of five books, three of which tell of the history of psychiatry. His first, Mad in America: Bad Science, Bad Medicine and the Enduring Mistreatment of the Mentally Ill was named by Discover magazine as one of the best science books of 2002. His second on this topic, Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America, won the Investigative Reporters and Editors book award for best investigative journalism in 2010. His latest, which he co-authored with Lisa Cosgrove, is Psychiatry Under the Influence: Institutional Corruption, Social Injury, and Prescriptions for Reform. Prior to writing books, he worked as the science and medical reporter at the Albany Times Union newspaper in New York for a number of years. He is also the publisher of a mental health webzine,

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Rep. Knute Buehler, M.D.

Knute Buehler, MD is a physician, small business owner, inventor, civic leader, husband and father. As an orthopedic surgeon, he has had extensive clinical experience, published more than 20 scientific papers and book chapters, lectured widely, held academic positions, and consulted in medical product development and commuter-assisted surgery. Currently, he represents Bend, in the Oregon House of Representatives and is involved in issues regarding safe prescribing of medications.

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Cheryl Emerson, MS LPC

Cheryl Emerson is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in private practice in Bend, Oregon. She specializes in trauma care and offers counseling services to adults, adolescents, couples, and families presenting with a wide variety of concerns. She holds a Masters in Counseling, is an Adjunct Instructor in the Masters in Counseling program at Oregon State University-Cascades, and is a certified trainer in Question-Persuade-Refer (QPR). Ms. Emerson is particularly focused on suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention. She receives regular requests to speak, consult and is a Master Trainer in Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), the most widely used suicide intervention training worldwide.

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Steve Flowers, MA MFT

Steve Flowers has been deeply invested in meditation practice since 1974 and is in private practice specializing in mindfulness-based psychotherapy for the treatment of stress-related conditions. He is certified Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) teacher and supervisor at the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and the online Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program through the Enloe Medical Center in Chico, California. With his teaching partner Bob Stahl, PhD, he conducts accredited mindfulness-based stress reduction retreats and has authored books on the topic: The Mindful Path Through Shyness and Living with Your Heart Wide Open.

Anna Lembke

Anna Lembke, M.D.

Anna Lembke, MD, received her undergraduate degree in Humanities from Yale University and her medical degree from Stanford University School of Medicine. She completed a residency in Psychiatry, and a fellowship in mood disorders, both at Stanford, and is currently Chief of the Stanford Addiction Medicine Dual Diagnosis Clinic. She has published over 50 peer-reviewed articles, chapters, and commentaries, and is author of the book: Drug Dealer, MD: How Doctors Were Duped, Patients Got Hooked, and Why It’s So Hard to Stop (Johns Hopkins University Press, November 2016).

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Wallace Mendelson, M.D.

Wallace Mendelson, MD, is a retired professor of psychiatry and clinical pharmacology at the University of Chicago. He has been the director of the sleep laboratory at the National Institute of Mental Health Intramural Program, the Sleep Disorder Center at the Cleveland Clinic, and the Sleep Research Laboratory at the University of Chicago. He has won awards including the award for excellence in sleep and psychiatry from the National Sleep Foundation, and the William C. Dement academic achievement award by the American Sleep Disorders Association. He has written numerous scientific papers and authored or co-authored four books.  His newest book, 'The Science of Sleep' from the University of Chicago Press, is being released in September 2017.

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Michael Miller, M.D., DFASAM, DLFAPA

Michael M. Miller, MD, DFASAM, DLFAPA, is the medical director of the Herrington Recovery Center at Rogers Memorial Hospital in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin. He is a board-certified general psychiatrist and addiction psychiatrist, and is a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. Dr. Miller has practiced addiction medicine for more than 30 years and is certified in addiction medicine by the American Board of Addiction Medicine ABAM where he is also an at-large director. A Distinguished Fellow of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), he has served in ASAM on multiple task forces and executive roles including as past president. He served as Managing Editor for the 2013 edition of The ASAM Criteria and he chaired the Action Group within ASAM that produced the Standards of Care for the Addiction Specialist Physician. Through 2015, he chaired the Steering Committee of ASAM’s Practice Improvement and Performance Measurement Action Group. In addition, he has held a variety of important posts in the Wisconsin Medical Society and the American Medical Association, including being elected to serve on the Council on Science and Public Health of the latter. As full professor at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, he is a faculty member for the Addiction Psychiatry Fellowship and the Addiction Medicine Fellowship. He also is an assistant clinical professor in the psychiatry and behavioral medicine department at the Medical College of Wisconsin. The recipient of multiple prestigious awards, Dr. Miller is a widely sought after speaker nationally and internationally on topics related to addiction, psychiatry, medical economics / quality / ethics, and public health.

Lisa Lavine Nagy, MD

Lisa Lavine Nagy, M.D.

Lisa Nagy, MD, after completing her emergency medicine residency in New York and working in that role in Los Angeles, developed a severe form of the complex medical condition known as Chemical Sensitivity or Environmental Illness. She now specializes treatment of people with otherwise unsolvable mysterious medical problems, focusing on causes among genetic, hormonal, nutritional, allergic, immunologic, and environmental factors. She is medical director of Environmental Health Center of Martha’s Vineyard treating the countries’ sickest patients.  As president of Preventive and Environmental Health Alliance and the government liaison for the American Academy of Environmental Medicine  she is active educating the medical profession, congress, and the public. Linda Birnbaum, Director of NIEHS recommends her as a fantastic teacher of the principals of Environmental Medicine.

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Joseph Pergolizzi, M.D.

Joe Pergolizzi, MD, is an internationally recognized expert in perioperative and pain medicine whose innovative clinical practice offers personalized, highly compassionate medical care. He specializes in clinical research, consulting with major research institutions and drug developers worldwide, which has resulted in many important natural and synthetic products with improved efficacy and safety for patients. Dr. Pergolizzi has held various positions at prestigious academic medical institutions, collaborates with the Food and Drug Administration’s Safe Use Initiative, and has authored over 200 peer reviewed articles, abstracts, platform presentations, and book chapters in his areas of interest and expertise.

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Robert P. Raffa, Ph.D.

Robert Raffa, PhD, has a professional career devoted to the pharmacologic understanding of the balance between the therapeutic utility and abuse potential of drugs – and how this can be applied rationally and responsibly. With master’s degrees in both Biomedical Engineering and Toxicology and a doctorate in Pharmacology, he has had pivotal roles in drug development and is co-holder of nine patents on analgesic agents. He has been the recipient of more than $3 million in research funding - including from the National Institutes of Health - to investigate drug action and drug misuse. He has authored over 300 papers in refereed journals and is co-author or co-editor of several books and the Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics. Recently retired as Professor Emeritus after 20 years as tenured faculty at Temple University School of Pharmacy, Dr. Raffa continues to publish and speak worldwide.

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Mary Rose, Psy.D.

Mary Rose, PsyD, is a Clinical Psychologist and staff psychologist at TIRR Memorial Hermann. She is also Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Baylor College of Medicine, with a secondary appointment in the Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep. Her research and clinical focus has been in sleep, subspecializing in behavioral sleep disorders. In recent years she has been dedicated almost exclusively to working with patients with sleep disorders with complex comorbid illnesses. She has served on several committees and organizations related to sleep, and currently works on the National Sleep Foundation’s insomnia committee. Over the course of her academic career Dr. Rose has collaborated on several research grants and has published over 60 peer review articles, book chapters and abstracts. She has been actively involved in training programs including the training of pulmonary sleep medicine fellows at the VAMC in Houston, and lectures nationally.

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Martin L. Rossman, M.D.

Martin Rossman, MD, is a pioneer in mind-body medicine, founder of The Healing Mind, co-founder of the Academy for Guided Imagery, Clinical Faculty member at the University of California San Francisco Medical School, and an advisory board member of Dr. Andrew Weil’s Integrative Medicine Program. His cutting-edge research in guided imagery has contributed to the current paradigm of holistic health and has influenced the work of many of its prominent leaders. Dr. Rossman has authored numerous books and CDs, including Guided Imagery for Self-Healing and recently, The Worry Solution, which teaches readers how to capitalize on the powerful mental force behind worry. He is a widely sought-after speaker and has been featured in academic, trade, and popular national media.

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Mark Sullivan, M.D.

Dr. Mark Sullivan received his MD and PhD in Philosophy from Vanderbilt University. After completing an internship in Family Medicine at University of Missouri, he completed a residency in Psychiatry at the University of Washington in 1988. He is now Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences as well as Adjunct Professor of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine and Adjunct Professor of Bioethics and Humanities at the University of Washington. He has served as attending physician in the UW Center for Pain Relief for 30 years, where he is Co-Director of Behavioral Health Services. He has published over 250 peer-reviewed articles. He has a new book from Oxford University Press titled, The Patient as Agent of Health and Health Care.


Kimberly Swanson, Ph.D.

Kimberly Swanson is a Licensed Psychologist working full time as the Director for Behavioral Health at Mosaic Medical. Dr. Swanson has over 20 years combined experience in medicine including over a decade of clinical research and direct clinical experience in integrated healthcare settings. She has completed multiple publications and presentations. Dr. Swanson is a member of the American Psychological Association and concomitantly serves on the Provider Engagement Panel for the Central Oregon Health Council. She was appointed by Governor Kitzhaber to the Prescription Drug Abuse Academy in 2011. Dr. Swanson presently chairs the regional Pain Standards Task Force which boasts 28 regional interdisciplinary members that was formed to address the opioid epidemic in Central Oregon. Dr. Swanson was awarded the 2016 Deschutes County Health Hero award for her work chairing the Pain Standards Task Force.

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Michael Twohig, Ph.D.

Michel Twohig, PhD, is a licensed psychologist in the state of Utah and a Professor of Psychology at Utah State University. He received his B.A. and M.S. from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, his Ph.D. from the University of Nevada, Reno, and completed his clinical internship at the University of British Columbia Hospital. He is past-President of the Association of Contextual Behavioral Science, the organization most associated with Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). His research primarily focuses on the use of ACT across a variety of clinical presentations. He has published over 100 scholarly works including two books: An ACT-Enhanced Behavior Therapy approach to the Treatment of Trichotillomania (with Woods) and ACT Verbatim for Depression and Anxiety (with Hayes). His research has been funded through multiple sources including the National Institute of Mental Health.

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Elaine Walters, MS

Elaine Walters is the founding Executive Director of the Trauma Healing Project, an organization that provides professional and community training and technical assistance, and direct healing support for survivors. Prior to this position she coordinated the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Program for the Attorney General’s Sexual Assault Task Force in Oregon. For the last 20 years she has been a consultant, trainer and community organizer working to address and eliminate intimate violence. She has designed and facilitated workshops and trainings on many related topics and has provided direct services and support to youth and adults impacted by violence, abuse and other forms of trauma.

Dr Steven Wright

Steven Wright, M.D.

Steven Wright, MD, is a residency-trained family physician with a 32 year clinical career. Active in addiction medicine (board certified) 30 years and medical pain management 14 years, he focuses on building sober and pain-managed persons and communities through evidence-based, personalized medical approaches as a medical director of a clinical practice in metro Denver, Colorado and through consulting, advocacy, policy development, education, medical provider assessment / supervision, medical legal work, and speaking across the country. His clinical interests include the etiology / neurophysiology / best practice treatment of pain and addiction, pharmacogenetics, opioids, benzodiazepines, cannabis, and controlled substance risk management. He is serving as the Program Medical Director for The International Benzodiazepine Symposium as well.