Staff

Beverly Gould

Beverly Gould was born and raised in New York City where she has worked for almost 40 years as a clinical social worker and school psychologist.  She received her MSW from Columbia University in 1977 and her doctorate in School Psychology from New York University in 2002,  Throughout her career, her primary interest has been working with low income families with children aged 0-5. She has worked in a variety of community mental health clinics, child abuse prevention and treatment programs, therapeutic nursery and substance abuse programs and schools both as a clinician and administrator.  In 2001, she was a National Head Start Leadership Fellow in Washington DC where she worked in the Division of Disabilities at the Head Start Bureau participating on the Fetal Alcoholism Workgroup and Infant Mental Health Initiative.  She contributed to and edited the Bureau’s Child Mental Health Bulletin published in 2002.  A former Early Head Start Director, she is currently the Coordinator of Early Childhood Mental Health Services at the Child Center of New York supervising and working with low-income, traumatized immigrant children and families. She has been actively studying psychodrama for the last 12 years, and was ordained as an Interfaith Minister in 2005.  She is a member of the One Spirit, One Family Leadership Education Team of One Spirit Seminary working on developing an Interspiritual Curriculum for preschoolers.

Michelly Garcia, LMSW

A driven and passionate advocate for the interests of underserved and vulnerable populations in New York City, Michelly E. Garcia, LMSW has spent the last ten years working to promote optimal functioning for families with children zero to five years of age, improve early child developmental and health outcomes, and support families’ progress toward their own self-sufficiency and other long-term goals.

She currently serves as the Director of the South Bronx Early Head Start program of Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center, which serves families in one of the most high need communities in the nation and is the only Early Head Start program with services embedded in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).  Ms. Garcia leads a multidisciplinary team in the ongoing development and implementation of a model integrating relationship-based practices into the NICU’s medical care and support service delivery.  This model is aimed at empowering parents in the care of their infants through interventions that promote mutual regulation and connection.  She also has worked to incorporate trauma focused principles into program development, design, and home visitation practices in line with the needs and vulnerabilities of the South Bronx community.  Ms. Garcia is a fee-for-service clinician at the Jewish Board Child Development Center where she provides therapeutic services to families parenting children aged two to eight, and engages in training on the theories and methods of the latest evidenced-based interventions to support positive parent and child outcomes.

Ms. Garcia completed her graduate training in social work at Lehman College of CUNY and a post-graduate fellowship in Infant Parent Mental Health at the University of Massachusetts, Boston campus.

Katherine (Katie) Lingras, PhD

Katherine (Katie) Lingras, PhD  is a psychologist at the New York Center for Child Development, where she provides treatment and consultation in Pediatric Primary Care Clinics and Early Childhood Education (ECE) Centers, and leads a team of mental health professionals who provide professional development training and consultation in ECE centers. She holds an appointment as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University Medical College and hospital appointments with New York Presbyterian Hospital and the Family Health Center of Harlem, where she provides outpatient treatment for young children with behavioral concerns and trauma histories. Dr. Lingras specializes in social-emotional development in early childhood and is trained in the Incredible Years curriculum (parent, child and teacher) as well as Child-Parent Psychotherapy (a dyadic treatment for young children who have experienced trauma). Her experience and expertise sits at the intersection of early childhood psychology research, practical applications, and policy implications.

Dr. Lingras completed her undergraduate and Masters degrees in Psychology at Stanford University and her doctoral work at the University of Minnesota’s Institute for Child Development, where she collaborated and published with internationally recognized experts on aggressive behavior, social competence, risk, and resilience in children and families.  Dr. Lingras also holds a certificate in Early Childhood Public Policy from the University of Minnesota, and has held policy-related positions with local government and community-based organizations, including the St. Paul Mayor’s office Early Learning Initiatives team and Minnesota’s Center for Early Education and Development. Dr. Lingras completed her clinical psychology internship with the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and her post-doctoral training with Brown University and Bradley Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island. Dr. Lingras has conducted Incredible Years parent, child, and Teacher Classroom Management Training groups in communities across the country. Her work as a consultant for HeadStart centers and school districts in several states has been noted as having in significant impact in creating sustainable, programmatic change. She has supervised trainees and mental health professionals in clinic and community-based settings, in both mental health treatment and consultation work. Her additional professional interests include teaching university-level courses (cultural perspectives in child development/clinical psychology), early childhood public policy advocacy, and program evaluation.

Julienne N. Verdi, JD

Prior to joining NYZTT, Julienne, an attorney, served as the Director of Government Relations at Planned Parenthood of New York City and as a Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Francine A. Schott in New Jersey Superior Court. Julienne is a graduate of CUNY Hunter College and Brooklyn Law School where she was an associate managing editor of the Brooklyn Journal of International Law and Chair of Brooklyn Law Students for Reproductive Justice. Julienne is admitted to practice in New York, New Jersey and the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey. As a mother to eight month old Jude, Julienne is passionate about early childhood development and is thrilled to join the NYZTT team.

Questions? Contact our Director, Julienne,  at 718-638-7788 or info@nyztt.org

Hillary Mayers, LCSW

Hillary Mayers is co-director of Chances for Children-NY which she co-founded in 2000 with Elizabeth Buckner, LCSW. Her specialty is children ages birth to five and their families. A graduate of the Columbia School of Social Work and the Institute for Child, Adolescent and Family Studies (ICAFS) she maintains small private psychotherapy practice in Manhattan. She has worked in clinics, schools, and therapeutic nurseries providing treatment, training and supervision to interns and staff for over 25 years.

Randi Levine

Randi Levine is Policy Coordinator and Early Childhood Education Project Director at Advocates for Children of New York. She provides legal representation, policy advocacy, and community education to strengthen access to early childhood education in New York City. She also serves as an adjunct clinical professor of education advocacy at NYU School of Law. Previously, she worked in Head Start centers and served as Senior Policy Associate at Fight Crime: Invest in Kids in Washington, DC where she advocated for federal legislation to increase investments in high-quality early childhood education programs. She is a graduate of NYC public schools, Yale University, and NYU School of Law.

Bonnie Cohen, LCSW

Bonnie Cohen is a licensed clinical social worker with over 35 years of experience working with people with developmental disabilities and over 30 years in early childhood. She is a graduate of Hunter College School of Social Work. She has managed Early Intervention programs for more than 25 years, and provided home based early intervention services in the early years of the program. In the past decade, she has worked in Early Childhood Mental Health and currently works at University Settlement as the Senior Director of Early Childhood Clinical Services. As the Director of the Butterflies Program, she leads a small team of social workers who are embedded in early learn sites, providing evidenced based mental health services including screening, training, consultation, group work and Child Parent Psychotherapy. Bonnie manages a collaboration with NYU ParentCorps. She also co-chairs the New York Zero-to-Three Network Infant Toddler Leadership Circle, participates in Winning Beginnings Advocacy and statewide Infant Toddler Leadership calls. She also sits on the New York City Early Childhood Mental Health Strategic Workgroup.

Susan E. Perkins

Ms. Perkins is the state project director for NY Project LAUNCH, a SAMHSA funded initiative to improve the systems that serve young children and address their physical, emotional, social, cognitive and behavioral growth (project end date September 2015). Also a senior policy analyst for the New York State Council on Children and Families, she works closely with the staff of the Head Start Collaboration Project, the Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems (ECCS) initiative, and the Early Childhood Advisory Council (ECAC) on early childhood, parenting and family literacy issues across the state. Since its inception in 2006, she has represented the Council as a principle member of the New York State Parenting Education Partnership (NYSPEP).

Prior to joining the Council, she was an Even Start Family Literacy coordinator for seven years and an adult educator, specializing in child and family development/parenting education, for Cornell Cooperative Extension for seven years.

Susan holds graduate and undergraduate degrees from the Pennsylvania State University, is a member of the Association for the Education of Young Children and the National Parenting Education Network and serves on the board of the NYS Family Engagement Coalition (formerly the Parental Information & Resource Center (PIRC), Cornell University’s Parenting Work Team and New York’s Zero-to-Three Network. She has been named an honorary board member of Literacy Volunteers-Rensselaer County.

Marjorie Brickley

Director of the Infant and Family Development and Early Intervention Program at Bank Street College of Education where she teaches courses in development and assessment as well as providing reflective supervision to field work students. Director of the Infancy Institute at Bank Street College, a 3-day annual conference for people working with children under 3 years of age and their families. Works as a developmental specialist in Early Intervention.

Sandra R. Wolkoff, LCSW

Sandra R. Wolkoff, is the former Director of the Marks Family Right from the Start 0-3+ Center, the early childhood mental health site of North Shore Child & Family Guidance Center. Ms. Wolkoff also developed the Training and Consultation Services at the Center that included curricula for frontline professionals, educators and clinicians working with young children and their families. She is editor of “Raising Young Children Well: Insights and Ideas for Parents and Teachers”. Ms. Wolkoff developed a model of mental health consultation for Head Start centers that was reviewed as one the best models of practice in the country.

Ms. Wolkoff currently supervises the Diane Goldberg Maternal Depression Program and has worked with the Nassau County Perinatal Coalition, Postpartum Resource Center of New York, and the National Parent-Child Home Program, among others, to provide training on the recognition and the treatment of postpartum depression. She is currently chair of the Perinatal Mood Best Practices Task Force of Nassau County.

Ms. Wolkoff has presented to professionals throughout the country on risk factors in child development, social group work issues in the workplace and the recognition of the impact of perinatal mood disorders on families. Ms. Wolkoff has also presented Grand Rounds at metropolitan area hospitals and was chosen as one of the 50 Most Influential Women of Long Island by Long Island Business News.

Ms. Wolkoff has had a regular column in the former Long Island Parents and Children, hosted a parenting show on Cablevision, “Ages and Stages”, and has had her work published in professional journals, magazines and newspapers. In addition, Ms. Wolkoff was a 2007-2009 Fellow in the Leaders of the 21st Century Fellowship with Zero To Three, the National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and their Parents in Washington, DC.

Ms. Wolkoff received her BA from CCNY and her Masters in Social Work from Adelphi University. She is currently finishing her Ph.D. in Social Work at Adelphi University.

Julia Travers, RN, MSN

Description: Infant/Toddler Specialist/Clinical Nurse Specialist

Current Position: Coordinator of New York City Infant Toddler Technical Assistance Resource Center, Childcare, Inc.

Counseling experience as member of Community Mental Health Team
Developed and coordinated hospital-based “New Parent Warmline”. Coauthored journal article: “Warmline Services for New Parents: One Center’s Evaluation”.
Managed Early Intervention Program
Consultant/workshop facilitator for Early Head Start through the Quality Improvement Center for Disabilities Services at New York University
Graduate of the Institute for Infants, Children and Families at the Jewish Board of Children’s and Family Services
Currently coordinate regional infant/toddler resource center, provide supervision for Center Infant/Toddler Specialists and provide training and technical assistance for Early Care and Education Programs

Suzi Tortora Ed D., C.M.A., A.D.T.R., LCAT, LMHC

Description: Administrator/Psychotherapist/Educator/Author

Current Position: Founder and director of Dancing Dialogue Healing and Expressive Arts, a center for movement, music & dance based arts that support healing & self- expression, in Cold Spring, New York

Doctorate from Teachers College Columbia University with a specialization in infancy development, psychology and education
Master degree in dance therapy from New York University; and her undergraduate degree from the Elliot Pearson Department of Tufts University in child development, psychology, and education with teaching certification for typical and special needs early childhood and elementary education.
Teaches creative and meditative dance to all ages in her clinical dance movement psychotherapy practice in New York City and in the Hudson Valley Region of upstate New York.
Certified Laban Movement Analyst and Kestenberg Movement Profiler.
Additional studies include Body Mind Centering (BMC) with Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen; the discipline of Authentic Movement with Janet Adler; and extensive study and training in the field of infancy and early childhood research, development, education, communication and intervention through the Zero-to-Three Institute.
Over 23 years experience working with infants and young children (and their parents and caregivers).
A dance/movement psychotherapist.

Tonia Spence, LCSW, MSEd

Tonia M. Spence, LCSW, MSEd, is an advocate, educator and clinician who has served children and families for the last 15 years. She currently is the Director of The Virginia and Leonard Marx Clinic Services at the Child Development Center of JBFCS. She holds a Masters in Special Education from Bank Street College of Education and a Masters in Social Work from Columbia University School of Social Work. She has been a middle school teacher in NYC public schools and a Special Education Itinerant Teacher for young children. Prior to accepting her current position, Ms. Spence was a part of the Faculty at the Yale Child Study Center where she served as a Clinician and supervisor in its Outpatient Psychiatric Clinic and spent the 2006-2007 year in the Post Graduate Fellowship Program.

Tonia devotes her time developing clinicians and advocating on behalf of families. In addition, she serves as Vice President of CUSSW’s Alumni Board and is a board member of New York Zero-to-Three.

Rebecca Shahmoon Shanok, MSW, PhD

Description: Clinician/Author/Educator

Current Position: Founding Director of the Institute for Infants, Children & Families
(formerly Early Childhood Group Therapy Program and the Institute for Clinical Studies of Infants, Toddlers and Parents) of the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services

Training and experience in psychology, social work, early childhood education, psychoanalysis and infant mental health
Oversees a multi-year, several site service, training, replication and research demonstration project under the auspices of Head Start, Administration for Children’s Services in New York
Co-leading the Ground Zero Trauma Screening and Intervention Initiative for children under five and their caregivers
Longtime clinical consultant to the Rita Gold Infant and Early Childhood Center at Teachers College, Columbia University and currently an Advisory Board member
Active board member of Zero to Three: National Center for Infants, Toddlers and Families for over twenty years
Founder and current Co-President of the New York Zero-to-Three Network
Sees children, birth through early adolescence with their parents, in private practice and is known for work with children who have developmental delays and their families
Formerly a Contributing Editor for Parents magazine, serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Developmental and Learning Disorders and of the Journal of Infant, Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy
Published numerous articles on adult development; parent development and intervention; interventions with delayed young children and their parents; peer play psychotherapy; outreach in community-based settings; and on reflective supervision and practice in the birth through preschool field

Susan L. Recchia, PhD

Description: Psychologist/ Program and Project Director/ Professor

Current Position: Director, Early Childhood Center; Director and the Center for Babies, Toddlers and Families, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY

Specializes in infant mental health and developmental disabilities in infancy and early childhood
Associate Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Faculty Member of the Parent Infant Psychotherapy Program of the Columbia University Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research
Director of large clinical intervention program for infants and young children and their parents or caregivers and director of clinical externship program for graduate students in psychology, social work and special education
Has obtained grants and administered projects that bring infant mental health and developmental services to child serving systems and community based programs including primary pediatric care centers, child care and preschool programs, foster agencies and Family Courts
Editorial Board of the Journal of Early Childhood and Infant Psychology
Member, NYC Local Early Intervention Coordinating Council and the Children’s Committee of the Bronx Mental Retardation Council

Susan Rabinowicz, PT, DPT, MS

Description: Physical Therapist

Current Position: PhD Candidate in Health and Rehabilitation Sciences Stony Brook University

  • Extensive experience as a physical therapist providing home based services with the early intervention program of Nassau County.
  • Co-director of the Suffolk County Infancy Leadership Circle
  • Active member of the Early Intervention Special Interest Group of the American Physical 
Therapy Association.
  • Graduate of the Infant-Parent Study Center of the Institute for Infants, Children and Families at the
 Jewish Board of Children’s & Family Services.
  • Research interests include ensuring the application of current research and evidence based practice to clinical work with infants, toddlers and families, cross-disciplinary professional preparation of the early childhood workforce, and the sustainability of early intervention programs.

Carole J. Oshinsky, MLS

Description: Editorial, Communications and Policy Consultant

Current Position: Editorial, Communications and Policy Consultant

Carole Oshinsky has a Masters in Library Science and retired as publications manager of the National Center for Children in Poverty after more than 30 years of service to Columbia University as a librarian, clearinghouse manager, and publications manager. She has served NYZTT as co-president, secretary and treasurer. She was selected to be a Birth to Three State Advocacy Leader in 2008 as part of ZERO TO THREE’s Creating Connections for Babies project and subsequently co-founded NYZTTs Infancy Leadership Circle Network across New York State to promote comprehensive, quality services.  She has also been a counselor on breastfeeding and parenthood issues for La Leche League International and serves on a number of local committees and statewide coalitions to raise the needs of infants and toddlers and to promote inclusion of children with disabilities.

Joanne Loeb, PhD

Joanne is a Psychologist and Assistant Professor in Clinical Pediatrics at the Early Childhood Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine where she provides therapeutic interventions for young children with emotional and developmental difficulties and their families. As a bilingual clinician she works with many Spanish- speaking families with immigrant experiences. She also supervises graduate students and coordinates a Parent Child Interaction Therapy program. She has published articles in the areas of early intervention and assessment and presented in local and national conferences on topics such as early childhood development, early identification of autism, early childhood trauma and parent child interaction therapy. Her interests include early childhood mental health, foster care, and trauma-focused interventions for young children and parents.

Joaniko Kohchi, MPhil, LCSW

Joaniko Kohchi, MPhil, LCSW, is an infant and early childhood mental health specialist with experience focusing on court-involved families spanning several regions of the United States. Ms.Kohchi has worked with children and families who have survived traumatic events, such as natural disasters or interpersonal violence, which often lead to out-of-home care. She has consulted in a variety of early care and school settings providing direct service to children and families and supporting teachers guiding children to realize their optimal learning and achieving developmental milestones. She is former clinical and research faculty at Tulane University School of Medicine and LSU Health Sciences Center, both in New Orleans, where she taught and supervised professionals from a wide range of disciplines. Ms. Kohchi was a primary clinician on the Tulane Infant Team, a specialized program that followed all children in foster care under the age of five in Jefferson Parish, LA, providing developmental and relationship assessment, therapeutic interventions, frequent court reports and testimony. The Tulane team was part of the Early Trauma Treatment Network, a SAMHSA effort to establish evidence-based interventions for traumatized children. Ms. Kohchi was part of the Pyramid Community Parent Resource Center in New Orleans, which was an early contributor to the Center for Evidence-Based Practice, now the Center for Social Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) and its partner organization, the Technical Assistance Center for Social Emotional Interventions (TACSEI). Ms. Kohchi has extensive experience working with children with developmental challenges of all ages, usually with co-occurring mental health disorders. Ms. Kohchi is a Child-Parent Psychotherapy provider and trainer at the Jewish Board in New York City. She has been a board member of NYZTT since 2013, and currently serves as an officer on the Executive Committee, as well as working on the Communications and Membership Committees.

Richard Kahn, PhD, RD

Richard Kahn is a dietitian specializing in transdisciplinary treatment of growth and feeding problems. He earned his MS in Nutrition and Food Science at Hunter College. His doctorate is in Social Welfare and his dissertation topic explored the way the way allied health professionals, nurses and physicians learned to blend their physical training with Infant mental health at the Institute for Infants, Children and Families at the JBFCS. He was researcher at the Einstein College of Medicine Dept. of Family and Social Medicine. There, he designed and carried out an intervention to help parents wean their children off baby bottles. In addition, he co-directed a pilot project to help S. Asian families improve the feeding and growth of their children in the Pediatric Gastroenterology Clinic at North Central Bronx Hospital. He has presented on ways to separate developmental feeding struggles from sensory and oral motor delays in the US and Canada. He was an Adjunct Professor in the Dept. of Nutrition and Food Science at Hunter College. He works in the WIC and Early Intervention Programs as well as having a private nutrition practice specializing in the needs of developmentally delayed infants, toddlers children and teens. He blogs on the interaction between body, mind, parenting around food on the eating behavior of children and teens.

Marion Katzive

Marion C. Katzive is currently a partner in the firm of Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC, concentrating on education law matters for public school districts, private schools, individual parents and students. From 1983 to 1990 she was a member of the firm of Rebell and Katzive and has participated as counsel in the Jose P class action, most recently focusing on placement options for New York City children. She has served for many years as special education counsel to the Bronxville, North Salem, Byram Hills, Edgemont and New Rochelle City School Districts and also represents non public special education elementary and secondary schools and agencies providing preschool and early intervention services. She is currently a member of the Advisory Board of Resources for Children with Special Needs in New York City and chairs the Board of Directors of Argus Community, Inc, a multi-service agency serving adolescents and adults in the Bronx. She holds an A.B. degree from Bryn Mawr College, attended Harvard Law School between 1962 and 1964, and received her LL.B degree from Columbia Law School in 1965.

Barbara Greenstein, LCSW PhD

Dr. Barbara Greenstein is a social worker and psychoanalyst who  has spent close to 30 years pioneering innovative programs for high risk infants, toddlers, preschoolers and their families including mentally ill parents, teen parents, and dually- diagnosed parents. Dr. Greenstein developed the first new Early Head Start in New York City, a nationally recognized program that was spotlighted on “Good Morning America.” She was a member of the National Early Head Start Research consortium with investigators from New York University and Dr. Edward Zigler, the “father of Head Start” as research partners. Dr. Greenstein’s Early Head Start Program gave rise to the National Research study on Father Involvement in Early Head Start.

Most recently, Dr. Greenstein served as the Chief Operating Officer of The Child Center of New York, and as Division Director of Early Childhood Services at The Jewish Board. She is a member of the Early Childhood Strategic Work Group, a committee that advises the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene on early childhood mental health, served on the faculty of the Institute for Infants, Children and Families from its inception in 1995 and is past-president of the New York Zero to Three Network.

Evelyn Efinger, MS Ed

Description: Child Development Specialist/Educator/Administrator

Current Position: Independent Consultant and Mentor,  Albany NY

  • 30+ years of experience in Head Start, Early Head Start, child care, Child Care Resource and Referral
  • Managed the NYS Network of Infant Toddler Specialists in the Child Care Resource and Referral agencies whose goal is to improve the quality of child care for babies and toddlers across New York State
  • Leadership positions in statewide efforts to promote cross disciplinary dialogue and networking amongst professionals who work with infants, toddlers and their families through activities such as the NYS Infancy Conferences in 2004 and 2005 and statewide Infancy Summits in 2007 and 2008
  • 2007 national ZERO TO THREE Fellow. Developed a manual for states to consider for the orientation and ongoing training of Infant Toddler Specialists
  • Experience with college and community based training and education for adults working in early care and education
  • BS Clinical Psychology, MS Ed. Early Childhood Education with a specialization in Infants and Toddlers

Martha E. Edwards, PhD

Current Position(s): Director, Developing Families Project, Ackerman Institute for the Family;
Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Child Study Center, New York University Medical Center

Long-standing interest in understanding child development within the intersecting contexts of the family system, culture, and intra-individual levels of neurobiology and psychodynamics
Developed a universal prevention program for families with infants and toddlers at the Ackerman Institute called The Bright Beginnings Parent-Infant Program which is currently being implemented in NYC public schools and the Even Start Family Literacy Program
Her article, “Attachment, Mastery and Interdependence: A Model of Parenting Processes” in Family Process describes the theoretical framework for Bright Beginnings
As Co-Principal Investigator in the Woodward Initiative for Children with Bipolar Disorder at the NYU Child Study Center, is developing a family-focused treatment model for children with bipolar disorder
Supervises psychology interns in family therapy
Maintains a private practice for families and couples in New York City
Member of the Board of Directors for the American Family Therapy Academy and currently serving as the Program Chair for the 2003 Annual Conference

Greta Doctoroff, PhD

Greta is a licensed clinical psychologist and an associate professor in the School-Clinical Child Psychology Doctoral Program at Yeshiva University’s Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology. She completed her Ph.D. at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and her post-doctoral fellowship at Brown Medical School/Rhode Island Hospital. Her research focuses on supporting young children’s social, emotional, behavioral and early academic development with a focus on parenting and teaching practices. In addition, she studies parenting in the context of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Her work has been published in a number of peer-reviewed journals and presented at national conferences. She teaches developmental psychopathology, evidence-based treatment, and co-leads the Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for Youth practicum program at Ferkauf. She works with children, families and adults from a CBT perspective in her private practice.

Susan Chinitz, Psy. D.

Susan Chinitz is a psychologist with specialties in the areas of infant mental health and developmental disabilities in infancy and early childhood. She was formerly a Professor of Clinical Pediatrics and the Charles S. and Patricia T. Raizen Distinguished Scholar in Pediatrics at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and was the Director of the Early Childhood Center and the Center for Babies, Toddlers and Families at Einstein’s Children’s Evaluation and Rehabilitation Center. She is currently a consultant for the Center for Court Innovation and has helped to develop and launch the Strong Starts Court Initiative, a Family Court based model of practice designed to improve outcomes for infants and toddlers who are known to the court due to concerns about maltreatment.

Dr. Chinitz is on the Community Advisory Board of the NYC Nurse Family Partnership, the faculty of the Parent-Infant Psychotherapy Program at Columbia University Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research, the Professional Advisory Board for the New York Center for Child Development, and is a member of the New York City Early Childhood Mental Health Strategic Work Group.

Dr. Chinitz has obtained city, state and federal grants to provide developmental and infant mental health services in community-based programs for young children, including the first allocation of city funding specifically for infant and early childhood mental health services that supported the integration of infant and early childhood mental health services in primary pediatric care, preschools, foster care agencies and the Family Courts. She received a grant from the Administration on Children and Families to create the first Early Head Start Program in the Bronx; and one from the New York State Developmental Disabilities Planning Council to create a childcare and preschool program that provided developmental therapies and behavioral supports for children with disabilities and training for childcare staff.

Dr. Chinitz is an invited speaker at professional conferences and has authored chapters and journal articles related to psychological assessment of children with disabilities, social-emotional development in infancy and early childhood, young children with attachment disorders and developmental disabilities, young children in the foster care system, and trauma in infancy and early childhood.

Natalie Brooks Wilson, LCSW-R

Natalie Brooks Wilson, Director of Mental Health Services, Safe Space, NYC, Inc., is one of the original team members of Safe Space’s Seen and Heard Program serving young children who have experienced or witnessed violence. She has served as a leader, trainer and program developer in the fields of Foster Care, Mental Health, Head Start, Early Head Start and Child Protective Family Support Services. One of her passions is to break down institutional silos to foster integration and open communication. Brooks Wilson is a social worker by training who has actively worked in the field for over 23 years.  She is currently a PhD student at Adelphi University.

Lorraine Chun, MLS

Description: Public Health Administrator/Librarian

Current Positions: Trainer with the Early Intervention Learning Network, Just Kids, Inc., and Reference Librarian/Archivist at Pace Law School.

  • Extensive governmental experience in programs for high risk infants and toddlers, and childrenwith developmental delays from birth to age 21 years.
  • Developed numerous collaborative networks and programs in New York City and Westchester County to improve services for at risk infants and toddlers and infants and children with special needs.
  • Former Early Intervention Official for Westchester County and representative on various New York State Early Intervention committees, founding member of the Coalition for Asian American Children and Families and former Board of Directors member, and former member of the New York State Task Force on Immigrant Health.

Priscilla Lincoln, PhD, PMHNP

Priscilla Lincoln currently works as a psychiatric nurse practitioner and psychoanalytically informed psychotherapist with children, adolescents and adults in at an outpatient clinic and in private practice.  She does dyadic therapy with parents and infants through the Anni Bergman Parent Infant Program and provides mental health consultation for several of University Settlement’s home visiting programs.  She has extensive experience in working with high risk infants and their families, including:

  • Development of Early Head Start, Early Intervention and Family Support programs for families of children with chronic illness while serving as Director of the Department of Children’s and Family Services at Visiting Nurse Service of New York.
  • Development of the Families First Program at South Beach Psychiatric Center, a parent support program for new parents.
  • Extensive experience and expertise in staff development

Evelyn Blanck

Evelyn Blanck is the Associate Executive Director of the New York Center for Child Development. New York Center for Child Development (NYCCD) is a not-for-profit early childhood organization founded in 1995, which offers a continuum of educational and therapeutic services for children from birth through age 5 designed to promote their optimal development.

She received a gubernatorial appointment to the Early Childhood Advisory Council of New York State, where she serves on the Steering Committee and is the Co-Chair of the Strong Families Workgroup. The Council advises the office of the Governor, the Legislature, and Commissioners on early childhood policies and programs. She is a member of the New York State Medicaid Redesign Team where she is helping to reshape New York State’s Medicaid Plan to better address the needs of young children. She is a member of the NYS Joint Task Force on Social Emotional Development which was formed to develop guidance for Early Intervention to ensure that practitioners have the necessary tools available to identify and treat young children in need of social emotional supports and interventions.

Ms. Blanck is the Founder and Chair of the New York City Early Childhood Mental Health Strategic Work Group, an official advisory committee to the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene that is comprised of leading experts in the area of early childhood health and mental health. She was also the Chair of the Council on Young Child Wellness for SAMHSA Project LAUNCH which consisted of representatives of the New York City Mayor’s office, city government agencies and private agencies dealing with young children and their families.

She is the Co-President of the New York Zero to Three Network. She is a founding board member of the New York Association of Infant Mental Health which will oversee the implementation of a New York State Infant Mental Health Endorsement program. She is on the Professional Advisory Board of the Profectum Foundation.

Evelyn Blanck has been an invited speaker at many professional conferences addressing social-emotional development and policy in infancy and early childhood. A major focus of her work has been on promoting the integration of mental health in education, primary care and all child serving systems.