The QPR Institute offers comprehensive suicide prevention training programs, educational and clinical materials for the general public, professionals, and institutions.

Paul QuinnettPaul Quinnett, Ph.D., Founder and CEO

A clinical psychologist and trainer for more than 35 years, Dr. Quinnett developed and managed a suicide prevention hotline, an emergency services department, and a dozen mental health service delivery programs. He has authored seven books, many professional articles and book chapters. He was Director of Training for the Spokane Mental Health APA-approved psychology internship program for more than 20 years and has served on board of the American Association of Suicidology. He was a founding board member of two national suicide prevention organizations: The Kristin Brooks Hope Center (1-800-SUICIDE), and The Suicide Prevention Action Network. Heavily involved in the training of mental health professionals, he currently serves as Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at the University of Washington School of Medicine. To help prevent suicide, he donated the French and English electronic editions of his bestseller, Suicide: the Forever Decision to the world in 2005 via the World Wide Web.

Richard RiesRichard K. Ries, MD, Medical Director

Dr. Richard Ries is Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Washington Medical School in Seattle, Washington. He is board certified in Psychiatry and certified in Addiction Medicine by the American Society for Addiction Medicine, and in Addiction Psychiatry (1993) by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. Dr. Ries is Director of Outpatient Psychiatry, Dual Disorder Programs, and the Chemical Dependency Project at Harborview Medical Center. He is director of substance abuse education at the University of Washington Medical School and director of the Division of Addictions for the Department of Psychiatry. He has obtained NIDA sponsored clinical research grants in 1989 and 1997 to evaluate treatment outcome in dual disorders and also helped develop and participate in a NIDA sponsored training videotape (1996) on dual disorders.

Dr. Ries was chosen to chair the first official Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP#9-1994) on dual disorders by the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment. In 1999 he became co-editor of the key reference text Principles of Addiction Medicine, published by the American Society of Addiction Medicine. He is heavily involved in clinical research and in teaching and training physicians about the role of substance abuse and mood disorders in suicide.

Norman BravemanNorman S. Braveman, PhD, Senior Research Consultant

Dr. Norm Braveman is President and founder of Braveman BioMed Consultants (, a firm devoted to excellence in biomedical and behavioral research. In more than 25 years experience with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) he has provided leadership in strategic and implementation planning as well as in program development and evaluation for individual institutes including the National Institute on Aging, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, and the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. As Acting Director of Planning and Evaluation and Chief of the Planning and Policy Research Branch for the NIH he was responsible for agency-wide program development and assessment activities.

His expertise spans the design, implementation and evaluation of clinical trials, program planning, development, evaluation and assessment, the development and peer review of research proposals, and strategic and implementation planning. During his 10 year academic career he taught statistics and experimental design as well as survey methods at the university level.

Brian QuinnettBrian Quinnett, M.S., National Training Director and QPR Master Trainer

Brian current duties include the recruitment, selection, training, coordination, credentialing and supervision of advanced QPR program instructors and master trainers. He also manages the Institute’s university CEU web-based suicide prevention educational programs for professionals and serves as a consultant to organizations seeking to implement suicide risk reduction practices.

Also the Institute’s Web master, Brian returned to campus after playing professional basketball for three years with the New York Knicks and earned a masters degree in Sports Psychology and Counseling from the University of Idaho. He worked in the business world for several years before joining the Institute. His special area of interest, speaking, and writing is preventing suicide among student athletes.

Paul LeBuffe, M.S. Master QPR Trainer

Paul LeBuffe is the Director of the Devereux Foundation's Institute of Clinical Training and Research. At Devereux, Paul co-chaired (with Susan Kiesling) a multidisciplinary best practices work group which developed a comprehensive agency-wide suicide risk reduction program. Through this program he became involved with the QPR Institute. Devereux trained over 5,000 staff in QPR and over 700 clinicians in QPRT.

In addition to suicide prevention education, Paul's professional interests include the measurement and promotion of resilience in young children, psychometrics and test development, and treatment outcome evaluation in behavioral health care. He has authored three behavior rating scales that are widely used in the behavioral health care and child development fields. He is active in a number of professional and community organizations concerned with young children and individuals with developmental and psychiatric disorders. Paul and his family live in Downingtown, Pennsylvania.

Skip SimpsonSkip Simpson, B.A., J.D. Risk Management Instructor

With a legal background ranging from duties as a U.S. Air Force Courts Martial Judge to services as Texas' top drug traffic prosecutor, Skip Simpson has created a private law practice in the area psychiatric and psychological malpractice. Profiled in the Wall Street Journal in 1997 for his pioneering work in suicide litigation, Mr. Simpson has been nationally recognized for his expertise in suicide and repressed memory cases. His work has been profiled in C.C. Risenhoover’s book The Suicide Lawyers: Exposing Lethal Secrets.

Unlike mental health experts, Mr. Simpson’s work obliges him to look at suicide from every possible angle in preparing a case, and he has to make his findings easily understandable to a jury. As a leading attorney in the mental health field, in 2003 Mr. Simpson received an academic appointment as a senior fellow, Harvard Medical School Program in Psychiatry and the Law at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center, Boston, Massachusetts. He was also appointed Clinical Instructor at The University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas, and in 2006 was promoted to Adjunct Associate Professor. In these roles, Mr. Simpson teaches medical residents subjects focusing on psychiatry and the law. In 2005 Mr. Simpson was named to the board of directors for the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill in Collin County where he served for a one year term.

Roger Bragdon, Law Enforcement Advisor

Mr. Bragdon served on the Spokane Police Department for nearly 33 years, retiring in 2006. The last eight years of his career there, he was the Chief of Police.  Mr. Bragdon has a strong background in police operations, having commanded the patrol, detectives, and special investigations units as well as the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team, among other assignments in his career. 

He has instructed in all areas of critical incident management, leadership, intelligence operations, and domestic terrorism for many years.  He continues instructing for the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) in the areas of counter-terrorism programs and Intelligence Led Policing.  Mr. Bragdon is also a consultant for the Community Colleges of Spokane (CCS) specializing in the management of safety and security programs.

Mr. Bragdon is a graduate of the Northwest Law Enforcement Command College and the FBI’s National Executive Institute.

John M. Violanti, Ph.D., Law Enforcement Advisor

John M. Violanti, Ph.D. is a Research Full Professor in the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine (SPM), School of Public Health and Health Professions at Buffalo, NY and has been associated with this department for 25 years. Dr. Violanti is a member of the University at Buffalo, NY Medical School graduate faculty.  Prior to his position at Buffalo, he also was a full professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology, Department of Criminal Justice.

He is a police veteran, serving with the New York State Police for 23 years as a trooper, criminal investigator, and later as a coordinator of the Psychological Assistance Program for the State Police.  Dr. Violanti served in the U.S. Army, 57th Military Police from 1963-1966. He has been involved in the design, implementation, and analysis of numerous suicide, stress and health studies over the past 25 years.  Dr. Violanti has authored over 50 peer-reviewed articles and 14 books on suicide, stress and PTSD. He has lectured nationally and internationally at academic institutions on matters of suicide, stress and trauma at work.

Lou Sowers, Ph.D., MBA, Advanced Clinical Trainer

Dr. Lou Sowers is a Police and Public Safety Psychologist who has worked in the mental health field for over 30 years. Lou works with most public safety agencies in Eastern Washington and North Idaho completing psychological suitability evaluations, working with officers after critical events, and training officers how to intervene with suicidal citizens.  Lou is also helping the Washington State Department of Corrections to redesign their mental health system of care and he runs the mental health unit at the Airway Heights Corrections Center.

Lou completed his BA in psychology at Indiana University in 1983 and his MS and PhD in psychology at the University of Southern California in 1993.  Lou worked with seriously mentally ill youth and adults on inpatient psychiatric units in Indianapolis and he worked as an inner city elementary school teacher in Los Angeles prior to moving to Spokane in 1992 to complete his APA internship training program at Spokane Mental Health (SMH).

Lou worked at SMH for 18 years and ran all of their outpatient treatment services including an APA accredited internship training program until 2010 when he made a decision to focus more on police and public safety psychology.  Lou has provided extensive training and supervision to clinicians over the years and he has been connected to the QPR Institute since its inception. He is the co-author of the QPRT-P Pediatric Suicide Risk Management Inventory and User's Manual that was published in 1998.

In addition to serving on the QPR Institute faculty, Lou is an active member of the American Psychological Association, the International Association of Chiefs of Police - Police Psychology Services Section, the Society for Police and Criminal Psychology, and the American Association of Suicidology.  Lou has been happily married for more than 20 years and enjoys spending time with his two teenagers and training for Ironman triathlons.

John Osborn, MD

John is an internist on staff at the Veterans Medical Center in Spokane since 1986.   His work at the VA has included primary care clinics and as a hospitalist.  John has also served as Chief of Medicine, Medical Director for Hospice, Chair of the Ethics Consultation Committee, Director of the HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis programs, and Director of the VA's Clinicians Web Support project for the Northwest/Alaska.

Growing up, John worked with his mother, Marie Osborn, Idaho's first practicing Nurse Practitioner in developing a rural-health-care delivery system in the Salmon River region.  John graduated from the College of Idaho in Caldwell, the University of Washington School of Medicine, and Internal Medicine Spokane.  He worked briefly in mission hospitals in Thailand and Kenya before starting his care for Veterans. 

John's public interest advocacy has included reforming HIV screening for Veterans to comport with CDC recommendations, improving care for Indian Combat Veterans with PTSD, advancing ethical care at the end of life through Physicial Orders for Live-Sustaining Treatment (POLST), and extensive work on protecting rivers and drinking water supplies in the face of climate change.   John dedicates his work in suicide prevention to his nephew Cameron Wilder who died by suicide, and to Veterans.

Bennett J. Mintz, Senior Marketing Advisor

Bennett J. Mintz was graduated from Los Angeles City College and California State College Los Angeles with degrees in journalism and communications. Following military service where he served in the Public Information Office of the aircraft carrier USS Bon Homme Richard, Mintz joined the staff of the Los Angeles Unified School District in public and community relations.

Ben accepted a position with the YMCA of Metropolitan Los Angeles developing public service radio and television commercials before striking out in his own agency. He specialized in writing and producing fund raising materials for non-profit organizations - YM and YWCAs, Red Cross Chapters, hospitals, Salvation Army chapters and others - before turning his lifelong fly-fishing hobby into a product advertising and marketing specialty.

He lives in Chatsworth, California.

David W. Coombs, PhD, M.P.H.

Dr. David Coombs is an Emeritus faculty member in the Department of health Behavior, School of Public Health, University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Trained as a sociologist he subsequently obtained a masters degree in public health with a specialization in health behavior and communication. He is an active participant in the Alabama Suicide Prevention and Resource Center (ASPARC) and is a member of the ASPARC Board of Directors. Dr. Coombs has studied suicide and suicidal behaviors for more than 30 years from a sociological and public health perspectives. He has also worked as a suicide prevention/crisis center telephone volunteer and as a professional back up. He has varied work experience in the design and implementation of research programs and in teaching at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Dr. Coombs is fluent in Spanish and has worked extensively in five Latin American countries in teaching, research and health promotion. Currently he is collaborating with the Alabama Department of Public Health, UAB and ASPARC in developing community gatekeeper training programs. These programs will test the utility of social media in circumventing the perceived stigma that impedes many depressed and suicidal persons from seeking or taking advantage of help.

Alejandro M Martinez, Ph.D., QPR Master Trainer

Alejandro M Martinez is the Senior Associate director, Consultation and Liaison, for Counseling and Psychological Services and Lecturer at the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University.  His areas of special interest include mental health promotion and risk reduction for young adults. His work involves the implementation of strategies that enhance protective psychological and social elements that contribute to the reduction of risk factors for Stanford students. 

Dr. Martinez brings extensive experience in the oversight and training of peer counselors.  As the advisor for the Stanford Bridge Peer Counseling Center and faculty for the academic courses required of students to work at the Bridge, he trains over 100 students a year.  Additionally, he has introduced this model of mental health support to over 35 universities in mainland China and is working with Remin University of China in the implementation of one of the first peer counseling university programs in the country.  During the summer,  he teaches the academic course required of Renmin University students to work as peer counselors and is especially versed in working with culturally diverse individuals.  Dr. Martinez is bicultural and bilingual in Spanish.

Robert Robey, QPR Master Trainer

Bob Robey is a suicide prevention master trainer for the QPR Institute in Spokane, Washington. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in business and education from Kentucky Wesleyan College and has over thirty years of experience in human services including twenty years with one of Kentucky’s Regional Mental Health Centers.

In 1995 Bob begin working with the Hospice in Owensboro, Kentucky as the bereavement coordinator. A few weeks after beginning with Hospice, his good friend died by suicide, which led him to organize the Owensboro Survivors of Suicide Bereavement Support Group. In 1997, after two years of meeting with survivors of suicide Bob felt the need to try and prevent suicides and traveled to Spokane, Washington to train with Dr. Paul Quinnett who had just developed the QPR Model for suicide prevention.

In 2004 Bob became a master trainer for the QPR Institute. In addition to training over ten-thousand QPR gatekeepers, he has provided QPR Instructor Certification for major universities including Kentucky, Texas, and Tennessee. He has provided QPR Instructor Certification Trainings for the U.S. Army in the U.S. and Germany, Hospices, and has conducted suicide prevention trainings for Native American Tribes across the U.S.

A member of the Kentucky Suicide Prevention Planning Group, he helped organize and served as chairman for three years of a community suicide prevention coalition in Owensboro. He is the author of “A Guide For The Bereaved,” published by the Hospice in Owensboro, and “After Suicide” a resource guide for families.

In addition to the suicide prevention work and meeting with survivors, Bob is an Americorps Volunteer working with the homeless shelters in Owensboro.

In 2006 he was recognized with the Kentucky Spark award for his contribution to suicide prevention in Kentucky, and received the R.C. Neblet Service award for his service for economically disadvantaged in the Owensboro community.

Kerry Hope, Ph.D., QPR Master Trainer

Dr. Hope is currently the Suicide Prevention Coordinator at the Student Counseling Services at Texas A&M university. Dr. Hope completed her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology at Texas A&M University and is a licensed psychologist. Her areas of special interest include crisis intervention and suicide prevention, as well as issues of diversity, Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual issues, Women’s issues, eating disorders and supervision and training.

Kerry trains both QPR Instructors and teaches the QPR Suicide Triage program and QPRT Suicide Risk Management Inventory courses. As a QPR Master Trainer she has been busy training leadership, chaplains and clinical professionals in the U.S. Army and at many colleges and universities.

Mary Bolin-Reece, Ph.D. QPR Master Trainer

Dr. Bolin-Reese is currently the Director of the University of Kentucky Counseling & Testing Center in Lexington, Kentucky. She is primary responsible for day-to-day oversight of services provided by a staff of nine psychologists, one learning skills specialist, one administrative officer, three support personnel, and several doctoral-level trainees. She completed her internship and served as Interim Administrative Director the Needs and Evaluation Center at the University of Virginia, where she also provided leadership to as Coordinator of Clinical and Crisis Services for the University.

Currently Mary serves on the Kentucky Suicide Prevention Group (KSPG), the Stop Youth Suicide Campaign (SYS), and coordinates QPR gatekeeper trainings for University of Kentucky faculty, staff and students. She has a wide range of interests, including suicide prevention both on college campuses and in the community.


Colleen Carpenter, MA, MPH, QPR Master Trainer

Colleen Carpenter has been the Director for the Indiana Cares Youth Suicide Prevention Resource Center for 3 years and was the Project Coordinator for the Indiana Suicide Prevention Coalition (ISPC) for 5 years. She has been presenting on suicide prevention for the last 7 years across Indiana and nationally at American Association of Suicidology conferences. She is a QPR Master Trainer as well as an ASIST Master Trainer, Connect Postvention Trainer, and a CALM Trainer. She has a master's degree in sociology from Loyola University Chicago and a master's degree in public health from the University of North Carolina's Health Behavior and Health Education program. She is also a survivor of her Uncle John's suicide.



Lindy Williamson, MSW, QPR Master Trainer

As an educator, Lindy Williamson has worked with communities, hospitals, mental health agencies, emergency services, military, schools, businesses, churches and service organizations. She regularly teaches several Critical Incident Stress Management Classes as an approved instructor with the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation and is in demand as a keynote speaker and panelist at national symposiums and conferences serving the needs of mental health agencies and emergency services on the state, regional and national level.

As a Life Coach, Lindy specializes in Trauma Recovery and Empowerment. Lindy served 5 years as consultant and trainer for the National Veterans Foundation which maintains a national toll free Hotline for Veterans and their families.

As a crisis response provider for Employee Assistance Organizations, she provides a calm and grounded response to both employees and businesses seeking guidance during times of workplace turbulence.

Lindy also works with the staff of the 2-11 Hotline in Charleston, SC. The 2-1-1 Hotline is accredited by the American Association of Suicidolgy and answers calls for the State of South Carolina for both 1-800-SUICIDE and for 1-800-273-TALK (The National Suicide Prevention Hotline). Deployed to several major disasters, including the World Trade Center, the Asian Tsunami, and several hurricanes, including Katrina, Lindy has worked with Green Cross, CISM Teams, the Red Cross and FEMA to provide assistance for both first responders and victims.

Sally Spencer-Thomas, QPR Master Trainer

As a clinical psychologist, mental health advocate, faculty member, and survivor of her brother's suicide, Dr. Sally Spencer-Thomas sees the issues of suicide prevention from many perspectives. Currently, she is the CEO of the Carson J Spencer Foundation and the Survivor Division Chair for American Association for Suicidology. Dr. Spencer-Thomas is a professional speaker and trainer, presenting nationally and internationally on the topic of suicide prevention and has published four books on mental health. She lives in Conifer, Colorado with her partner and three sons.



Donna Barnes, Ph.D., QPR Master Trainer

Principal Investigator and Project Director of the Suicide Prevention Program and Research Associate and Professor at Howard University’s Psychiatry Department in Washington, D.C. where she teaches suicide risk management to psychiatric residents and third year medical students. She also conducts research on families who have lost someone to suicide and has published in this area. She has authored several chapters on suicide for books in the area of mental health and recently completed a book on the Truth About Suicide published by DWJ books for adolescents. Dr. Barnes is currently the recipient of a $600,000 campus grant for suicide prevention from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.  Barnes is co-founder and President of the National Organization for People of Color against Suicide (NOPCAS) and a founding member of the National Council for Suicide Prevention (NCSP). Dr. Barnes was an awardee for the Eli Lilly Welcome Back Award in 2006 for her work in the community.


Nancy K. Bohl, Ph.D., QPR Master Trainer

Is a Psychotherapist and trainer, who holds a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and a Masters Degree in Counseling/Education. Dr. Nancy Bohl has specialized in the field of trauma since 1985. She is the Director of The Counseling Team International (TCTI), which is also, The Southern California Critical Incident Stress Management Team. She is a certified Master Trainer for the QPR Institute focusing on Suicide Prevention and Intervention. She is also a certified trainer for the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation (ICISF) and the Law Enforcement Wellness Association (LEWA). She is a member of the American Association of Suicidology (AAS), is one of the past presidents of the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Psychological Services Section as well as a past president of the California Peer Support Association (CPSA). For the past twenty-five years Dr. Bohl has been actively involved in helping the families of those killed in the line-of-duty during National Police Week in Washington, DC. She has written numerous articles and book chapters focusing on mental health issues for police and fire personnel. Dr. Bohl is certified in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), which is a technique she uses to help trauma survivors. She is an adjunct professor in the Criminal Justice Department for Riverside Community, and San Bernardino Valley Community Colleges. She has been a guest speaker at Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC), The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and Federal Bureau

Julie A. Rickard, Ph.D. Advanced Clinical Trainer

Dr. Rickard, a licensed psychologist, is currently the Behavioral Medicine Program Manager for Columbia Valley Community Health in Wenatchee, WA. She is primarily responsible for the oversight of services provided by a clinical providers (psychologists, psychiatric, doctoral interns) and staff while providing services at two community health primary care clinics and the local hospital.  Her work has focused around the integrated model or the blending of psychological services with medical services in primary care clinics.  She also specializes in Physician & Healthcare Leadership Coaching.  This work focuses on medical provider and leadership excellence while identifying and focusing on shortfalls in training to assist them in being successful in fulfilling all areas of their practice.

In February 2012 Dr. Rickard founded the Suicide Prevention Coalition of North Central Washington (SPCofNCW) in Chelan and Douglas Counties.  She founded the coalition in response to the community crisis related to youth/adult suicide.  Her focus & direction of SPCofNCW has been to adopt one community wide training model for suicide prevention and since the implementation the suicide rate has improved by 43%.  The Gatekeeper Instructors (29) have trained over 3000 people in suicide prevention and continue to train all sectors of the community.

She is a highly sought after public speaker on a variety of topics, but suicide prevention is her passion.  She now dedicates her free time by working as a Master Trainer/Faculty for the QPR Institute.

Mary VanHaute, QPR Master Trainer

Mary VanHaute is a QPR Master Trainer and educator with more than 20 years of experience as a professional instructor, online learning facilitator, and expert in community-based suicide prevention strategies, with a special focus on preventing suicide among First Responders and their families. A leader in suicide prevention, Mary integrates QPR training into a broader program that addresses the unique health and safety issues inherent in culture of law enforcement and fire service organizations.

Mark Besen, Ph.D., Advanced Clinical Trainer

Licensed Psychologist - New Jersey (active), Washington State (inactive); Pennsylvania (inactive)
Vice President Clinical Operations, Steininger Behavioral Care Services, Cherry Hill NJ - Responsible for oversight of operations of continuum of clinical services at large community behavioral health center serving adults and children in Camden County NJ. Services include crisis screening centers in two hospitals, adult crisis residential, supported housing, adult care, adult intensive outpatient services, assertive community teams, adult case management services, family support services; children’s services including youth case management and children’s mobile crisis response teams. Other services as well (see resume).

Adjunct Faculty at Richard Stockton College.
15+ years in executive management in community behavioral health.
QPR Master Trainer - QPRT, Triage, QPR Gatekeeper Master Trainer.
Involvement in 1st implementation of QPR system in large community behavioral health center (Spokane Mental Health).

Jack McClellanJack McClellan, MD

Dr. McClellan is a Professor in the Division of Child Psychiatry at the University of Washington. He is the medical director of Child Study and Treatment Center, the State Hospital for children and adolescents in Washington State. His research addresses the diagnosis and treatment of early-onset schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, and the genetics of complex neuropsychiatric illnesses. Dr. McClellan has also been involved in the development of the Practice Parameters for the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and is the primary author for the Academy's practice parameters on schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Jack McClellanDr Louisa Walker, QPR Master Trainer/New Zealand

Louisa completed a Doctorate in psychology in 1995 from the University of Idaho.  She is a NZ registered and US licensed clinical psychologist with 15 years of clinical experience working primarily in collaboration with general practice physicians.  She has worked with GPs and specialist in efforts to build innovative models of practice integrating psychological services into primary health care.  Louisa developed a Department of Behavioural Health for a regional US medical clinic and has worked with primary mental health care projects in New Zealand since 2002.  She has experience in private practice, has been a clinical manager and has developed mental health programs in both the private and the public sectors.  Louisa has taught in psychology graduate programs and provided clinical training and supervision for clinical psychology internship programs both in the US and in NZ.  Louisa often provides continuing education training for physicians, psychologists and allied health professionals on a range of clinical treatment issues.

Louisa is committed to developing effective cross-cultural mental health services that respect and attempt to integrate traditional cultural practices into primary mental health care delivery.  She has engaged in research and practice regarding the mental health status of, and treatment protocols for, Native American, Asian, and Hispanic patients, as well as gaining recent experience working with Maori, Pacific and NZ Refugee populations.

Louisa has extensive experience in clinical practice treating anxiety disorders, mood disorders, eating disorders, trauma and sexual abuse.  She worked for a crisis intervention and suicide prevention project in the State of Maine in the US.  While based in primary care, she developed a program to assess and treat ADHD in adults, adolescents and children and developed a neuropsychological testing service, training and supervising clinical psychology graduate students to conduct psychometric tests and neuropsychological evaluations. 

Since moving to New Zealand Louisa has worked in private practice, was a consultant to a regional NZ acute mental health service, and has worked with several NZ GP organizations in their ongoing efforts to further develop strategies to improve mental health treatment in primary care.

Louisa was the Clinical Manager for a NZ Ministry of Health funded suicide bereavement service.  She is a Consultant working in the areas of suicide prevention and postvention and is currently working with the NZ Coroner’s office developing psychological autopsy services investigating deaths by suicide. Louisa has been a QPR Master Trainer since 2008 and currently delivers QPR Level I – III training throughout New Zealand. 

Connie Briscoe, Ph.D. QPR Master Trainer

Dr. Connie Briscoe is currently the Assistant Director/Director of Community Intervention at the University of Tennessee Counseling Center.  Connie completed her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology at the University of Tennessee and interned at Texas Woman’s University. Connie is a Licensed Psychologist/Health Service Provider in Tennessee. She has a faculty appointment with the QPR Institute and is certified as a QPR Master Trainer. She is the project director of the VolAware Suicide Prevention Initiative, a suicide prevention program at the University of Tennessee (UT) funded by the Garrett Lee Smith grant and Coordinator of the University of Tennessee VolAware Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Awareness committee. She coordinates the use of QPR at UT including the training of Gatekeeper Instructors and the gatekeeper trainings provided to faculty, staff and students as well as to the Knoxville community. Connie is also on the Steering Committee for the Association for the University and College Counseling Center Outreach (AUCCCO).

Janet Schnell, MSW, LSW QPR Master Trainer & QPR Instructor

Janet Schnell holds a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Southern Indiana. She is the President of Survivors of Suicide of Dubois County, quilt organizer for American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, member of American Association of Suicidology, Indiana Suicide Prevention Coalition, and Dubois County Suicide Prevention Coalition. Janet was a past board member of Suicide Prevention Action Network.

As a suicide prevention trainer, Janet has worked with Girl Scouts, religious communities, teachers, students, law enforcement, hospital and human resource employees. Janet helped to develop QPR in a school system. She has been a Peer Trainer since 2002 and QPR Master Trainer since 2011. Janet is also a CALM suicide intervention and Connect Postvention trainer. She is a suicide loss survivor of her brother Kent's suicide.

Sarah Gaer, M.A., QPR Master Trainer

Sarah Gaer began working in human services in 1998. She is a Master's level clinician and graduate of Antioch New England University. She has diverse experience working with a wide variety of populations and milieus including substance abuse treatment facilities, mental health, residential and outpatient clinical services for individuals with severe and chronic mental illness, as well as developmental disabilities, and forensic populations in community based programs. Sarah has specialized in trauma treatment for veterans and women survivors of sexual abuse in both individual and group settings. She served as a Team Leader for the FEMA Crisis Counseling grant responding to the June 1, 2011 tornado in Western and Central Massachusetts- a project managed by Riverside Trauma Center, and continues responding to natural disasters, homicides, and suicides in the state.

In her current position as a Suicide Prevention Specialist at Riverside Trauma Center in Massachusetts, Sarah develops initiatives for suicide prevention related to middle-aged men and youth.  A focus on prevention related to working age men in public safety roles included training  more than 700 fire fighters in QPR as well as having trained more than 90 individuals to be trainers for the QPR Institute in the past two years. Sarah's prevention work with youth involves facilitating Fire Within classes for Massachusetts high school students- a program developed by the Carson J. Spencer Foundation.

Lt. Colonel Charles E. Woods, M.A., M.Div., QPR Master Trainer

Colonel Woods is an officer in the United States Air Force, assigned as the Commandant of the Academy for Innovative Ministry for the National Guard. He is responsible for developing, designing, and instructing curriculum on crisis intervention, suicide intervention, workplace violence, deployment ministry, and family support for all National Guard Personnel. He is a professional with more than 30 years of experience in the fields of mental health and substance abuse.A

Colonel Woods also serves as the Chief for Crisis Intervention, providing Crisis Intervention policy, guidance, training, and support for personnel assigned to National Guard units in 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. He is a certified instructor for nine different Critical Incident Stress Management courses, and is responsible for training and mobilizing Traumatic Stress Response Teams to provide assistance during times of national crisis. His duties include responding to mass fatalities, natural disasters, suicides, weapons of mass destruction, and acts of terrorism. In 2001 he served at the Pentagon as the chief of crisis operations, overseeing eight operational sites responding to the Pentagon Attack of September 11, 2001.

Sung Pil Yook, Ph.D. QPR Master Trainer (Korea)

Dr. Yook completed his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Korea University in Seoul, Korea. He learned about QPR while on a post-doctoral fellowship in suicide prevention at the University of Rochester School of Medicine. He completed his advanced QPR training in the United States and in Korea. Dr. Yook has provided consultation and training to police departments throughout Korea and is the suicide prevention advisor to the Republic of Korea National Defense Ministry.

Dr. Yook’s research and writing interests are in military and police stress, personality measurement, and suicide prevention. He has translated QPR and two of Dr. Quinnett’s books into Korean and is opening QPR-Korea.

Hyesun Lee, QPR Master Trainer (Korea)

Hyesun Lee is a Ph.D. candidate in Clinical Psychology in Korea University. She completed her advanced QPR training in the United States and in Korea. She has translated QPR program and Dr. Quinnett’s books into Korean. Dr. Yook and she are opening the Suicide Prevention Center in Korea University and plan to disseminate QPR in Korea.

She is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. She is working at the Student Counseling Center in Korea University as a researcher and counselor. She has interested in marital problem and crisis intervention.

Kevin Bratcher, M.S., Co-Author of the QPRT Risk Management System and Advanced Clinical Trainer

Kevin Bratcher, M.S. has over 19 years experience in suicide prevention, intervention and training. As a clinical treatment provider for both adults and adolescents, he developed and co-authored the QPRT Suicide Risk Management System. Mr. Bratcher’s administrative experience includes work as a Quality Improvement Manager and Behavioral Health Service Clinic Coordinator in large public and private sector mental health agencies. His has provided clinical services on both an outpatient and inpatient basis.

Kevin remains an active trainer, consultant and advocate for improving the national standard of care as it relates to suicide risk assessment and risk management. His energy over the course of the last six years has been focused on managing suicide risk from an administrative and systemic perspective within large healthcare organizations. He has trained hundreds of mental health professionals to improve their clinical assessment and suicide risk management skills both in professional seminars and university programs throughout the United States. Away from his work, Kevin enjoys time with his family camping and fishing in the Pacific Northwest.

Sergio Perez, M.D., Advisor Latin America

Dr. Sergio Perez Barrero is a clinical psychiatrist and the Founder of Suicidology Section of World Psychiatry Association and also Founder of World Suicidology Net. He is WHO and PAHO temporal advisor. Author of nine books about suicide prevention , he is also Clinical Titular Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Granma, Cuba. In addition to directing a large, public sector mental health program for adolescent, adults and elders, he maintained a public practice in primary care for 25 years. His primary interests are teach volunteers in preventing suicide and management of suicidal crisis for family, general practitioners, young psichiatrists and all people interested in this theme. He has been invited speaker in Italy, Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica , Dominican Republic, Uruguay, Peru, Mexico and Cuba.

Rebecca Cardell, DNSc, ARNP, Advanced Clinical Trainer

Dr. Cardell is an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner and a nurse suicidologist who has conducted research on the assessment and treatment of suicidal inpatients and published these findings in professional journals for the past ten years. She has served as an expert witness in legal cases involving hospital suicides and was a reviewer for the Joint Commission's book, Preventing Patient Suicide.

A clinician and professor at Washington State University, during her doctoral work at Rush University in Chicago she specialized in suicide prevention and intervention for inpatients. She served on the faculty of Washington State University's College of Nursing for ten years and taught suicide assessment and prevention to nurses for several years. She is a co-author of the QPRT-H: Suicide Risk Management Inventory for Hospitals, an Institute publication.

David J. Denino, LPC, NCC, QPR Master Trainer

David Denino is Director Emeritus of Counseling Services at Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven, CT. He is currently an adjunct faculty member teaching in the Clinical Mental Health program at SCSU. He has served as an executive board member to the Connecticut Counseling Association and American College Counseling Association, and has presented at many state and national conferences. Highlights of his career include the 2007 J. Philip Smith Outstanding Teaching Award at SCSU; Red Cross award for service as a first responder to Hurricane Katrina; Past Outstanding Emerging Leader, CT Counseling Association and CT Counselor of the year award, 1991. He has taught the QPR curriculum for several years, and was instrumental in bringing the QPR model to the state university system in Connecticut. Dave was awarded emeritus status upon retirement in 2010 after a 35 year career and lives in Wallingford, CT with his wife Vanessa, a nurse practitioner in private practice.

Matthew Schumacher, MA, Advanced Clinical Trainer

Matthew Schumacher, MA is a PhD candidate in clinical psychology at Northern Illinois University, and an adjunct professor of psychology at Aurora University. He is an active suicidologist with numerous publications and scholarly presentations and teaches on course, etiology and treatment of suicidality, mood and psychotic disorders. He is student representative to the Council of Delegates of the American Association of Suicidology.

Matthew received BA/MA degrees from the University of Chicago where he played football and was captain of the track & field team. From 2000-2003 he was clinical research manager of the Bipolar Disorders Clinic at Stanford School of Medicine, where he contributed to research projects in the neurobiology, etiology and treatment of bipolar disorders. He was also a clinical specialist in the NIMH funded Systematic Treatment Enhancement Program for Bipolar Disorders (STEP-BD), received specialty training in Family Focused Therapy, and was a junior investigator on the STEP-BD family impact study. He conducts research on the prevalence and etiology of bipolar spectrum psychopathology and suicidality with a particular emphasis on asolecents and young adults.

Michael McFarland, LMFT QPR Master Trainer

Michael currently serves as the Kentucky State Suicide Prevention Coordinator through the Kentucky Department for Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Addiction Services. With a clinical background, Michael conducts clinical trainings focused on suicide assessment, management and treatment throughout Kentucky. Michael also serves as the Project Director for a Garrett Lee Smith Memorial grant; a three year grant revolving around adolescent suicide prevention and intervention. Additionally, Michael serves as a staff consultant to the Kentucky Suicide Prevention Group (KSPG), a statewide organization whose mission is awareness, intervention and prevention of suicide across the state of Kentucky.

Michael’s clinical background includes membership on a mobile assessment team, working in a Psychiatric Hospital setting with both adults and adolescents, and he continues to maintain a private practice in Louisville, KY.

Marci Burroughs, Ph.D. QPR Master Trainer

Dr. Burroughs is currently the Associate Director/Director of Clinical Services at the University of Tennessee Counseling Center. Dr. Burroughs completed her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology at the University of Southern Mississippi and interned at the University of Tennessee Counseling Center. Marci is a Licensed Psychologist/Health Service Provider in Tennessee and an Adjunct, Assistant Professor for the Counseling Psychology Department at UT. Marci has a faculty appointment with the QPR Institute and is certified as a QPR Master Trainer. She is the Co-Coordinator of VolAware, the University of Tennessee’s Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Awareness committee. She coordinates the use of QPR at UT including the training of Gatekeeper Instructors and the gatekeeper trainings provided to faculty, staff and students as well as to the Knoxville community. Marci is on the Steering Committee for the Association for the Coordination of Counseling Center Clinical Services (ACCCCS).

Pam FlintPam Flint, Ph.D. QPR Master Trainer

Dr. Flint has over 16 years experience providing personal and career counseling at the University of North Texas and in her private practice in North Dallas. Prior to that, she worked as a registered nurse.  She has a co-therapist, Dakota that works with her at the Student Counseling Center at UNT.  Dakota is a Labrador retriever that has been certified by the Delta Society to work as an animal assistant.  Dr. Flint’s major areas of interest are with mood disorders, relationship issues, suicide prevention and psychopharmacology.  She serves as the Associate Director of Clinical Services at UNT.

Dr. Flint coordinates QPR gatekeeper trainings for UNT students, staff and faculty. In addition, Dr. Flint is a Master Trainer for Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), a two day suicide first aid interactive workshop for community caregivers.

James Allen, MPH

Mr. Allen holds a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Oklahoma, College of Public Health and has worked in the field of suicide prevention for eleven years. He worked for the Oklahoma State Department of Health for eight years with an emphasis on adolescent health, which included suicide prevention as a priority focus area. He chaired the Oklahoma Youth Suicide Prevention Council for four years, and assisted with the development of Oklahoma’s state plan for the prevention of youth suicide. He assisted in the development of numerous Youth Listening Conferences and has presented on topics including suicide prevention, adolescent pregnancy and parenting, injury prevention and program evaluation.

Mr. Allen has been with the University of Central Oklahoma for the past three years, serving as Assistant Director for Health Promotion where he continues his work in suicide prevention through grant management and teaching the Question, Persuade, Refer program to students, faculty and staff. He also teaches as an adjunct instructor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Studies.

Donna Soileau

Donna Soileau is a graduate of Auburn University. She is the former Director of Mental Health America of Sumter County and currently serves as the Coordinator for Suicide Prevention for Mental Health America of South Carolina. She received her suicide prevention certification from the QPR Institute in 2004 and received her Master QPR trainer certification in June 2007. Donna is married, has two sons and enjoys reading, traveling and outdoor adventures.

Constance Shepard, MSW

Constance Shepard is a graduate from Livingstone College in Salisbury, NC with a Bachelor of Social Work Degree and has a Masters of Social Work Degree from the University of Georgia in Athens. Constance is an adjunct instructor and a PhD student at the University of South Carolina’s College of Social Work Program. Her research interests are depression among multicultural groups, suicide prevention, and multicultural parenting influence with children.

Constance has nearly 30 years of professional social work experiences. Her work has encompassed individual and group counseling, program/grant development, management, evaluation and organization management. Constance has trained and educated consumers, students, and professionals in a broad range of mental health topics. Currently, the Affiliate Director for Mental Health America of South Carolina (MHASC) Constance coordinates statewide mental health public awareness, prevention activities, and services delivery for 20 local affiliates. Actively engaged with community collaborations Constance has chaired and participated on mental health, children, and suicide prevention coalitions. She is the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Outreach Partner Coordinator for the state of South Carolina.

Kathryn Falbo-Woodson, Master Trainer

Kathryn Falbo-Woodson currently serves as the Director of Advocacy and Outreach for the Mental Health Association of Central Carolinas in Charlotte, NC, where she has been employed since 2006. In this role, Kathryn has created the infrastructure for a statewide advocacy collaborative and a local multicultural outreach program. She has worked in the mental health field since 1995, providing direct care, case management, volunteer management, advocacy, fundraising, program development, training, oversight, and outreach. She is a certified trainer for Mental Health First Aid-USA and Q.P.R. ® (Question, Persuade, Refer) Suicide Prevention (and QPR Adapted for Refugees), as well as a Master Trainer for Q.P.R. She has an undergraduate in Psychology, with a minor in Spanish, from West Virginia University, and is currently enrolled in the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill Graduate School of Social Work (MSW), with a concentration on Marriage and Family Therapy. She lives in Indian Trail with her husband of 17 years, Bryson, and their two children, Emmy and Sam, and their dog, Shadow.

Sal Caraco, Master Trainer

Sal Caraco currently serves as the Compeer Director for the Mental Health Association of Central Carolinas, where he has been employed since 2006. He has worked in the field of human services since 1980, providing direct care, program management, and training. He is a certified trainer in Mental Health First Aid-USA and Gatekeeper Q.P.R. ® (Question, Persuade, Refer), Strategies for Crisis Intervention, and Prevention (SCIP), as well as a Master Trainer for Q.P.R. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from Saint Joseph's College (Indiana). He is married and lives in Charlotte with his wife Cherene. He has two daughters and is also a grandfather.

Julie A. Haurykiewicz, MA, Master Trainer

Julie Haurykiewicz is the Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at Lawrence University (Appleton, Wisconsin), where she also teaches Freshman Studies and public speaking.  She was part of Lawrence University’s Suicide Prevention Lifeline Core Team (an initiative funded by a SAMHSA/Garrett Lee Smith Suicide Prevention Grant) which allowed her to become a QPR Gatekeeper Instructor in 2010.  In 2012, she advanced to the level of QPR Master Trainer through apprenticeship with Bridgette Hensley.  Julie is active in coordinating and facilitating QPR suicide prevention trainings on the Lawrence campus and in her community more generally.  She serves on the Fox Valley Community QPR Advisory Board and has assisted in organizing two QPR instructor outreach/networking events for approximately 50 QPR instructors in her region.  Julie earned her bachelor of arts degree in English and French from the University of Notre Dame (South Bend, IN) and her master of arts degree in English from Marquette University (Milwaukee, WI).  She has completed coursework and qualifying exams towards a Ph.D. in English at SUNY-Binghamton (Binghamton, NY).  Julie lives in Appleton, WI with her dog Murphy, and she enjoys knitting, reading, and glass crafts.

© QPR Institute 2011