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Scientific Advisory Group


Pamela Y. Collins, MD, MPH, Director, Office for Research on Disparities and Global Mental Health (ORDGMH), NIMH

Pamela Collins, Director, Office for Research on Disparities and Global Mental Health, NIMH

 Dr. Pamela Y. Collins is the Associate Director for Special Populations, Director of the Office for Research on Disparities and Global Mental Health, and Director of the Office of Rural Mental Health Research at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). In her roles at NIMH, Dr. Collins coordinates research efforts to increase mental health equity locally and globally. As such, she oversees the development, articulation, and implementation of the NIMH strategy for investments in global mental health and mental health disparities research, and the coordination of NIMH’s efforts in women’s mental health research. In addition to her work at NIMH, Dr. Collins was one of the editors of the 2011 Lancet series on Global Mental Health, was a leader of the Grand Challenges in Global Mental Health initiative, and led the development of the 2013 PLoS Medicine Policy Forum series on global perspectives for integrating mental health. Prior to her arrival at NIMH, while a faculty member at Columbia University, Dr. Collins’ research focused on the intersections of HIV prevention, care, and treatment, and the mental health needs of women of color in the U.S. as well as underrepresented/low income groups in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa. Dr. Collins obtained her MD from Cornell University Medical College and her MPH from Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health (MSPH). She trained in psychiatry and completed an NIMH post-doctoral fellowship at Columbia University/New York State Psychiatric Institute. As a research fellow in the Department of Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Collins studied cultural psychiatry and applied medical anthropology. Until 2012, she retained faculty appointments at Columbia University in the Department of Epidemiology at MSPH and the Department of Psychiatry at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, where she was an Associate Professor.

Solfrid Johansen, PhD, Norwegian Institute of Public Health

Solfrid Johansen, Norwegian Institute of Public Health

 Dr. Johansen is a Senior Adviser in the Department of International Public Health at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. She coordinates the institute’s activities and projects that are related to the Arctic and is responsible for bilateral cooperation between Norway and five countries in Central and Southern Europe with a focus on reducing inequalities in health. She was co-chair in the Canadian initiative “Sharing Hope: Circumpolar Perspectives on Promising Practices for Promoting Mental Wellness and Resilience.” The Norwegian Institute of Public Health has established research collaborations and projects with international partners and cooperates with health authorities in low- and middle-income countries on capacity building, health surveillance and research. The institute is a scientific advisor for the relevant Ministries on issues regarding global health and coordinates Norway’s role as co-chair in the RISING SUN initiative.

Christina Larsen, PhD, National Institute of Public Health, University of Denmark

Christina Larsen, National Institute of Public Health, University of Denmark

 Dr. Larsen is a sociologist and holds a PhD in Public Health. She has worked in the field of circumpolar health since 2007 at the Center for Health Research in Greenland at the National Institute of Public Health (University of Southern Denmark). Her research interests are especially social inequality in health, pathological gambling, suicide prevention, mental health, and the influence of the ongoing social transition on the health of the Greenland Inuit. Based on the countrywide population-based health surveys, she works with social epidemiological research to improve our understanding of health among indigenous populations in the Arctic. Dr. Larsen has lived and worked in Greenland for many years and is actively involved in projects across the Arctic which focuses on improving the mental well-being for indigenous peoples across the circumpolar area.

Anthony Phillips, PhD, Scientific Director, Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

Anthony Phillips, Scientific Director, Canadian Institutes of Health Research

 Dr. Phillips is the Scientific Director of the CIHR Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction, Founding Director of the University of British Columbia’s (UBC) Institute of Mental Health, a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, and a senior investigator with UBC’s Djavad Mowafagian Centre for Brain Health. Recently, he served as President of Collegium Internationale Neuro-Psychopharmacologicum (CINP). His research focuses on the neurobiology of motivation, drug addiction and mental illness, with a specific emphasis on clinical implications and he has published over 300 peer-reviewed papers. In July 2015, he was awarded the Order of Canada and is both a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. He has received numerous awards for his research including a Steacie Fellowship from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC); the CINP Arvid Carlsson Medal and the Innovations in Neuropsychopharmacology Award, plus the Heinz Lehmann Award from the Canadian College of Neuropsychopharmacology.


Charlene Apok, University of Alaska, Fairbanks (UAF)

Charlene Apok, University of Alaska, Fairbanks (UAF)

  Ms. Apok was raised in Anchorage, Alaska; her family is from Golovin and White Mountain, Alaska, in the Bering Straits region. In 2013, Ms. Apok graduated cum laude from the University of Washington (UW) with a BA in American Ethnic Studies (AES) and a minor in Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies. As part of her undergraduate experience, Ms. Apok studied Environmental Science in Kenya and Public Health in India; both projects involved working with local indigenous peoples. She received a pilot study grant from the UW AES Department to complete her honors thesis, Storytelling is Healing. Ms. Apok has advanced to Master of Arts candidacy in the Department of Rural Development at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks (UAF). Focused areas of interest are Circumpolar Health, Community-Based Research Principles, and Indigenous Community Healing and Wellness, with attention to gender relations. Ms. Apok’s Master’s Project, Resilient Spirits, is a mixed methodology of talking circles and photovoice. The project aims to highlight narratives of healing and resilience through stories of survivorship among people in the Bering Straits region. Since 2014, Ms. Apok has worked on the Women’s and Men’s Leadership & Strength Project through the UAF School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, supported by a grant from the U.S. National Science Foundation.

Laura Baez, LCSW, LPC, MSW, Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium

Laura Baez, MSW, Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium

 Ms. Báez has been the Director of Behavioral Health, Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC), for its Division of Community Health Service since June 2011.  She received her undergraduate degree from Texas Women’s University and her MSW from the University of Texas in Arlington. Prior to joining ANTHC, Ms. Báez worked for the Yukon Kuskokwim Health Corporation for 15 years, serving the last seven years as their Behavioral Health Administrator. Prior to moving to Bethel, Ms. Báez worked in a variety of behavioral health settings in Texas. She has more than 26 years of experience assessing, implementing, managing and supporting behavioral health services in urban and rural settings, including outpatient, inpatient, residential, school-based and hospital emergency, as well extensive experience serving child, adolescent, adult, and developmentally disabled populations. She is a member of the Alaska Tribal Behavioral Health Director Committee and served as the Chair for four years.

Peter Bjerregaard, MD, Centre for Health Research in Greenland

Peter Bjerregaard, Centre for Health Research in Greenland

 Dr. Bjerregaard, Professor of Arctic Health since 1996, worked as a District Medical Officer in Northern Greenland in 1978-1980, then for four years in Kenya until his research career started in 1989. His main research interests are social epidemiology of mental health and cardiovascular disease among the Inuit in Greenland but he also spends much time advising the Greenland Government on a variety of health issues. He is former president of the Circumpolar Health Research Network, a current member of the International Union for Circumpolar Health, and chairman of the Danish-Greenlandic Society for Circumpolar Health. He was scientific editor of International Journal of Circumpolar Health 1996-2012. Dr. Bjerregaard has published scientific articles, reports in English and Danish, and books concerning the health of the Inuit.

Eduardo Chachamovich, MD, PhD, McGill University and Douglas Mental Health University Institute

Eduardo Chachamovich, MD, PhD, McGill University and Douglas Mental Health University Institute

 Dr. Chachamovich is a psychiatrist with research expertise in indigenous mental health, suicide prevention, and in modern psychometric analyses. He received his doctorate in Psychiatry from UFRGS/Brazil and University of Edinburgh/UK, and has been involved for several years in multi-center studies with the World Health Organization. He also completed a two-year postdoctoral fellowship at McGill, which consisted of a comprehensive assessment of risk and protective factors for suicide completion among Inuit in the Territory of Nunavut. At McGill, he is an Assistant Professor for the Department of Psychiatry. He is also a member of the McGill Group for Suicide Studies, and the Network for Aboriginal Mental Health Research (NAHMR). Dr. Chachamovich is involved in several studies in Northern Canada, Norway, and Sweden. His teaching activities include supervision of residents in northern communities, as well as mentoring graduate students. Finally, Dr. Chachamovich is the Medical Chief of the Northern Mental Health Program at McGill, in charge of designing and delivering psychiatric care in Nunavik.

Susan Chatwood, MSc, Institute for Circumpolar Health Research

Susan Chatwood, MSc, Institute for Circumpolar Health Research

 Ms. Chatwood is the Executive and Scientific Director of the Institute for Circumpolar Health Research in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada. She is an Assistant Professor in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. She has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from University of British Columbia, holds a Masters in Epidemiology from McGill University and is a PhD candidate in Medical Science at the University of Toronto. She is currently a Fulbright Arctic Initiative Scholar and will be based at UCLA to conduct research on health systems performance in circumpolar regions. She is Past President of the Canadian Society for Circumpolar Health. Ms. Chatwood has spent most of her career in remote and northern communities, working in clinical settings, public health and research. Her research interests include circumpolar health systems stewardship and performance, and the synthesis of knowledge that promotes broader connotations of health systems and wellness. During the Canadian chairmanship of the Arctic Council, she led an international team of researchers who explored promising practices for mental wellness initiatives in circumpolar regions.

Cody Chipp, PhD, Aleut International Association

Cody Chipp, Aleut International Association

 Dr. Chipp, a licensed psychologist, serves as the Behavioral Health Clinical Supervisor for the Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association, a Tribal Health Organization in Alaska. He earned his doctorate is in Clinical-Community Psychology, with a Rural and Indigenous emphasis, from the University of Alaska. As a direct service provider, he provides behavioral health services through regional outpatient medical clinics, addressing mental health and substance abuse concerns, and behavioral change in chronic disease management. Dr. Chipp’s professional background also includes research in rural settings, with an emphasis on service delivery and health outcomes of underserved populations. He has multiple peer-reviewed publications in the areas of nutrition and rural clinical practice, using both quantitative and qualitative research methods. He is also the Vice-Chair for Alaska’s Tribal Behavioral Health Directors, which provides an opportunity to engage on a state-wide policy level to address the behavioral health needs of Alaska Native peoples throughout the state.

Allison Crawford, MD, Director, Northern Psychiatric Outreach Program, University of Toronto

Allison Crawford, Director, Northern Psychiatric Outreach Program, University of Toronto

 Dr. Crawford is representing the Inuit Circumpolar Council in the RISING-SUN initiative. Dr. Crawford is a psychiatrist and Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, where she is the Director of the Northern Psychiatric Outreach Program and Telepsychiatry at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. She has worked as a psychiatrist in Nunavut for 10 years. Her research focus is on outreach and transcultural psychiatry, including: issues related to access and equity; cultural safety; collaborative and community-based care; technology; cultural adaptation of evidence-based interventions; and the incorporation of Inuit knowledge into healthcare in Inuit Nunangat. Current projects include: consulting to Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, with the Mental Health Commission of Canada, to create a Canadian National Inuit Suicide Prevention Strategy; and developing online educational resources on Inuit cultural safety and trauma-informed care.

Alex Crosby, MD, MPH, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Dr. Crosby graduated with a BA in chemistry from Fisk University, an MD from Howard University's School of Medicine, and an MPH in health administration and management from Emory University's School of Public Health. He completed training programs in Family Medicine then General Preventive Medicine and Public Health and epidemiology. He has responded to numerous public health emergencies and led investigative teams, addressing adolescent suicide clusters, civil unrest, school-associated violence, sniper attacks, and firearms-related injuries due to celebratory shooting, Hurricane Rita, and Ebola virus. He has authored or co-authored over 75 publications. His work as a medical epidemiologist focuses on prevention of suicidal behavior, child maltreatment, intimate partner violence, interpersonal violence among adolescents, and assault injuries among minorities.

Roberto A. Delgado, Jr., PhD, National Institute of Mental Health

Roberto A. Delgado, Jr., National Institute of Mental Health

 Dr. Delgado is a Scientific Program Manager at NIMH ORDGMH, supporting the Institute’s efforts to reduce to mental health disparities both within and outside the United States. In this capacity, he is coordinating RISING SUN, an Arctic Council initiative with the goal of producing a toolkit that enables communities, governments, and key stakeholders to measure the effectiveness of suicide prevention interventions among Arctic indigenous communities. He arrived at NIMH following an American Association for the Advancement of Sciences Science & Technology Policy Fellowship at the National Science Foundation (NSF). At NSF, he worked in the Directorate for Geosciences supporting the research goals and policy activities of the Arctic Sciences Section in the Division of Polar Programs through his engagement in the Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee, the U.S. Arctic Policy Group, and two international working groups of the Arctic Council focused on the conservation of Arctic flora and fauna, as well as on sustainable development.

Denise Dillard, PhD, Southcentral Foundation

Denise Dillard, Southcentral Foundation

 Dr. Dillard is of Inupiaq Eskimo descent, born in Fairbanks, Alaska, and raised in Anchorage. She is a licensed psychologist and director of research for Southcentral Foundation (SCF), a tribally owned and operated health care organization. Denise has spent more than 18 years conducting quantitative and qualitative research. She oversees a variety of research projects addressing tribal health priorities including suicide, trauma, substance abuse and dependence, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Her research portfolio also includes work about ethical and cultural implications of genetic research and other research where biospecimens are collected and stored for potential future use. She works directly with the SCF Board of Directors as they review and consider approval of research involving Alaska Native people in and around Anchorage and serves on the Alaska Area Institutional Review Board.

David Driscoll, PhD, University of Alaska, Anchorage

David Driscoll, University of Alaska, Anchorage

 Dr. Driscoll is Director of the Institute for Circumpolar Health Studies at the University of Alaska, Anchorage. He is a medical anthropologist and epidemiologist with a specialization in the application of interdisciplinary and mixed method health research designs to assess the social and physical determinants of community health. Dr. Driscoll conducts research that combines anthropological and epidemiological methods to develop and evaluate evidence-based risk communication, health promotion, and disease prevention interventions for rural, isolated, and culturally-distinct communities. He has published widely on his research, including in the Journal of Rural Health, Health Promotion Practice, the International Journal of Circumpolar Health, and the Journal of Health Communication.

Heidi Anita Ericksen, MD, Sámi National Centre of Mental Health and Substance Abuse

Heidi Anita Ericksen, Sámi National Centre of Mental Health and Substance Abuse

 Dr. Eriksen is a Sámi doctor born and raised up in the only community in Finland with Sámi majority, Utsjoki. She has worked in health care centers for the last ten years in Utsjoki. In 2015, she started specializing in child and adolescent psychiatry in SANKS. After moving back to her community, she became interested in Sámi health issues, mental health, research ethics and health care systems. She has been an elected member of Sámi Parliament in Finland 2008-2011, and a member of the health and social board of the Sámi parliament during 2008-2011 and 2012-2015. She has also been a member of the advisory board of Primary Health Care Unit of Lappi Hospital District, chair of the Health Care Services of Remote Areas working group (2012), chair of the Sámi health care services working group (2014), and has served on advisory boards for many developmental projects concerning Sami´s health care systems.

Jack Hicks, Suicide Prevention Researcher

Jack Hicks, Suicide Prevention Researcher

 Jack Hicks served as Director of Research for the Nunavut Implementation Commission, the federal commission responsible for advising on the design and implementation of the Nunavut government. Upon the creation of Nunavut on April 1, 1999, he became the new government’s first Director of Evaluation and Statistics. In 2004, he left the government to work on the ‘Learning from Lives that have been Lived’ suicide follow-back study. As Suicide Prevention Advisor to the Government of Nunavut, Mr. Hicks worked across institutional ‘silos’ to build the interagency partnership which in 2010 released the evidence-informed Nunavut Suicide Prevention Strategy. He is now a university lecturer and social research consultant. Mr. Hicks is completing an external PhD dissertation at Ilisimatusarfik (University of Greenland) on the social determinants of elevated rates of suicide behavior by Inuit youth in Nunavut. He is a member of the Board of the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention.

Per Jonas Partapuoli, Sami Youth Representative

Per Jonas Partapuoli, Sami Youth Representative

 Mr. Partapuoli was born and raised in Laevas Sami Village, a reindeer herding district in Kiruna municipality, Sweden. He and his family work in reindeer husbandry, an essential part of their lives. Since 2014, Mr. Partapuoli has been a board member of the International Centre for Reindeer Husbandry, established by the Norwegian Government in 2005 as a contribution to the unique international cooperation of circumpolar reindeer herding peoples. Mr. Partapuoli has also been a board member of the Sami Youth Organization in Sweden, Sáminuorra, where he served as President from 2013 to 2015. During these years, Mr. Partapuoli worked actively on mental health issues concerning reindeer herding youth who were dealing with the loss of grazing lands for traditional livelihoods. Mr. Partapuoli is an advocate for indigenous peoples and their traditional lands. He has worked toward empowering the Sami people with the right to participate in discussions with Swedish and international leaders, addressing the policies and decisions concerning their territories. In addition to working in reindeer husbandry, Mr. Partapuoli is a part-time student. He has also done some work for the Saami Council, an umbrella organization for Sami organizations in Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia, where he assisted and advised on issues relating to reindeer husbandry among indigenous peoples.

Beverly Pringle, PhD, National Institute of Mental Health

Beverly Pringle, National Institute of Mental Health

 Dr. Pringle is Chief of the Global Mental Health Research Program at NIMH, where she provides scientific leadership for the institute’s global research activities, monitors NIMH’s international grants and activities, and provides technical consultation to the global mental health research community. Dr. Pringle served as Chief of the Services Research Branch at the National Institute on Drug Abuse before joining NIMH. She worked with the Mozambique Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Mozambique Ministry of Health in 2012, assisting staff with capacity building and training in research design, technical writing, and data use. Before joining NIH in 2002, Dr. Pringle was Senior Research Associate and Managing Director at Policy Studies Associates, where she directed analysis, policy studies, and research in education. Dr. Pringle has also served as Supervisor of Virginia’s statewide Migrant Education Program, been a member of the National Association of State Directors of Migrant Education, and was Assistant Director of State & Federal Programs for Adrian Public Schools, Michigan, where she directed the Migrant Education Program.

Stacy Rasmus, PhD, Center for Alaska Native Health Research, University of Alaska, Fairbanks

Stacy Rasmus, Center for Alaska Native Health Research, University of Alaska, Fairbanks

 As a Research Associate Professor in the Institute of Arctic Biology and Center of Alaska Native Health Research at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Dr. Rasmus’ research focuses on understanding the intersections between culture, health and wellbeing, and the role of social determinants in addressing health disparities among American Indian and Alaska Native peoples. In Alaska, Dr. Rasmus works in collaboration with Yup’ik communities to: 1) develop, implement, and disseminate a cultural, community intervention to reduce disparities in alcohol abuse and suicide among Yup’ik Alaska Native youth, and 2) describe a comparative model of Arctic indigenous youth and community resilience and adaptation in response to rapidly changing social and environmental conditions. Relevant publications describe building Alaska Native strengths and protections against alcohol abuse and suicide, Alaska Native youth resilience, and collaborative and community-based participatory research methods in the development of indigenous theory-driven interventions.

Mette Lyberg Rasmussen, PhD, Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Division of Mental Health

Mette Lyberg Rasmussen, Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Division of Mental Health

 Dr. Rasmussen is a clinical psychologist and suicide researcher at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Division of Mental Health. She gained her PhD in psychology from the University of Oslo. Her thesis focused on suicide among young men, and she is currently undertaking post-doctoral research on suicide among men and the role of masculinity in relation to help-seeking issues. Dr. Lyberg Rasmussen has led a suicide prevention team in Norway for many years and, has together with two other Norwegian authors, developed the Norwegian national guidelines for survivors after suicide (2011).

Catherine Roca, MD, National Institute of Mental Health

Cathy Roca, National Institute of Mental Health

 Dr. Roca is Chief of the Women’s Program and Lead, American Indian / Alaska Native Research Programs at the National Institute of Mental Health. In her current roles, she works on issues related to research on suicide prevention in American Indian and Alaska Native youth, as well as research on perinatal mental health, sex differences in mental disorders, and women’s mental health research. Previous to her current position, Dr. Roca was an Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry and Medical Director of the Women’s Mental Health Clinic at Georgetown University Hospital, as well as a consultant to the Genetic Epidemiology Branch in the NIMH Division of Intramural Research Programs (IRP). She has also served in a variety of positions within the IRP in the Behavioral Endocrinology Branch and in the Office of the Clinical Director. As a clinician, Dr. Roca has worked in rural community mental health settings at both state and federal Indian Health Service-funded sites.

Sigrún Sigurðardóttir, MSc, University of Akureyri (Iceland)

Sigrún Sigurðardóttir, University of Akureyri (Iceland)

 Ms. Sigurðardóttir is an Assistant Professor at the School of Health Sciences at the University of Akureyri in Iceland. She has a BSc in Nursing, a MSc in Health Sciences, and is presently a PhD candidate in Nursing at the University of Iceland and will finish her dissertation in 2016. The focus of her research is on childhood sexual abuse, and its consequences for health and wellbeing, as well as on holistic and integrative therapies for people suffering from childhood sexual abuse.

Anne Silviken, PhD, Centre for Sámi Health Research

Anne Silviken, Centre for Sámi Health Research

 Dr. Silviken is a Norwegian psychologist educated at UiT, the Arctic University of Norway. She has been working clinically since 1998 mainly with suicidal behavior and substance use/abuse among indigenous Sámi adolescents and young adults at Sámi Psychiatric Youth Team (Sámi Norwegian National Advisory Board on Mental Health and Substance Abuse). Dr. Silviken has been taking part of different suicide prevention projects in the Sámi population in Norway and has been an ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training) trainer since 1999. Dr. Silviken is also working as a researcher at the Center for Sámi Health Research. The topic of her PhD thesis was suicidal behavior in the Sámi population in Northern Norway (2007). Dr. Silviken was project leader for the “North Norwegian bereavement study” and the planned autopsy study “Stories about life and death: Exploring the bereaved person’s narratives as a way to understand suicide among young Sámi men”.

Janet Smylie, MD, Applied Public Health Chair, Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Janet Smylie, Applied Public Health Chair, Canadian Institutes of Health Research

 Dr. Smylie is a family physician and public health researcher. She currently works as a research scientist at St. Michael’s hospital, Center for Research on Inner City Health, where she directs the Well Living House Applied Research Center for Indigenous Infant, Child and Family Health. Her primary academic appointment is as an Associate Professor in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto. She maintains a part-time clinical practice at Seventh Generation Midwives Toronto. Dr. Smylie has practiced and taught family medicine in a variety of Aboriginal communities both urban and rural. She is a member of the Métis Nation of Ontario, with Métis roots in Saskatchewan. Her research interests are focused in the area of addressing the health inequities that challenge Indigenous infants, children and their families through applied health services research. Dr. Smylie currently leads multiple research projects in partnership with First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities/organizations. Dr Smylie holds a CIHR Applied Public Health Research Chair in Indigenous Health Knowledge and Information and was honored with a National Aboriginal Achievement (Indspire) Award in Health in 2012.

Jon Petter Stoor, MSc, Sámi Norwegian National Advisory Board on Mental Health and Substance Abuse

Jon Petter Stoor, Sámi Norwegian National Advisory Board on Mental Health and Substance Abuse

 Mr. Stoor was born and raised in Laeváš Sámi reindeer-herding community in northernmost Sweden. He is a clinical psychologist and a researcher (MSc) at SANKS, working to prevent suicide through understanding sociocultural meanings of suicide among Sámi and providing Sámi patients with culturally sensitive and relevant psychiatric treatments. Stoor is particularly engaged in improving the situation for Sámi youth in Sweden but he is also collaborating in several international efforts including strengthening the evidence base for land-based suicide prevention for indigenous boys and men in Canada, and developing a plan for suicide prevention in Sápmi (crossing the borders within "land of the Sámi"). He is also a board member of the International Union for Circumpolar Health.

Yury Sumarokov, MD, Northern State Medical University, Arkhangelsk Region (Russian Federation)

Yury Sumarokov, Northern State Medical University, Arkhangelsk Region (Russian Federation)

 Dr. Sumarokov earned his MD from the Arkhangelsk State Medical Institute (Russia) in 1983 and has worked as a rural practitioner in Nyandoma district of Arkhangelsk for 15 years. He was then Chief Physician of Regional Psychiatry Hospital #1 (the largest mental clinic in northern Russia, with 750 beds) and, during 2001-2003, he organized the Medical Information and Analytics Center in Arkhangelsk. During this same period, Dr. Sumarokov was involved as an expert of the EU TACIS project in the areas of health management, prevention and primary health care. Since 2003, Dr. Sumarokov has worked at the Northern State Medical University and coordinated the international co-operation program. He became a director of Arkhangelsk International School of Public Health (ISPHA) at the first stage of the project in 2006-2008, and was involved in ISPHA as a co-teacher of an MPH-training module “Mental Health and Addictive Behavior.” His major research interest focuses on the problem of suicides among the indigenous and non-indigenous populations of Russian North. Since 2010, he has been conducting research in cooperation with the Department of Community Medicine at UiT-The Arctic University of Norway.

Lisa Wexler, MSW, PhD, School of Public Health and Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Lisa Wexler, School of Public Health and Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

 Dr. Wexler is an Associate Professor and Program Head of Community Health Education at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She received her doctorate focused on community education and youth studies at the University of Minnesota in December 2005. Dr. Wexler’s research investigates the conditions that increase suicide risk, and importantly, those factors, relations and circumstances that support youth resilience and wellness. Her 5-site interdisciplinary study (NSF ARC-07556211), Circumpolar Indigenous Pathways to Adulthood, engaged indigenous youth from Siberia, Alaska, Canada, and Norway in one of the first studies to use participatory methods internationally. These Inupiaq, Yupik, Sami, Eveny and Inuit youth co-researchers used film and digital storytelling as vehicles for dissemination and translation of research findings (NSF ARC-1219344). Using her innovative participatory method—Intergenerational Dialogue Exchange and Action, she is creating opportunities for learning and relationship-building within and across indigenous communities. Her most recent project, Developing Proximal Care for Alaska Native Youth Suicide Prevention (R34-MH096884), develops and evaluates a community education model to translate research to practice, and to build linkages between formal and informal systems of care in rural Alaska Native villages. Overall, Dr. Wexler’s collaborative research aims to deepen understanding of indigenous youth suicide and resilience in ways that offer possibilities for action.