2014 Great Plains Disaster Behavioral Health Conference

The Great Plains Disaster Behavioral Health Conference focused on the psychological consequences of emergencies and disasters, including the impact of exposure to traumatic situations for survivors, responders, and communities, and practical steps to counter these impacts.

Conference Objectives
  1. Learn how to create a plan to manage the aftermath of a critical incident, identify effects of post-incident trauma, and effectively address survivors’ post-incident needs.
  2. Learn self-care coping techniques to minimize the risk of secondary trauma, compassion fatigue, and burnout in disaster behavioral health workers.
  3. Understand the psychological process of receiving a disaster warning, lessons learned by other emergency responders about developing warnings, and who to assist survivors with emotional reactions related to warning compliance.
  4. Review ethical considerations and challenges in providing disaster behavioral health services.
Conference Faculty and Materials

Click here for the conference agenda.

SSA Perry Woo is an Assistant Special Agent in Charge with Homeland Security Investigations, Los Angeles field office.  Mr. Woo has 20 years of law enforcement experience both as a special agent and police officer.  Mr. Woo has certifications and has expertise in cybercrimes, financial investigations, computer forensics, and undercover operations. On February 16, 2012, Mr. Woo was involved in a deadly workplace violence shooting at the Long Beach Federal building and had to take lethal action against another special agent in order to save the life of another special agent.  The FBI concluded that Mr. Woo's heroic actions not only save the lives of the critically-wounded agent and himself, but countless others who were inside the federal building during the time of the incident.
Click here to view an article regarding Mr. Woos’ presentation.

John Lehnhoff, Ph.D., has practiced clinical psychology since 1977 after receiving his doctorate from the University of Nebraska’s Clinical Psychology Ph.D. Program. He has served as the director of a community mental health center office, engaged in private practice, and was Clinical Director and Clinical Consultant at Omaha’s Richard Young Center for 16 years. Dr. Lehnhoff has served on adjunct faculty in the Clinical Psychology and Counseling Psychology programs at UNL, and the Creighton Medical School Department of Psychiatry. He has provided many professional and community education trainings on numerous clinical topics. Since 2003 he has served as a Clinical Psychologist Consultant for all Alegent Creighton Health Behavioral Services in Nebraska and Iowa.
Click here to view Dr. Lehnhoff’s presentation.

Karla Vermeulen, Ph.D., currently teaches undergraduate and graduate courses at the State University of New York, New Paltz. Dr. Vermeulen is currently developing an Advanced Certificate in Trauma and Disaster Mental Health Counseling to provide specialized graduate education to mental health professionals. In her role as Deputy Director for the Institute for Disaster Mental Health she has coordinated the development and delivery of curricula for the New York State Office of Mental Health and Department of Health, the Red Cross, the United Nations, and other organizations, and has worked with Palestinian and Israeli helpers to create pyscho-educational materials for coping with trauma.
Click here to view Dr. Vermeulen’s presentation.

Jim Harvey, LCSW, retired from Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Behavioral Health in November 2013. At NE-DHHS, some of Mr. Harvey’s projects included state level program development and implementation in employment, housing, criminal justice, and quality improvement. Mr. Harvey also served as the state disaster behavioral health coordinator for 20 years and was designated as the State Planner for Community Mental Health Service Block Grant for 15 years. Mr. Harvey also has over 12 years of experience providing mediation services and is experienced in large group facilitation.
Click here to view Mr. Harvey’s presentation.
Click here to view Mr. Harvey’s presentation handout.

We would like to extend a thank you to our conference sponsors.