Stuart Ablon, Ph.D., is Founder and Director of Think:Kids in the Department of Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital. An award-winning psychologist, Dr. Ablon is Associate Professor and the Thomas G. Stemberg Endowed Chair in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. He is the author of three books, Changeable, hand-picked by Malcolm Gladwell, Adam Grant, Dan Pink, and Susan Cain for their Next Big Idea Club, The School Discipline Fix, and Treating Explosive Kids: The Collaborative Problem Solving Approach.
Dr. Ablon received his doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of California at Berkeley and completed his training at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. One of the world’s top-rated thought-leaders and keynote speakers, Dr. Ablon teaches educators, parents, clinicians, managers, and leaders a very different approach to understanding and addressing challenging behavior of all types and in all people. Dr. Ablon has helped hundreds of organizations throughout the world implement the Collaborative Problem Solving approach.
As Manager of Program Evaluation, Sanya manages all aspects of evaluation across the organization. She is responsible for designing data collection tools and procedures to assess the quality and effectiveness of all programs and implementing those procedures. She reports results to internal and external stakeholders to support program improvement decisions and communicate the program’s impact on families.
Before joining Think:Kids, Sanya worked at Jumpstart for Young Children, where she oversaw child and volunteer data collection and management across 70+ sites to ensure the Evaluation department had meaningful information about Jumpstart’s impact and reach. Before that, she worked at UTEC, where she was responsible for developing and promoting program monitoring tools to strengthen the organization’s data culture. Sanya has 5+ years of experience in program evaluation and data operations and management, with a passion for supporting social change organizations in having maximum impact.
Sanya holds a Master of Public Administration from NYU Wagner School of Public Service, a Bachelor, and a Master in History from the University of Delhi, India.
Lindsey Baughman-Dalton, MSW, is a Senior Project Manager for Think:Kids focusing on clinical organizations. As a project manager, Lindsey supports Collaborative Problem Solving implementation at organizations serving kids and families worldwide. She works with partner organizations to design and execute plans to ensure high-quality implementation of Collaborative Problem Solving. As the key point person for each project, Lindsey plays a critical role in the relationship between Think:Kids and partner organizations.
Lindsey is trained as a clinical social worker. Her previous work includes direct practice with children and families in inpatient, outpatient, and community-based settings and embraces a strength-based collaborative approach. She has served as a field instructor, clinical supervisor, and field liaison for MSW students and recent graduates since 2010. Before joining the Think:Kids team, Lindsey was the Assistant Director of Field Education at Simmons University. She supported the learning and development of MSW students and managed the complex operations of a large field education department.
Lindsey received her BS in Psychology and Rehabilitation Services from Pennsylvania State University and her MSW from Boston College.
Elizabeth Buchholz, MNS is a Certified Trainer and Consultant and works with learners across the Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) continuum. She provides training and coaching for organizations, provides implementation consultation sessions, and facilitates learning through the Certification program.
Elizabeth has experience working directly with youth and families using Collaborative Problem Solving in residential treatment, private day schools, and treatment foster care. As an Organization Learning Manager for a statewide nonprofit, she provided training and consultation in Collaborative Problem Solving and Implementation to staff and families in each of these settings. Elizabeth also led the direct care team in a large residential facility using the CPS approach as both a human resources management approach and as the guiding philosophy for interacting with and treating clients and families.
Elizabeth received a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice with a minor in Philosophy and a master’s degree in Nonprofit Studies with a concentration in Implementation Science and Trauma Informed Care from the University of Richmond.
Hallie Carpenter, EdS, NCSP is the Manager of Implementation and a Certified Trainer and Consultant for Think:Kids. She provides training and coaching to individuals and organizations seeking to learn and implement Collaborative Problem Solving within their systems. Hallie has worked for over a decade in educational settings as a behavior specialist, school psychologist, consultant, and adjunct instructor. She has had the opportunity to collaborate with individuals serving in various roles in schools and other agencies to work towards the common goal of improving outcomes for youth and families.
Hallie received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Linfield College and an Education Specialist Degree in School Psychology from Lewis and Clark College. She has been using CPS in her professional work and personal life for the past 10 years. In this time, she has observed firsthand the transformative power that comes from teaching others about the CPS approach. Specifically, how it encourages a more compassionate view of behavioral challenges and gives youth voice and ownership in their personal growth.
Jennifer has been with Think:Kids since 2014 and has held many roles across the program. She currently serves as Manager of Certification, managing all stages of the Certification Program on the Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) training continuum. She is responsible for leading a team of trainers who facilitate the program courses and thinking strategically about the certification curriculum and initiatives. She is honored to lead and support a community of experts passionate about the CPS approach and Think:Kids’ mission of creating a compassionate world with adults who listen to and collaborate with children.
Before joining Think:Kids, Jen worked as a Service Coordinator for in-home care, managing a team of over 100 home health aides in the Boston area. She has always had a passion for working in the healthcare space and is grateful her journey brought her to Think:Kids, where the program’s positive impact on children and their families is undeniable.
Jennifer received her BA in Corporate Communications from Framingham State University.
Sarsha Hall is a Program Coordinator for Think:Kids, where she assists the Collaborative Problem Solving Certification Program. Previously, Sarsha worked for the Psychiatry Department at Massachusetts General Hospital for over ten years in various roles. She graduated from Fisher College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services and is currently working on her Masters in Business Administration and Leadership.
Michelle Harding is a Project Manager at Think:Kids in the Department of Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital. Michelle is responsible for school partnerships, working with partners to ensure a strong implementation of CPS into school systems.
Prior to joining Think:Kids, Michelle served children and adolescents in the greater Boston area through direct service work, including as a public school counselor for eight years. As a school counselor and program coordinator, Michelle worked to implement Collaborative Problem Solving into public education systems. Michelle is passionate about the mission of Think:Kids and strongly aligns with the CPS philosophy in both her professional and personal life. Michelle received her B.A. in Developmental Psychology from Emmanuel College and her M.Ed. in School Counseling from UMass Boston.
Erin Hill, Ph.D., is a Licensed Psychologist and Clinical Instructor in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and a full-time Certified Trainer & Consultant at Think:Kids. Dr. Hill has worked with youth and families in a variety of settings including inpatient, outpatient, residential treatment, and therapeutic schools and summer camps. The primary focus of Dr. Hill’s training has been on providing evidence-based treatment to children and adolescents experiencing acute emotional distress and/or behavioral challenges.
Dr. Hill received her doctorate in clinical psychology from Suffolk University and her master’s in child development from Tufts University. Dr. Hill completed her internship training at Astor Services for Children and Families, in Rhinebeck, NY. She also completed postdoctoral fellowship training at the University of Minnesota.
Michael Hone, MA, has worked in child and adolescent services since 1988 in a variety of settings including child welfare, youth justice, education and child and youth mental health. He began his career as a child & youth worker, then following receipt of a Masters in Education degree in 1998 became a therapist. Currently he is the Executive Director of a Children’s Mental Health Centre in Ottawa, Canada.
Michael has been committed to implementing the Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) approach across Ontario, and to date has trained approximately 8,000 people in Ontario. This includes the police, fire departments, children’s aid societies, parent organizations, other mental health organizations, and learning institutions (schools, colleges and universities). All of which are working together towards the common goal of improving outcomes for the ever increasing number of children and youth requiring mental health services. He is one of 2 Master trainers in Canada for Collaborative Problem Solving. Michael also is involved with the Advisory Council of Think:Kids at Massachusetts General Hospital.
Heather Johnson, LCSW, is a Certified Trainer and Consultant and Director of Training with Think:Kids. Heather provides coaching and training to various individuals and organizations seeking to learn Collaborative Problem Solving and integrate the model within their professional practice and organizations. Heather has an outpatient therapy practice specializing in serving families who are struggling with their children’s behavior. Additionally, Heather has extensive experience as a school-based Behavior Specialist providing interventions for youth who struggle with the most challenging behavior related to emotional and behavioral disabilities, coaching and consultation to school and community service teams, and guiding best practice within the school district’s behavior management, discipline, and Special Education systems and policies. Heather earned her Bachelor’s degree in Human Development from Wheelock College in Boston, MA, and her Masters in Social Work from the University of New Hampshire.
Margaret Johnson, LMSW, works with people across the entire Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) learning continuum. She hosts training coaching sessions, provides implementation consultation to organizations, and provides high-level instruction in our Certification Program. Margaret also oversees the organization’s efforts to address diversity, equity, and inclusion within our services, day-to-day operations, and community relations. She works with the Think:Kids team to continually evaluate and improve how we train, coach, instruct, support, and interact with our community of learners and partners.
Margaret spent many years working directly with youth, families, and staff in Oregon’s foster care and residential treatment settings. As part of a large-scale effort to implement CPS across Oregon’s systems of care, she created CPS-based pilot programs, facilitated community meetings, and built curricula supporting CPS growth resulting in overseeing the Oregon CPS Project at Oregon Health & Science University. Margaret is passionate about teaching CPS to programs that serve families and youth involved in the child welfare and justice systems. She loves teaching CPS directly to parents and initiated the first online CPS parent classes while working at OHSU.
Margaret holds a Master’s in Social Work from the University of Southern California and a Bachelor’s Degree in both Psychology and Creative Writing from San Francisco State University.
Naomi Kesher is the Director of Operations. She oversees the finances and operations of Think:Kids and supports the Director in setting program strategy.
Prior to joining Think:Kids, Naomi served in a variety of other roles at Massachusetts General Hospital including Practice Manager for the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program and Project Manager for the MGH Substance Use Disorders Strategic Initiative. Naomi has a passion for supporting innovation and positive change in the way we care for marginalized and vulnerable populations.
Naomi holds a BA in Economics and an MA in International Economics and Finance from Brandeis University.
Larry Lam, LCSW, MPH provides a range of services at Think:Kids to those who are learning to utilize Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) in their personal and/or professional lives. He facilitates training and coaching sessions, teaches advanced concepts as an instructor in our Certification Program, and consults with organizations who are working towards implementation and sustainability of CPS.
Prior to working full-time at Think:Kids, Larry spent many years working with youth, families, and staff in foster care in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Florida. He spent over 9 years leading CPS implementation efforts in child welfare that included training and coaching of staff and parents. He has been using CPS in his work since first learning the model in 2013. He has been dedicated to spreading the philosophy in his professional life and grounding himself in the philosophy at home as he raises children of his own.
Larry received his BS in Policy Analysis and Management from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. He also holds Master’s degrees in both Social Work and Public Health from Temple University in Philadelphia, PA.
Ted Layman, LCSW, is a Certified Trainer and Certification Instructor for Think:Kids who provides training, coaching, and certification instruction to a wide range of organizations seeking to learn the Collaborative Problem Solving approach and integrate it into their programs.
Ted has been working with at-risk youth and families since 2002 in Ohio and Oregon in a variety of rural and urban clinical settings including juvenile justice, substance abuse, outpatient mental health, schools, violence prevention outreach, foster care, residential, home-based services, clinical supervision, and private practice. He has been using the CPS approach with children, parents, and colleagues since 2011 and was certified by Think:Kids as a CPS trainer in 2014. In addition to his work at Think:Kids, Ted works as a family therapist at Restore Therapy, LLC, a group practice in Portland, OR specializing in helping children and families heal from trauma. Ted earned his MSW from Ohio University in Athens, OH.
Molly supports the philanthropy program for several areas across the Massachusetts General Department of Psychiatry, including Think:Kids. She is dedicated to raising resources that enable programs like Think:Kids to bring the very best mental and behavioral health care to all in need, pursue cutting-edge research, and educate the next generation of clinician-scientists.
Prior to Mass General, Molly held fundraising positions at the University of California, San Diego, the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy, and the Phoenix Symphony. She began her development career 15 years ago as a student caller and supervisor at the Arizona State University Office of Annual Giving. In addition to her professional work, Molly currently serves as President of the Board of Directors for the Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music, a board member for Palaver Strings, and has been a Big Sister with Big Sisters Boston since 2017. She lives in Boston with her husband, son, and two cats.
Molly has a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance from Arizona State University.
Ed Morales, MPP, MSW, LICSW, is a Certified Trainer and Consultant at Think:Kids.
Based in Minneapolis, Ed is a husband, an adoptive parent, and a step parent with more than a decade of experience as a clinician and educator. He began his journey with Collaborative Problem Solving in 2014 as a school social worker, and was certified as a trainer in 2017. He received his Master of Social Work from the University of Minnesota and his Master of Public Policy from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs.
In addition to his work with Think:Kids, Ed is a staff trainer with the Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy, a social worker with Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, serves as Community Faculty with the University of Minnesota’s School of Social Work, sits on the Minnesota Children’s Subcommittee on Children’s Mental Health, and provides training and consultation on a wide array of issues facing families and the systems that serve them through Socorro Consulting.
Becky Norum is a Project Manager for Think:Kids. Becky works with partner organizations and Think:Kids staff to create and execute plans to ensure high-quality implementation of Collaborative Problem Solving within organizations.
Before joining Think:Kids, Becky managed global teams and programs at different technology companies. Outside of work, she volunteers with her community SEPAC and equity organizations. Becky has used the principles of CPS in her personal and professional lives for years and is passionate about expanding access to others.
Becky received her Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Master of Science in Information Systems from Northeastern University.
Lindsay O’Connell is the Director of Outreach & Communications for Think:Kids in the Department of Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital. Lindsay is responsible for guiding the Think:Kids outreach and communications strategy and coordination with the MGH greater communications efforts.
Prior to joining Think:Kids, Lindsay served as Director, Engagement & Marketing at The Bridgespan Group, a nonprofit that provides management consulting to nonprofits and philanthropists. She also served as Senior Director of Marketing and Communications for an executive search firm serving nonprofits and mission-driven companies. Lindsay has a passion for the mission-driven sector, community engagement, and promoting programs that make lives better. Lindsay received her BA in Communications from Wake Forest University and holds a certificate in Advanced Study in Management from Northeastern University.
Amefika Paige is Think:Kids’ Training Coordinator and is often the first person the general public talks to when they find Think:Kids. Amefika coordinates the full slate of Think:Kids trainings and classes, overseeing registrations, confirmations, and operations, handles general inquiries and information requests and serves as a welcoming presence to all who work with us.
Amefika joined Think:Kids in 2015 after training in the Partners Career & Workforce Development program. She was previously employed in the Campaign Department of the Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD), and she is currently completing a bachelor’s degree in Communications.
Alisha R. Pollastri, Ph.D., is Director of Research and Evaluation at Think:Kids. For the last decade, Dr. Pollastri’s research has focused on the identification of neurobiological, social, and environmental factors that contribute to disruptive behaviors, particularly in children. At Think:Kids, Dr. Pollastri is responsible for evaluating how, and for whom, Collaborative Problem Solving works best. Through the analysis of data collected in our clinic and in our partner schools and agencies, Dr. Pollastri strives to promote a clearer understanding of challenging kids and to improve child outcomes.
Dr. Pollastri earned her doctorate in clinical psychology at Clark University and completed a clinical internship in community and school-based mental health at South Shore Mental Health Inc. She completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the Psychiatric and Neurodevelopmental Genetics Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School.
Ben Stich, LICSW, M.Ed., is a Certified Trainer and Consultant for Think:Kids. Ben conducts training and coaching in Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS), participates in the internal development of the model, and is a member of the Think:Kids Advisory Council.
Ben previously served as the Director of Training and Curriculum Development and Director of Certification for Think:Kids. Ben is passionate about working within teams. His most proud accomplishments are helping create a certification team and a process for team-wide training and curriculum materials development.
Ben was introduced to the CPS approach while working as a high school social worker. He made it his mission to disseminate the model through the school system, which led him to become certified and join the Think:Kids team. Earlier in his career, he ran a residential treatment program for teenage girls for eight years.
In addition to his work at Think:Kids, Ben manages a private practice that works with parents learning the CPS approach and divorce and family mediation. Ben mediates divorces, co-parenting disputes, and all other types of family conflict. Ben is particularly interested in helping parents in high-conflict relationships focus on reducing tension for their children’s well-being. He is an instructor for Massachusetts’ only court-mandated High-Conflict Parent Education program at William James College.
Ben is a mediator and a licensed social worker. He graduated from Boston College Graduate School of Social Work and earned an M.Ed. from Endicott College.
Jordan Spikes is the Manager of Curriculum and a Certified Trainer and Consultant at Think:Kids, providing training and coaching for individuals and organizations interested in implementing Collaborative Problem Solving in their systems. He earned a BS in Psychology from Oregon State University and has worked in the mental health and special education arenas as a front-line staff, coach, and administrator for more than 12 years.
With a goal of shifting mindsets away from conventional “people choosing to misbehave” to a neurobiologically-guided mindset of viewing behavioral challenges as a form of learning disorder, Jordan joins with educators, parents, and caregivers in the responsibility of teaching individuals the necessary skills to meet daily, real-world expectations.
Natasha Tatartcheff-Quesnel, MSW, is a Certified Trainer and Consultant for Think:Kids. She provides Tier 1 and Tier 2 training and site-specific consultations in English and French. Natasha completed her Master’s in Social Work fellowship at Think:Kids in the Department of Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital. She is committed to implementing the Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) approach in Canada and the United States, and, to date, she has trained and provided implementation support to numerous sites, including police and fire departments, children’s aid societies, parent organizations, mental health agencies and educational institutions. These coaching and training efforts aim to provide compassionate care and ultimately improve outcomes for children and youth with complex needs and their families.
Natasha has worked in child and adolescent services since 1991 in various settings in the public and private sectors. She has reviewed child and youth mental health systems internationally using the SOCPR and presented on the topic at numerous conferences with a specific focus on bridging the gap between System Care concepts by utilizing CPS to actualize those concepts at the level of practice. More recently, she has combined her knowledge of CPS with the world of sports.
Natasha received her BA and MSW from Carleton University in Ottawa.
Think:Kids is grateful to our Advisory Council for their thoughtful insights, guidance, and ongoing support.