Meet the Speakers

Denise Moody
Founder & Director, Resilience Impact & Keynote Presenter
Denise Moody, MSW, LICSW is the founder and executive director of Resilience Impact, LLC. She has been working in educational settings for fifteen years, working with early childhood through high school age students primarily at the district level. Ms. Moody has special interest in the area of trauma-informed systems of care, school-based mental health and multi-tiered systems of support. She has been an adjunct professor at Winona State University in the Department of Social Work since 2006 and has a small private practice providing psychotherapy to adolescents and adults. Ms. Moody holds a bachelor’s degree from Winona State University in Social Work and a master’s degree from the University of St. Thomas/College of St. Catherine in Social Work. She has also completed post graduate work in the area of Educational Leadership with the University of Minnesota and is licensed as a Director of Special Education and as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.
April Duncan
Keynote Presenter

April Duncan (DSW, LCSW, RPT-S) obtained her Bachelor’s in Arts & Science from the University of Missouri-Columbia (2006), Masters of Social Work from Saint Louis University (2012) and Doctorate of Social Work from the University of Southern California (2021). She is the founder of BMH Connect, an organization focused on Black youth empowerment through the use of play therapy.

Dr. April is a racial trauma expert and leader in her field in advocating for the mental health needs of Black children. She also is an adjunct instructor in the online MSW program at Tulane University. With over ten years of clinical experience, Dr. April has worked collaboratively with various stakeholders in schools, the juvenile justice system and the child welfare system, to teach the importance of recognizing and addressing trauma in children from all backgrounds.

Danny Bauer
Keynote Presenter

As a chronically late student, Danny Bauer once told his Chemistry teacher a fib about saving an entire girl scout troop from a burning building to get out of a tardy. Danny is not sure if it was the very made up story, the very real cookie he offered his teacher, or a combination of both that got him out of a detention that day …

That experience taught him it pays to develop your storytelling skills.

Danny has been telling stories since then, most recently on the Better Leaders Better Schools podcast, ranked in the TOP 0.5% of 3 million global podcasts, and via his bestselling book, Mastermind: Unlocking Talent Within Every School Leader, co-published by Corwin and the National School Superintendents Association (AASA).

His third book is titled Build Leadership Momentum: How to Create the Perfect Principal Entry Plan.

Sarah Clarke
Keynote Presenter

Sarah Clarke, MA, LPCC, is a licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor, who has been working with children, adults and families for 15 years. She has a particular focus on helping children who have experienced significant trauma, and the adults who work with them.

She has a firm belief that we cannot fully help the children we know and love, until we help the adults who work with them. She has been working in overlapping worlds of mental health and education for the past five years. During that time, she has found how the techniques of mental illness treatment can be applied to the world of education. She has developed a passion for developing the skills of educators to better provide for the wellness of both themselves and their students.

She currently is the Social-Emotional Learning Lead for Rochester Public Schools, and provides clinical therapy to a small case load of adults and couples at Flourish Counseling in Rochester, MN. Sarah holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, and is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in the state of Minnesota.

Ed Morales
Keynote Presenter

Ed Morales, MPP, MSW, LICSW, is a trainer and social worker based in Minneapolis, MN. In addition to being an adoptive parent, Ed is a Training Supervisor with Hennepin County Children and Family Services; a Certified Trainer and Consultant with Think:Kids at Massachusetts General Hospital; serves as Community Faculty with the University of Minnesota’s School of Social Work; sits on the Board of Foster Advocates; and provides training, clinical supervision and professional development through his LLC, Socorro Consulting.

Rick Bowman
In Person Breakout Session Presenter

Nationally regarded expert trainer, speaker and consultant on topics of trauma-informed and resilience practices, Bowman Consulting Group is known for their content solidly anchored in the most current neuroscience and coherence research, and translating these into actionable practices for educators and mental health professionals serving children and adults with trauma impacts. Rick’s background includes leadership positions in the U.S. Military, business, mental health and education. He’s functioned as a clinical consultant for mental health clinics and human service agencies, and has also provided consultation internationally in Russia, Cuba & Jamaica. He’s held positions of Clinical Psychologist, Community College Professor, Assistant Principal, Alternative Education Coordinator, Student Services Director, and Assistant Executive Director of a non-profit organization providing educational services to students with severe emotional/behavioral challenges.

Doris Bowman
In Person Breakout Session Presenter

Nationally regarded expert trainer, speaker and consultant on topics of trauma-informed and resilience practices, Bowman Consulting Group is known for their content solidly anchored in the most current neuroscience and coherence research, and translating these into actionable practices for educators and mental health professionals serving children and adults with trauma impacts. Doris has co-authored Going to Bed is Easy Now, and “Going to School is Easy Now”, the first two in a series of children’s books designed to support children with challenging behavior (www.easynowbooks.com). She has over 20 years’ experience working with and supporting children/youth with challenging behaviors and their families.

Gisela Valenzuela
Virtual Breakout Session Presenter

Gisela Valenzuela serves as the Dean of Restorative Justice and Student Culture at Arts in Action Charter School. As an accomplished school counselor with a passion for addressing behavior needs and creating a positive school environment, she has dedicated her career to supporting students' social and emotional well-being, helping them overcome challenges, and fostering a safe and inclusive learning environment. Gisela provides professional development sessions for staff, focusing on proactive strategies for managing behavior challenges and promoting positive discipline approaches.

Dr. Emily Couch
Virtual Breakout Session Presenter

Dr. Couch is a Pacific Northwest native who has taught, coached, and led in schools and districts throughout Oregon and Washington for the past decade. She has undergraduate degrees in Elementary Education and History, her master's degree in Student Development Counseling and Administration, an ESOL endorsement, and an administrative license. She completed her doctorate with a concentration in Curriculum Design and Development in 2021. Dr. Couch is passionate about centering student experiences as she collaborates with colleagues to create schools and systems that serve each and every student. She is always looking for opportunities to explore and travel. 

Ginger Healy
Virtual Breakout Session Presenter

Ginger Healy MSW, LCSW is a clinical social worker with almost 30 years of experience in the field. Ginger has worked as a child abuse investigator, hospital social worker, and school therapist. She spent 15 years as the social service supervisor at an international adoption agency and was able to travel to provide support for orphanages all over the world. This job continues to inform her work on attachment and trauma needs in children. She is currently the director of programs for the Attachment & Trauma Network where she co-anchors the podcast “Regulated and Relational” and speaks across the nation on trauma-informed schools, therapeutic parenting, and community engagement. Ginger is also the author of Regulation and Co-Regulation: Accessible Neuroscience that Brings Calm into the Classroom. Ginger is married and has four children who have been her greatest teachers about developmental trauma and special needs.

Jen Petersen
In Person Breakout Session Presenter

Jen Petersen MSW LICSW: Jen is the Mental Health Coordinator for Intermediate School District 917. She works in the Therapeutic Education Alternative that serves students from ages 3-12th grade that have both a mental health diagnosis and special education needs. She provides clinical supervision, classroom coaching and training in interventions that support both mental health and behavioral health for students with high needs.

Joe McQueen
In Person Breakout Session Presenter

Joe McQueen M. ED is the director of alternative education for the Regional Office of Education #33. Joe has over twenty years’ experience in the field of mental health. He has served as a LBS1 teacher, special education coordinator, and a residential treatment specialist. Joe is an author of the book Calming Young Minds Mental Health, De-Escalation, Trauma, and Restorative Practices in Teens. He has been working as a dynamic trainer and speaker for the past five years, presenting at national conferences and working with various schools in west central Illinois. 

Liz Ritz
Virtual Breakout Session Presenter

Doctoral Candidate Liz Ritz is the Director of Teaching and Learning in Oak Harbor Public Schools in Washington State. Previous to working in Oak Harbor, Liz worked for over twenty years in the Bellevue School District as a paraeducator, teacher, instructional coach, elementary principal and Director of Curriculum & Instruction. Liz is finalizing her doctoral dissertation and should be defending in the fall of 2023.

Kathy Magnusson
Virtual Breakout Session Presenter

Kathy Magnusson, M.Ed., is the founder and director of Wildewood Learning. She is a licensed public school teacher, social and emotional learning specialist, and certified Sources of Strength trainer. She has a master’s degree in education from the University of Minnesota, advanced training in adverse childhood experiences, creating trauma-sensitive environments, non-violent communication, and strengths-based education and leadership. Using a tailored strengths-based approach, Kathy gives people the knowledge and tools to uncover their individual brilliance. She supports education and youth service professionals in developing their own social and emotional learning skills to create positive relationships. Kathy has found that when educators and professionals can change their perceptions, a ripple effect occurs, changing the learning experience for all. 

Christine Cowart
Virtual Breakout Session Presenter

Christine Cowart is a dually-certified trauma professional and human services policy analyst, focusing on justice systems and family services. Her career includes working as a legislative analyst in two states, analyzing programs for the New York State Division of Parole, and serving as a contract and grant specialist for the Vermont Department for Children and Families.  Committed to researching and addressing trauma and its effects throughout our society, Christine founded Cowart Trauma Informed Partnership. Recognizing that the physical spaces in which we spend time can impact our perceptions, stress levels, and ability to regulate our emotional responses and behaviors, Christine cofounded the Trauma-informed Design Society (TiDS), with Janet E. Roche, MDS CAPS, and J. Davis Harte, PhD, WELL AP in 2021. The Society helps organizations implement a trauma-informed approach in their services and create stress-reducing physical spaces. In 2023, Christine and Janet formed Trauma-informed Design Consultants, in response to increasing requests for consultation services on architectural and design projects.

Janet Roche
Virtual Breakout Session Presenter

Janet E. Roche, MDS CAPS is a leader in designing for health and wellness. She received her Masters in Design for Human Health within the Masters of Design Studies program at the Boston Architectural College (BAC). With a background with a B.S. in Social Work from Boston University, her Certificate of Business and Management from Harvard University Extension School, and nearly two decades of owning her own production company, she is now engaging her love of design, helping others, and business by owning her own company Janet Roche Designs, LLC. In 2019, Janet launched her own podcast, Inclusive Designers™, and in 2020 started Trauma Informed Design Society along J. Davis Harte, PhD., and eventually adding Christine Cowart (2021). Janet and Christine do a variety of presentations on trauma-informed care and Trauma-informed Design for marginalized populations and consult on projects around the world. Together, they founded Trauma-informed Design Consultants, LLC this year.

Shannon Geary
In Person Breakout Presenter

Shannon Geary is a teacher, a learner and a believer in the power of others to succeed and influence others in amazing ways. She is a self-proclaimed colossal neuroscience and resilience geek who has worked with students and families in the Rochester area for a little over 20 years. During her years of work, she has completed degrees of Master of Science, Academic and Behavioral Specialist, and an EDS in leadership. She is most proud, however, of the feedback and stories that she has received from colleagues, students, and families.