Dr. Amy R. Mack, director of a national center for disaster behavioral health preparedness and response, has 15 years of diverse clinical experience treating trauma survivors; providing interventions and ongoing support to schools/communities upon a child/youth fatality; implementing prevention and early intervention services in a school-based setting; treating adults with serious persistent mental illness; leading groups for oppositional youth; providing treatment to juvenile and adult offenders… and these are just the highlights. Dr. Mack reported that working clinically with these populations helped prepare her for what she considers to be her true passion and current role: developing, evaluating, and directing programs that serve many of these same populations.
Dr. Mack received both her M.A. in Applied Psychology and her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Long Island University, C.W. Post. While completing her dissertation and graduating from C. W. Post in May 2002, she completed a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at Mt. Sinai Hospital where she was involved with a longitudinal study about ADHD and aggression. After her fellowship, Dr. Mack moved to Washington, D.C. where she currently resides with her husband and two children. Her first job there was as a Clinical Psychologist and then Evaluation Coordinator in the D.C. Department of Mental Health’s School-based Mental Health Program. She was also involved with a D.C. government community-based initiative to co-create and evaluate a mentoring program for at-risk youth.
Dr. Mack decided to move into the private sector in 2006 and has been working since then for ICF International, a large international consulting company. She has been the project manager for several federally-funded contracts aimed at the prevention and early intervention for at-risk youth, including the Child Development-Community Policing program that was developed at Yale University’s Child Study Center. After several promotions, and in 2009 winning a contract funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), she has been the project director of the SAMHSA Disaster Technical Assistance Center (DTAC). SAMHSA DTAC provides training and technical assistance to the entire United States, its Territories, the District of Columbia, and all Federally-recognized Tribes on disaster behavioral health (mental health and substance abuse) all-hazards preparedness, response, and recovery. Using her background in program evaluation, Dr. Mack also supervises the survey research team which is responsible for developing and disseminating national needs assessment surveys and a customer satisfaction survey Dr. Mack works with subject matter experts across the country to revise psychoeducational materials and develop podcasts on various disaster behavioral health topics (e.g. compassion fatigue, retraumatization, and mass casualty). She presents nationally at conferences about integrating disaster behavioral health and the public health fields, as well as, findings from the needs assessment studies.
Beyond impressive credentials, Dr. Mack’s career highlights the diversity in paths available to us upon graduation from C.W. Post as clinicians, researchers, or a combination of both. If you have any questions about Dr. Mack’s experiences since Post, she can be reached at AMack@icfi.com.
Congratulations Dr. Mack of your many accomplishments!