Speaker Bios

Andrew Allen is a third year medical student at Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia. He graduated valedictorian from North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC with a degree in Biological Sciences and Genetics. His particular areas of interest in the field of psychiatry include the treatment of mental illness in teens and young adults and treatment modalities for Borderline Personality Disorder.

Akriti Bhatia is pursuing her Master’s in sociology from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, having received her undergraduate degree in economics from Shri Ram College of Commerce, Delhi University. She’s also completed the Graduate Certificate Program in Public Policy from the Takshashila Institution, Bangalore. As a scholar deeply interested in social policy and development, she currently conducts research with the HOC, Bangladesh High Commission alongside Professor Rajeev Gowda, and provides policy research assistance to Rajya Sabha, MP.

Lily Chan is a second-year medical student at Mayo Medical School. She graduated with a degree in biophysics from Brown University. She has interests in cross-cultural psychiatry, minority psychiatry, neuroscience, music and art.

Dennis Debiak, Psy.D. is a psychologist and psychoanalyst in private practice in Philadelphia and Swarthmore. He is a founding board member and the first graduate of the Institute for Relational Psychoanalysis of Philadelphia (IRPP) and is a past president of the Philadelphia Center for Psychoanalytic Education (PCPE). He is Past Secretary and Board Member at Large of APA’s Division of Psychoanalysis. He coordinates the Psychoanalytic Collective at Widener University’s Institute for Graduate Clinical Psychology, where teaches courses in clinical supervision.

Phoebe Friesen is a Ph.D. candidate at CUNY’s Graduate Center, where she works primarily on issues within philosophy of psychiatry, especially those concerning the justice system, philosophy of science, and/or bioethics. She currently teaches ethics at Baruch College, volunteers at the New York State Psychiatric Institute’s Center for Practice Innovations, offers workshops on medical decision-making at Mt. Sinai Hospital, and is engaged in a fellowship program at the New York Psychoanalytic Society and Institute.

Greg Gabrellas, M.A. is a medical student at Drexel University and regional co-chair of PsychSIGN. He earned his Master’s degree in American history and social thought from the University of Chicago, where he also studied anthropology as an undergraduate. He is a director of the Society for Psychoanalytic Inquiry and contributes to its study group on analytic social psychology. In addition to psychiatry, neurology, and psychoanalysis, his scholarly interests include the philosophy of medicine, modernist literature, and critical social theory.

Stacy Gallin, D.M.H. earned her doctorate in Medical Humanities from Drew University in 2012. Her dissertation, “The Evolution of Psychiatry: Morals, Mind, and Medicine,” traced the trajectory of psychiatry from its philosophical roots to its currently accepted status as a medical subspecialty. Her work on Bioethics and the Holocaust further examines the negative implications of the medicalization of psychiatry. She currently serves as creator and coordinator of the Bioethics and the Holocaust grant project at Drew.

Patricia Gherovici, Ph.D. is a psychoanalyst and analytic supervisor and senior member, analyst, supervisor, and faculty at Apres-Coup Psychoanalytic Association New York. She is co-founder and director of the Philadelphia Lacan Group.  Her books include The Puerto Rican Syndrome (Other Press: 2003) winner of the Gradiva Award and the Boyer Prize and Please Select Your Gender: From the Invention of Hysteria to the Democratizing of Transgenderism (Routledge: 2010). Most recently, she has contributed to Lacan and Addiction: An Anthology (Karnac: 2011) and The Literary Lacan: From Literature to ‘Lituraterre’ and Beyond (Seagull Books, University of Chicago Press: 2013).  She is currently co-editing with Manya Steinkoler Lacan On Madness: Madness, Yes You Can’t (Routledge, forthcoming) and Lacan, Psychoanalysis and Comedy (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming). Her new book Psychoanalysis Needs a Sex Change: Lacanian Approaches to Sexual and Social Difference will be published in 2015 by Routledge.

Amir Hampel is a doctoral candidate in psychological anthropology at the University of Chicago’s Department of Comparative Human Development.  His work places social anxieties in sociocultural context, relating standards of self-evaluation to varying constructions of the self.  He has recently completed a year and half of ethnographic and textual research on popular psychology in China, focused on how both imported psychological discourses and Chinese social critiques construct personality as an object of concern and intervention.

Andres J. Pumariega, M.D. has devoted his over 30 year career in academic child and adolescent psychiatry to work in the areas of children’s systems of care and cultural diversity in mental health. He is currently Professor and Chair, Department of Psychiatry, Cooper University Hospital and Health System and Cooper School of Medicine at Rowan University. He is President of the American Association of Social Psychiatry and immediate Past President of the American Orthopsychiatric Association. He has served as the founding Chair, Work Group on Systems of Care (1994-2001), Chair, Community Psychiatry Committee (2001-2007), Chair, Committee on Diversity and Culture (2007-Present) in the AACAP, and Chair, Committee on Hispanic Psychiatrists (2006-2009) of the American Psychiatric Association. He has over 170 scientific papers, chapters, and monographs, over 200 abstracts, and was co-editor (with H. Vance) of Clinical Assessment of Child & Adolescent Behavior (John Wiley, 2001), co-editor (with N. Winters) of the Handbook of Child and Adolescent Systems of Care: The New Community Psychiatry. Dr. Pumariega has received numerous awards over his career, including the American Psychiatric Association’s 2004 Simon Bolivar Award and Lecture in Hispanic Psychiatry, and the 2007 Jeanne Spurlock Award and Lecture in Diversity and Culture by the AACAP.

Puneet Chawla Sahota, M.D., Ph.D. is a physician and cultural anthropologist. Dr. Sahota is currently a psychiatry resident at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. She received her M.D. in 2013 and her anthropology Ph.D. in 2009 from Washington University in St. Louis. She has worked with Native American communities for over a decade, conducting research on suicide prevention, cultural issues in genetics research, health care reform, and the epidemiology of depression and diabetes.

William Schultz is a Psy.D. student in clinical psychology at the Minnesota School of Professional Psychology. He received his B.A. (honors) in Philosophy from Concordia College, Moorhead. His research interests are the philosophy of psychiatry, the philosophy of science, and clinical psychology. A skeptic of biological/reductionist models of mental illness, he’s presented research at graduate conferences on topics such as the chemical imbalance hypothesis and social/cognitive models of schizophrenia.

Ashley Sterchele is a medical student at Temple University School of Medicine and regional co-chair of PsychSIGN. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Neuroscience from the University of Pittsburgh, where she participated in research on theory of mind in schizophrenia. During this time, she minored in Religious Studies, which led her to her primary interests in narrative based medicine and cultural psychiatry. Through medical school, she has been involved in tutoring elementary schools, all the while learning of the psycho-social stressors that contribute to the behavioral and learning difficulties of so many of the children. This and other experiences have influenced her choice to pursue Child-Adolescent Psychiatry. She is currently working on a project, through exploring literature and the arts to address the question: “How does a person experience and interpret their mental illness?”

Timur Suhail-Sindhu is a current second year medical student at Drexel University College of Medicine. Before medical school Timur graduated Summa Cum Laude from Rutgers University New Brunswick with a B.A in philosophy. His main interests in medicine are centered on psychiatry, particularly child/adolescent. Other academic interests include philosophy of mind, philosophy of science, and cognitive science.

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