Speakers

Plenary Roundtable Speakers

Learn more about the SSPC Mentorship Day Plenary Roundtable speakers
Amela Blekic

Amela Blekic

Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the Oregon Health & Science University

Dr. Amela Blekic is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the Oregon Health & Science University. Dr. Blekic graduated from The University of Sarajevo, School of Medicine, Bosnia and Herzegovina and worked as a general practitioner during the Bosnian war. In 1997 Dr. Blekic immigrated to the United States and was originally employed by American Red Cross. She joined Oregon Health & Science University, Department of Psychiatry, in August 1999 and worked at the Intercultural Psychiatric Program establishing Bosnian Clinic for Mental Health within that program, while working with severely traumatized refugees. After completing the United States Medical Licensing Examination, she trained as a psychiatrist at the Oregon Health & Science University from 2005-2009, and was a Chief Resident between 2008 and 2009. Since then Dr. Blekic has continued her involvement with the Department of Psychiatry at Oregon Health & Science University as a faculty member. Dr. Blekic has been active in a number of areas including caring for chronically mentally ill at Oregon State Hospital, providing psychiatric care for students at Oregon Health & Science University Student Health Center, providing psychiatric care for Vietnamese population at Intercultural Psychiatric Program, clinical leadership of inpatient and consultation services, including a service aimed to development of care models at newly built psychiatric hospital by creation of consistent cultures of care and supervision of patient care and providers. One connection to these settings and engagements for Dr. Blekic is a field of cultural psychiatry. She sees that as a fundamental principle in everything she does. The ability to incorporate cultural psychiatry in her clinical work, her leadership roles, and education of medical students, psychiatry residents and fellows on a daily basis is invaluable to her and she believes the best way to help the patients.
Anna Fiskin

Anna Fiskin

Attending Psychiatrist at Chinatown North Beach Mental Health Services

Anna Fiskin is a psychiatrist with training in medical anthropology who specializes in cultural psychiatry and global mental health. She is a currently an attending psychiatrist at Chinatown North Beach Mental Health Services, where she works with a diverse patient population from China, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. She is the one of the directors of the Cultural Psychiatry Area of Distinction for UCSF Psychiatry residency and the faculty lead in Cultural Psychiatry for UCSF Psychiatry HEAL Fellowship in Global Mental Health.
Kenneth Fung

Kenneth Fung

Staff Psychiatrist; Clinical Director of the Asian Initiative in Mental Health Program, Toronto Western Hospital, University Health Network; & Associate Professor with Equity, Gender, and Populations Division, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto

Kenneth Fung, MD, MSc, is Staff Psychiatrist and Clinical Director of the Asian Initiative in Mental Health Program, Toronto Western Hospital, University Health Network, and Associate Professor with Equity, Gender, and Populations Division, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto. His research, teaching, and clinical interests include both cultural psychiatry and psychotherapy. He co-leads the Pillar 4 Dialogue of the Department of Psychiatry Strategic Plan, University of Toronto, which focuses on issues related to equity, social justice, and social responsibility, and is the Block Co-coordinator of the Cultural Psychiatry Core Seminars for psychiatry residents. He is involved in community-based research related to HIV, mental health stigma, and immigrant and refugee mental health. He is
psychiatric consultant to Hong Fook Mental Health Association and Mon Sheong Scarborough Long-Term Care Centre. He is the President of the Society of the Study of Psychiatry and Culture and the Chair of the Transcultural Section, Canadian Psychiatric Association.
James Griffith

James Griffith

Leon M. Yochelson Professor & Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at The GWU School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Washington, DC

James L. (“Griff”) Griffith, MD, is Leon M. Yochelson Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at The GWU School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Washington, DC. Dr. Griffith received his M.D. in 1976, followed by Neurology Residency and an MS in Neurophysiology at the University of Mississippi School of Medicine in 1979. He completed Psychiatry Residency at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School in 1983, followed by a Clinical and Research Fellowship in 1985. Dr. Griffith has developed a model of psychiatric residency training that balances biological and psychosocial therapies in the treatment of patients within their family, community, and cultural contexts. He provides psychiatric treatment for immigrants, refugees, and survivors of political torture in the Program for Survivors of Torture and Severe Trauma (PSTT) at Northern Virginia Family Services. Under his leadership, the GWU Dept. of Psychiatry has become nationally recognized for its excellence in global mental health, psychotherapy training, neurosciences education, and psychosomatic medicine. In his clinical practice at The GW Medical Faculty Associates, he treats psychosomatic disorders, psychiatric complications of medical illnesses, and other problems of couples and families. He has been named a Washingtonian magazine Top Doctor.
Jaswant Guzder

Jaswant Guzder

McGill Professor of Psychiatry, former Head of Child Psychiatry & Director of Childhood Disorders Day Hospital at the Jewish General Hospital

Dr. Jaswant Guzder is a McGill Professor of Psychiatry, former Head of Child Psychiatry and Director of Childhood Disorders Day Hospital at the Jewish General Hospital. She is active in clinical, teaching and research activities of both the McGill Child and Social and Transcultural Psychiatry Divisions. She was a founding co-director and senior clinician for Cultural Consultation at Jewish General with global health projects in Jamaica, India and Nepal. Since Covid in 2020, working with Indigenous Child and Youth Mental Health team and the Victoria Refugee and Immigrant
Center. She is a psychoanalyst, family therapist, artist and supervisor for the Art Therapy Masters Program at Concordia University. Her last solo art show was Nov 2017 at Museo Laboratorio Della Menta, followed by publication of Ibrazione: politiche della cure e delle culture (collected essays on hybridity, arts and related topics with colleagues from Italy).
Bonnie Kaiser

Bonnie Kaiser

Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology and Global Health Program at University of California San Diego

Bonnie Kaiser is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology and Global Health Program at University of California San Diego. Her research focuses on elucidating cultural models of mental health and illness and exploring their connections to care-seeking; developing and adapting measurement tools for cross-cultural research and interventions; improving cultural adaptation of global mental health interventions; and critically exploring concepts of trauma, risk, and resilience.
Ted Lo

Ted Lo

Community Psychiatrist in Toronto, retired faculty of University of Toronto, & consultant to Hong Fook Mental Health Asociación and Across Boundaries Ethnoracial Mental Health Centre

Dr. Ted Lo is a community psychiatrist in Toronto, retired faculty of University of Toronto, consultant to Hong Fook Mental Health Asociación and Across Boundaries Ethnoracial Mental Health Centre. He is involved in program development, working with case managers, cultural competence training, some teaching, some global mental health (China, Ethiopia), mental health planning with three levels of government, alternative medicine, and filmaking. He was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the SSPC in 2019.
Cécile Rousseau

Cécile Rousseau

Child Psychiatrist & Professor of the Division of Social and Cultural Psychiatry at McGill University

Dr. Cécile Rousseau, MD is a child psychiatrist and professor of the Division of Social and Cultural Psychiatry at McGill University. She has worked extensively with immigrant and refugee communities, developing specific school-based interventions and leading policy oriented research. Presently her research focuses on intervention and prevention programs to address violent radicalization.