Cheri Pic 2

  Cheri Bragg - - Cheri’s journey has been highly impacted by her lived experience as a Daughter of a person with many mental health labels.  She is grateful that the small amount of time spent with her mother during childhood led to a strong bond which has weathered numerous hospitalizations, decades-long institutionalization, nursing facilities, police interactions, probate court hearings, and even ideas that question her very existence.  She finds her current role as caregiver to be exceptionally challenging and in the same breath, an honor, as she witnesses her mother’s spirit and assists in fighting for her rights.  Professionally Cheri earned her B.S. in Human Development & Family Relations from the University of Connecticut.  The past 15 years of professional experience include case management, rehabilitation, grassroots legislative advocacy, Coalition building, family advocacy & civil rights advocacy.  She values Intentional Peer Support and the Wraparound process models of connection.  She enjoys writing, teaching and publicly speaking about the topic of Daughters & Sons and intends to start a D&S wellness group in the Fall of 2015.  The last part of her journey, and perhaps the most difficult, is one of self-exploration in pursuit of wellness, learning how to nurture herself mind, body and soul. 

Joe Donovan 14240 small  Joe Donovan -  Joe is the host of The Daughters & Sons Hour, and a founder of the  Daughters and Sons  Initiative.  He brings a unique blend of personal and professional  experience to the organization. Soon after he was  born, Joe’s mother experienced a period  of what we would now refer to as post-partum psychosis. After receiving a  diagnosis of  schizophrenia, she would go on to raise two children as a single mother. Joe has worked  in mental  health disability rights for over 15 years.  Prior to this, he had worked as an information systems professional for  an additional 15 years; several of which included work with systems used to manage public services such as  Medicaid, Food Stamps, etc...  As a veteran, he is also familiar with services provided by the Department of  Veterans Affairs.

Maggie Jarry, M.Div. -  Maggie wears many hats. Most relevant here is her volunteer work as co-founder of the  Daughters and Sons Initiative. Inspired by her life experience as a daughter of a mother who parented well while  struggling with schizoaffective  illness,  a stepfather who  experienced schizophrenia and a father who suffered  from  chronic depression, in 2003 Maggie began  efforts to galvanize support for people who  have a parent with  mental illness. She has worked to  change the way people think about having a parent with mental illness within  mental health and child welfare systems by coordinating national workshops and panel discussions across the United States and abroad. Her essay “A Peer Saplings Story: Lifting the Veil on Parents with Mental Illness and Their Daughters and Sons” was published in the December 2009 issue of Psychiatric Services. Ms. Jarry’s most recent written contribution is an essay entitled, "River of Resilience: A Daughter's Memories of Becoming Whole", in Motherhood, Mental Illness and Recovery: Stories of Hope(Springer International, August 2014). Professionally, Maggie's career is in disaster response and recovery, which began through her work in New York City’s World Trade Center disaster recovery efforts. She holds a Master of Divinity degree from Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York, Columbia University; a Master of Science degree in Nonprofit Management from the Milano School of International Affairs, Management and Urban Policy at The New School in New York; and two Bachelor of Arts degrees from the University of Arizona in Tucson.


Evan Kaplan ED  Evan Kaplan - Evan is the executive director of Child and Family Connections, Inc., a  behavioral health non-profit (501c3) that supports families living with parental mental  health  challenges. CFC teaches parents, children, and families how to renew, rebuild, and  strengthen  family relationships damaged by the effects of a parent's mental illness. Evan  is both a parent  with lived experience and a person who grew up in a family with  parental mental illness. He is  a keynote speaker at international and regional conferences,  universities, and support groups.  And he continues to work directly with families to help them overcome the challenges of  mental illness. Evan earned his Bachelor's degree in English from the Pennsylvania State University, executive leadership training and certification from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and a graduate of Bryn Mawr College's Nonprofit Executive Leadership Institute. He is certified as a Peer Specialist by the City of Philadelphia.
Edie Mannion  Edie Mannion, LMFT -  Edie Mannion’s pioneering work on behalf of families locally, regionally, and nationally has been inspired and guided by her lived experience as a family member of individuals with behavioral health conditions, beginning in childhood. As the co-founder and the director of the Training and Education Center (TEC) at the Mental Health Association of Southeastern Pennsylvania (MHASP), Ms. Mannion has been providing supportive educational services for family members of adults with behavioral health disorders since 1985, including a monthly educational support group for adult daughters, sons and siblings of people with behavioral health conditions.  She has also been providing training for behavioral health providers, child welfare providers, psychiatric residents and graduate students.  Ms. Mannion is a licensed marriage and family therapist, working as part of a team at the DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) Center of Greater Philadelphia. She has been a consultant/trainer for the Veterans Administration, the New York State Office of Mental Health, university research/training centers and public behavioral health agencies. She helped launch several programs and initiatives, including the Family Resource Network, MHASP’s Parenting Plus, Child and Family Connections, the Family Resource Center at Friends Hospital and TEC’s child and adolescent Coping workshop/website. She has also co-authored six training manuals on implementing family education interventions. One of these manuals was used by Joyce Burland in creating the very popular Family-to-Family Education Course for the National Alliance on Mental Illness. The most recent training manual has been used for TEC’s increasingly popular Getting Off the Emotional Roller Coaster Family Skill-Building Workshop. Controlled, randomized research by Phyllis Solomon, Ph.D., at the University of Pennsylvania comparing TEC’s family coping skills workshop model to its family consultation intervention yielded many peer-reviewed journal articles and textbook chapters; these publications have been cited extensively in the literature.  Ms. Mannion has also been an invited guest on public radio and highlighted in a documentary on a family’s experience of schizophrenia.
Joanne Nicholson  Joanne Nicholson, Ph.D - Dr. Nicholson is a clinical and research psychologist, and  Professor of  Psychiatry at the Dartmouth Psychiatric Research Center. She is also Adjunct  Professor of  Psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS),  where she  directed the Child and Family Research Core of the UMMS Center for Mental  Health Services Research. Dr. Nicholson has established an active program of research on  parents with mental illnesses and their families, in partnership with people in recovery.  Her team is developing education and skills training materials for parents, integrating the  current knowledge on parents with mental illnesses, and evaluating interventions for  families, including the pilot Family Options intervention. Dr. Nicholson’s research interests also include the study of collaborations, knowledge exchange, and the impact of web-based interventions. Dr. Nicholson has received funding from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the National Alliance for Mental Illness Research Institute, private foundations, and industry sources. In 2006, Dr. Nicholson received the Armin Loeb Award from the U.S. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association for her significant career contribution to research in psychiatric rehabilitation. She has been a W.T. Grant Foundation Distinguished Fellow, and a NIDRR Switzer Distinguished Research Fellow. She is the 2010 recipient of the UMMS Women’s Faculty Committee Outstanding Community Service Award, and in 2011 received the Katharine F. Erskine Award in Medicine & Science for her professional achievements, commitment to the advancement of women and girls, and her contributions to the community.
Joanne Riebschleger  Joanne Riebschleger, Ph.D., MSW - Joanne is a family member of people  with mental illnesses  and an Associate Professor of Social Work at Michigan State  University in East Lansing,  Michigan. She lectures  internationally and nationally on  issues pertaining to children  with a parent with a mental illness (COPMI), their  parents,  and other family members.  Examples of her current research in these areas include: 1)  Developing an  evidence-based  mental health literacy program for middle school children who have a family member with mental  illness and/or substance abuse; 2) Exploring parents’ who have a mental illness descriptions of their experiences  with family courts; and 3) Assessing factors that contribute to effective recruitment of COPMI youth, parents, and  families to prevention programs for the children.
Michelle Sherman Michelle Sherman, Ph.D., - Michelle is a licensed clinical psychologist who has dedicated her career to supporting veterans and their families with mental illness, trauma, and PTSD. She has worked in the VA system for almost 20 years, and has developed family education programs that have been used nationally in the VA. Further, along with her mother (a teacher), she writes books for teens dealing with parental mental health problems, including "Finding My Way: A Teen's Guide to Living with a Parent Who Has Experienced Trauma" (