CONFERENCE Program and Objectives

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The 15th Annual Pacific Northwest

Brain Injury Conference 2017

34th Annual BIAOR Conference

Sponsored by

The Brain Injury Alliance of Oregon

The Brain Injury Alliance of Washington

The Brain Injury Alliance of Idaho

Alaska Brain Injury Network


Living with Brain Injury, Stroke & Neurological Changes:






March 9-11, 2017

Sheraton Portland Airport Hotel

Portland, Oregon


All Sessions recorded by Backcountry Recording and will be for sale at the conference

Back Country Recording


2017 Program

Pre-Conference Details

Conference Details

Conference Objectives

CEUs Offered


Poster Presentations

Sponsors & Exhibitors

Online Order Form for Conference Presentations on DVDs and/or MP3s on USB drive

:: Conference 2017

15th Annual Pacific Northwest Brain Injury Conference 2017

Living with Brain Injury, Stroke and Neurological Changes - How to Work with Challenging Behaviors

March 9, 2017

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Registration Form 2017

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Conference Brochure 2017



Thursday - Draft Program -8.5 CEU hours

ACBIS National Certification Training (CBIS)

March  9, 2017 The Academy for the Certification of Brain Injury Specialists (ACBIS) offers a national certification program for both entry-level staff and experienced professionals working in brain injury services. ACBIS provides the opportunity to learn important information about brain injury, to demonstrate learning in a written examination, and to earn an internationally recognized credential.

The Brain Injury Alliance of Oregon is offering a training program geared toward preparing for the CBIS examination. This training will be delivered in a one day workshop March 9, 2017, from 8:00-4:00pm.

Students must attend the entire session. The workshop will include study materials and interactive workshop with Sherry Stock, Certified Brain Injury Specialist Trainer. The National Online Examination will be given scheduled at a time that works for each student; within a month after the class is suggested.

Registration fee: $700, includes The Essential Brain Injury Guide, materials, instructor time, the ACBIS certification fee, one year professional BIAOR membership with listing in The Headliner and online, and one year subscription to The Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation, and lunch. For further information and qualifications click here.

Join us for this comprehensive training, and gain your national certification in Brain Injury, with support through BIAOR.  


Pre-Conference Workshop
Thursday, March 9   8:00 – 5:00 pm

Working with Clients and Individuals with Brain Injury, Stroke and Other Neurological Changes

How to Work with Challenging Behaviors After Brain Injury, Stroke and Neurological Changes


An entire day devoted to effective ways caregivers and families can work with clients and individuals with brain injury and other neurological disorders and the best practices being used. 

Thursday – March 9

7:00 a.m. - 7:45 a.m.  Registration and Check-in

7:45 am - 8:00 am  

Welcome to BIA Conference 2016:
Hands on booths, interactive demonstrations and individual trainings throughout the day

8:00 am –  10:45 am

Behavior Management Strategies for Caregivers dealing with Challenging Behaviors from individuals diagnosed with Brain Injury or other Neurological Diagnosis - Part 1- Carla-Jo Whitson, MSW, CBIS, Brain Injury Alliance of Washington Southwest Resource Manager

This presentation will guide you through understanding the causes of challenging behaviors and methods to appropriately intervene using interactive brainstorming and discussions to enhance knowledge and skill. You should be able to do the following after this presentation:

- Define the term “challenging behavior” and verbalize at least found (4) examples of challenging behaviors.

- Identify both internal and external causes of challenging behaviors.

- Verbalize at least four purposes that challenging behaviors serve.

- Discuss ways that verbal and nonverbal communication impacts a person’s behavior.

- Demonstrate effective communication strategies when an individual is expressing a challenging behavior.

- Use learned strategies to respond to someone experiencing a challenging behavior.

- Describe approaches to modify and improve behavioral control.

- Use techniques to motivate and manage emotional outbursts.

- Describe and utilize strategies to overcome common behavioral management issues.

- Review ways to shape positive and pro-social behavior.


11:00 am - 12:15 pm

How to Use Music Therapy for Increasing Positive Outcome - Lillieth Grand, MS, MT-BC

Music is a powerful tool because it follows unique neural pathways and functions globally in the brain. Because of this, the music therapist is able to access neural function using music to assist their patients to achieve rehabilitative, habilitative and palliative goals. This presentation will introduce participants to the field of music therapy , how and when to access a music therapist as well as strategies for the appropriate use of music by those who are not board -certified music therapists.

12:30 pm – 1 pm Working Lunch Strategies for Working with Challenging Behaviors -  (Continued)

1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Oregon Disabilities Commission - Public Meeting

The Oregon Disabilities Commission is charged by state statute to advise the Department of Human Services, the Oregon Health Authority, the Governor, the Legislative Assembly and appropriate state agency Administrators on issues related to achieving the full economic, social, legal and political equity of individuals with disabilities. ODC also acts as a coordinating link between and among public and private organizations servicing individuals with disabilities.

In order to carry out its mission, the commission:

- Identifies and hears the concerns of individuals with disabilities and uses the information to prioritize public policy issues which should be addressed.
- Publicizes the needs and concerns of individuals with disabilities as they relate to the full achievement of economic, social, legal and political equity.
- Educates and advises the Department of Human Services, the Governor, the Legislative Assembly and appropriate state agency administrators on how public policy can be improved to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities.

The Commission is taking this time to hear concerns from AFH, professionals, caregivers, family members, survivors, and the general public on any issues that they may be having with any government or private agency. 

3:00-3:45 pm
Behavior Management Strategies for Caregivers dealing with Challenging Behaviors from individuals diagnosed with Brain Injury or other Neurological Diagnosis - Part 2- Carla-Jo Whitson, MSW, CBIS, Brain Injury Alliance of Washington Southwest Resource Manager

4:00 - 5:00 pm
Provider Roundtable - Where is help when you need it? -
Ombudsman Long Term Care Ombudsman, Fred Steele, Guardian Ombudsman, Travis Wall and Oregon Health Authority Ombudsman, Ellen Pinney  


Friday - March 10 Saturday - March 11
7:00 a.m. - 7:45 a.m.
Registration and Check-in - Continental Breakfast

8:00 am - 8:15 am  Welcome to BIA Conference 2017
7:00 a.m. - 7:45 a.m.
Registration and Check-in - Continental Breakfast

8:00 a.m. - 8:15 a.m. Welcome to BIA Conference 2017  


8:15 a.m. - 9:15 a.m.

Keynote Speaker: We Are Oregon Veterans - Cameron Smith, Director, Oregon Department of Veterans Affairs 



8:15 a.m. - 9:15 a.m.

Keynote Speaker:   The End of Caring: Understanding the Dynamic of Failure in Rehab - Rolf B. Gainer, PhD
Rehabilitation Institutes of America, Novato, California; Neurologic Rehabilitation Institute at Brookhaven Hospital, Tulsa, Oklahoma; Neurologic Rehabilitation Institute of Ontario, Etobicoke, Ontario and Community NeuroRehab, Des Moines, Iowa Introduction by: Rehab without Walls

An event that results in a condition such as brain injury sets off a cascade of events for the person, their loved ones and the persons they come into contact with during the course of rehabilitation. The abrupt change of direction in life causes the individual and their family to experience a loss of control which can lead to negative emotions such as anger, blame and hate. As professionals involved in working with people, their expression of emotion can trigger our own expression of negative emotions in the counter transference. The difficulty in producing positive change causes feelings of powerlessness for the individual, the family, the staff and the organization which can compromise the rehabilitation process. Professionals in the organization can learn to end the conflict which can restore caring and effectiveness to the rehabilitation process and assist the person in addressing loss of personal authority.


            1. To conceptualize brain injury as an event which impacts the person as well as others around them

             2. To develop understanding of dynamics associated with loss of control leading to blame and anger

             3. To explore dynamics associated with failure that are experienced by all individuals in the process

            4. To understand that strong emotion is shared by all involved in the process, including helping professionals

            5. To learn how to maintain compassion and effective relationships

9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Track 1 - Treatment of Concussion - From the Field to the Hospital and Rehabilitation - 2017 Update - James Chesnutt, MD

Track 2 - What Imaging Can Reveal About Brain Injury - Aaron DeShaw

Track 3 - The Role of Music Therapy in Rehabilitation -
Lillieth Grand, MS, MT-BC

Music is a powerful tool because it follows unique neural pathways and functions globally in the brain. Because of this, the music therapist is able to access neural function using music to assist their patients to achieve rehabilitative, habilitative and palliative goals. This presentation will define music therapy as it pertains to rehabilitation. Goals of music therapy as well as several case examples will be shared.

1. Telling the Story with Images and Video -
Richard H. Adler, JD of Adler Giersch ps
2. Proving mTBI Case When No Loss of Consciousness and Negative CT -
Jacob Gent, JD and Steven Angles, JD
3. Uncovering the Deceptive Neuropsychological IME and Report - Melissa D. Carter, JD
4. Proving Economic Damages in a mTBI case. Arthur D. Leritz, JD

Richard H. Adler, JD
is the founding principal for the law offices of Adler Giersch ps, which is exclusively dedicated to representing victims of traumatic brain, spinal, and musculoskeletal injuries.
Arthur Leritz, JD a former insurance attorney from a private practice law firm
Melissa Carter, JD,
a former in-house insurance attorney for Nationwide and she handled their complex cases including severe TBI
Steve Angles, JD,
a former in-house insurance attorney for Progressive Insurance
Jacob Gent, JD,
a former claims manager for Farmers Insurance company before joining Adler Giersch and then heading to law school

Track 2 -   A Holistic Approach to Healing Broken Brains:Nutrition, Supplements and Herbs Patient  - Dr. Adam Grove, ND

Recovery from brain injury Is complicated by a number of physiological and cognitive processes which can be positively Impacted by the use of nutrition and select natural products. This presentation will review these interventions and their evidence for use. Protocols for their application will be presented.

• Why a holistic approach Is needed
• Integrating a holistic approach into a treatment plan Nutritional Interventions for Recovery from Brain Injury
• The importance of blood sugar regulation
• The role protein and fat
• Other dietary constituents
Nutritional Supplements to Speed Recovery
• Phospholipids
• Vitamins
• Minerals
• Glandulars
Herbs Useful for Healing the Injured Brain
• Anti-inflammatories
• Nootroplcs
• Relaxants
• Sedatives
• Stimulants
• Circulatory stimulants

Track 3 -   Heal Your Brain, Heal Your Body -
Linda Gifford

In the space of an instant, Linda’s life was irrevocably changed due to a head-on car accident. As a result of her traumatic brain injury, Linda suffered memory loss and sustained multiple injuries throughout her body. Suffering from the loss of independence, including relationships with family and friends, did not stop her from fighting to survive. She discovered people who led her to scientific discoveries on how to heal. Using both Western medicine and Alternative modalities gave her the tools to recover. Her extensive research has led her to a compilation of a wide range of materials related to brain trauma leading Linda to write a book and the many paths to healing yourself. “Heal the Brain, Heal the Body.” As Linda shares her real life experiences, she also, teaches others how to recover, restore and be at their best without the use of medications or surgery. Linda will discussing this book and how her life has been changed.  

10:45 am - 12:00 pm 10:45 am - 12:00 pm
Track 1 - Screening for Traumatic Brain Injury: Idaho's Approach - Russell C. Spearman M.Ed. Principal Investigator, Traumatic Brain Injury Program Institute of Rural Health ISU Meridian Health Science Center

Idaho's community health screening (CHS) program is a collaboration of Idaho State University, Central District Health Department, the Department of Health and Welfare, and Ada County. The CHS was developed to provide health screenings and education for low income adults with no insurance or limited access to preventative healthcare.

Track 2 -  The Developing Adolescent Brain: How THC affects the Brain
- Shelley Campbell, Coordinator Injury Prevention and Outreach Education Youth and Family TNTT/Trauma Services

This presentation will cover the pathophysiology of the stage the adolescent brain is in and how THC effects the development.  Covered will be the use, especially of high levels of THC, behavior and some of the physiological effects that bring adolescents into a trauma center or emergency room, and some of the emerging long term effects of use of the high levels of THC.

Track 3 -  Washington State’s Traumatic Brain Injury Advisory Council: A history and the positive impact on the brain injury community - Scott Bloom, CBIS, Mary Kelly LTC AN (Ret)


Track 2 - TBI and Psychiatric Illness: A Common Thread of Neuroinflammation -  Shauna Hahn,
Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Central City Concern    Moderator: Dr. Glen Zielinski

Track 3 -TBI Induced Vision Problems: The Hidden Problem That Impedes Rehabilitation - Juliet Machado, BA OVT   Moderator: Jeri Cohen

• What are some common vision problems associated with TBl?
• What do these problems look like1How do they feel?
• How do they impact recovery?
• What can we do about these problems?

During this presentation we will discuss the underlying causes of vision problems associated with mTBI. Demonstrations and an opportunity to experience how these vision problems look and feel to the patient will be simulated with lenses, prisms, and other activities. Our goal will be to achieve a better understanding of how mTBI Impacts visual performance and to gain a better appreciation of the role vision plays In overall recovery. Experience vision problems associated with TBI in this interactive workshop.  


12:00 - 1:00 pm Working Lunch

Break a Board - Brain Injury and Taekwondo -
Karen Campbell Moderator: Melissa Taber
Highland Height/Shaun’s Place Taekwondo team will show their board breaking skills.
12:00 - 1:00 pm Working Lunch

Meeting of BIAOR Members and Updates

It’s All About the Dance -
Karen Campbell Moderator: Melissa Taber
Highland Height/Shaun’s Place Dancers will show their moves
1:00 pm - 2:15 pm  Afternoon Keynote

Patient, Dr., What's the Difference-  Jacob Plasker, DC 

As a survivor turned clinician, I will be talking about how insights I have gained throughout my life have informed by approach as a doctor. When he was ten-months old, Dr. Plasker suffered a head injury that left him partially paralyzed. The attending doctors said that he would never walk or talk. Dr. Plasker will talk about his journey to becoming a chiropractor like his father.

1:00 pm - 2:15 pm  Afternoon Keynote

Keynote Speaker: Functional Neurological Management of Persistent Post-Concussion Syndrome -
Dr. Glen Zielinski, DC, DACNB, FACFN 
An overview of some of the underlying pathophysiology of PPCS will be presented, with emphasis on central vestibiopathies and impairment of visual-vestibular proprioceptive interaction interaction, methodologies to evaluate and address this will be presented, along with case study results.


2:30 pm - 3:45 pm

2:30 pm - 3:45 pm
Track 1 -  What survivors, caregivers and families need to know.  - Dr. Glen Zielinski, DC, DACNB, FACFN  

An overview of some of the underlying pathophysiology of PPCS will be presented, with emphasis on on central vestibiopathies and impairment of visual-vestibular proprioceptive interaction interaction, methodologies to evaluate and address this will be presented, along with case study results.

Track 2 -  “How can I help?” – Practical Applications for Behavioral Health Clinicians - Dan Overton, MC, LMHC, MHP, Traumatic Brain Injury Program Coordinator,  Behavioral Health Services WA. Dept. of Veterans Affairs

Recent research has shown how often brain injuries go unrecognized, un-diagnosed and untreated especially in the veteran population. The impact on behavioral health can be enormous yet most clinicians have little to no training in how to treat this population effectively. Through this presentation, the participant is provided with practical applications in understanding, assessing, developing treatment plans and overall incorporation of the special needs of the brain injured client.

Learning Objective:

1)    The participant will have a working knowledge of the causes, signs and symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI / Acquired Brain Injury (ABI).

2)    The participant will have an understanding of the impact TBI/ABI may have on the behavioral health plans/interventions/diagnosis and successful treatment plans.

3)    The participant will have an understanding of the prevalence of the veteran population in his/her practice, the prevalence of TBI/ABI in this population and how treatment approaches may differ from the general population.

4)    The participant will leave with practical application in evaluation, screening, referrals and treatment techniques they can put into practice with the veteran TBI/ABI population.


Track 3 -  Multi-Modal Brain Imaging: The Future of Trauma Diagnosis and Treatment in Veterans - Dr. Michael Seyffert, Amen Clinic

The effects of trauma from PTSD and TBI can be devastating. The problem of misattribution in these complex patients may result in inaccurate diagnosis leading to improper treatment. Recently, for the first time, single photon emission computed tomography {SPECT) was able to differentiate the brains of people with PTSD from TBI. This groundbreaking research makes an accurate diagnosis more feasible and opens the door to more successful, holistic and personalized assessment and treatment.


Track 1 - Embracing the Journey - Dr. George Siegfried, D.C.

Track 2 -  Nutrition and Brain Injury Recovery - Dr. Jeffrey McNannly

Track 3 - Life after TBI: Emotional and Psychological Rebirth - Kendra Bratherton, COTA/L

Kendra Bratherton, COTA/L is an Occupational Therapist Assistant and Reiki Practitioner. Kendra understands coping with multiple emotional and behavioral problems after sustaining four head traumas herself. She will be discussing her years of trials and tribulations of what methods worked to help herself, her family and her friends deal with the wide gamut of difficulties with personality, memory, agitation, emotional lability and much more. She will be identifying the emotional and behavioral components that are most often present after brain trauma and will discuss the multiple avenues (both conventional and unconventional) for managing symptoms related to head trauma. She will explain the most profound treatment that finally changed the course of her recovery and will touch on the use of essential oils that assisted with calming the symptoms and aiding in the recovery. She will also touch base on her experience with moving from pharmaceutical medications to natural alternatives and the health benefits that she has experienced by doing so.

4:00 pm - 5:00 pm 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Track 1 -  Roadblocks to Re-entry: The Triple Whammy of Brain Injury, Psychiatric Disorders and Substance Abuse - Rolf B. Gainer, PhD Rehabilitation Institutes of America, Novato, California; Neurologic Rehabilitation Institute at Brookhaven Hospital, Tulsa, Oklahoma; Neurologic Rehabilitation Institute of Ontario, Etobicoke, Ontario and Community NeuroRehab, Des Moines, Iowa    Moderator: Melissa Taber

Individuals living with a moderate to severe brain injury coupled with psychiatric and/or substance abuse problems face many challenges in their recovery. Those individuals with psychiatric and/or substance abuse problems which pre-date their brain injury may experience greater barriers to positive outcomes than individuals whose mental health and/or substance abuse problems occurred after their injury. Rehabilitation for either cohort must include psychiatric and substance abuse treatment services within the context of the program to achieve optimal results. The failure to offer integrated rehabilitation services can be the cause of these individuals experiencing ongoing crises, unnecessary emergency hospitalizations, incarceration and personal upheaval. The Outcome Validation Studies being conducted at the Neurologic Rehabilitation Institute of Ontario and Community NeuroRehab provide data to examine the barriers to outcome attainment and to maintaining stable and effective personal, social and community return after discharge. These studies indicate that for both pre-existing and post-injury cohorts the length of time from injury to rehabilitation effects the attainment of positive outcomes. The course of rehabilitation opportunities for the person living with a brain injury and a dual diagnosis must include early and effective interventions to produce positive results which reduced extended costs, ongoing problems and diminished quality of life.

1)      Identify the barriers to positive outcomes faced by individuals living with a brain injury

 2)      Examine pre- and post-injury mental health and substance issues which affect personal, social and community outcome domains

 3)      Identify how rehabilitation services can evolve to improve potential outcomes available to the persons served
Track 2 - Finding Happiness - Dan Overton, MC, LMHC, MHP, Traumatic Brain Injury Program Coordinator,  Behavioral Health Services WA. Dept. of Veterans Affairs

All of us want to be happy yet it can sometimes feel hard to come by, especially if dealing with a brain injury. With some understanding, new techniques and approaches and utilizing the “key” to happiness one can “find” happiness again.

Learning Objective:

1)     The participant will have an increased awareness of how we have been shaped to find happiness.

2)     The participant will have an understanding of the impact TBI/ABI may have on how one adjusts to the world around them and the impacts on “typical” pursuits of happiness.

3)     The participant will have an understanding of techniques to increase self-awareness and how this is a major “key” to happiness.

4)     The participant will leave with practical application in maintaining ongoing sense of peace of mind, mindfulness and happiness.

Track 3 -
 Triumph over TBI: Turning Loss into Opportunity Brief - Tanya J. Peterson, MS, NCC

Traumatic brain injury, with its symptoms and sequelae, often creates a sense of loss in those who have been injured. It’s not uncommon for someone adjusting to life with a brain injury to feel hopeless, that they will never again be the person they once were. While it’s true that some effects of brain injury are permanent, a TBI doesn’t not have to mean loss. People can learn how to turn the sense of loss into opportunity and create a life worth living. This presentation will explore the sense of loss as well as tools people can develop to take charge of their lives, create a sense of purpose, and turn loss into opportunity.
Track 1- Stroke and Brain Injury Recovery - Dr. Haakon Andresen

Track 2 - What Support Groups Can Do To Help You-
Kristina Fosse, Michael Jensen and Dr. James Chesnutt

Track 3 -  Life After Brain Injury - Panel

How Roles Change -  Michael Green and Stephanie Slack: Stephanie will share how their personnel story began on 9/29/2010 as a result of a motorcycle accident while on vacation 900 miles from home.  Michael will discuss his unique story-My Life After TBI and Emergency Crainiotomy.  Michael and Stephanie will share then and now, almost 7 years post TBI.  How it has affected their lives within the family network.

The Challenges of Brain Injuries in Marriage and Raising Children When Both Parents Have a Brain Injury - Certified Life Coach and mentor Ben Luskin along with his wife Kassia Luskin, both survivors of TBI, will share the challenges they have encountered in living together and raising children. Emphasis will be placed on strategies for accommodation they have utilized in order to promote harmony within their family. 

When It's Not That Easy - Keri Stocks

Keri will talk about how a brain injury alters the family dynamics and the effects that these changes have on everyone including family and friends.



5:00 pm - 6:30 pm  Reception


Poster Presentations: will be up for the entire conference


Comparison of Intentional Deaths (Suicide) and Unintentional Motor Vehicle Traffic Deaths with and without Traumatic Brain Injury as an Underlying Cause by State and By Year Across Selected Demographic, Economic and Geographical Characteristics—Unites States 1999-2010

Russell C. Spearman, M. Ed., Beth Hudnall Stamm, Ph.D., and Ann D. Kirkwood, M.A. Institute of Rural Health at Idaho State University


What is a Traumatic Brain Injury

Sherry Stock, MS CBIST  Brain Injury Alliance of Oregon




At the completion of the conference, participants will be able to:

1. Implement strategies designed to significantly improve positive outcomes for those living with brain injury and neurological conditions in all communities.

2. Describe the epidemiology of brain injury and its resultant impairments, disability, and psychosocial impact.

3. Integrate new developments in science and medicine into practice for brain injury rehabilitation.

4. Utilize multidisciplinary strategies for the management of psychological and behavioral problems common to brain injury including behavior management.

5. Identify neurophysiological mechanisms involved in brain plasticity and their potential application to improving practice and service provision across rehabilitation disciplines.

6. Summarize recent brain injury-related research with corresponding practical application and best practices.

7. Identify clinical management practices, specifically new strategies in behavioral management, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment guidelines.

8. Understand health care delivery trends and their impact on long-term brain injury and neurological conditions management, acute care, and what that can/will mean to your business.

9. Analyze past brain injury and neurological conditions - related interventions and weigh their value in today’s world-what is working.

10. To understand brain injury as a chronic disease which affects the person throughout their lifetime

11. To consider co-morbid conditions which affect the process of aging with a brain injury

12. Discuss the life long, post-acute rehabilitation needs of individuals with traumatic brain injuries and the importance of developing long term care plans.

13. Improve quality of life for brain injury survivors and their caregivers by connecting them with community resources.

14. Create networking opportunities and build partnerships with key brain injury researchers, clinicians, and prevention professionals.


CEUs Offered/Applied for:  AFH, DC, DO, CGC, CLE, SLP, OT, PT, CCRC, CDMS, CCMC  Hours:  Thursday: 7.75 hours; Friday: 7.75 hours;  Saturday: 7.75 hours; all three days: 23.5 hours; Friday and Saturday Total: 15.5 hours








Cameron Smith

Cameron Smith was appointed by Governor Kitzhaber in as the director of the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs. Cameron served as a policy advisor in the Governor’s Office and had the privilege over the years of working closely with the Department and its partners to serve our veterans and military families. As a proud Marine who served three tours in Iraq, I understand the unique impacts of war on our current generation of veterans. I also have the deepest respect and admiration for our shared history and all previous generations who have served our state and nation. We know that our work for veterans is just beginning. Our recent veterans represent one of the nation’s greatest assets, with hard-earned skills and experience, yet they continue to carry the residual effects of nearly 12 years of war. We also have aging veterans from previous eras such as Vietnam, Korea and World War II who deserve the best in care, honor, and support. We also cannot forget the service and sacrifice of our military families that are the backbone of our forces. With current operations overseas winding down, we risk fading attention to veterans’ issues. As such, we must redouble our efforts to focus support and services for their health, continuing education, and employment. We must expand and improve our outreach to all veterans and continue to grow our essential partnerships.



Jacob Plasker, D.C. is a second-generation chiropractor who can personally attest to the power of chiropractic care. When he was ten-months old, Dr. Plasker suffered a head injury that left him partially paralyzed. The attending doctors said that he would never walk or talk. Through regular chiropractic care, Dr. Plasker defied the grim prognosis and dedicated his life to understanding the human nervous system so that he can deliver the same exceptional care that has allowed him to thrive today. Dr. Plasker’s case has been published in multiple publications, and he has spoken to both professional and lay audiences all over the country about the power of chiropractic. During his time at Life University, Dr. Plasker served as the vice president for the Life Functional Neurology club where he gave weekly lectures on the complex structure and function of the human nervous system to students and doctors alike. He also attended the Carrick Institute for Graduate Studies and is currently board eligible with the American Chiropractic Neurology Board. Upon graduation he was presented with the Chiropractic Philosophy Distinction award for his demonstration of profound understanding of the adaptability of the human nervous system. Dr. Plasker has a true passion for patient care and has helped patients immensely with a range of complex neurological disorders including Concussion/traumatic brain injury, post-stroke rehabilitation, vertigo, peripheral neuropathy, and more. In addition to chiropractic neurology, Dr. Plasker’s other passions include hiking, tennis, snowboarding, chess, and traveling.  





Dr. Rolf Gainer, CEO of Brookhaven Hospital


Dr. Rolf Gainer, PhD, ABDA CEO, Diplomate ABDA, serves as the Chief Executive Officer at Brookhaven Hospital as well as the Vice President of Rehabilitation Institutes of America. Dr. Gainer is the founder of the Neurologic Rehabilitation Institute of Ontario (Canada), and previously served as its Chief Executive Officer for twenty three years. Dr. Gainer has been involved in the design and operation of brain injury rehabilitation and treatment programs since 1978. He has a PhD in Clinical Psychology from Union University and a MEd in Counseling Psychology from Antioch University. He has published numerous articles on brain injury rehabilitation and mental health topics and has presented at many national and international conferences. He is involved in three outcome research projects related to social role return and lifespan considerations for individuals with traumatic brain injury.


Dr. Rolf B. Gainer was invited to serve on the panel of distinguished authors for The Essential Brain Injury Guide, Edition 5.0 released by the Brain Injury Association of America. Dr. Gainer's chapter on the "Psychosocial Complications of Brain Injury" addresses the psychiatric and neurobehavioral problems which can occur for individuals with brain injuries. The Essential Brain Injury Guide, Edition 5.0, a comprehensive brain injury training manual, is used in the Academy of Certified Brain Injury Specialist training programs and in other settings.




Glen Zielinski, DC, DACNB, FACFN, is a chiropractic neurologist and Fellow of the American College of Functional Neurology. He graduated as the Valedictorian of his class from Parker College of Chiropractic, and studied functional neurology with the Carrick Institute. He earned his board certification in 2003, and was appointed as Assistant Professor of Clinical Neurology with the Carrick Institute in 2004. He has spent the last decade lecturing on functional neurology, functional medicine, and neuroimmunology throughout North America and Europe. He is the clinical director of Northwest Functional Neurology, in Lake Oswego, Oregon. His practice focuses on rehabilitation of traumatic brain injuries, as well as on vestibular disorders, neurodevelopmental challenges, and movement disorders. He has published on mechanisms of persistent post-concussion syndrome. He was honored as the Neurologist of the Year for 2014 by the International Association of Functional Neurology and Rehabilitation, the highest award in the functional neurology profession. As a Functional Neurologist, he is a firm believer in treating the root cause of neurological dysfunction, not just the reduction of symptoms. His goal is to maximize the function of neurological systems in order to promote the fullest expression of health.






Richard Adler

Richard Adler, JD, is an honors graduate of Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C., where he received his Juris Doctorate degree in 1980. He was called to the Bar in Washington State that same year. Mr. Adler is the founding principal for the law offices of Adler Giersch ps, which is exclusively dedicated to representing victims of traumatic brain, spinal, and musculoskeletal injuries. Mr. Adler volunteers his time with the Brain Injury Association of Washington having served as its President (2006-2009) and current serves as its Chairman of the Executive Board. He is credited with turning around the BIAWA’s organization with initiatives to implement BIAWA’s mission of prevention, education, support, and advocacy for brain injury survivors and their caregivers. In 2009 he organized a powerful coalition of healthcare, businesses, and community partners to enact the “Zackery Lystedt Law,” names after this client, that requires medical clearance before a young athlete can return to competition or practice following concussion. Mr. Adler has authored many publications on traumatic injuries for attorneys, healthcare providers, and the injured. His most recent book, Understanding Traumatic Brain Injury: A Guide for Survivors and Families (2006) joins prior top-rated writings, The Medical-Legal Aspects of Soft Tissue Injuries, and Spinal Trauma and the Personal Injury Case, and From Injury to Action: Navigating Your Personal Injury Claim.  Mr. Adler has co-produced several educational and instructional videos for doctors on testifying at deposition and trial. Also, he writes and edits the law firm’s monthly newsletter, “The Advocate,” which focuses on various medical-legal-insurance aspects of personal injury claims. Frequently, he lectures on traumatic brain injury, personal injury and insurance law to attorneys, medical doctors, chiropractors, physical therapists, massage therapists, and psychologists. Mr. Adler and the law firm of Adler Giersch PS are “AV” rated, the highest rating available, as established in a confidential survey of other attorney conducted by Martindale-Hubbell. In 2005, Mr. Adler was inducted into the Million Dollar Advocate Forum, an organization of the top trial lawyers in America. He has also received the Pro Bono Award from the Washington State Bar Association for his commitment and leadership in providing legal services to those in need every year since 2003. In 2008, Mr. Adler received the President’s Award from the American Massage Therapy Association, an award that is reserved for those who have advanced the profession of massage therapy statewide. In 2009, he received an award from the American College of Sports Medicine for “protecting the health and safety of young athletes,” in establishing the “Zackery Lystedt Law.” Mr. Adler is licensed to practice law in federal court and all jurisdictions in the State of Washington. He is a participating member of the Washington Bar Association, Washington State Association of Justice (Eagle Status), American Association for Justice, the Brain Injury Alliance of Washington and the Brain Injury Alliance of Oregon.

Haakon Anderesen

Haakon Andresen, DC,  graduated Cum Laude from Life University in Atlanta, Georgia, with his doctorate of chiropractic degree. He received numerous awards and citations, and was the recipient of the prestigious Integrative Change Award. While pursuing his studies in Functional Neurology with the Carrick Institute, he spent two years as a resident intern at the Carrick Brain Center in Atlanta, assisting in the treatment of extremely complicated neurological cases, professional athletes, and celebrities. He relocated to join Northwest Functional Neurology as a senior clinical associate in 2016. His work in helping a stroke victim regain motor function was published in the November 2015 edition of the prominent journal Frontiers In Neuroscience.  He hails from Tonsberg, a small town in southern Norway. He is a competitive extreme athlete, and as such has fractured virtually every bone in his body skiing, kitesurfing, wakeboarding, snowboarding, kiteskiing, and more. He witnessed many talented friends lose themselves and their careers to head trauma. This engendered a keen interest the study of traumatic brain injury, into which he has invested thousands of hours.  He spends his free time studying neurology and shredding Mount Hood Meadows, usually at the same time.

Steven J. Anglés, JD, is a first generation Cuban-American. Mr. Anglés graduated on the Dean’s List with degrees in Political Science and Spanish Language Arts from Berry College, in Georgia. He remained in Georgia and went on to earn his Juris Doctorate from The Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University in 2000. While putting himself through law school, Mr. Anglés worked for the Floyd County District Attorney’s office prosecuting criminal cases. During his service, he secured funding to protect victims of domestic violence by enabling attorneys to more effectively prosecute and convict abusers through the use of enhanced technology designed to display photographic evidence to judges and juries. Prior to joining Adler♦Giersch PS, Mr. Anglés was admitted to the Georgia and Washington Bars and worked as in-house counsel for Progressive Insurance Company defending at-fault parties as well as the corporation itself when sued for failure to provide benefits. Over a 12-year period, his practice focused on cases involving severe injuries, insurance coverage, and complex personal injury claims. He has extensive courtroom experience, having tried over 35 jury trials and 100 bench trials in his career. In addition to his active trial practice, Mr. Anglés developed and taught legal education courses on emerging issues to insurance agents, claim representatives, and their supervisors about issues facing injured parties and how they effect the settlement of personal injury claims and jury verdicts. He also co-founded a nationwide Employee Resource Group to enrich the holistic customer and employee experience as well as address the unique needs of the insured within the Hispanic community. With time and experience, Mr. Anglés became increasingly disenchanted with unjust practices of insurance companies and the resulting impact those practices were having on injured parties. He wanted to put his well-earned and highly specialized knowledge of the insurance industry’s inner-workings and claim practices towards the reason he became an attorney in the first place: to stand up for those in need and advocate for those who have been harmed.

Scott Bloom is the Traumatic Brain Injury Council Coordinator working within the Aging and Long Term Care; Home and Community Services of the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS). Scott, has been working for the State of Washington since 2009, having previously retired from the Army, as a Chief Warrant Officer and Aviator. Today, he serves the Traumatic Brain Injury community as a Certified Brain Injury Specialist and Program Manager of The Washington Traumatic Brain Injury Strategic Partnership Advisory Council. Scott has spent the last year as the Clinical Supervisor of Building 9, a transitional housing program for homeless veterans in Port Orchard, WA, while continuing to provide awareness trainings to thousands of individuals on Traumatic Brain Injury, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Military Culture across the state of Washington. Mr. Bloom is a member of the Disability Rights Washington; Disability Advisory Council, an Advisory Board member of the Lakewood YMCA, and a member of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA).


Kendra Bratherton, COTA/L, Reiki II Practitioner, PNW Head Injury Support Group Leader, Board of Director/Secretary for Brain Injury Alliance of Oregon, Vice President/Co-owner at Seaside Brewery, has personal understanding of the kind of emotional and behavioral disturbances that one is often faced with after brain trauma. Kendra has sustained multiple head injuries over the course of her life and is also a spinal cord injury survivor. The first three of her head injuries and spinal cord injury occurred in her 1991-1992 college year. The last head injury occurred in 2005. In the earlier years she had to learn ways of coping with multiple cognitive, emotional and physical deficits in order to achieve her education. Her 2005 injury was more devastating due to accumulative brain trauma. She had to learn how to live life again- with physical and cognitive deficits, speech and language problems, severe migraines, PTSD, and multiple behavioral and emotional changes. Since she has overcome her many life changing experiences with success, she gladly shares her experience, strength and hope with others. She went through multiple physicians, psychiatrists, medications and alternative care methods to achieve continued success of recovery and beyond.

Through all of Kendra’s experiences during her multiple recoveries, she decided to focus, not only on her pursuit for a Psychology degree, but also to become a therapist. She has an Associate’s Degree in Occupational Therapy from Baker College of Muskegon - Muskegon, MI. , completed her BA, majoring in Psychology with Thomas Edison State College - Trenton, NJ. Her early professional career was specializing in Stroke rehabilitation and head trauma and has worked for Cleveland Clinic - Cleveland, OH, Lakewood Hospital - Lakewood, OH, Macomb Hospital -Macomb County, MI and is currently living and working in Astoria, Oregon where her professional career consists of hand therapy, cognitive retraining and physical rehabilitation. She is also part of the Clatsop EASA (Early Assessment and Support Alliance) multi-disciplinary team which is a program that works to identify young people who are experiencing psychoses and to provide the information and support they need to continue on their life path. She works as a PRN, part-time lab instructor for Linn-Benton Community College OTA (Occupational Therapy Assistant) program. She started the Pacific Northwest Head Injury Support Group in 2012 (Astoria, OR), has been a member of BIAOR since 2012 and is now serving as Secretary on the board. She is in pursuit of attaining Reiki Master and is currently completing an 8 month Tensegrity Medicine Mentorship program and is working towards becoming a certified Bowen Practitioner. She has plans of launching her new healing business in fall of 2017. She is also co-owner and Vice President of Seaside Brewery in Seaside, OR.


Shelley L Campbell, RN Coordinator, Injury Prevention and Outreach Education Youth and Families Trauma Services, Trauma Nurses Talk Tough Legacy Emanuel Medical Center Shelley has been an RN for over 40 years. 27 of those years were in the Operating Room with the main role as Pediatric Nursing Coordinator in the Operating Room and Coordinator of an Adult Trauma Team. Her entire nursing career has been in critical care at a Level 1 Trauma Center. She is Chair of the Youth Empowerment Committee for the Multnomah Drug Coalition, Big Village and is a member of the Steering Committee. She is Vice President of SAFE KIDS OF Oregon and chairs the Education and Conference Committee, She is a board member of the Tigard Turns the Tide Youth Drug Coalition, She represents Legacy at the Governors DUII Advisory Committee. Shelley is currently Coordinator of Injury Prevention and Outreach Education, Youth and Families, with Trauma Services and the Trauma Nurses Talks Tough Program at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center. She conducts injury prevention education presentations to all age levels from pre-school to adults. She also provides presentations for court mandated classes such as for Safety Belt violations, Minors in Possession, Young Drives Improvement, and DUII classes. Some of the areas that Shelley covers are Driver Education Classes, Parenting Classes, Supervision for Safety, and Responsibility for Safety, Substance Use and its effects. Shelley also presents to groups concerning violence and gang activity in the community and to court remanded youth working with Healing Hurt People. She presents to the Juvenile Court Classes on Youth and Alcohol and Marijuana in Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington Counties. Presentations to MS and HS students focus on the Adolescent Brain and stages of maturation and the effect of Alcohol and Marijuana on the developing brain. Shelley provides Injury Prevention Education to businesses, church groups and conferences. She has been the Key Note Speaker at National Conferences bringing with her the information that “Injuries Can Be Prevented”. Her presentations on substance use and youth, contain information on brain development and the areas responsible for decision making, logic and short term memory. She then covers how alcohol and marijuana effect the brains ability in those areas. Once we lose the ability to make a safe decision or use safe judgment there are consequences. Her discussion covers those consequences that occur when an unsafe decision is made and those affected by those decisions. Data and stories of real patients highlight and show that all of this is real with real people dealing with these decisions and the resulting consequences.

Melissa D. Carter, JD, was born and raised in Washington and received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Washington in 1996. She then attended law school in Boston, Massachusetts and received her Juris Doctor degree from Suffolk University Law School in 1999.   While in law school, Ms. Carter worked as a legal advocate for its Battered Women’s Clinic and assisted hundreds of victims of domestic violence to obtain and enforce restraining orders against their abusers. During her time in Boston, Ms. Carter was selected for the prestigious fellowship with the Suffolk Public Interest Law Program, which involved providing legal representation, counseling and advocacy to indigent and underprivileged individuals at the Justice Resource Institute’s Health Care Center. She also held positions at the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, where she researched, investigated and prosecuted discrimination cases involving public housing, education and employment.   Prior to joining Adler♦Giersch PS, Ms. Carter followed her calling for courtroom advocacy by representing insurance companies and at-fault parties for over twelve years in claims involving complex traumatic injury, insurance contracts and commercial insurance disputes. During this time, Ms. Carter conducted and completed well over 30 jury trials to verdict in state and federal courtrooms in Washington and Massachusetts. Her most recent trials involved traumatic brain injury, wrongful death and insurance bad faith.


James Chesnutt, M.D.,  is the Medical Director of the OHSU Sports Medicine Program and has been an Assistant Professor at OHSU for 19 years. He is full time faculty in the Orthopedics and Rehabilitation and Family Medicine departments. Jim has been a Team Physician for 20 years and teaches and practices sports medicine full time. Jim grew up in Portland. He attended Stanford for his undergraduate, and went to OHSU Medical School and had his residency with the Air Force. Dr Chesnutt was the President of the Oregon Academy of Family Medicine from 2004-5. He is a member of the OSAA Medical Aspects of Sports Committee, that governs Oregon HS sports. Jim is the co-director of the Oregon Concussion Awareness and Management Program. Dr. Chesnutt specializes in Pediatric and Adult Sports Medicine and treats athletes and recreationalists of all ages. He has a special focus on the comprehensive care of the adolescent athlete through his work in high school sports medicine programs. Dr. Chesnutt specializes in comprehensive non-operative diagnostic and treatment options, but is very knowledgeable about specialized surgical treatment options available to patients. He has a special interest in treating runners, cyclists and triathletes as well as those involved in outdoor recreational activities. He can evaluate medical problems associated with exercise and has developed a comprehensive set of specialists who can assist in the care of specialized problems. One of Dr Chesnutt’s unique specialty areas is concussion evaluation and management. He is the Co-Director of the Oregon Concussion Awareness and Management Program and serves on the OSAA Medical Advisory Committee. OHSU Sports Medicine is the only credentialed ImPact provider in the Portland metropolitan area and can provide consultation to other doctors and medical personnel.


Aaron DeShaw


Aaron DeShaw, JD DC. is a trial lawyer from Portland, Oregon. He has obtained settlements and verdicts for his clients in excess of $350 million. He is perhaps the best known expert in the U.S. on the subject of Colossus, the computer assessment program used by most auto insurance companies for evaluating personal injury claims. He is author of three books on auto injuries and insurance. He is a frequent resource for national media such as CNN, MSNBC, BusinessWeek and others on the topic of insurance. He has lectured for both physician and legal professionals including at ATLA, AAJ, the Spine Research Institute of San Diego, and the National Institute for Trial Advocacy, as well as private seminars before the nation’s top insurance bad faith lawyers. Aaron handles serious personal injury cases including brain injury cases, catastrophic injuries, and wrongful death claims. He works with Rick Friedman, a member of the Inner Circle of Advocates, a by-invitation-only society of the Top 100 plaintiff lawyers in the United States. Friedman, a Harvard Law graduate, and author of two best selling legal textbooks, has obtained over $300 million in jury verdicts. The two lawyers handle cases nationally, with offices in Oregon, Washington and Alaska. You can reach Aaron DeShaw at


Kristina Fosse, Student, OHSU.


Jacob W. Gent, JD, began working at Adler ♦ Giersch PS as a Case Manager in June 2002 and since then has been effectively assisting those with traumatic injuries. Mr. Gent earned his Juris Doctorate from Widener University School of Law in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania in August 2009. He continued working for Adler Giersch, PS, while attending law school at night and completed a four year part-time law school program in just three years. At school he was a member of the Trial Advocacy Honor Society and participated in mock trials and trial skills workshops. During the summer of 2007, Mr. Gent studied international law and constitutional law at the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia, through the Widener Law School exchange program. During his final year, Mr. Gent worked in the Widener University Civil Law Clinic, providing free legal services to indigent, elderly, and disabled individuals on a wide variety of matters. Befitting his ‘rising star’ status, Mr. Gent was admitted to the Bar and sworn in by two Washington Supreme Court Justices, Tom Chambers and Debra L. Stephens, during a private ceremony in October, 2010. Mr. Gent is licensed to practice law in federal court and all jurisdictions in the state of Washington. He is a participating member of the Washington State Bar Association, Washington State Association for Justice (Eagle status), King County and Snohomish County Bar Associations, the Brain Injury Association of Washington, and the Greater Everett Community Foundation.  

Linda Giffotrd

Linda Gifford - In the space of an instant, Linda’s life was irrevocably changed due to a head-on car accident.  As a result of her traumatic brain injury, Linda suffered memory loss and sustained multiple injuries throughout her body.  Suffering from the loss of independence, including relationship with family and friends, did not stop her from fighting to survive.  She discovered people who led her to scientific discoveries on how to heal.  Using both Western medicine and Alternative modalities gave her the tools to recover.  Her extensive research has led her to a compilation of a wide range of materials related to brain trauma.  You will lean more things than ever imagined related to brain injury; how the entire body is affected and the many paths to healing yourself.  “Heal the Brain, Heal the Body” is a “One good stop” book on how to restore one’s health from natural aging and numerous diseases.  As Linda shares her real life experiences, she also, teaches others how to recover, restore and be at their best without the use of medications or surgery.  Linda teaches these methods to others and they tell of their journeys not only to survive, but to thrive.

Lillieth Grand


Lillieth Grand, MS, MT-BC, Executive Director, Milestone Music Therapy, has been a music therapist since 1993 specializing in working with children who have neurological impairment, traumatic brain injury, autism, developmental disabilities, and chronic health conditions. She is passionate about the field and holds several regional and national positions with AMTA and WRAMTA. She also trains music therapists to do Music Therapy Assisted Childbirth and is adjunct faculty at Marylhurst University. As well-known speaker on music therapy, she has been keynote speaker at the Utah Brain Injury Association and presents at nearly every music therapy conference. Lillieth has been trained in neurologic music therapy, NICU music therapy, Sprouting Melodies, Music Together, level 1 of the Bonny Method of Music and Imagery and more. Her master’s degree is in special education. She has a vision of seeing that all persons in Oregon who could benefit from music therapy have access to and use of a music therapist. Lillieth is the single mother of three boys, ages 15, 13, and 4. Her middle child being severely neurologically impaired makes her appreciate them all the more. Her major instrument is voice.

Dr. Adam Grove


Dr. Adam Grove, Vice-Chair, Alaska Brain Injury Network.  Dr. Adam Grove is a Naturopathic Physician practicing family-medicine and specializing in children and adults with neurological and psychological challenges. He practices in Anchorage, Alaska at Head to Toe Holistic Healthcare LLC. He emphasizes an individualized, whole-person focus with attention to accurate diagnosis and holistic treatment for brain-based issues. He works with people of all ages experiencing symptoms of ADD/ADHD, Autism, Brain injury and other brain-based disorders. He is currently the Director of the Board for the Alaska Brain Injury Network. Dr. Adam Grove is also the Director of The Neurocognitive Brain Center which diagnoses and treats brain-based disorders in adults and children. The center’s mission is to provide Alaskan’s with the best options for post-acute traumatic brain injury rehabilitation.He is a member of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians.He is a frequent presenter on topics of Autism, Brain Injury, Environmental Medicine and topics in pediatrics. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering (University of Arizona, 1985), a Masters of Arts degree in Soviet Area Studies (Naval Postgraduate School, 1992) and a doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine (Bastyr University, 2002).  

Shauna Hahn



Shauna Hahn, PMHNP. is a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner in Portland, Oregon. She has been working with a "downtown" population of Severely and Persistently Ill Population for approximately one decade, her whole career. Shauna became interested in TBIs through the work of her family member and became increasingly aware of the prevalence of unassessed TBIs in her population. It is now her mission to help explain to her patients their unique symptomology post-TBI.



Michael Jensen is currently a student with the hopes of matriculating into a medical school and treating people with life altering brain injuries to allow them to achieve their highest potential, and to CHOOSE it. I was injured August 29th, 2015. For better or worse, I haven’t been the same since. I understand your struggle, but more importantly, I want you to see your injury as a blessing, as a tool, as your Archimedes lever that will enable you to flip your obstacles on their heads and win at life.


Mary Kelly LTC AN (Ret), Transition Assistance Advisor, Idaho National Guard, Board Member, Brain Injury Alliance of Idaho

Arthur D. Leritz, JD, received his degree in Political Science from the University of Washington in 1996, followed by his Doctor of Jurisprudence from Willamette University College of Law in 1999. Prior to joining ADLER ♦ GIERSCH PS, Mr. Leritz represented and defended insurers for nearly 11 years, handling a wide variety of complex insurance and personal injury cases. It was through his legal representation of at-fault defendants and insurance companies that Mr. Leritz realized his true calling was to advocate, protect, and defend those with traumatic injuries. Mr. Leritz is a contributor to From Injury to Action: Navigating Your Personal Injury Claim (2011), and is a contributor to the firm's Advocate newsletter on insurance and injury issues. He has also lectured to attorneys and healthcare providers. Mr. Leritz is licensed to practice law in federal court and all jurisdictions in the state of Washington. He is a participating member of the Washington State Bar Association, the Washington State Association for Justice-Eagle, the American Association of Justice, and the Brain Injury Association of Washington. Mr. Leritz has been selected and served as court-appointed arbitrator in King, Snohomish, and Pierce Counties to resolve personal injury and insurance cases.


Ben Luskin is a Certified Professional Coach (CPC), , author, and advocate for empowerment in his community. He holds discipline and responsibility to be fundamental ingredients in recovery. Kassia Luskin, Ben's wife, is a strong voice for empowerment in the health care arena, mending fractured lives as a CNA. On a daily basis, both Ben and Kassia support each other in overcoming self-doubt and living fruitful lives with TBI.




Juliet Machado


Juliet Machado, BA OVT,  has been a Vision Therapist for over 13 years. She is currently Director of the Vision Therapy Center at Lifetime Eye Care in Eugene. While Juliet works with vision development for all ages, over the past 5 years, under the guidance of Dr. Carol Maruslch, her special emphasis has been with patients following TBI. Regular participation In brain injury support group meetings has further enhanced her understanding of the challenges patients face following injury and has enabled her to provide the most comprehensive care to the individuals she works with. Juliet speaks regularly at Pacific University in Eugene, and lectures to teachers about the importance of vision and learning.  


Jeffrey McNally


Jeffrey McNally, DC, graduated Magna Cum Laude with his Doctorate in Chiropractic from Life University in Atlanta, Georgia, where he was the recipient of the prestigious Contemporary Scientific Paradigms Award. He received his neurology training with the Carrick Institute. After completing his internship at the Carrick Brain Center in Atlanta, he pursued a residency in neurology at Cerebrum Health Centers. He has also received advanced certification in Applied Kinesiology. He moved to Portland in 2016 to work with Dr. Zielinski and join the Northwest Functional Neurology team. His work on treating frozen shoulder an balance disorder with Functional Neurological methodologies was published in the prominent journal Frontiers in Neuroscience. He has a passion for the treatment of traumatic brain injury, post-concussion syndrome, dizziness and balance disorders, and post-traumatic headaches. He also focuses on using Functional Neurology for the optimization of athletic performance. He hails from the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area, and completed his Bachelors of Natural Science degree at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He is a former athlete, and competed in baseball, football, and karate. He still enjoys working out, hiking, snowboarding, and yelling at his TV while watching sports.  





Dan Overton


Dan Overton, MC, LMHC, MHP, began his career at the Seattle VAMC working as a Therapeutic Recreation Specialist for the Spinal Cord Injury Unit. He moved to Arizona in the early 1990’s where he earned a Master’s Degree in counseling and was appointed to the Arizona Governors Council on Spinal and Head Injury. He has worked with county, state, federal, for profit and not for profit agencies in the areas of physical rehab, behavioral health and addictions. In 2008, he began working as a Psychology Associate at Stafford Creek Correction Center where he, along with the rest of the team, was awarded the State Innovator Award for the successful creation of the “veteran’s pod” pilot at Stafford Creek. Before joining WDVA, he worked as Behavioral Health Department Manager for the Quinault Indian Nation and served for the City of Ocean Shores as City Council Member. He has presented professional seminars for a number of years, taught undergraduate psychology for Western International University’s Behavioral Science Department and has guest lectured at Arizona State University and Eastern Washington University. His work over the decades has never strayed far from working with veterans or Traumatic Brain Injury and so it his a pleasure to serve as the Traumatic Brain Injury Specialist for the Washington Dept. of Veterans Affairs.  


Tanya J Peterson, MS, NCC


Tanya J. Peterson, MS, NCC, with credentials as a Nationally Certified Counselor and personal experience with traumatic brain injury and mental health care, author Tanya J. Peterson uses writing and speaking to increase understanding of and compassion for people living with brain injury and/or mental illness as well as to help all people enhance their own mental health and well-being. She has written four critically acclaimed, award-winning, mental-health-themed novels and a self-help book about acceptance and commitment therapy which is available as a course for continuing education credits on Tanya also writes extensively for the mental health website Her HealthyPlace writing includes a weekly column entitled Anxiety-Schmanxiety. Additionally, she writes the main article in their weekly newsletter and has written more than 100 articles about various mental health topics that appear around the Further, Tanya has written numerous mental health articles for varying online and print sources. She has been a guest on radio programs, speaking about mental health and her writing. She also has her own radio show dedicated to mental health and overcoming obstacles like mental illness and brain injury. She has spoken about mental health regionally and nationally. She lives with her family in Oregon. Visit to learn more about Tanya and find links to connect with her.



Ellen Pinney has served as Oregon Health Authority / Oregon Health Plan Ombudsperson since 2010. Oregon Revised Statute 414.712 spells out the expectations of her position created in the 2009 legislative session. For 17 years, Ellen served as Executive Director of the Oregon Health Action Campaign a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the development of health systems that give all people access to the care they need, when they need it, from providers of their choice at an affordable cost. OHAC operated a Health Helpline and was home to statewide and local projects focused on Medicaid access and quality including the Expanded Access Coalition and Project Equality, run by and for people served by OHP. Ellen has a degree in Public Policy and Communications from Tulane University. She started her advocacy career as an organizer with ACORN in Baton Rouge and New Orleans.



Michael Seyffert, M.D., MS is a former Robert Wood Johnson-VA Clinical Scholar from the University of Michigan (2014-2016). He is triple board certified in psychiatry, neurology and sleep medicine. Dr. Seyffert has a unique clinical and research background in assessing and treating child and adult neuropsychiatric disorders and associated sleep problems. He holds the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Michigan Air National Guard and served as Chief Flight Surgeon for the 107th Fighter Squadron in Kuwait during Operation Inherent Resolve (June·November, 2015). He has taken part in international disaster relief efforts in Haiti after the earthquake in 2010 and New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. He is a 2013 American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law Rappeport Fellow and published on the forensic and ethical implications of electronic media use. His major clinical area of expertise lies in the relationship between neuropsychiatric disorders and sleep. Dr. Seyffert is actively involved in several research projects to include: 1) Retrospective study of PTSD and sleep disorders among U.S. military veterans, 2) Mobile health communications as a means to increase access to mental health care, 3) Transcultural idioms of distress, trauma and immigrant mental health care disparities. Dr. Seyffert received his M.D,, from Technion·Israel Institute of Technology. He completed a residency in pediatrics at St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital and his fellowship in child neurology at the University of Washington. He went on to complete a National Institute of Mental Health Research fellowship in Psychiatric Neuroimaging at the NYU Child Study Center (2004·2006), and conducted structural and functional neuroimaging studies of Neuropsychiatric disorders to include Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Dr. Seyffert has over 10 peer-reviewed publications in the areas of neuropsychiatry, sleep and epilepsy. He is a member of the Society for the Study of Psychiatry and Culture, Child Neurology Society, American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the American Psychiatric Association. He was recipient of the Child Neurology Society, 'Outstanding Junior Member Award' in. 2002 and was chosen as a 'Future Leader in Psychiatry' by Emory University in 2005, In 2009, Dr. Seyffert received the Seton-Hall University 20th Annual Research Colloquium Award for work on sleep related movements in children.


Russell C. Spearman M.Ed. is the Project Director for Idaho's Traumatic Brain Injury Partnership Implementation grant from the Health Resources Services Administration, Maternal and Children's Health Bureau. Since August 2000 Russ has been employed by the Institute of Rural Health at Idaho State University- Boise. Prior to this Russ was responsible for developing and implementing all aspects related to Idaho's 1915 C Medicaid Home and Community Based Services Waiver for adults with a traumatic brain injury. He is the former Executive Director for Idaho's Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities. He is the lead author of "The Use of Medicaid Waivers and Their Impact on Services". Russ was instrumental in developing and transitioning Idaho's nationally recognized Home of Your Own Initiative, a single family secondary mortgage program, that today has assisted over 100 people with disabilities realize their dream of home ownership.  Over the past 34 years he has personally and in collaboration with others assisted in the passage of several pieces of legislation on behalf of Idahoans with disabilities.  Russ received his undergraduate degree from Manhattan College and his Master's degree from the College of Idaho. He is married with two children, one who experienced a traumatic brain injury in 1993. Russ was recognized by the National Association of Social Workers - Idaho Chapter in 2002 as the public citizen of the year for his work with people with disabilities. In 2009 Russ was honored as a health care hero by the Idaho Business Review.



Fred Steele, JD, was appointed by Governor Kate Brown in September 2015 to be Oregon's Long-Term Care Ombudsman and Agency Director of the Office of the Long-Term Care Ombudsman. Fred has focused his career on advocating for older adults and individuals with disabilities, with particular focus on enhancing infrastructure to maximize independence of Oregonians. He holds a J.D. From Willamette University College of Law and an M.P.H. from Portland State University. Fred relaxes in his free time by camping, hiking, and watching sports with his wife, two young sons, and their dog.​



  S. Travis Wall was appointed in late 2014 as Oregon's Public Guardian, as delineated by Senate Bill 1553, which became law in 2014. Travis comes to the position with broad guardianship experience.  As a director, analyst, and advocate with rights protection and advocacy programs for people with disabilities and seniors in California, Travis worked to reform guardianship practices and law. Later, he developed and directed the Utah Office of Public Guardian.  For the past eight years, Travis was the Policy and Program manager for Oregon Vocational Rehabilitation, where he led programs and inititatives to increase employment of people with disabilities. 

Carla-Jo Whitson, LICSW, MSW, CBIS, is the Washington Traumatic Brain Injury Resource Manager for Clark, Cowlitz, Lewis Counties since 9.27.2009. Her job is to help TBI survivors and their families connect with resources and services, understanding how their injuries impact their lives, and give them someone to talk with. She facilitates two Traumatic Brain Injury Support Groups, one in Clark County and one in Cowlitz County. In 2010 she became a Certified Brain Injury Specialist from Academy of Certified Brain Injury Specialist. Following her dream to complete her education she returned to school and received her Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences from Washington State University in 2003. Then went on to earn her Master of Social Work from Eastern Washington University in 2009. She recently completed one more step of that dream. She earned her LICSW License from Washington State on 3.25.2016. During this period of time she volunteered as a therapist with Community Services NW’s Wellness Project in Clark County, Washington from 2009 to 2013. In 2008 served as the Clark County Veterans Assistance Fund Service Officer. From 2006 to 2008 she facilitated the YWCA’s Domestic Violence Support Group in Vancouver, WA Finally, to keep her life balanced she is the Vancouver Farmers’ Market Face Painter. 12 seasons and counting.  








Sponsors and Exhibitors





The Neurologic Rehabilitation Institute (NRI) at Brookhaven Hospital is an internationally recognized center for the treatment and rehabilitation of individuals with traumatic brain injuries and other neurological disorders. This highly individualized treatment program is tailored to each individual with the goal of restoring the highest level of independence possible.



Adaptability for Life

Deb Marinos MS CRC
Rehabilitation Counselor

Providing Creative Strategies for Tasks of Employment and Daily Living 503-871-5299  



Amen Clinics


At the Amen Clinics, we understand that no two people are alike, and treatment is not one-size-fits-all, especially in psychiatry. With a complete picture of your biological, psychological, social and spiritual health, together with SPECT imaging, neuropsychological tests and labs when appropriate, our doctors will provide you with a personalized, targeted treatment plan geared toward your symptoms and your brain.
616 120th Avenue Northeast c100
Bellevue, WA 98005
(425) 455-7500

Adrienne Berofsky-Seyffert MFA, EdM Clinic Outreach Manager


Everyday at Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Inc., we focus on the research, development and commercialization of novel medical and pharmaceutical treatments for people with central nervous system disorders. That focus, along with the deep seated passion of our people, is fueling the development of innovative medical solutions.
 Robin Schantz  503-601-9051


The Brain Injury Alliance of Idaho promotes awareness, understanding and prevention of brain injury through support, advocacy and education based on the expressed needs of persons affected by brain injury.

1055 North Curtis Road
Boise, Idaho 83706
Phone: (208) 367-2747

Hours of Operation: Monday through Friday 9-5pm Idaho's TBI Ombudsman, Virginia Galizia, Ph.D. R.PH. Contact her at or call (208) 478-7830

The Brain Injury Alliance of Oregon, Inc. is the only statewide 501(c)(3), not-for-profit association dedicated to creating a better future through brain injury prevention, research, education and advocacy and supporting our mission. Services offered are: Information and Referral: We serve as a clearinghouse for community resources through our 1-800-544-5243 toll free helpline, referring survivors, family and professionals alike to community, state and national services, resources, and professionals serving the brain injury community, sending information packets free of charge; Peer mentoring and support for family members and survivors; Support Groups: over 40 support groups throughout the state; Advocacy: working to educate legislators and voters on brain injury issues; Awareness and Prevention activities:; Support Services: dispersing donated computers, volunteering opportunities and work trials for survivors in rehabilitation; Research: working to facilitate research in the field of brain injury by disseminating current calls for input and volunteers on TBI issues; Education: through conferences, workshops, trainings, seminar's and presentations and our quarterly newsletter, The Headliner, reaching more than 6000 members and supporters.   800-544-5243



The Brain Injury Association of Washington (BIAWA) is dedicated to increasing public awareness, support, and hope for those affected by brain injury. If you or someone you care about is living with brain injury, then you have come to the right place.  Providing educational information about TBI and information about the free services offered through BIAWA.  877-982-4292.

Cascadia Community Bowen Clinic

Bowen Work is a gentle, manual therapy with proven results for TBI.

Clair Darling, LMT
Cascadia Community Bowen Clinic
3295 SW 106th Ave
Beaverton OR 97005


Dr. Aaron DeShaw, Esq. PC: a Portland law firm where our lead lawyer, is both a doctor and a lawyer. The combination allows our firm to fully understand the wide variety of health problems that can result from an injury. br>

Dunn Chiropractic Clinic and Wellness Center

"A Compassionate Tradition of Natural Pain Relief and Wellness Since 1915"

301 NE Dunn Place
McMinnville, OR 97128
Ph: 503-472 6550
Fax: 503-472-1039

5319 SW Westgate Dr. #154
Ph: 503-977-0055
Fax: 971-266-8369

Homeward Bound


Independent Living Resources is one of seven Center for Independent Living in Oregon.  ILR offers Information & Referrals, Peer Counseling, Skills Training, Advocacy and Transition Services for people with all types of disabilities thoughout the Portland Metro Area.  We also offer speciality services outside the metro area under grants and contacts such as benefits planning under the Work Incentives Network and STEPS to Success with Your Homecare Worker.



Integrated Supports for Living

Chrislyn Prantl
Chief Executive Officer
1880 Fisher Rd. NE
Salem OR 97305


Kampfe Management Services - Brain Injury Rehab was the first “Specialized Living Facility” in the state of Oregon to focus on brain injury rehabilitation services, KMS has a history of developing programs that benefit our clients (and payers). We offer independence within the structure of a supported living environment that focuses on developing compensatory strategies which allow clients to successfully transition back into community.


Learning Services

Learning Services is a national provider of community-integrated programs that offer innovative, specialized support for adults with acquired brain injuries. We provide supported living, residential rehabilitation, neurobehavioral rehabilitation, as well as day acitivity programming in homelike environments.

For information, call 888.419.9955 or visit





Regina Ibrahim

MRSA Survivors Network

Director of Oregon & Washington

1532 NE Alberta st

Portland, OR 97211





The Medicaid Long Term Care Quality & Reimbursement Advisory Council: The Medicaid Long Term Care Quality & Reimbursement Advisory Council (MLTCQRAC) was established by the 1995 Legislative Assembly to advise the Department of Human Services Aging and People with Disabilities programs on changes or modifications to the Medicaid reimbursement system for long-term care and community-based care services.

What we do
- We work with complicated neurological and other health conditions with a brain-based approach.

- We use in-office evaluations and leading-edge lab testing to thoroughly assess the function of your brain and nervous system, immune system, and other facets of your health.

- By looking at how brain function intersects with other systems in the body we can begin to unravel complex health conditions and understand how best to assist with your care.

Glen Zielinski, DC, DACNB, FACFN
Northwest Functional Neurology
4035 SW Mercantile Drive, Suite 112 Lake Oswego, OR, 97035
(503) 850-4526 Fax: (503) 908-1555

Oregon Chiropractic Association

Oregon Chiropractic Association

Jan Ferrante
Executive Director
Office (503) 256-1601


Oregon Trial Lawyers Association

Oregon Trial Lawyers Association
319 SW Washington St. Ste 607, Portland, OR 97204
503 223 5587    FAX 503 223 4101


Clinical trial of the Portable Neuromodulation Stimulator (PoNS)

Clinical trial of the Portable Neuromodulation Stimulator (PoNS) device for people who have problems with balance or walking that resulted from mild or moderate traumatic brain injury (TBI)  

Volunteers Needed: Research Study on Balance Problems Caused by Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

The Center for Regenerative Medicine at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) and the VA Portland Health Care System are conducting a research study for people who have problems with balance or walking that resulted from mild or moderate traumatic brain injury (TBI). This study will test a potential treatment that combines the use of a device called the Portable Neuromodulation Stimulator (PoNS™) – which provides mild electrical stimulation to the tongue – with physical therapy exercises and relaxation training.

If you would like to participate, please call:
Dr. Sarah Theodoroff at 503-220-8262 ext 51948
The Principal Investigator for this study is Dr. Kenton Gregory OHSU Center for Regenerative Medicine Oregon Health & Science University
3181 S.W. Sam Jackson Park Road
Portland, OR 97239





In addition to serving the existing recumbent market, Recumbent PDX has e a special focus on customers with special needs and adaptive cycling products.   (503) 231-1000

Rehab without Walls

Rehab Without Walls® provides Comprehensive neuro-rehabilitation to adults and children in their environments of home and community. Rehab Without Walls® is committed to serving cost effective and durable outcome to our patients.   877-497-1863


StoryMinders, LLC

StoryMinders, LLC, is a local media production company run by a peerwith TBI disabilities.  Product:  "Who Am I To Stop It", a locally-made documentary about artists with TBI. This documentary is a film on isolation, art, and transformation after brain injury.  by Cheryl Green and Cynthia Lopez




Payment: Please register online or by printing the registration fax to the office


Mail registration forms and payments to:


 Brain Injury Alliance of Oregon - BIAOR
PO Box 549
Molalla OR 97038

  If you need to make travel arrangements - please use the BIAOR discount travel site at:

Registration, Payment and Refund Policies

To register, please register online, contact us via e-mail at biaor@biaorgon.orgg

or by telephone at 800-544-5243, M-F, 9-5. Fax: 503-961-8730


No refunds will be issues for cancellations; however, registrations are transferable. 

Substitutions are always welcomed and no-shows will be billed.  


Please submit payment with completed registration form.
Fees are payable by check, credit card, or state government purchase orders which obligate payment. 


All payments must be received by March 1, 2017 to be eligible for discount.   Price increases by $75 after March 1.

No refunds will be issued for cancellations; however, registrations are transferable


Continuing Education Units: Thursday: 7.75 hours; Friday: 7.75 hours; Saturday: 7.75 hours; all three days: 23.25 hours; Friday and Saturday Total: 15.5 hours



Accommodation Information

Ask for BIAOR Discount rate  BIA2017

Conference rate ends on March 2, 2017


Free Parking for Conference Attendees


Sheraton Portland Airport Hotel
8235  NE Airport Way
Portland, Oregon 97220

For Special Guest Room Needs & Assistance contact: 503-335-2862

sheraton hotel map







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