Our Team

John Laing

John Laing

John is a Registered Psychologist in private practice in Alberta. He is a well-reviewed public speaker on a variety of psychological topics, across numerous organizations, including the Alberta Children’s Hospital, Ambrose University, University of Calgary, numerous public and private education boards, as well as non-profit community mental health organizations.

John has also provided professional consultation to research  projects at Concordia University and has presented research at conferences including the Conference of the International Society of Childhood Indicators. John specializes in working with people and organizations to facilitate personal and systemic growth.

He provides assessment and counselling services through Hexagon Psychology.

Dr. Mitchell Colp

Dr. Mitchell Colp

Mitchell is a Registered Psychologist in private practice who supports individuals children, youth, and families overcome the situational or ongoing challenges that impact their lives. He obtained his Ph.D. in Child Psychology from the University of Calgary and serves as a part-time faculty member for several universities across Canada. Mitchell is also a founding partner of Rocky View Data Solutions, where he leads large-scale program evaluation, instrument construction, and statistical analysis activities across Alberta.

He provides assessment and counselling services through Hexagon Psychology.

Chris Pawluk

Chris Pawluk

Chris is a Registered Psychologist in Alberta. He specializes in creating systems and structures that improve team performance and align with organizational goals. He spends most of his work time helping to lead a team of over 70 staff and works closely with various Alberta Universities to facilitate research and training of teachers, psychologists, speech pathologists, and occupational therapists. A Clinical Supervisor in the Werklund School of Education, Chris has presented on a wide range of topics in three countries over the last 20 years, with the latest presentation being to the College of Alberta School Superintendents. Chris runs a small private practice. He also provides assessment and counselling services through Hexagon Psychology.

Current and Previous Speakers

Dr. Sandra DIxon

Dr. Sandra DIxon

Dr. Sandra Dixon is a Registered Psychologist in Alberta and an Assistant Professor at the University of Lethbridge. Her program of research addresses culturally sensitive counselling practices among immigrants, cultural identity reconstruction, and ethno-cultural diversity issues including but not limited to the intersectionality of spirituality, class, race, and gender across cultural contexts. On a communal level, she currently serves on the Boards of the Psychologist’s Association of Alberta and Alberta Network of Immigrant Women (ANIW). She has extensive experience in immigration research, community engagement, social justice, and advocacy. She also brings knowledge and enthusiasm for social inclusion and faith-based frameworks in her work with counsellors-in-training and other helping professionals. She has published a wide range of work that centres around faith, immigration and multicultural counselling.

Kristy McConnell

Kristy McConnell

Kristy McConnell is a Registered Psychologist and the founder of Off the Beaten Path Psychology and Wellness. Off the Beaten Path introduces unique mental health treatment methods that utilize movement by walking or running together during the therapy session. Kristy’s clinical training is in counselling psychology, although her day to day work is split between school psychology and private practice. Kristy is also a Clinical Supervisor for the Werklund School of Education at the University of Calgary, and supervises provisional psychologists in her private practice. You can visit her website here. Kristy is a sought-after public speaker on a range of wellness topics including school crisis response and threat assessment.

Michelle Deen

Michelle Deen

As a Registered Psychologist within Alberta, Michelle Deen began her practice in 2013. Her 16 years of experience as a special education teacher as well as a school psychologist has provided her with practical and theoretical skills to help youth succeed while effectively collaborating with educators, parents, and other professionals. Michelle is also a Clinical Supervisor with the Werklund School of Education and has several years of experience delivering professional development on various topics including Threat assessment, Assessing Suicidal Ideation, Non-Suicidal Self-Injury, Psychological First Aid, Executive functioning, and Childhood stress and anxiety.

Dr Ryan Matchullis

Dr Ryan Matchullis

A registered psychologist practicing with Renfrew Educational Services in Calgary, AB. Dr. Ryan Matchullis obtained his PhD in School and Applied Child Psychology in 2018. His graduate research focused on cognition and social skills in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), as well as social interaction for adolescents with ASD. His work has focused on assessment and intervention for children and adolescents with diverse learning needs, and neurodevelopmental delays and disorders. Over the past few years, he has also provided psychological assessment services within First Nations school systems. Dr. Matchullis has a growing interest in how tele-assessment can be tailored to meet the needs of diverse populations and compliment in-person services. Dr Matchullis provides assessment and counselling services through Hexagon Psychology.

Susan Raiford, Ph.D

Susan Raiford, Ph.D

Susan Raiford, Ph.D. is a senior research director at Pearson, where she is involved in all aspects of test creation and revision conceptualization. Dr. Raiford has helped design the research plan for test creation and revision, write the manuals, develop items, and oversee data collection as well as creation of all final test components. For tests where there is no live author, she serves as the tests’ ghost authors. Dr. Raiford has been a primary developer of the Wechsler Intelligence scales since March of 2004. She was the primary research director on the WISC-V and the WISC-V Integrated, along with the WAIS-IV and the WPPSI-IV. Her present project is the WAIS-5. Susie has published four books on the Wechsler scales and maintains a part time psychological assessment practice. Prior to becoming a psychological test developer, she primarily engaged in clinical work for ten years, providing assessment, psychotherapy, and consultation to patients of all ages in inpatient, outpatient, school, and residential settings in private and public sectors.

Jordan Wright, PhD, ABAP

Jordan Wright, PhD, ABAP

Dr. Jordan Wright is faculty and director of the Center for Counseling and Community Wellbeing in the Department of Applied Psychology at New York University. He has authored several assessment texts, including Conducting Psychological Assessment: A Guide for Practitioners and, with Gary Groth-Marnat, the sixth edition of the Handbook of Psychological Assessment. He has also conducted research on the equivalence of remote, digital test administration and traditional, in-person test administration for cognitive and academic achievement tests.

Derek Truscott, Ph.D.

Derek Truscott, Ph.D.

Derek Truscott, Ph.D. is a Professor and Director of Counselling Training in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Alberta. He obtained registration as a psychologist in 1987, earned his doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Windsor in 1989, and has been on the faculty at the U of A since 1997. He has practiced in hospital, community, group home, rehabilitation, and private settings. Derek is the author of three books, including Ethics for the Practice of Psychology in Canada (soon to be in its third edition), Ethics and Law for Teachers, and Becoming an Effective Psychotherapist, as well as many book chapters, articles, and conference presentations on the topic of what it takes to be a good psychologist. By “good,” he means one who is effective, helpful, influential, and impactful – who is sought out by people suffering from personal problems and to whom other psychologists refer or seek out themselves. He also means “good” in the sense of one who is ethical, principled, virtuous, and moral – who knows how to do and does the right thing and is sought out by others wanting to do likewise. Derek lives in Edmonton, Alberta.

Dr. Jeremy Sharp

Dr. Jeremy Sharp

A licensed psychologist practicing in Colorado. Dr. Jeremy Sharp graduated with a PhD in Counseling Psychology from Colorado State University in 2008. He has worked in university counseling centers, with older adults in extended care facilities and in elementary school classrooms for children with Autism and emotional disturbances. He also spent two years as a psychometrician under a Clinical Neuropsychologist. Dr Sharp is the host of The Testing Psychologist, a consulting service and podcast aimed at helping psychologists and other mental health professionals add or grow psychological assessment services in their practices.

Mike Velthuis Kroeze

Mike Velthuis Kroeze

Mike Velthuis Kroeze has been working with youth experiencing crisis for 8 years in both residential care and crisis hotline settings. For four of those years, Mike was the Coordinator of the ConnecTeen program, a youth peer-support crisis service, at the Distress Centre Calgary. A registered social worker, Mike’s experience lies in training, supporting, and supervising youth volunteers to provide compassionate, non-judgmental, and effective crisis and suicide intervention, primarily through texting and online chat modalities. Mike is currently the Crisis Program Manager at the Calgary Distress Centre and applies his knowledge and experience in leading a team of over 50 staff and 200 volunteers who responded to over 82,000 crisis contacts in 2019.

Dr. Lisa Horowitz

Dr. Lisa Horowitz

Dr. Lisa Horowitz is a Staff Scientist and Clinical Psychologist at the National Institute of Mental Health Intramural Research Program at the National Institutes of Health. She serves as a senior attending with a specialty in pediatric psychology on the Psychiatry Consultation Liaison Service in the Hatfield Clinical Research Center at NIH. The major focus of Dr. Horowitz’s research has been in the area of suicide prevention with an emphasis on detection of suicide risk in the medical setting. Dr. Horowitz has served as a Topic Expert on suicide screening for the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention. She was lead PI on the development of two suicide risk screening instruments for the pediatric emergency department (ED): the Risk of Suicide Questionnaire (RSQ) and the Ask Suicide-Screening Questions (ASQ), a tool created to screen pediatric medical/surgical patients for suicide risk. She is currently lead PI on 6 NIMH studies focused on validating and implementing the ASQ in emergency departments, medical/surgical inpatient units and outpatient primary care and specialty clinics. 

Dr. Esther Geva

Dr. Esther Geva

Dr. Esther Geva is a Registered Psychologist & Full Professor in the Department of Applied Psychology and Human Development at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto. Her research interests include the development of literacy skills in children learning to read in a second language (L2); the relations between oral and written language skills in L2 learners; transfer issues in L2 literacy development; cognitive and linguistic processes and predictors of normal and problematic literacy development in L2 children, and selected topics in cross-cultural psychology pertaining to children’s well-being such as parental attribution and concepts of wellness. In applied practice, Dr. Geva is interested in community-based approaches to prevention and intervention in minority groups, and options in assessment and intervention for ELL and other L2 learners.

Dr. Kelly N. Banneyer

Dr. Kelly N. Banneyer

Dr. Kelly Banneyer (she/her) received her Bachelor’s degree from Rice University, majoring in both Psychology and Cognitive Sciences. She then attended The University of Texas at Austin to receive her Ph.D. in School Psychology with specialty in pediatric and clinical child psychology. Dr. Banneyer matched for internship at Baylor College of Medicine/Texas Children’s Hospital, and she stayed on to complete a two-year clinical post-doctoral fellowship. Currently, Dr. Banneyer is an Assistant Professor in the Psychology Section within the Department of Pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine (BCM), and she practices as a licensed psychologist within the Texas Children’s Hospital Obsessive-Compulsive and Anxiety Disorders Program. Her area of specialty is working with preschoolers, children, and adolescents with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, social anxiety, selective mutism, separation anxiety, specific phobias, and generalized anxiety. She also specializes in working with young children whose anxiety presents as disruptive behavior. Dr. Banneyer uses evidence-based intervention, primarily exposure-based cognitive behavior therapy (ERP+CBT) and parent management training (PMT) in her work with children and their families. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, she has been providing services both in-person and through a Telehealth modality. In line with her clinical interests, Dr. Banneyer aims to research and disseminate factors to enhance exposure-based cognitive behavioral therapy. Her current research projects include the investigation of the role of anxiety in families and the development of a brief intervention to treat anxiety in preschool-age children.

Dr. Russell A. Barkley

Dr. Russell A. Barkley

Russell A. Barkley, Ph.D., is a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine (2016-present).  He is also a retired Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology from the University of Massachusetts Medical Center (1985-2002) and subsequently worked as a Professor of Psychiatry and Health Sciences at the Medical University of South Carolina (2003-2016).  In semi-retirement, he continues to lecture widely and develop continuing education courses for professionals on ADHD and related disorders, as well as consult on research projects, edit The ADHD Report, and write books, reviews, and research articles. He is board certified in Clinical Psychology (ABPP), Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, and Clinical Neuropsychology (ABCN, ABPP).  Dr. Barkley is a clinical scientist, educator, and practitioner who has published 27 books, rating scales, and clinical manuals numbering more than 43 editions, and creator of 7 award winning professional videos.  He has also published more than 300 scientific articles and book chapters related to the nature, assessment, and treatment of ADHD and related disorders.  He is the founder and Editor of the clinical newsletter, The ADHD Report, now in its 29th year of publication.  Dr. Barkley has presented more than 800 invited lectures in more than 30 countries and appeared on nationally televised shows such as 60 Minutes, the Today Show, Good Morning America, CBS Sunday Morning, CNN, and many others.  He has received numerous awards from professional societies and ADHD organizations for his lifetime achievements, contributions to research and clinical practice, and the dissemination of science.  His website is www.russellbarkley.org

Dr. Peg Dawson

Dr. Peg Dawson

In over 40 years of clinical practice, Dr. Peg Dawson has worked with thousands of children who struggle at home and in school. At the center of their struggles are often weak executive skills. Along with her colleague, Dr. Richard Guare, she has written numerous books on this topic for educators, mental health professionals, and parents, among them Smart but Scattered, Smart but Scattered Teens, Executive Skills in Children and Adolescents, and Coaching Students with Executive Skills Deficits. Peg is also a past president of the National Association of School Psychologists, and the International School Psychology Association, and is a recipient of NASP’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Dr. Dawson has written a number of books. One of the most recent being Smart but Scattered.

You can find all her work on https://www.smartbutscatteredkids.com/ 

Disclosure: Peg Dawson receives a speaking fee for her presentation. She has no relevant non-financial relationships to disclose.