Frank Grijalva, MSCC, MSPH
Co-director and founder

Frank is involved in consultation and education for more than a dozen agencies in Iowa and Nebraska as well as several agencies nationally and internationally. Frank has a BS in psychology with an emphasis on disaster mental health, a Masters of Science in Clinical Counseling with a focus on trauma protocols and a Master's of Science degree in Public Health with a focus on child mental health.
As a clinical programming consultant for these agencies he has spent the last several years introducing and training selected trauma informed evidence based practices as well as designing innovations specific to at risk children in Iowa, Florida, Illinois, South Dakota, Nebraska and Alaska.
As a senior consultant and senior trainer for the International Trauma Center an operational partner with the Harvard school of Disaster Medicine, Frank has trained clinicians from Nepal, Jordan, Turkey, Afghanistan and Sudan, in addition Frank responds to United States disasters such as Hurricane Katrina as part of a core emergency response team to stabilize child populations in the aftermath of traumatic events.
Frank managed safety and logistics for clinicians and federal employees working at ground zero in the immediate aftermath of 9/11.


Dr. Robert Macy

Dr. Robert Macy was trained as a dance movement therapist, traumatologist, and neuroscience researcher with over 30 years practice in the field of psychological trauma response, intervention development and trauma informed care development and dissemination. Dr Macy is a Founder, Director and the President of the International Trauma Center - Boston, as well as the Founder and Executive Director of The Boston Children’s Foundation, also in Boston. He is also a Founder and Director of the Midwestern Trauma Services Network operating in numerous states in the Midwest. Dr. Macy is a member of the SAMHSA DTAC or SAMHSA Disaster Technical Assistance Center and works nationally to assist SAMHSA in disaster response and recovery. Dr. Macy is one of only 13 experts nationally to be selected to sit on the Barack Obama commissioned Attorney General’s National Task Force on Children Exposed to Violence as part of the Attorney General’s broader Defending Childhood Initiative.

Dr. Macy is a tireless pioneer in the field of psychological trauma, psychosocial recovery and resiliency in research, interventions and violence prevention initiatives for children, youth, their families, and adults and their communities exposed to traumatic events including large-scale disasters, terrorist events, and political, school based, community and armed conflict violence. Dr. Macy co-directs the Division of Disaster Resilience at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) – a Harvard Medical School teaching hospital, and is an Instructor in the Division of Emergency Medicine at Harvard Medical School. Macy designs, implements and evaluates trauma focused psychosocial resiliency initiatives, violence prevention programs, and Trauma Informed Care initiatives in the United States, and internationally.


Robert P. Sheehan, MSW

Sheehan has served in an administrative role in two large human service agencies that have driven children’s mental health and child welfare agencies in Iowa for the last 40 + years. For the last 16 years he has worked to bring a trauma focus to all of child welfare and children’s mental health programs across Iowa, Nebraska and Alaska. In his administrative role, he helped create, nurture and grow MSTN. MSTN is a leading force in bringing purpose and vision and has demonstrated the powerful and transformative force trauma informed care can have in all service delivery systems. In the past four years, he has focused at the micro level and with the help of the entire MSTN team, operationalized TIC principles and therapeutic interventions into critical children’s services with tremendous results. This dynamic is seen both in individual agencies, in individual programs, as well as efforts to engage the entire State of Iowa.

As a former CEO and Program Administrator, Sheehan has had the opportunity to transform agencies belief systems, operational systems, and clinical systems to fully embrace a TIC culture. These are the values and beliefs needed to fully embrace a trauma approach to all those an organization chooses to serve.

Sheehan role as a part of the MSTN team is to continue to move TIC beliefs and principles across organizations, so its total system is connected to the integrity of TIC. These organizational values then can penetrate through all an agencies treatment programs, and therapeutic interventions, and touch every life that an organization reaches out to and serves. The organization that has fully integrated these principles and values also cares for their staff who serve those clients, and the business practices that govern the entire agency.



Matthew Vasquez, PhD, LMSW

Matthew is an assistant professor of social work at the University of Northern Iowa. He currently teaches the advanced clinical courses in the trauma-informed MSW program. He has clinical experience working with a broad range of individuals (both children and adults) who have experienced multiple and severe forms of psychological trauma. He is trained in various cognitive and body-based practices, and other contemporary and holistic techniques that can be used to treat PTSD and other trauma-related symptoms. His current area of research focuses on the later cognitive, emotional, and social functioning of children who were adopted (either domestically or internationally) and were exposed to chronic neglect and deprivation at an early age (ages 0-3). His other research interests include examining the benefits of infusing trauma-informed care practices in residential treatment programs and in school-based settings, along with how to effectively educate care providers on the salient neurobiological and clinical aspects of trauma. He has presented his research on the effects of trauma and innovative clinical approaches to its treatment at both state and national levels.

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Christy Lynn Anana, M.Ed., NBCT, RYT

Anana has extensive experience working with schools and children who have experienced trauma. For the last 10 years, she has worked at a school on a Native American Reservation. Because of her work at this school, she was named Washington State School Counselor of the Year.  Anana has served as an acute responder for a tragedy that impacted her school and district. She is trained in EMDR, Rainbow Dance, CBITS, and Psychological First Aid. Christy is a yoga teacher, done extensive training in mindfulness, and has written a book for children to help them use the strategy of Tapping or EFT. Her background is as a teacher and in special education. Anana is passionate about helping teachers stay healthy in their careers. She promotes a system of self-care as protection from vicarious trauma. Anana has had the opportunity to train school counselors from across Washington State and North Carolina on compassionate strategies to help students and teachers. 



 Vu has dedicated himself to creating innovative programs that link public health and technology at an international level.

He has helped launch many of the nation's largest suicide prevention programs, overseeing projects and grants ranging from $80,000-$5,000,000 per year. These include the Suicide Prevention Resource Center, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, Veterans Crisis Line (the documentary about which won an Academy Award this year) and CrisisChat.org. He established the initial suicide prevention partnership with Facebook and co-wrote the social media network's policy on suicide in 2005; he has since helped Google, YouTube, Twitter and Pinterest create similar policies.

Chris is on the board of Connect Safely, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, Crisis Text Line and is a friend of the National Domestic Violence Hotline. Through his company Emotion Technology he continues to link social media companies and non-profit organizations. Having launched these national and international programs, he’s now looking to shift into the corporate sector, with a particular interest in technology, community engagement strategies and corporate giving. Chris is also a speaker with the Fresh Speakers Bureau: http://freshspeakers.com/.

In all of these efforts, Chris takes a profoundly personal approach to large scale public health issues. His mom fled Vietnam in 1978 when he was four months old, making him one of the first “boat people.” After a year in a refugee camp, they were sponsored by an American family to come to the U.S. Chris spends his life trying to provide others with the same kind of refuge that he felt in that moment.

Education M.A., Communication and Education, Teachers College, Columbia University, 2003 B.F.A., Design and Technology, Theatre Studies, University of Evansville, 1999