Connecticut's partner in brain injury prevention and recovery since 1982.

Call Us:
(860) 219-0291

Primary Navigation

Annual Conference

speaker presenting to a large group pf people

BIAC 2023 Annual Professional Conference
March 17, 2023 at Quinnipiac University

REGISTRATION OPEN!

We are so excited to be bringing our Annual Conference back to a live, in-person event for 2023!! We look forward to another year of outstanding, informative, and top-notch professional education on current topics within brain injury practice and research.

Our full day of live workshops will include the following seminars:

Keynote Presentation: “Look Closer.  My Brain Injury Is Invisible”
Stacia Bissell, M.Ed., Brain Injury Speaker, Educator, Coach

This presentation features Stacia talking about unwelcome consequences from her invisible brain injury from a bicycle accident eleven years ago, and how she started learning to accept, adapt, manage, and eventually thrive. She will share her personal TBI story with a focus on how her professional team helped her gain insight into her own brain injury so that she could find congruity between her former and new self. 


Domestic and Interpersonal Violence: What Brain Injury Professionals Should Know
Davine Lynnette Manson, Motivational Speaker & Founder of Divine Restorations, Inc.
Sarah Raskin, PhD, ABPP/ABCN, Charles A. Dana Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience
Rachael Schippani, MA, Coordinator of Community Education and Volunteer Programs/The Umbrella Center for Domestic Violence Services, a program of BHcare

This workshop features a panel of speakers including a brain injury survivor, a certified domestic violence advocate and educator, and a neuropsychologist who has performed research on effects of brain injury following domestic violence. The panel will provide information on the current research regarding cognitive and emotional changes unique to brain injury after domestic violence and situate it within psychological, social, and cultural frameworks. The panel will provide information on ways to recognize that someone with brain injury is in an interpersonal violence situation and how to support them and guidelines for understanding their needs and perspectives.


Carving a Meaningful Life through Employment for Persons with Brain Injury
Laura DiGalbo, M.Ed., CRC, LPC

This presentation will discuss the intersection of persons’ self-concept and what is valued in their culture. In the American culture the intersection of these two concepts is successful employment. The workshop will explore the current research showing that in order to create a “new life’, those with ABI must have actual experiences in school and /or employment in which they are valued and are successful, concurrently with therapy to adapt to their new sense of self. A model of this collaboration will be introduced including “honoring the ghost”.


Vision: A Crucial Piece for Management of Concussive Injury
Elizabeth Kloczko Wescott, OTD, OTR/L, SIGHT Multispecialty Center
Melissa Lambright, OD, FCOVD, Diplomate of the American Board of Optometry, SIGHT Multispecialty Center
Kaelie Murray-Simmons, Vision Therapist, SIGHT Multispecialty Center
Lauren Jameson / Occupational Therapy Student, SIGHT Multispecialty Center

This workshop will cover an overview of the visual system, visual function, and visual changes resulting from brain injury/concussion. The session will discuss concussion symptomology, the importance of visual evaluation and treatment as a part of comprehensive brain injury/concussion program, and interprofessional collaboration for care of clients.


Cultural Humility
Anthony Lequerica Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist, Kessler Foundation

There is a growing body of research demonstrating the existence of health disparities in brain injury outcomes. A new wave of studies seeks to understand these disparities by examining the underlying factors using a social determinants of health model. This workshop will review some of the findings over the past several years and then consider ways to look at the care provided to traditionally underrepresented individuals with brain injury. It will explore concepts of culturally humble approaches that require both an intrapersonal and interpersonal perspective to work toward providing effective patient-centered care for individuals with brain injury.


Managing Challenging Behaviors With a Brain Injury
Michelle Brisman Ph.D., Director of Clinical Services/Neuropsychologist

Behavioral dysregulation is a common sequelae of brain injury, negatively affecting clients’ lives, families, relationships, and progress with goals. This workshop discusses the etiology of behavioral dysregulation as multi-faceted. Understanding these factors is critical for managing challenging behaviors. Approaches for intervention for successful management of behavioral dysregulation will be discussed. Utilizing key methods to prevent the crisis and de-escalate the individual is ideal. Long-term management is best achieved with behavior plans that focus on encouragement of adaptive behaviors, shaping successes, and extinguishing maladaptive behaviors that are harmful to the client and their support network.


Ambiguous Loss
Peter Love, Ph.D., Peter Love Educational Consulting LLC

The workshop will introduce the theory of Ambiguous Loss, as developed by Dr. Pauline Boss. Ambiguous loss occurs when there is psychological presence but physical absence, as in the case of missing children, or physical presence but psychological absence, as in the case of dementia or acquired brain injury. The workshop will also cover the Six Guidelines Resilience process recommended by Dr. Boss and how families and staff can support the person with ABI in that process. The session will focus on how ambiguous loss impacts those with brain injury, family members, and caregivers. Participants will also learn how to support people with acquired brain injury to develop resilience in response to their experience of loss.


Brain Injury Resources: Helping Individuals and Families Navigate Their Way – New & Revised 2023 Edition
Victor Darr, Senior Brain Injury Specialist, Brain Injury Alliance of CT
Katia Reynolds, Brain Injury Specialist, Brain Injury Alliance of CT

Brain injury is a sudden and drastic life altering event that often leaves individuals and families feeling overwhelmed and lost – often needing guidance on how best to navigate the complexity of the healthcare, social services & and rehabilitation system. This workshop will provide an overview of various resources that individuals, families and professionals can explore. Based on BIAC’s “Road to Recovery” handbook, resources have been updated and revised to reflect the most current, up-to-date information available within the state of CT. This is a perfect workshop for those new to the brain injury community in CT and for those simply needing to refresh their knowledge on available resources within the state. Discussion will include commonly asked questions from families and individuals following brain injury, including those new to brain injury or several years post injury.  


Durable Community Living: Tools That Help With Emotion, Behavior & Cognition After Brain Injury
Colette Seter Elliott Ph.D., Program Director/Rehabilitation Psychologist, Hospital for Special Care Neurobehavioral Program
Kris Shea, Graduate Student, Hartford University
Lindsey LoStimolo, Graduate Student, Hartford University

This workshop discusses how a neurobehavioral program (NBP) can be implemented with individuals whose behavioral issues preclude their ability for optimal and successful community living. This program provides a manualized and empirically supported treatment, rooted in cognitive rehabilitation for adults with brain injury. The treatment targets emotional regulation, problem-solving, and attention abilities. The strategies are further applied to maximizing life skills, reducing unsafe behaviors, building healthy habits, and applying cognitive remediation tools for successful and durable life in the community. Focus will be on application of strategies for both clinical and non-clinical providers.


Support for Wounded Warriors Living with Service-Related Traumatic Brain Injury
Staff Sergeant Juliet Taylor, Master’s Degree Mental Health Counseling, Intake & Program Access Specialist, CT Veteran Legal Center

This workshop provides essential information on the complexity of brain injury from a military/veteran perspective. TBI is a stressful injury to the brain and can often hide in plain sight for veterans because they are largely invisible injuries. Many veterans with traumatic brain injury remain untreated due to the consequences associated with injury. It is key that individuals and agencies work together to build awareness to service members struggling with TBI symptoms. Advocacy efforts should focus not only on quality care but also addressing any challenges faced by veterans when navigating through the complexity of systems. Recommendations on how best to support the individual and family members throughout the re-integration process for best outcomes is key to this discussion.


CEU Certificates

All workshops will be recorded* and made available to those who register AND attend the in-person conference, enabling you to earn up to 14.5 continuing education credits! Workshops will be available online by late March and CEU’s will be distributed by late April. Please note that ONLY those who attend the conference will have access to the workshops.

Professional CEU’s are pending for the following: APA* (psychologists); CTPTA (physical therapists); NASW (social workers); SLP (speech language pathologists).
*APA CEU Credit only available for in person workshops. APA CEU credit not eligible for On-Demand Workshops

Interested in Sponsoring or Exhibiting?

The BIAC Annual Conference is the only event of its kind in Connecticut. With over 200 industry professionals in attendance, it is an excellent way to promote your organization to a highly qualified and targeted audience. All Conference Sponsors & Exhibitors will benefit from excellent visibility and publicity before, during, and after the event. Additionally, your sponsorship helps BIAC continue to serve as Connecticut’s partner in brain injury prevention and recovery.

Please contact Lori Shield at lshield@biact.org with any questions or for additional information about Sponsorships, Exhibiting and Program Book opportunities.

Group Registrations

Available for 5 or more from the same organization. Group Rate cannot be accepted online. Print and mail this Group Registration Form or call 860-219-0291 to register by phone. In order to receive group rate, all names must be submitted together.

Conference Questions? contact Bonnie Meyers
Please call 860-219-0291 X 304 or email bmeyers@biact.org.