2019 HEDS Conference: About the Speakers

Keynote Speakers

Dr. Linda Bacon, PhD

Author of Health at Every Size: The Surprising Truth About Your Weight and Co-Author of Body Respect: What conventional Health Books Get Wrong, Leave Out, or Just Plain Fail to Understand about Weight.

Dr. Linda Bacon is fostering a global transformation to a more just world, where all bodies are valued, respected, and supported in compassionate self-care. A professor and researcher, for almost two decades, Dr. Bacon has taught courses in social justice, health, weight and nutrition; she has also conducted federally funded studies on health and weight and published in the top scientific journals.

Bacon earned her PhD in physiology from the University of California Davis, where she currently serves as an Associate Nutritionist.  She holds additional graduate degrees in psychology and exercise metabolism.   With a rare dual perspective combining academic expertise and clinical experience, Bacon is adept at providing a link between scientific research and practical application.

For more information please visit: www.lindabacon.org.

Andrew Walen, LCSW-C, LICSW, CEDS

Founder and CEO The Body Image Therapy Center (located in Maryland and DC) Author of Man Up to Eating Disorders

Andrew Walen is a psychotherapist specializing in eating disorders, body image, anxiety, depression, self-harm, and self-esteem. He currently serves a President of the executive board for the National Association for Males with Eating Disorders (NAMED). He was also a founding board member of the Binge Eating Disorder Association (BEDA). He has appeared on The Today Show, was featured in the New York Times, and interviewed for film documentaries, television, radio as an expert in the field of eating disorders and body image.

Walen is a magna cum laude graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Social Work in Nashville. He also is a published singer/songwriter and performs regionally.

For more information please visit: www.thebodyimagecenter.com and www.andrewwalen.com

2019 HEDS Conference Speakers

Rebecca Berman, LCSW-C, MLSP, CEDS

Rebecca Berman, LCSW-C, CEDS, MLSP, is the Clinical Training Specialist at the Renfrew Center.  She specializes in treating eating disorders, self-injurious behavior and trauma. Ms. Berman holds two graduate degrees from Bryn Mawr College Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research, one in Clinical Social Work and one in Law and Social Policy. She also maintains a private practice in Arlington, VA and Bethesda, MD. She provides trauma supervision to Renfrew’s identified trauma therapists throughout the country.  Ms. Berman is a member of the Eating Disorders Coalition, the Academy of Eating Disorders, the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals, Binge Eating Disorder Association and the National Association of Social Workers.

Aaron Flores, RDN

My goal in working with clients is to help them re-learn what it means to be an Intuitive Eater and to reclaim Body Trust®.  Our current food environment and body image focused culture have created a perfect storm where we have become fearful of food and bodies.  This fear keeps us “in our heads,” obsessed with what to eat and what is the shape of our bodies.  I want to help you “drop down into your body” and learn to trust the best nutrition expert there is: yourself.

I have come to this work after seeing the damage done by a focus on weight loss and diet culture.  I have been developing this philosophy after spending years focusing on Intuitive Eating, and Health at Every Size® and  finally by becoming a Body Trust® Certified Provider. I work part-time for the Center for Discovery, and part-time in my private practice in Calabasas, California. I am also the co-host of the podcast, Dietitians Unplugged.

Lesley Williams, MD, CEDS 

Dr. Lesley Williams is a Certified Eating Disorder Specialist and board certified Family Medicine physician. She received her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine and completed her Family Medicine residency training at Mayo Clinic Arizona. She has worked exclusively with eating disorders for over 15 years in the full spectrum of treatment settings. Dr. Williams is founder of Williams Wellness Medical Group, an outpatient eating disorder practice in Phoenix, AZ dedicated to providing expert medical care for those struggling with all forms of eating disorders and disordered eating. She has previously served as the Co-Founder and CEO for Liberation Center eating disorder treatment center and is currently the Medical Team Lead for Banner Behavioral Health Hospital in Scottsdale, AZ. Dr. Williams is a dynamic speaker who has given numerous lectures at national professional conferences. Her areas of special interest and expertise include: Diabetes and Eating Disorders, GI Illnesses and Co-Occurring Eating Disorders, PCOS & Binge Eating Disorder (BED), Inclusivity in Eating Disorder Treatment, Diabetes and Eating Disorders as well as Health at Every Size Advocacy. Dr. Williams is a member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, Academy of Eating Disorders and the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals. Due to her hard work and dedication to the field, in 2018 Dr. Williams was named as one of the Top 80 Female Eating Disorder Leaders in the United States.

Marisol Perez, PhD

Dr. Marisol Perez is an associate professor in the Department of Psychology at Arizona State University. Her program of research encompasses both theoretical and applied studies in the area of eating psychopathology, often using a focus on Latino populations. Perez was born in Los Angeles, California and comes from a Cuban immigrant family. She was the first generation in her family to go to college and graduated with a bachelor’s degree from University of Miami in Florida in 1999. She obtained her master’s and doctoral degrees from Florida State University in clinical psychology, graduating in 2004. She currently serves on the Board of the Academy of Eating Disorders as director of Communications, is an associate editor for the ABCT Clinical Practice Book Series, and incoming editor for Clinician’s Research Digest.

Stephanie Setliff, MD

Dr. Stephanie Setliff, certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, has specialized in the treatment of eating disorders for over 20 years. After developing and running the eating disorders program at Children’s Health, she joined Eating Recovery Center in January 2014 to develop and open Eating Recovery Center, Dallas. She opened Eating Recovery Center, Dallas in July 2014 with a Partial Hospitalization Program and Intensive Outpatient Program for adults and adolescents. In a short time, it was expanded to be a vertically integrated program, offering inpatient and residential care.
Dr. Setliff received her medical degree from Creighton University and completed her adult psychiatry residency and did advanced training in a child and adolescent fellowship at UT Southwestern Medical Center. She served as Chief Resident of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry while in her child fellowship. From 2000-November 2013, she was an Assistant Professor at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and the Medical Director of the Center for Pediatric Eating Disorders at Children’s Medical Center. She was involved in collaborations with UT and Children’s to increase research on eating disorders at the University.
Dr. Setliff speaks frequently at various eating disorder education, prevention, and treatment programs in an effort to increase awareness about the growing epidemic of eating disorders. She has been interviewed on many local and national news and media outlets and has become a strong voice for eating disorder awareness to the North Texas community. Additionally, for 16 years, Dr. Setliff has served on the Board of Directors of The Elisa Project. She was their 2012 Star of Hope recipient, was the Board Chairman from 2015-2017 and is their current Vice President of Programming. She serves on the board of Dallas Child and Family Guidance and the Embody Love Movement Organization. 

Linda Lewaniak, LCSW, CAADC

Nationally recognized addiction treatment expert Linda Lewaniak, LCSW, CAADC joined Insight in March 2016. A widely respected therapist and administrator, Lewaniak brings over 25 years of experience in the treatment of substance abuse and comorbid mental illness.  As Program Director of Integrated Services, Lewaniak is responsible for integration of Addiction Services across all programs and levels of care to most effectively treat the co-occurring diagnosis of substance abuse. Leveraging her extensive clinical and operational background, she oversees the delivery of evidence-based, cutting edge substance abuse treatment at Insight’s Chicagoland treatment centers and provides clinical supervision to the multidisciplinary treatment team. Lewaniak also collaborates closely with Eating Recovery Center’s senior clinical leadership across all 25 facilities nationwide to ensure holistic integration of addiction treatment, and provides substance abuse education, training and development for mental health professionals, educators and community resources.

Kate Bennett, PsyD

Kate Bennett, PsyD, is a Clinical Sport Psychologist and the director of Athlete Insight, PC. She supports the clinical and performance needs of athletes worldwide and specializes in the treatment of athletes recovering from eating disorders. Prior to becoming a psychologist, Dr. Bennett was an athletic trainer and cycling coach. During her coaching career, she coached several state and national champions as well as earned two national championships herself. As a sport psychologist, her roster of athletes includes Olympians, National Champions, professional athletes, and DI/II/III college student-athletes as well as amateur athletes. Dr. Bennett authored “Eating Disorders in Athletes” (Eating Disorders in Special Populations, 2017) and co-authored “Motivation and Mental Training” (Cycling Science, 2017). In addition, she regularly presents at annual conferences on topics related to the mental health of athletes.

Amanda Mellowspring, MS, RD, CEDRD-S 

Amanda has been a Registered Dietitian for over a decade, with expertise in eating disorders, food reactions, & whole foods nutrition. Amanda was awarded the prestigious honor of equivalency certification through the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (IAEDP) as a Certified Eating Disorder Registered Dietitian (CEDRD) due to her significant contributions to the field of eating disorders and nutrition in 2012.
Amanda currently serves on the Certification Committee for IAEDP and co-authored the publication defining the Standards of Practice and Standards of Professional Performance for RDs working with eating disorders in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.
Amanda speaks at professional conferences and symposiums on the topics of nutrition, eating disorders, & related subject matter.
Amanda Mellowspring holds a MS in Whole Foods Nutrition from Bastyr University in Seattle WA, one of the country’s leading schools of natural medicine. Amanda also holds a BS in Foods & Nutrition from Appalachian State University in Boone, NC.
Amanda owns Eat from the Earth Nutrition Counseling, LLC in Blacksburg, VA and also serves as the Director of Nutrition Services for Clementine Programs, a Monte Nido affiliate providing residential treatment for adolescent girls.

Norman Kim, PhD

Norman completed his B.A. at Yale and his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at UCLA. His research and clinical interests include the neurobiology and social development of people with autism and Asperger’s syndrome, the developmental course of childhood bipolar disorder, and the treatment of anxiety disorders.  In conjunction with these interests, Norman has developed an expertise in treating and teaching about psychiatrically complex populations, multi-modal treatment, and diagnostic assessment with a particular focus on Eating Disorders, Trauma, and Bipolar Disorder. He is a regular national speaker, educator, and passionate advocate for eating disorder awareness and legislation with a particular focus on marginalized communities.  He is on the Board of Directors for the Eating Disorders Coalition, the co-chair of the Transcultural SIG for the Academy of Eating Disorders, and on the Advisory Boards of Recovery Warriors, Spectrum CBT and Tikvah V’Chizuk, Norman is the co-founder of the Reasons Eating Disorder Center and is the National Director for Program Development for Reasons Eating Disorder Center and Center for Change in UT.

Cassidy Gillaspie, MD

Dr. Gillaspie is a Texas Lady – growing up in Houston, attending college at Baylor University and Medical School at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio.   Dr. Gillaspie is Triple Boarded in Adult Psychiatry, Child Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine.  After training, she returned back to Houston to be closer to family and now is in private practice in Memorial.
Dr. Gillaspie is married and they have 2 young boys, Beau and Boone.  She spends her days off hunting wolves, putting out fires, and telling the best nap stories EVER – you should ask her about the parachuting flamingoes.  It’s a winner.

Melissa Cook, LPC-S

Melissa H. Cook is a Licensed Professional Counselor offering Psychotherapy in the Memorial area of Houston.  She is a native Houstonian, a wife, and mother of three children, ages 22, 20 and 18. She is a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin and The Houston Graduate School of Theology.

For over 13 years, Melissa has had the privilege of helping clients in the Memorial/Houston area change their lives for the better. She approaches her clients with Validation and compassion, finding a balance between unconditional positive regard, while expecting change from them as well. She has co-authored a book called The Power of Validation and feels very much that Validation is one of the keys to eating disorder recovery.

While in high school and college, Melissa struggled with Anorexia, Anxiety Disorder, OCD and Depression. She has been in recovery for over 23 years and is called as a clinician to help those who struggle as she did.

Emmy Lu Trammel, PhD, RD, LD

Emmy Lu Henley is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Program Director for Eating Disorders at the Texas Tech University Center for Collegiate Recovery Communities (CCRC). Emmy Lu completed her PhD in Nutritional Sciences with an emphasis in Addictive Disorders and Recovery Studies and also is a Certified Eating Disorder Registered Dietitian. At the CCRC, Emmy Lu provides nutrition and eating disorder support to the community and assists in research development to expand services to students in recovery. She also holds a private practice for eating disorders to serve those beyond the university setting.

Diana Monsour, MEd, LCDC, LPC-Intern

Diana Monsour is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and Licensed Professional Counselor Intern. She received her master’s in counselor education from Texas Tech University and is currently pursuing a PhD.  Diana is a research associate for the Texas Tech Center for Collegiate Recovery Communities and a counselor for Stages of Recovery, providing support for individuals in recovery from substance use disorders and eating disorders.