Heather Larkin, PhD
Heather is an Associate Professor at the University of Texas at Austin School of Social Work and directs the National Center. She also volunteers as a consultant on research and education for the Center for Post-Trauma Wellness. Heather has researched adverse childhood experience (ACE) prevalence and service use among homeless people, and co-developed the Restorative Integral Support (RIS) model with John Records. Heather leads ACE Think Tank and Action Team meetings and works closely with local service agency directors to strengthen ACE response.
Amanda Aykanian, MA
Research and Project Lead
Amanda is doctoral student at the University at Albany School of Social Welfare and serves as the National Center’s Research and Project Lead. She has worked for several years in program evaluation and research, and has been involved in many evaluations of homeless service and related programs. Amanda has experience in quantitative and qualitative research methodologies, data analysis, leading trainings, and teaching. Her research interests include the migration and mobility of people experiencing homelessness; homelessness prevention efforts; and program and policy evaluation.
Graduate Student Assistant
Kelsey recently completed her MSW at the University at Albany and currently works as a Graduate Student Assistant at the National Center. She has experience working with adults with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges, families and children with mental health challenges within the foster care system, and in mental health services for veterans. She is interested in trauma-informed care, mental health services for veterans, homeless services, and mindfulness.
Katharine is Dean Emeritus at the University at Albany School of Social Welfare and previously served as the school’s dean for 15 years. She is a national expert on family-focused practice and child and family policy. She has co-authored or co-edited multiple books, including Family-Centered Policies and Practices: International Implications (2001), Innovative Practices with Vulnerable Children and Families (2001), Globalization, Social Justice and the Helping Professions (2011), and The Children’s Bureau: Shaping a Century of Child Welfare Practices, Programs, and Policies (2013). She is also the former president of the National Association for Deans and Directors.
John is a Public Service Professor at the University at Albany and serves as Founding Co-Director and Senior Advisor at the National Center. He attended Cornell University and New York University School of Law, practiced law in New York and Oregon, and has taught at several universities. From 1992 to 2013, John served as Executive Director of Committee on the Shelterless (COTS), an award-winning nonprofit agency helping homeless children and adults in Northern California. John also serves as a hospice chaplain with HopeWest of Colorado.