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Kelly Posner

Kelly Posner Gerstenhaber, PhD

Columbia University

Dr. Posner Gerstenhaber, PhD presents “The Columbia Protocol: Reducing Suicide, Reducing Liability, and Redirecting Scarce Resources In Healthcare & Beyond” as part of the Child Mind Institute Visiting Professor Lecture Series.

Dr. Kelly Posner Gerstenhaber is a Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University and her work is saving lives all over the globe. The former President of the American Psychiatric Association noted her work with the Columbia Protocol could be “like the introduction of antibiotics.” The U.S. Department of Defense said that her work is “nothing short of a miracle,” and the Center for Disease Control noted that it is “changing the paradigm in suicide risk assessment in the US and worldwide.” In 2018 she was awarded The Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Public Service.

Dr. Posner’s work has been noted in a keynote speech at the White House and cited in Congressional hearings, and she gave the lead presentation in a U.S. Senate forum on school safety after the Parkland tragedy. Jim Shelton, Former Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, says her work “has the potential to keep the 64 million children in our schools safe physically and mentally by helping prevent school violence.” She gave the invited presentation on tackling depression and suicide at the first European Union high level conference on mental health. In Israel, where the protocol is in every school teacher’s hands, officials said her work “is not only saving millions of lives but in Israel it is literally changing the way we live our lives.” Through her advocacy, she has changed local, national and international policy, which in turn has helped achieve reductions in suicide across all sectors of society.

The Columbia Protocol is policy across all 50 states, national agencies, and most countries. The FDA has characterized Dr. Posner’s work as “setting a standard in the field.” Her scholarly work is among the top 20 most cited papers published by Columbia faculty across medicine over the past 10 years, and is included in the compendium of most important research in the history of the study of suicide.