To download the PDF of the 2019 Connections Count! Conference Brochure Click Here.

Keynote Speakers

Tanya Radecker, Ph.D., LPC-S, NCC, RN
Dr. Radecker is credentialed as a Licensed Professional Counselor in Louisiana and Mississippi. She is Executive Director of the Louisiana Community for Emotionally Focused Therapy and also an ICEEFT (International Centre for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy) certified supervisor and therapist. She is trained in hypnotherapy, trauma therapy and has advanced training in perinatal mood disorders. In 2018 she authored a book based on her dissertation topic of divorced mental health professionals working with couples. She has been a registered nurse for the past 33 years and worked as a neonatal nurse practitioner before retiring from actively working as a nurse. Dr. Radecker has a private practice in New Orleans and Bay St. Louis and travels throughout Louisiana providing workshops on Emotionally Focused Therapy.

Keynote-Thursday Feb. 7, 2019
Making It Happen with Emotionally Focused Therapy
We are pleased to hear Dr. Radecker, Executive Director of the Louisiana Community for Emotionally Focused Therapy, during lunch on Thursday, February 7, as she presents the method she finds to be the most useful and effective in facilitating change. Through actual client cases, Dr. Radecker will give us the inside view of what works and what doesn’t when working with individuals, couples, or families. Bring your appetite for food and knowledge!


Leigh Boyer, NCC, LPC, Registered Play Therapist
Leigh Boyer earned her Master of Science at Loyola University in New Orleans in 2014. After graduation, she moved back to her hometown of Lake Charles, LA, to work at Family & Youth Counseling Agency, where for four year she provided counseling and play therapy for children, and also worked with families and adults. Leigh Boyer is a National Certified Counselor, a Louisiana Licensed Professional Counselor and a Registered Play Therapist. She has training and experience in working with adults, children and families. Currently she sees clients in private practice and takes time out for play, mostly in the form of traveling.

Keynote-Friday Feb. 8, 2019
The Importance of Play
In a media saturated world, we easily can get swept away in everything that is technology….and especially if we are a kid. For a child, technology becomes a wonderful source of passive entertainment, a fun gadget that captures the imagination, and a dependable babysitter that holds a child’s attention for hours at a time. Registered Play Therapist Leigh Boyer is eager to tell us about the importance of good old-fashioned play in a child’s life. She will discuss the benefits and risks of technology on the developing brain and the importance of keeping play alive, no matter how young or old we are!

Your Ethics Connection

Stan Mahaffey, Ed.S., LPC-S, NCC, ACS
Stan Mahaffey is a Licensed Professional Counselor-Supervisor and National Certified Counselor who has presented the required LPC supervision training for over 23 years. He enjoys presenting continuing education programs related to ethics, diagnosis, workplace violence, risk-management, and a wide-range or other topics. In addition, he provides consulting services regarding developing, expanding, and promoting the private practice of counseling. Mr. Mahaffey also presents a weekly golf show on Sportstalk 97.7 in North Louisiana.

MAJ Angela V. Huval, LCSW
MAJ Angela V. Huval is a recognized clinician, author, consultant, and motivational speaker with over 25 years’ experience working in the social work profession. She currently is the State Behavioral Health Officer for the Louisiana National Guard. She conducts assessments; fit for duty, sniper, and security clearance evaluations; crisis intervention services; and individual and family counseling. She has had the privilege of serving as a member of the Louisiana Military Funeral Honors Team and has participated in over 100 military funeral services. In 2010, after her return in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, MAJ Huval served as a Military Life Consultant on several military bases providing crisis intervention and non-clinical counseling care. Her work history includes working in a school system with high risk youth and adolescents, providing youth court mandated anger management classes, developing a specific grant based program to divert students from expulsion, and serving as a subject matter expert in school and community mass disasters.

Featured Speakers

Amy Russell, M.S.Ed., J.D.
Amy Russell is Executive Director of Arthur D. Curtis Children’s Justice Center in Clark County, Washington. Ms. Russell is a licensed attorney and holds credentials as a National Certified Counselor. Ms. Russell has worked with victims of violence and trauma in several capacities, including interviewer for child victims of abuse and interviewer for witnesses to crime; counselor for survivors of homicide victims; and advocate for victims of sexual and intimate partner violence. She has also directed several Children’s Advocacy Centers; provided training on child abuse investigations, interviews and litigation; interviewed over a thousand children; and authored several articles on forensic interviewing, child maltreatment, and vicarious trauma. 

Jerri Sites, M.A.
Jerri Sites is Reginal Training Specialist for Southern Regional Children’s Advocacy Center (SRCAC), a project of the National Children’s Advocacy Center, where she provides training and technical assistance to Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs) and Multidisciplinary Teams (MDTs) throughout 16 states in the southeast region of the United States. Jerri Sites has 26 years’ experience working in the field of child abuse investigations, 21 of those working within the CAC movement in the state of Missouri. She has conducted over 2100 forensic interviews and has testified numerous times as an expert witness. Ms. Sites co-authored The Child Abuse Investigative Field Guide, published in 2015, and currently writes Research to Practice publications for SRCAC. 

Erin Dugan, Ph.D., NCC, CRC, LPC-S, RPT-S
Dr. Erin Dugan is a Licensed Professional Counselor-Supervisor and Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor specializing in children ages 2 to 12, attachment disorders, and child-parent relationship therapy, including filial therapy and family play therapy. In addition to her clinical work, Dr. Dugan is a professor in the Department of Clinical Rehabilitation and Counseling at Louisiana State University Health Science Center, New Orleans, and serves as the Interim Department Head of the Department of Clinical Rehabilitation and Counseling as well as the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs in the School of Allied Health Professionals at LSUHSC. With nearly 15 years of experience as a Registered Play Therapist, she is recognized as a leader in the field of play therapy, presenting both nationally and internationally at professional conferences and publishing scholarly works on the subject. Dr. Dugan is a current member of the American Counseling Association, the Association of Play Therapy, and many other professional organizations in the field. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Association of Play Therapy. 

Kathryn Elliott, Ph.D., LPC-S, LMFT
Dr. Kathryn Elliott, Director of Anthetics Institute in Lafayette, Louisiana, is a Licensed Professional Counselor-Supervisor, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, and retired counselor educator. She and her late husband, Dr. James Elliott, are authors of Creating Optimal Relationships: Use of the Voltage Concept with Couples as well as Disarming Your Inner Critic. Kathryn brings practical insights to her audience by drawing on the stories of intriguing clients she has helped. In addition, she offers the personal perspective of applying in her own life the methods she teaches. She is committed to providing her audiences with unique insights into psychological dynamics, fresh clinical concepts, and therapeutic techniques immediately useful in practice. 

Corie Hebert, Ph.D., LMSW
Dr. Corie Hebert is an Associate Professor at Southeastern Louisiana University. She has fifteen years teaching experience and has managed the Southeastern Title IV-E Child Welfare Program for eleven years. Dr. Hebert received her B.A. from Auburn University and her M.S.W. from the University of Alabama. After practicing as a social worker in the field of health care for ten years, she later earned a Ph.D. from Louisiana State University. Dr. Hebert’s research focuses on foster parent needs and teaching effectiveness. She is part of the Louisiana University Child Welfare Alliance and is the lead university project coordinator for the Louisianan Child Welfare Training Academy. 

To register for the 2019 Connections Count!
Conference please click here.