About Us

About Us 2017-09-13T09:16:23+00:00

The MEHRIT Centre Team

Stuart Shanker, Founder & CEO, stuart@self-reg.ca
Susan Hopkins, Executive Director, susan@self-reg.ca
Debbie Climans, Executive Assistant for Susan Hopkins, debbie@self-reg.ca
Colleen Dickinson, Executive Assistant for Dr. Shanker, colleen@self-reg.ca

TMC Telephone/Fax #: (705) 243-6636
Finance Department Fax #: (705) 243-6609

General Inquiries: info@self-reg.ca
Media Inquiries: media@self-reg.ca
Finance Inquiries: Ext. 104, finance@self-reg.ca
Self-Reg eSchool: onlinelearning@self-reg.ca
Event Inquiries:
Ext. 107, events@self-reg.ca
Human Resources: Ext. 108, tmc.humanresources@self-reg.ca
Executive Director’s Office: Ext. 109, debbie@self-reg.ca
Chief Executive Officer: Ext. 102, colleen@self-reg.ca


Managers

Meaghan Trewin, Communications Manager
Sarah Diotte, Internal Operations & Finance Manager
Liz Shepherd, Resources & Services Development Manager
Paula Jurczak, Dean of eLearning

Communications Department

Stephanie PellettWebmaster & Social Media Manager
John Hoffman, Communications Officer & Newsletter Editor
Letitia Calver, Communication Designer
Samantha Cox, Communications Administrator

Resources and Services Development

Jamie Barker, Client Services Representative

Self-Reg eSchool

Stephen Retallick, eSchool Administrator
Taylor Wilson, Lead Teaching Assistant & Learning Navigator

Education Department

Travis FrancisTeaching Assistant, Research Assistant
Vicki Parnell, Self-Reg Parenting Group Administrator
Aviva Dunsiger, Self-Reg Portal Plus Administrator
Aidan Kennedy, Videographer
Aaron Peacock, Videographer
Melshean Boardman, Transcription
Kathleen Sullivan, Teaching Assistant

Facilitators

Amanda Binns, Self-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Arlene Robinson, Self-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Cathern Lethbridge, Self-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Casey Burgess, Self-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Kim Smith, Self-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Stefani Burosch, Self-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator

Self-Reg Consultants

Angie Rosati, Self-Reg Consultant
Gail Molenaar, Self-Reg Consultant
Karen Braun, Self-Reg Consultant
Kyla Zachary, Self-Reg Consultant
Leigh Anne Jacques, Self-Reg Consultant
Linda Warren, Self-Reg Consultant
Lisa Bayrami, Self-Reg Consultant
Marilyn Barros, Self-Reg Consultant
Melissa Raine, Self-Reg Consultant
Nancy Niessen, Self-Reg Consultant
Rebecca Leslie, Self-Reg Consultant
Robert Malowany, Self-Reg Consultant
Sonia Mastrangelo, Self-Reg Consultant

TMC Executive Bios

Susan Hopkins
Susan HopkinsExecutive Director, TMC
A passionate advocate for children, families and communities, Dr. Susan Hopkins leads Dr. Stuart Shanker’s organization, The MEHRIT Centre (TMC). Susan’s leadership brings Dr. Shanker’s self-regulation knowledge to contexts across Canada and beyond. As a one-time at-risk youth who quit high school twice, Susan went on to complete four degrees. Over the course of Susan’s career, she has been an educator, school administrator, special education teacher, inclusive schooling coordinator, curriculum developer, educational researcher, and educational leader. She has worked in every area of education from the early years to post-secondary and across contexts from Italy to the Northwest Territories. Susan led the territorial implementation of the Early Development Instrument (EDI), co-authored the Government’s Early Childhood Framework and developed the NWT play and culutre-based kindergarten curriculum. She went on to lead the Planning, Research, and Evaluation division for the Department of Education before relocating to Edmonton to head up the Society of Safe and Caring Schools and Communities. These experiences always lead back to the self-regulation research, writing, and thinking of Dr. Stuart Shanker. In 2014 Susan became the Executive Director of The MEHRIT Centre and under her leadership the organization has grown and developed into a much respected, accessible, and successful Centre of teaching and learning. In addition, Susan now brings her skills to Stuart’s self-regulation research centre (SRI) as the lead researcher for SRI’s fourth area of focus: The Practice of Self-Reg.
Debbie Climans
Debbie ClimansExecutive Assistant and Event Co-ordinator
Debbie is thrilled to be joining the TMC team as Susan Hopkins’ Executive Assistant. She brings many years of experience having worked in high schools (both public and private), and at a child and teen psychology centre. As the proud mother of three children in university, Debbie knows how important it is for parents to learn from, and partner with knowledgeable educators in order for children to reach their greatest potential.

What helps Debbie stay calm and alert: Cooking, yoga, volunteering, doing puzzles, gardening, and spending quality time with her children who have grown up way too fast.

Colleen Dickinson
Colleen DickinsonExecutive Assistant for Dr. Shanker
Colleen is a natural born organizer and planning is in her blood. She is returning to Ontario from Fredericton NB where she spent 14 years working for an IT company as their training and travel administrator. Her diverse experience in finance, customer service, insurance sales and travel planning make her a great addition to the TMC family as Dr Shanker’s executive assistant.

What helps Colleen stay calm and alert: Spending time with her grandchildren, playing with her ferrets and cats, whale watching, animals and exploring new places.

Meet Our Managers

Meaghan Trewin
Meaghan TrewinCommunications Manager
Meaghan is an experienced editor, writer, graphic designer, and communications strategist. She cares deeply about the big questions in life, such as: Do we want to use the Oxford comma? and Would an en or em dash be appropriate here? She lends her creative eye and obsessive attention to detail to TMC and SRI printed materials and online resources, to ensure key messages are easy to understand, visually engaging, and, above all, fun to read.

What helps Meaghan stay calm and alert: Small-batch roasted coffee, yoga, biking, cooking, reading a good book, her cat, and binge watching old episodes of The Mentalist with a glass of red wine.

Sarah Diotte
Sarah DiotteInternal Operations & Finance Manager
Sarah Diotte is the Internal Operations and Finance Manager at The MEHRIT Centre Ltd. Sarah has built her career from being involved in a variety of industries and brings extensive experience as a Corporate Operations Officer, Financial Manager, and Human Resource Manager to her role overseeing all aspects of Operations, Finance, and Human Resources Departments. Sarah believes the greatest asset a company has is its people. Her strategy: “Listen and observe, then speak with informed facts. Always encourage, and build up the confidence of those around you.”

What helps Sarah stay calm and alert: Gaining experience in the art of wine making, painting and creative hobbies, watching the sunset at her country home, and relaxing outside with her three little dogs by a cozy fire.

Liz Shepherd
Liz ShepherdResources & Services Development Manager
Prior to completing her MSc in Psychology at Trent University, Liz was deeply involved in voluntary work both in the USA and the UK. Her voluntary experience ranges from working at an animal shelter to acquiring resources and funds to support local youth. Her passion for volunteering, helping and understanding others led her to pursue a career in psychology and makes her a natural Self-Regger. After a year with The MEHRIT Centre, Liz has now used her organizational skills and Self-Reg certification to branch out in the realm of Self-Reg project management. Liz additionally works as a research assistant for the Self-Reg Institute, where she hopes to integrate her knowledge of the brain to further understand self-regulation.

What helps Liz stay calm and alert: Listening to music, exploring nature trails, reading, and knitting.

Paula Jurczak
Paula JurczakDean of eLearning & Self-Reg Consultant
Paula is a native Vancouverite and enjoys living near the ocean. As a Registered Clinical Counselor and Registered Social Worker she works with infants, children, adolescents, parents and professionals in her clinic, schools, hospitals and mental health settings. Additionally, Paula is a Special Needs Consultant and DIR Floortime Training Leader providing therapy, consultation, training and workshops locally and internationally.

Paula enjoys supporting each person’s self-regulation journey to become calm and alert.

What helps Paula stay calm and alert: Music, walking, tea, reading a good book, cardio salsa, time with friends and loved ones.

Meet Our Teams

Communications Department Team Members

Stephanie Pellett
Stephanie PellettWebmaster, Social Media & #TMCTalks Coordinator
Stephanie is the webmaster and social media manager for The MEHRIT Centre. Passionate about building a career doing work that matters, Stephanie chooses to work only with values-driven organizations such as TMC. After majoring in Psychology and working as a teacher and camp counsellor for young children, Stephanie has come to believe strongly in the power and potential reach of Self-Regulation. She is excited to be a part of the TMC team and to continue learning how to implement Self-Reg into her own life.

What helps Stephanie stay calm and alert: Plenty of long walks outdoors, getting lost in a book, listening to podcasts, practicing yoga, and working on creative projects.

John Hoffman
John HoffmanCommunications Officer & Newsletter Editor
John has had three distinct careers that have blended together at times: roots musician, stay-at-home father and freelance writer. A former long-time columnist and feature writer for Today’s Parent, John now specializes in knowledge translation, blogging and writing for not-profit organizations like The MEHRIT Centre, The Psychology Foundation of Canada and Dad Central Ontario.

What helps John stay calm and alert: Playing the fiddle, sailing his Laser and making wisecracks.

Letitia Calver
Letitia CalverCommunication Designer
Letitia is a communication designer from Port Hope, ON. She holds a Bachelor of Design from NSCAD University and an Advanced Diploma in Communication Design from George Brown College. She is currently working as a freelance designer under the company name Calver/Create. Letitia specializes in brand strategies, print mediums and creating custom designs and logos. She is passionate about design, typography, and branding and enjoys working on projects where she can use design thinking to enrich an original idea.

What helps Letitia stay calm and alert: Staying organized, time in the outdoors, Sunday brunch and conversations with friends.

Samantha Cox
Samantha CoxCommunications Administrator
Sam is very enthusiastic about recently joining The MEHRIT Centre as a Communications Administrator. With an in depth understanding of graphic design and online marketing, she has held an array of roles in the advertising and marketing field for industries such as retail, high tech, health care, real estate, and logistics. Sam has a passion for both design and data analytics. She currently holds a diploma in graphic design from Humber College, but is currently working towards a degree in digital marketing at McMaster.

What helps Sam stay calm and alert: Spending time with family and friends, nature walks with her dog Luna, listening to music and going on long bike rides near the lake.

Resources and Services Development Team Members

Jamie Barker
Jamie BarkerClient Services Representative
Jamie is excited to join the TMC team as Client Services Representative. Jamie moved to Peterborough in 2007 where she met her husband and began her career in customer service and administration. Jamie is a big believer in continuing education on and off the job. Jamie received her certificate in Medical Office Support Staff in December 2014 and has always been interested in the health and wellness of others.

What helps Jamie stay calm and alert: Going to the cottage, yoga, spending time with her husband, reading and walking down to her favourite local café for an ice cream or a London Fog.

Self-Reg eSchool Team Members

Stephen Retallick
Stephen RetallickeSchool Administrator
Before working at The MEHRIT Centre, Stephen found solace as a librarian in a small local library. As a graduate of Fleming College, Stephen uses his background in technology to perform his countless responsibilities. His interests include exploring his family’s genealogy, increasing his knowledge of world history and encouraging his wife to do the same.

What helps Stephen stay calm and alert: Spending time with family, eating dark chocolate and listening to classical music.

Taylor Wilson
Taylor WilsonLead Teaching Assistant & Learning Navigator
Taylor is a strong believer in the power of personal relationships. With over five years in the service industry as a server and youth leader at her local church, Taylor continues to serve as a customer service assistant for the Self-Reg community. Currently pursuing Psychology at Trent University, Taylor hopes to translate this degree into a career as a Speech and Language Pathologist. While still new to Self-Reg, Taylor is eager to learn more about Dr. Shanker’s methods.

What helps Taylor stay calm and alert: Listening to music, singing, reading for pleasure, watching Downtown Abbey, taking nature walks and spending time with family.

Education Department Team Members

Travis Francis
Travis FrancisTeaching Assistant, Research Assistant
Travis is currently pursuing a degree in Interdisciplinary studies at Lakehead University in Orillia with a specialization in Psychology and Criminology. One of the youngest members of The MEHRIT Centre’s team, Travis works as a Teaching and Research Assistant. Having presented on Self-Regulation at the Conference on Holistic Early Learning and Development as well as the Canadian Conference on Student Leadership, Travis has a strong understanding of Self-Regulation and is eager to expand his knowledge.

What helps Travis stay calm and alert: Performing with his band as a guitarist, playing with his two golden retriever puppies and staying active on the Lakehead University hockey team.

Vicki Parnell
Vicki ParnellSelf-Reg Parenting Group Administrator
Vicki is the administrator of the Self-Reg Parenting group on Facebook. She also works as an RDI Certified Consultant and Special Needs Resource Navigator, offering parent support and personalized intervention for families throughout British Columbia who have been affected by autism and other neurodevelopmental differences.

Vicki can often be found reading from her growing pile of books about neuroscience, mindfulness and self-regulation, purchased while taking the Self-Reg Foundations course.

What helps Vicki stay calm and alert: listening to bel canto opera, looking at the ocean and the sky, and drinking big cups of Yorkshire Gold tea.

Aviva Dunsiger
Aviva DunsigerSelf-Reg Portal Plus Moderator
Aviva is no stranger to self-regulation, whether in the classroom or in her everyday life. When she’s not moderating Portal Plus, Aviva works as a JK/SK teacher at an inner-city school in Hamilton, helping her students develop self-regulation skills. Dr. Shanker’s book, Calm, Alert and Learning has been a source of inspiration for Aviva as a teacher and digital native.

What helps Aviva stay calm and alert: Regular blogging, slowly sipping her morning coffee, low lighting, a quiet room and reading a good book.

Aidan Kennedy
Aidan KennedyVideographer
Descended from a family of performers, Aidan found a passion behind the camera. After studying Television and New Media Production at Loyalist College, he co-founded the Northumberland County based video production company, Two Blue Shirts Productions. Awarded for his work on corporate productions at Loyalist, Aidan now produces content for clients across the province, including TMC. Though an amateur when it comes to Self-Reg, Aidan looks forward to utilizing it when his computer crashes during an editing session.

What helps Aidan stay calm and alert: Watching sports, specifically his beloved Boston Red Sox.

Aaron Peacock
Aaron PeacockVideographer
Aaron is a videographer and filmmaker from Port Hope ON. He studied Film & TV Production at Humber College, and has had several projects play at film festivals all over North America. His company (with Aidan Kennedy) Two Blue Shirts Productions, produces online course content for TMC. Aaron is new to Self-Reg but looks forward to utilizing the five steps in the Shanker Method on set, possibly the most high stress workplace known to man.

What helps Aaron stay calm and alert: Crowded coffee shops.

Kathleen Sullivan
Kathleen SullivanTeaching Assistant
Kathleen is a recently graduated occupational therapist, who became interested in Self-Reg while pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Throughout university, Kathleen worked with children in a number of capacities, including as a coach, a researcher, and after-school program provider. From the school to the swimming pool, Kathleen’s experiences led her to strongly believe in Self-Reg’s ability to benefit children and adults from all walks of life. She is excited to be a part of the Mehrit Centre team and to expand her understanding of Self-Reg.

What helps Kathleen stay calm and alert: Synchronized swimming, reading, and listening to the ocean.

Melshean Boardman
Melshean BoardmanTranscription
As a bibliophile from a young age, Melshean followed her love of the written word to pursue degrees in English Literature and Education, and to develop a background in editing and research. Currently, she is a part-time transcriber for TMC, including creating closed captions for videos in the Self-Reg Foundations Program. She is also an occasional teacher for her local school board, where Melshean patiently walks herself through the five steps of Self-Reg when experiencing stress as a model for her elementary-age students.

What helps Melshean stay calm and alert: A good breakfast, organized work spaces, a walk in the woods, an episode of Gilmore Girls, and singing at top volume in the car.

Meet Our Facilitators

Amanda Binns
Amanda BinnsSelf-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Amanda is a Speech-Language Pathologist, PhD student and mother. She is also a DIR-Floortime training leader, adjunct faculty at Fielding University, and blogger. Amanda has worked with children, adolescents and parents in home, school, hospital, university clinic and agency settings. She is passionate about sharing with others what she has learned about self-regulation through years of clinical and research work. She has presented to and consulted with professionals across four continents. Amanda continues to be inspired by working in conjunction with Dr. Stuart Shanker and his dynamic team at TMC.

What helps Amanda stay calm and alert: A hot cup of tea, yoga, snuggles with my daughter, and sharing meal and laugh with friends and family.

Arlene Robinson
Arlene RobinsonSelf-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Arlene is an elementary school principal with more that 25 years in education, wife and mother of two. She has been searching for more effective ways to support students to their fullest potential in spite of what lies in their life path. For Arlene, the Self-Reg is the answer to this search and she is finding the learning journey to be beneficial both personally and professionally, and believes everyone can benefit from this learning.

What helps Arlene stay calm and alert: Reading, kayaking, gardening, learning, practicing mindfulness, quiet time with family and any time spent on both the shore and the surface of Lake Katchiwanooka.

Cathy Lethbridge
Cathy LethbridgeSelf-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Cathy has been an elementary educator for 32 years with the Simcoe County DSB, the past 13 years as principal. She actively applies Shanker Self-Reg in both her personal and professional life and believes in the power of Self-Reg to change trajectories no matter a person’s age or stage in life. Inspired by Dr. Shanker’s work, Cathy is leading her current school toward being a Self-Reg Haven and works with other schools to help them achieve school-wide improvement through Self-Reg.

What helps Cathy stay calm and alert: Workouts at the gym followed by decaf coffee and classical music, photography, hand washing dishes, cooking and blogging daily gratitudes.

Casey Burgess
Casey BurgessSelf-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Having lived across Canada from coast to coast, Casey has worked for over 20 years as an Autism Resource Consultant and Clinical Supervisor on multidisciplinary teams, in both British Columbia and Ontario. Currently in Sault Ste Marie, she is an adjunct faculty member at Algoma University (Psychology), Lake Superior State University (Education), and Sault College (Social Sciences), as well as a PhD student, a parent of a teen and a tween, and the partner of a very understanding man.

What helps Casey stay calm and alert: Yoga, meditation, forest trails, a glass of wine, hearty laughs amongst good friends, the beach, a variety of stringed instruments, and her amazing family.

Kim Smith
Kim SmithSelf-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Kim is a wife and mother and has been an elementary educator for over 30 years with the York Region District School Board, 18 of those years as a Principal. She has a Master’s degree in education, is a Cognitive Coach and is also trained in Adaptive Schools and Mindfulness. Kim has been inspired by the work of Stuart Shanker and strives to create a haven in her school for students, staff and parents. She believes that self-reg is the way to finding calmness and comfort in our fast paced world and looks for ways of sharing this with others.

What helps Kim stay calm and alert: Spending time with her family and friends, reading a good book, yoga and crossfit.

Stefani Burosch
Stefani BuroschSelf-Reg Foundations Program Facilitator
Stefani is a Registered Social Worker with a background in research, communities, organizations, and planning. She is a passionate advocate for school-based mental health and spent five years in northern Alberta as a Project Coordinator with the Alberta Mental Health Capacity Building in Schools Projects. Since moving back to Ontario, Stefani has continued her work in mental health leadership within the education sector. She believes that self-regulation is absolutely essential for promoting the well-being of kids, families, and communities.

What helps Stefani stay calm and alert: Sharing a good laugh with friends and family, walking with my dog, hitting the trails on my horse.

Meet Our Self-Reg Consultants

Angie Rosati
Angie RosatiSelf-Reg Consultant
Angie is a Professor of Early Childhood Education at Sheridan College and a PhD student in Education at York University. Angie has been interested in the impact of the schooling experience on the developmental pathways of children for as long as she can remember. Angie writes policy papers and op-ed pieces for an array of educational organizations and regularly delivers workshops to early childhood educators and college professors on the topics of Self-Regulation, Temperament and the Biology of Behaviour. Angie is working toward the day when the science of self-regulation becomes an embodied aspect of education and is hopeful that when all children come to be viewed through a self-reg lens by the important people in their lives, they will be freed to experience the promise of their potential.

What helps Angie stay calm and alert: The memory of her father’s smile, sharing stories with a friend over a glass of craft beer, Frank Sinatra, teaching, and watching her daughters sleep.

Gail Molenaar
Gail MolenaarSelf-Reg Consultant
Gail is a passionate educator connecting nature and self-regulation as both a practicing Forest and Nature School Practitioner student and facilitator of nature learning and Self-Reg. Children naturally self-regulate in the forest! She graduated with honours in ECE from Georgian College. has an undergraduate degree in psychology from Lakehead University and is passionate about all things Early Years. Gail is an aspiring children’s author, an occasional blogger, and an independent Early Years consultant/presenter who is proudly amongst the first cohort in TMC’s Foundations 1 and 2 courses. She also works as a Kindergarten educator in the SCDSB and is a member of the CCCF and the AECEO.

What helps Gail stay calm and alert: Watching great movies and children at play, exploring/hiking in the forest, sitting by a night fire and laughing with her granddaughters and patient partner.

Karen Braun
Karen BraunSelf-Reg Consultant
Karen is a wife, mother of five and grandmother of four. She has been an educator for 30 years in Southern Alberta. Her last twenty years have been in the area of behaviour support. Shanker Self-Reg has transformed her professional and personal life. Karen believes strongly in “see a child differently, you see a different child” and her goal is to help everyone to look at each other with soft eyes. Karen is currently working with her school board to change the outlook and to embrace the understandings and science of Self-Reg.

What helps Karen stay calm and alert: Photography, nature, time with family, baseball, time on Shuswap Lake, hanging with my husband and reading.

Kyla Zachary
Kyla ZacharySelf-Reg Consultant
Kyla is a Speech-Language Pathologist who spent the first 13 years of her career working in early intervention as part of a multidisciplinary team. She now has her own private speech and language practice serving children and youth in greater Victoria. Kyla came to Self-Reg after seeing an unmet need in the children she serves and in her own children. She is inspired by the change and growth that have come from practicing the five steps of Self-Reg both in her professional and personal life.

What helps Kyla stay calm and alert: Snuggles with her boys and husband, listening to music and going to concerts, being active outdoors, and spending time alone with a good book and a cup of green tea.

Leigh Anne Jacques
Leigh Anne JacquesSelf-Reg Consultant
Leigh Anne is a Montessori teacher and the owner of Beaches Montessori School. She is a wife and mother of four and lives in Toronto. She is inspired by Dr. Shanker and the Self-Reg movement. It has had such a positive effect on her personal life as well as the lives of the children and staff that she works with. She is working towards creating a Self-Reg haven at her school.

What helps Leigh Anne stay calm and alert: Daily cardio especially long runs along the beach, hot yoga, family time without electronics and spending time at the cottage.

Linda Warren
Linda WarrenSelf-Reg Consultant
Linda believes self-regulation is the foundation of a happy life of learning and living. She is grateful for the opportunity to continue her journey of self-reg learning with Dr. Shanker and is committed to supporting others on theirs.
Linda is an experienced presenter, and as a school and system principal, she has 30 plus years’ experience in education and community involvement. She has worked in centralized roles in Special Education and Safe Schools and has taught in elementary and secondary schools. Linda sits on the Board of Directors for Frontenac Youth Services, a not-for-profit mental health agency for children, youth and their families.

What helps Linda stay calm and alert: Being outside, time with her grandchildren and practicing gratitude.

Lisa Bayrami
Lisa BayramiSelf-Reg Consultant
Lisa Bayrami is a developmental psychologist with a passion for research in the areas of Self-Regulation, social-emotional learning, and well-being. She is Director of Research at Roots of Empathy and adjunct scientist at The MEHRIT Centre. Previously, she was Senior Scientist at the Milton and Ethel Harris Research Initiative (MEHRI) and a Professor of Psychology in the Liberal Arts Department at Seneca at York. She has worked with children and families in collaboration with Drs. Stanley Greenspan and Stuart Shanker around early identification of Autistic Spectrum Disorders. Lisa is on the Advisory Committee for Measuring What Matters (People for Education) and the Editorial Board of the International Journal of Holistic Early Learning and Development. Previously, she has served as a member of the Babies and Preschool Working Groups as part of the National Reading campaign.

What helps Lisa stay calm and alert: Playing with her son, walking nature trails, being near the ocean, reading, cooking, music, and a nice cup of coffee.

Marilyn Barros
Marilyn BarrosSelf-Reg Consultant
Finding Self-Reg, the Shanker Method was something Marilyn had been looking for, for a long time. She has always been a person who tries to see the positive in others and learning about Self-Reg has helped her learn the science behind our actions.

Marilyn’s experiences as a mom have taught her so much. Her career has taken her from residential services, vocational services, supporting mental health services then into the school system to her current role as an Occupational Therapy Assistant in paediatrics. In each of these roles, she has had the opportunity to meet and learn from so many children and their families.

What helps Marilyn stay calm and alert: She enjoys spending time with her family and friends which includes her beagle, Aldo. She loves to swim, likes to run, read and enjoys walking in nature.

Melissa Raine
Melissa RaineSelf-Reg Consultant
Melissa’s research background is in medieval English literature. After becoming an Associate Investigator with the Centre for the History of Emotions in Australia for a project on children’s voices in medieval narratives, she became aware that the key questions she was asking – When do children have voices? What are they permitted/expected to say? What do their voices tell us about the culture they inhabit and how it understands childhood? – were as relevant for living children as for the imaginary children of the texts she was researching. As a result, she expanded her project into a symposium in 2016, “Children’s Voices in Contemporary Australia”. This coincided with her learning at The MEHRIT Centre, which informed the shape and questions that were considered on the day. Melissa continues to work on both projects as well as being a mother to 2 sons.

What helps Melissa stay calm and alert: Sharing happy times with her children, her cats, quiet conversations with her partner, being involved in community, reading, walking and trees!

Nancy Niessen
Nancy NiessenSelf-Reg Consultant
Nancy Niessen’s teaching career has spanned over three decades. Most of that time has been spent in the Early Years and Special Education. She has worked in a variety of settings, predominantly in the public school system. She is OCT certified and has a Diploma in Child Studies (ECE) from what was formerly known as The Institute of Child Studies. Nancy thrives on the challenge of grounding theory in practice. Now retired from the classroom, she continues her work as an ETFO AQ instructor and enjoys working with other educators to improve their practice and build leadership skills. She is an active member of her local Reggio Study Group and sees many connections between Reggio-inspired practice and self-regulation.

Nancy is proud to be a Cohort 1 graduate of TMC’s Foundations course. Self-Reg has become an ever-present influence in all that she does. She consciously puts the 5 Steps of Self-Regulation into practice in her life and is working with others to help them understand the process for themselves.

What helps Nancy stay calm and alert: Quiet, a lack of clutter, having her feet in the sand, beautiful sunsets, kayaking, hammocking, handfeeding birds in the woods, djembe drumming, playing the ukulele, reading, and spending time with her two children and other loved ones.

Rebecca Leslie
Rebecca LeslieSelf-Reg Consultant
Rebecca is passionate about travelling (alone or en famille), music (made and played), questioning, reading, silence and the sound of others laughing.

She moved to Toronto just last year after more than 25 years in Quebec. She has also lived in France and the United States. Rebecca is an elementary school teacher by trade (15 years). She loves teaching, but much prefers learning with her students! Building relationships is at the heart of her work with kids. She has taught both in English and in French, both in the inner-city and specialized with children experiencing attachment issues.

She has enjoyed her studies at McGill and is continuing her education in Developmental Psychology & Education at the University of Toronto.

After finishing the Self-Reg Foundations Courses, she joined the Research Team at the non-profit Self-Regulation Institute (SRI), based at Trent University, in early 2017. Rebecca passionately embraces Dr. Shanker’s statement that “Self-Reg is an approach of great optimism and hope.”

What helps Rebecca stay calm and alert: That first cup of coffee in the morning, friendship with her husband, hot Moksha yoga, peace – silliness – and cuddles with her two boys, daily texts with her best friend, sunshine felt and seen (even with her eyes closed), getting her hands dirty while gardening, and that last glass of wine at night.

Robert Malowany
Robert MalowanySelf-Reg Consultant
Robert is a counsellor/psychotherapist and part-time professor. He is a husband and a parent of two teen-aged girls. The concept of Self-Regulation fits perfectly with his passion for helping people to find paths that lead to flourishing, which has been a foundational value throughout his career. Since 2003 Robert has been working at George Brown College in Toronto, where he follows his passion of facilitating self-awareness and psycho-education in the development of positive mental health through one-on-one sessions for students and in workshops for students and staff. It is in this work where Robert found resonance with Stuart Shanker’s model of Self-Regulation, which can impact the well being of students as well as their academic and personal successes.

What helps Robert stay calm and alert: Using mindfulness in the moment, relying on the relationships that help him get there, as well as finding joy in thinking about his next woodworking project.

Sonia Mastrangelo
Sonia MastrangeloSelf-Reg Consultant
Sonia Mastrangelo is an Associate Professor at Lakehead University Orillia in the Faculty of Education, associate editor of the International Journal of Holistic Early Learning and Development and former special education teacher. She is also a certified Miller Method therapist, a cognitive developmental approach to working with students on the autism spectrum. Sonia travels nationally and internationally, speaking with parents and teachers about autism spectrum disorder, self regulation, the importance of play and developmentally appropriate practice and provides direct consultative support to schools and clinics.

What helps Sonia stay calm and alert: Daily exercise, hikes along the Humber Valley Trail, baking, and dancing with her daughters.

Self-Reg Partnerships

Natalia Fedan
Natalia FedanOwner of MindCare (Poland)
Natalia Fedan is a psychologist, English studies graduate, with training in cognitive-behavioral therapy and in Self-Reg method. Mother to three kids, including two teenagers and one almost two-year-old. Translator of Stuart Shanker’s book on Self-Reg. She gives anti-stress consultations, emotion regulation consultations, personal development workshops and psychological counselling for adults, children and adolescents.

Natalia is the owner of a developing company MindCare (www.mindcare.pl) – a center for stress management and reduction and emotion regulation. Co-author of the blog www.zyciowapsychologia.wordpress.com. She also writes guest posts on the blog Droga Uważności, www.drogauwaznosci.pl, promoting mindfulness.

Telephone: +48 505 422 950

For more information and to read Natalia’s biography in Polish, click here to visit the Self-Reg Poland section of TMC’s website.