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Family Research Collaborative

Founded by Debra Zand, Ph.D., in September, 2013, the Family Research Collaborative (FRC) is an interdepartmental group of scholars, clinicians, family members and students who meet to conduct research on processes that foster resilience in high risk children/youth, their parents and their families. Students at all levels are welcome and should contact Dr. Zand regarding participation.

Core Members

  • Debra Zand, Ph.D.
    Professor of Pediatrics, Tenured
    Licensed Clinical Psychologist
    Saint Louis University, School of Medicine, General Academic Pediatrics

    My research focuses on how individual factors interact with environmental influences throughout the developmental course of childhood to influence positive adaptation among children and their families. Specifically, I investigate processes that foster resilience in high risk populations of children from birth through emerging adulthood (low income, deaf/hard of hearing, medically fragile, children in foster care, developmentally delayed, autism spectrum disorders), and apply this knowledge to the development and/or adaptation of early intervention/prevention programs.
    Email: debra.zand@health.slu.edu 
  • Heidi Sallee, M.D., F.A.A.P.

    Associate Professor of Pediatrics
    Danis Pediatric Center, Medical Director
    Diplomate of the American Board of Pediatrics
    Saint Louis University, School of Medicine, General Academic Pediatrics

    My research interests in parenting stem from 20 years of providing primary care to pediatric patients. As a physician who strives to practice evidence based medicine, I am interested in discovering what works for parents in the primary care setting. That is, how as a pediatrician I can help parents to be better parents especially in the face of adverse circumstances.
    Email: heidi.sallee@health.slu.edu 

  • Jennifer Ladage, M.D., F.A.A.P.

    Associate Professor of Pediatrics
    FACES Clinical Director
    Diplomate of the American Board of Pediatrics
    Saint Louis University School of Medicine, General Academic Pediatrics

    My research focuses on the role of attachment in promoting positive developmental outcomes in refugees, immigrants and foreign adoptees.
    Email: jennifer.ladage@health.slu.edu 

  • Jessica Chou, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor, Tenure Track
    Department of Counseling and Family Therapy
    Drexel University

    My research interests are focused on mothers and families impacted by substance use and examining factors related to treatment retention and program development in gender-specific treatment centers. Specifically, I am interested in the dynamics of mothers and their children impacted by maternal substance use and how to best meet their needs through programming and advocacy.
  • Jen Newton, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor of Education, Tenure Track 
    Ohio University

    My research focuses on developing inclusive early childhood educators to promote family-centered practices in partnering with young children and families. Specifically, I support pre-service and in service educators in building social emotional competence in young children through and with their interactions with families.
    Email: newtonj@ohio.edu   
  • Katherine Pierce, Ph.D.

    Research Coordinator
    Psychologist
    Saint Louis University, School of Medicine, General Academic Pediatrics

    My research focuses on processes that foster resilience in high risk children and their families. I have over a decade of experience managing large, longitudinal databases, conducting advanced statistical  analyses, writing grants, and writing articles for peer review.
    Email: katherine.pierce@health.slu.edu  

  • Donna Marie McNamara
    Research Coordinator
    Saint Louis University, School of Medicine,
    General Academic Pediatrics
    Email: donnamarie.mcnamara@health.slu.edu 
  • Myrrah Naunheim

    Family Advocate
    Saint Louis University, School of Medicine, 
    General Academic Pediatrics
    Email: myrrah.naunheim@health.slu.edu 

Funding

Current Funding

Funding Agency: Saint Louis Mental Health Board
Title: Improving Mental Health: Parent and Child Collaborative Treatment (IMPACCT)
PI: Debra Zand
Co-I's: Heidi Sallee, M Susan Heaney, Jennifer Ladage
Duration: 07/2018-06/2021
Total Funds: $609,000

Past Funding

Funding Agency: Saint Louis Mental Health Board
Title: Positive Parenting: Healthy Children, Healthy Families (P-Square)
PI: Debra Zand
Co-PI: M Susan Heaney
Duration: 07/2015-06/2018
Total Funds: $600,000

Funding Agency: Saint Louis University, School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics. Fleur de Lis
Title: Development and Validation of the Brief Assessment of Emotional Regulation (BAER)
PI: Debra Zand
Co-PI's: Heidi Sallee, Jen Newton
Total Funds: $25,000

Publications

Publications of Prior and Current Members

Peer Reviewed:

  1. McMillin SE, Bultas MW, Wilmott J, Grafeman S, & Zand DH. Rapid-response parenting intervention in diagnostic centers as a patient-centered innovation for autism spectrum disorders. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. 2014; PMID: 25064087.
  2. McMillin SE, Hall L*, Bultas MW, Gott R, Grafeman S, Wilmott J*, & Zand DH. Knowledge of developmental milestones as a predictor of mother-child play interactions. Clinical Pediatrics. 2015; PMID: 25857730.
  3. McMillin SE, Bultas MW, Zander TL*, Wilmott J*, Underwood, S*, Broom, M, & Zand, DH. The role of maternal knowledge of child development in predicting risk for maltreatment. Clinical Pediatrics, 2015; PMID: 26289564
  4. Bultas MW, McMillin SE, Broom M, & Zand DH. Brief, rapid response parenting interventions within primary care settings. Journal of Behavioral Health Services & Research 2015; PMID: 26289564
  5. Zand, DH, Pierce KJ, Gott R, Bultas MW, McMillin SE, & Wilmott J*. Accuracy of knowledge of child development in mothers of children receiving early intervention services. Journal of Early Intervention, 2015; doi: 10.1177/1053815115610633
  6. Bultas MW, McMillin, SE, & Zand, DH. Reducing Barriers in the Office-Based Health Care Setting for Children with Autism. Journal of Pediatric Health Care, 2016; PMID:26455786.
  7. Zand DH, Chou, J, Pierce KJ, Pennington L, Dickens R, McNamara DM, Michael J, & White, TM*. Parenting self-efficacy and empowerment among expectant mothers with substance use disorders. Midwifery, 2017; PMID: 28324807
  8. Zand DH, Pierce KJ, Bultas MW, McMillin SE, McNamara DM, Halloran D, & White, TM*. A Pilot Study of a brief positive parenting program in children newly diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Family Process. 2017; PMID:29238949.
  9. Chou J, Pierce KJ, Pennington L, Siegler R, Michael J, McNamara D, & Zand DH. Social support, family empowerment, substance use, and perceived self-efficacy during pregnancy for women with substance use disorders. Substance Use and Misuse. 2018; PMID: 29757060.
  10. Zand DH, Pierce KJ, Ladage J, Heaney MS, & Sallee HM. I get by with a little help from my friends: Models of psychology intervention in pediatric primary care. Missouri Medicine. 2019; PMID: 31040496.

Encyclopedia Entries/Book Chapters:

  1. Zand DH, White TM*, Haller K, Sallee H, & Heaney MS. Affluent youth. Encyclopedia of Adolescence 2nd Edition. New York: Springer Publishing; 2017; doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-32132-5_153-2.

Trade Magazines:

  1. Sallee H, Zand DH. Providing mental health care: A case for an on-staff clinical psychologist. Pedsline; 2017, Summer.

*Denotes a student/mentee

Refereed Abstracts, Posters and Presentations
  1. McNamara, DM, Pierce, KJ, McMillin, SE, & Zand, DH. Fostering parenting resilience among parents of children newly diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders. Parents as Teachers National Headquarters; 2014, August. St. Louis, Missouri.
  2. Zand DH, McMillin SE, Bultas MW, Pierce KJ, McNamara DM. A pilot study of Primary Care Stepping Stones Positive Parenting Program with parents of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders. St. Louis University, School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics Research Colloquium; 2014, September. St. Louis, Missouri.
  3. Zand DH, Bultas MW, McMillin SE, McNamara DM, & Pierce KJ. Primary Care Stepping Stones Positive Parenting Program with parents of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders: A pilot study. Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders; 2014, October. Columbia: Missouri.
  4. Zand DH, McMillin SE, Bultas MW. Fostering resilience among parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders within the pediatric setting: A pilot project. Saint Louis University, Department of Pediatrics, Ground Rounds; 2014, October. Saint Louis University: Missouri.
  5. Bultas MW, McMillin SE, Zand DH. Fostering resilience among parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders within educational settings. Saint Louis Special School District, 2014, November. St. Louis, Missouri.
  6. Zand, DH. The long and winding road: The making of an autism researcher and healthcare professional. Alpha Epsilon Delta; 2014, December. St. Louis, Missouri.
  7. Zand DH, McMillin SE, Bultas MW, McNamara DM, & Pierce KJ. Primary care stepping stones positive parenting program. Missouri Department of Mental Health; January, 2015. Saint Louis, Missouri.
  8. McMillin SE, Wilmott J*, Grafeman S, Bultas MW, & Zand DH. Predictors of academic performance in a national mentoring program: The roles of the mentor-youth alliance, parental attachment, and youth self-efficacy (presentation). Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research; 2015, January. New Orleans, Louisiana.
  9. Zand DH. I get by with a little help from my friends: Forming and sustaining a successful research team. Saint Louis University Faculty Development Workshop; 2015, March. St. Louis, Missouri.
  10. Zand DH, Ladley A, McNamara DM. P-Square Program at Danis Pediatric Center. Cardinal Glennon Children's Medical Center, Social Work; 2015, November. St. Louis, Missouri.
  11. White TM*, Pierce KJ, Bultas M, McMillin SE, McNamara DM, & Zand, DH. Impact of Primary Care Stepping Stones Positive Parenting Program on Reducing Stress among Parents of Children Newly Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (poster). Academic Pediatric Associations' Region IV Fall Meeting; 2016, September. St. Louis, Missouri.
  12. Zand DH. Fostering Resilience in Parents of Children Newly Diagnosed with Autism. Saint Louis University Board of Trustees Retreat; 2015, December. St. Louis, Missouri.
  13. Zand DH. I get by with a little help from my friends: Forming and sustaining a successful research team. Saint Louis University Faculty Development Workshop; 2016, May. St. Louis, Missouri.
  14. Zand DH, Bultas MW, McMillin SE, Pierce KJ, & McNamara DM. Feasibility and Initial Efficacy of Primary Care Stepping Stones Positive Parenting Program (Triple P) on Reducing Maladaptive Behaviors in Children Newly Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum. Disorder (poster). IMFAR; 2016, May. Baltimore, Maryland.
  15. McMillin SE, Bultas MW, Pierce, KJ, White TM* & Zand DH. Initial Efficacy of Primary Care Stepping Stones Positive Parenting Program on Reducing Risk of Dysfunctional Parental Discipline of Children Newly Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (poster). IMFAR, 2017, May. San Francisco, California.
  16. Zand DH, Pierce KJ, McNamara DM, Lanning NM, Sallee HM, & Heaney MS. Readiness to change as a predictor of positive parenting outcomes in pediatric primary care (poster). Society for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, 2017, October. Cleveland, Ohio.
  17. Newton J., Sallee HM, & Zand DH. Development and validation of the Brief Assessment of Emotional Regulation. Saint Louis University, School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics Research Colloquium. 2017, November. St. Louis, Missouri.
  18. Sallee HM, Pierce KJ, Newton J, McNamara DM, Lanning N, Jaschek C, Heaney MS, Zand DH. Feasibility of implementing a positive parenting program in primary care. (poster). Saint Louis University School of Medicine Pediatric Science; 2018, May; St. Louis, Missouri.
  19. Heaney MS, Pierce KJ, Newton J, McNamara DM, Lanning N, Jaschek C, Sallee HM, & Zand DH. Readiness to change as a predictor of positive parenting outcomes in primary care pediatric settings (oral presentation). Saint Louis University School of Medicine Pediatric Science; 2018, May; St. Louis, Missouri.
  20. Sallee HM, Pierce KJ, Newton J, McNamara DM, Lanning N, Jaschek C, Heaney MS, Zand DH. Feasibility of implementing a positive parenting program in primary care. (poster). Pediatric Academic Societies; 2018, May. Toronto, Canada.
  21. Heaney MS, Pierce KJ, Newton J, McNamara DM, Lanning N, Jaschek C, Sallee HM, & Zand DH. Readiness to change as a predictor of positive parenting outcomes in primary care pediatric settings (oral presentation). Pediatric Academic Societies; 2018, May; Toronto, Canada.

*Denotes a student/mentee

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