Advisory Council

The USA-Palestine Mental Health Network works closely with the members of our Advisory Council:

SAM BAHOUR is managing partner of Applied Information Management (AIM), a policy analyst with Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network, a secretariat member of the Palestine Strategy Group, and chairman of Americans for a Vibrant Palestinian Economy. He blogs at Twitter: @SamBahour

RITA GIACAMAN PharmD, MPhil, is a professor of public health at the Institute of Community and Public Health, Birzeit University, in the occupied Palestinian territory. Her work overall is a chronicle of the effects of the Israeli military occupation on the life and health of Palestinians.  Since 2000, she has focused on the impact of chronic war-like conditions and exposure to violence on health and well-being, with an emphasis on psychosocial health among adolescents and young people and the development of measures to assess health and well-being in conditions of protracted violence.  She has published extensively, both locally and internationally.  In 2011, Rita was awarded an Honorary PhD from the London School of Economics for her “outstanding contribution to the increased understanding or appreciation of ‘the causes of things’…” In 2018, she was granted the title of International Fellow of the Society for Research on Adolescence for her “internationally and culturally sensitive approach to the understanding of adolescence worldwide.” In 2019, she was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science degree (honoris causa) from King’s College, London for work which “set a standard for the provision of health care in war and post-war contexts in the Middle East and globally.”

SAMAH JABR M.D. is a psychiatrist and psychotherapist based in East Jerusalem. She has consulted with many health and mental health care organizations globally, and has been on the faculty of several universities within Palestine and internationally. She is well-known as a spokesperson for human rights in Palestine and widely published in the popular press, in academic journals, and in scholarly books.

YASSER ABU-JAMEI M.D. is a psychiatrist who has served since 2014 as the General Director of the Gaza Community Mental Health Center, a leading provider of mental health services in Palestine. In 2012, he obtained his MSc in Clinical Neuropsychiatry (with distinction) at the University of Birmingham.  He received the Best Alumnus Achievement award from the Said Foundation in 2015 for his work developing both the mental health sector in Gaza and the GCMHP crisis response plan following the 2014 war on Gaza.  He received the Alumnus of the Year award from the University of Birmingham in 2016.  Dr.Abu-Jamei is a member of the Taskforce responsible for Palestine’s National Mental Health Strategy for 2015-2019. He has a special interest in capacity-building programs, neuropsychiatry, advocacy, and lobbying activities.   He has been certified as a Trainer of Trainers in the field of supervision and Care for Caregivers from the Free University of Berlin.  He has recently co-authored articles investigating mental health treatment approaches that integrate public health and human rights in the Gazan context.

MARTIN KEMP Ph.D. is a psychoanalyst in private practice in London, UK. He has made several visits to Palestine, experiences that motivated a commitment to activism within the mental health community. He was one of the founders of the UK-Palestine Mental Health Network in 2014. He has published several articles exploring psychological components that affect the quality of international discourse on Israel and Zionism, within and beyond the professional literature, and numerous briefer contributions to the struggle for justice and equal rights in the region.

LYNNE LAYTON Ph.D., Ph.D. is Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychology, Part-Time, in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, a supervisor at the Massachusetts Institute for Psychoanalysis, and Adjunct Professor at Pacifica Graduate Institute’s program in Community Psychology, Liberation Psychology, and Ecopsychology. She is past-president of the American Psychological Association’s Section IX (Psychoanalysis for Social Responsibility) of Division 39. Dr. Layton is past-editor of the journal Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, and has published widely on the intersection of psychoanalysis and social justice with regard to gender, class, race, and related subjects.

SAMI OWAIDA M.D. is a child psychiatrist based in Gaza. He studied medicine in Moscow and child and adolescent psychiatry at the Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem. Dr. Owaida was trained during the 1990’s at the Gaza Community Mental Health Programme under the leadership of its founder, Eyad El-Sarraj MD, and now works as a child psychiatrist at the GCMHP, dealing mostly with traumatized children.

ALICE ROTHCHILD, M.D. is a physician, author, and filmmaker who has focused her interest in human rights and social justice on the Israel/Palestine conflict since 1997.  She practiced ob-gyn for almost 40 years.  Until her retirement she served as Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Harvard Medical School and as a fellow in the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology.  She writes and lectures widely, is the author of Broken Promises, Broken Dreams: Stories of Jewish and Palestinian Trauma and ResilienceOn the Brink: Israel and Palestine on the Eve of the 2014 Gaza Invasion, and Condition Critical: Life and Death in Israel/Palestine.  She has contributed to a number of anthologies, the most recent being Reclaiming Judaism from Zionism: Stories of Personal Transformation.  She directed a documentary film,Voices Across the Divide and is active in Jewish Voice for Peace, Health Advisory Council.  She is currently working on a middle grade children’s book and a graphic novel.

LARA SHEEHI Psy.D. is a licensed clinical psychologist, behavioral health policy analyst and Assistant Professor of Clinical and Forensic Psychology at the George Washington University. She is the incoming Secretary for the America Psychological Association’s Division 39 (Psychoanalysis), an executive board member of Division 39’s Section IX (Psychoanalysis for Social Responsibility), previous co-chair of the Division 39’s Multicultural Concerns Committee, and a mentor in the Minority Scholars Program. Dr. Sheehi was the 2016-2017 recipient of the Psychology Fellowship with the American Psychoanalytic Association. She and her husband, Stephen Sheehi, co-authored an article, Enactments of Otherness and Searching for a Third Space in the Palestine-Israel Matrix, which was the winner of the 2017 Best Article Gradiva Award from the National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis. They are currently working on a book under contract with Routledge entitled Psychoanalysis Under Occupation: Theories and Practice of Psychoanalysis in Palestine; she has a forthcoming chapter “The Islamophobic Normative Unconscious: Psychoanalytic Considerations” in the edited book, Islamophobia and Psychiatry: Recognition, Prevention and Treatment (forthcoming, 2018).

STEPHEN SHEEHI Ph.D. is the Sultan Qaboos bin Said Chair of Middle East Studies at the College of William and Mary. He is the author of Arab Imago: A Social History of Portrait Photography, 1860-1910 (Princeton, 2016), Islamophobia: The Ideological Campaign Against Muslims (Clarity, 2011) and Foundations of Modern Arab Identity (Florida, 2004). He and Dr. Lara Sheehi are the authors of Psychoanalysis Under Occupation: Theories and Practice of Psychoanalysis in Palestine (forthcoming, Routledge). Along with Salim Tamari and Issam Nassar, he is also co-author Camera Palaestina: Photographic Witnessing in the Albums of Wasif Jawharriyeh (University of California Press, forthcoming).