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Sam D. Bernard, PhD

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Sam is founder and owner and President of Bernard & Associates, P.C. his Chattanooga-based private practice focusing on trauma, crisis intervention and disaster mental/behavioral health. He is founder and President of the Board of Directors for the PAR Foundation, an IRS registered non-profit that provides Preparation, Assessment and Response for various crisis. Sam is a national and international educator, consultant and program developer concerning psychological / behavioral crisis, trauma, suicide, employee assistance program (EAP) services, psychological autopsies, organizational consultations, and public speaking. Sam is a curriculum consultant and instructor with FEMA since 2008 at both CDP and EMI. He researched, consulted, and presented on various psychological aspects of COVID-19. He develops special projects to address psychological trauma prevention and recovery in unique and underserved populations.



- PhD: Columbia State Consortium: Counseling Psych. focusing on disaster psychology and crisis intervention

            Internship: Crisis Management International, Atlanta, GA (1 year)

            Residency: Erlanger Medical Center’s Level One Trauma Center, Chattanooga, TN (1 year)

- MA: Austin Peay State University: Clinical Psychology focusing on psychological testing and therapy,

         Internship: Harriett Cohn Mental Health Center & Clarksville Hospital’s Psych Ward (6 months)

- BS: Emory & Henry College: Psychology with a minor in Sociology and Biology;

         Internship: Southwestern State Psychiatric Hospital’s Geropsychology Unit, Marion, VA (3 months)



- Licensed Senior Psychological Examiner – Health Service Provider in Tennessee

- National Certified Counselor

- National Certified Gerontological Counselor

- National Certified Psychologist

- Traumatologist; Green Cross

- Board Certified in Comprehensive, School and University Acute Traumatic Stress Management

- Certified Traumatic Stress Consultant; The Institute for Traumatic Stress

- Psychological Autopsy Investigator and Researcher; American Association of Suicidology

- Fellow and Diplomate, American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress

- Certified, Critical Incident Stress Management; University of Maryland - Baltimore County

- Certified, Homeland Security – Level III

- Employee Assistance Specialist – Clinical; Employee Assistance Professionals Association

- Certified Grief Counseling Specialist

- COVID-19 Contact Tracing; John Hopkins University



- International Critical Incident Stress Fdn (ICISF): Instructor of 19 courses; National Road Show faculty; International faculty

- FEMA/EAI/Leidos/SAIC: Center for Domestic Preparedness- Nobel Training Center, Anniston, AL: Advanced Public Information

Officer course (and “Road-Show” faculty) since 2008

- American Red Cross: Basic & Adv. CPR; Stress Mgmt.; Disaster Mental Health Services (Retired:30+ years)

- The Institute for Traumatic Stress: Acute Traumatic Stress management (ATSM);

ATSM for Schools; University & College ATSM

- Resiliency Sciences Institutes: Instructor, Crisis Leadership; University of Maryland-Baltimore County

- American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress (AAETS): Comprehensive Acute Traumatic Stress Management

(CATSM); School ATSM; University ATSM; Excellence in Teaching Award

- New York Academy of Medicine: Psychosocial Aspects of Terrorism

- Green Cross Projects: Traumatology and Compassion Fatigue Instructor; Training Site Coordinator

- FEMA’s Emergency Management Institute, Emmitsburg, MD: Advanced Public Information Officer and Master Public Info Officer

Facilitator: Virtual Table-Top Exercises (VTTX) since 2011

- Suicide Prevention Resource Center: Assessment & Management of Suicidal Risk (AMSR)

- QPR Institute: QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) Suicide Intervention Model

- Southern Adventist University; University of Tennessee Chattanooga: Adjunct Professor: Graduate Counseling Psychology

- National Association of School Psychologist: PREPaRE Courses: 1. Crisis Prevention & Preparedness; Comprehensive Safety Planning; 2. Crisis Intervention & Recovery: Roles of School-Based Mental Health Professionals

- Robert Douglas & Associates: Advanced Multi-Systemic Resiliency Approach EAP Critical Incident Response

- Tennessee Commission on Children & Youth: Building Strong Brains Tennessee (ACEs Educational Program)​


Board Member:

- American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress: Board of Scientific & Professional Advisors; Recipient: Excellence in Teaching

- PAR Foundation, Founding member, President Board of Directors; website

- Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network, Founding member, Chair & Emeritus Chair of Governor’s Advisory Council; website

- Chattanooga Area Clinical Pastoral Education, Board member 2017-2021 website


Volunteer Service:

- American Red Cross: Retired after 30+ years beginning in 1975 (15 years old), Instructor in various courses including:

=First Aid, Advanced First Aid and Emergency Care =Stress Management

=CPR and Professional Rescuer CPR =HIV-AIDS Education

=Disaster Mental Health (National Instructor)

- CISM Team: Northeast TN CISM; Tri-State CISM Tm; Suicide Postvention Response Tm; School Crisis Support Coop;

- Civil Air Patrol, Auxiliary US Air Force: Joined 1990; retired after 24 years holding the rank of Lieutenant Colonel; served as:

=Squadron Pilot and Assistant Medical Officer =Southeast Regional Critical Incident Stress Management Officer

=Squadron and Wing Public Affairs Officer and attained “master rating” in PAO, =National CISM Team Leader and lead trainer (6 years)

- TN Suicide Prevention Network: Founding member; elected 2007 and 2008 Chair, Governor’s Advisory Board; first “Emeritus”;

- TN Department of Agriculture & TN Department of Homeland Security: Consultant: Agri-terrorism and Psychological Impacts;

- Hamilton County Health Department: Medical Reserve Corp;

- Clinical Pastoral Education, Erlanger Medical Center, Chattanooga, TN; Clinical Consultant/Lecturer,

- National Center for Missing and Exploited; Clinical Team

- Second Life Tennessee /Street Grace: Clinical Volunteer (Awareness education concerning human trafficking)

- PAR Foundation: COVID Support Group Facilitator: COVID Workers, Chaplains, Public Information Officers, Gay Men


Notable Incident Response:

- Woodmore Elementary School Bus Crash, Chattanooga, TN Clinical consultant to guidance counselor staff

- Nutro /MARS, Nashville, TN; Lead Clinical EAP Consultant: Employee killed in terrorist bombing at Brussels Airport, March 2016

- Chattanooga Terrorist Shooting, Mayor’s Office / Chief of Police / Family Justice Center: Clinical consultant, July 2015

- Green Cross Projects: Deputy IC with FSU; Tsunami & Katrina & Rita & Miami post Haitian earthquake

- GA EMA: Tri-State Crematory Event response: 2 months on-site working with GBI agents, local responders and families;

- NYC 9-11-01: 3 weeks; consulting with FORTUNE 5 Companies in lower Manhattan

- Local Responses: robberies, workplace violence, suicide, homicide, drowning, lost person, fires, tornadoes, aviation incidents, etc.


Special Projects:

-Memorial Hospitals: Contractor, Supplemental Staff Support Project providing crisis services and counseling to staff and physicians

- COVID-19: =Psychological Resources website =Facebook LIVE broadcasts website =Discussion/Support Groups(various) mental health consultant website =Infodemic Challenge: Behavioral Health Consultant

- Director, Mental Health Services; Captive Audience: Abduction prevention, Captivity survival training, Recovery services

- International Trainer: NAV Portugal: air traffic controllers (ATC), pilots, cabin crew & Portuguese Air Force ATC;

SkyGuide: Swiss Air Traffic Controllers and airport employees

- FEMA, Public Information Officer curriculum development focus groups for Advanced and Master PIO courses: since 2007

- Chattanooga State Community College: Military Veteran Student Enhancement Project: 2016

- Response Works Aviation Disaster Coordinator: Nashville, TN International Airport; Co-coordinator Atlanta, GA Airport

- Magic Relief: Training magicians in psychological crisis intervention to provide service in disaster shelters

- John D Martin, EdD Institute for Clinical Crisis Chaplain Education: educating spiritual leaders in trauma informed shepherding

- LGBTQO Peer Crisis Support Project: developing peer crisis support teams internationally

- Journalist/Media Peer Crisis Support Project: developing peer crisis support teams for media journalist

- Zero COVID: Chattanooga: Founder/Consultant


Personal: Married; Native of Kingsport, TN; Only child; Home in Chattanooga, TN; Licensed private pilot; People-To-People High School Student Ambassador 1980 – visited Austria, Germany, Italy, Greece, Yugoslavia with home-stays in Austria, Germany, and Greece, then in 1981, France, Egypt, Israel, China and Japan with home-stays in France and Japan; Survivor of an aviation incident in Karachi, Pakistan while serving as a People-To-People High School Ambassador in 1981; Pet therapy with “Buddy” (petit sheltie) until his death in 2010. He has been learning magic since 1976 and is a member of the International Brotherhood of Magicians. Volunteer research subject for Moderna’s phase 3 COVID-19 vaccine.


Contact Information:

01 (423) 322-3297

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