Presenter Biographies

Palliative Care Conference Presenter Biographies

Prof. Derek B. Brown, PhD, MSW, LMSW, taught from 2006 to 2015 at Fordham University’s Graduate School of Social Service, and from 2015 to 2017 at Sacred Heart University. He recently joined the Social Work program at LIU Brooklyn. His research focuses on trauma, stress, and mental health issues among ethnically diverse and marginalized populations.

Dr. Lisa Caramico, MD, is an anesthesiologist at Bridgeport Hospital. She experienced the journey of palliative care as the wife and caregiver for her husband who succumbed to brain cancer. It was this experience that motivated her to provide education and support to other families and their caregivers.

Prof. Patricia Carl-Stannard, MSW, LCSW, is Clinical Associate Professor of Social Work at Sacred Heart University. She teaches and coordinates student intern field placements. She also has a part time private practice treating children, adolescents and adults in individual, couples and family treatment. She has a special interest in the interplay between mindfulness, spirituality, and daily experiences.

Fr. Anthony Ciorra, PhD, was ordained a priest in 1973 and has earned graduate degrees in psychology, history, and pastoral theology, as well as a certificate in spiritual direction. He has worked in parish life, education, administration, retreat work, and formation ministries. He is currently the Vice President for Catholic Mission and Identity at Sacred Heart University.

Dr. Mary Alice Donius, EdD, RN, is the Dean of the College of Nursing at Sacred Heart University. She serves on boards of directors and ethics committees for several health care institutions. Her passions include holistic modalities of healing. She has developed a nursing theory that embodies the concepts of caring, heart, and healing.

Prof. Janna C. Heyman, PhD, LMSW, is Professor and Henry C. Ravazzin Chair in the Graduate School of Social Service at Fordham University. She is Co-Director of the Palliative Care Fellowship Program, which supports and trains MSW students in palliative care and aging through New York City. Dr. Heyman is also working with colleges and universities in the tri-state area to expand aging educational information to graduate and undergraduate students.

Prof. Beverly Fein, PT, DPT, EdD, is Associate Professor and Director of Clinical Education in Physical Therapy at Sacred Heart University. Her professional interests focus on acute care physical therapy, the management of medically complex patients, and professionals’ roles in emergency preparedness.

Dr. Robert Fitton, MD, is Director of Clinical Informatics and Palliative Care at St. Vincent’s Medical Center. A graduate of the New York Medical College. He is a family doctor with interest in sustainable and cost-effective chronic disease management.

Prof. Mary Beth Morrissey, PhD, MPH, JD, is a health care attorney and social science researcher at Fordham University. Her research and work is focused on suffering and end-of-life issues. She is a founder and the current President of the Collaborative for Palliative Care, Inc., of New York.

Prof. Brian Stiltner, PhD, is Professor of Theology and Religious Studies and currently co-directs the Hersher Institute for Applied Ethics at Sacred Heart University. His teaching and research interests include bioethics, human rights, the ethics of war and peace, and the role of religion and virtues in society.

Prof. Linda Strong, EdD, RN, is Assistant Professor of Nursing and Director of the BSN and RN-to-BSN programs at Sacred Heart University. Her research interests include public health nursing, vulnerable populations, and emergency preparedness.