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Keynote Speakers

Mary BurkeMary C. Burke, PhD
Dr. Burke is a Professor of Psychology at Carlow University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where she teaches in the Doctoral Program in Counseling Psychology. Her scholarly interests include minority mental health in the context of oppressive systems, gender based violence, trauma and human trafficking. In 2004 she founded the Project to End Human Trafficking (www.endhumantrafficking.org), an all-volunteer United States based non-profit group that works regionally, nationally, and internationally to raise awareness about the enslavement and economic exploitation of people. In this role, Dr. Burke has lectured extensively and facilitated trainings about human trafficking both in the United States and abroad. She has begun anti-trafficking coalitions in Pennsylvania and Virginia and consulted on the development of coalitions in other regions. In addition, she has spoken to various state and regional elected officials in Pennsylvania and Virginia regarding this issue and has worked on legislation in these states in support of strengthening human trafficking laws.

Current international efforts are focused in Uganda where she and her team work collaboratively with citizens to prevent trafficking through school and community based programming. Access to education and therapeutic services for women and child sex trafficking survivors is also part of the effort in the Soroti and Lira areas of northern Uganda, a region traumatically impacted by armed conflict for over twenty years.

Dr. Burke is a member of the American Psychological Association Task Force on the Trafficking of Women and Girls and is working to advance knowledge about current best practices regarding therapeutic work with survivors. She is often called upon to assist news media outlets on the issue of trafficking.