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Home 9 Awards 9 Professional Awards 9 Sarah Haley Memorial Award for Clinical Excellence

Sarah Haley Memorial Award for Clinical Excellence

Nominations are now closed.

This award is given to a clinician or group of clinicians in direct service to traumatized individuals.

Sarah Haley, MSW, was a psychiatric social worker in the VA clinic in Boston, now a part of VA Boston Healthcare System. Beginning with her treatment of a My Lai veteran who was severely distressed and unable to remember aspects of his highly traumatizing experiences in Vietnam, at a time when traumatic experiences were rarely the focus of treatment, she sat with hundreds of veterans who gradually were able to trust her enough to tell their horrific narratives. Working with these men, who repulsed or frightened many other therapists, led to her landmark article entitled, "When the Patient Reports Atrocities: Specific Treatment Considerations of the Vietnam Veteran," published in the Archives of General Psychiatry in 1974. She established that the Vietnam veteran who had witnessed or taken part in atrocities presented a new and difficult challenge to psychotherapy, one that took courage and conviction on the part of the therapist to help bring about healing. Haley died prematurely of cancer in 1989 at the age of 50. This award is made in her memory.

Award Criteria

Applications will be judged against the following criteria:

  • Provision of high-quality direct service to traumatized individuals
  • Dissemination of clinical excellence through, for example, publications, and training initiatives
  • Advocacy for survivors of traumatic stress as demonstrated by, for example, public and media appearances, policy consultancy, or clinician training

Eligibility Criteria

  • Nominees can be self-nominated or nominated by someone else
  • Preference will be given to nominees who are members of ISTSS

Award Benefits

The awardee will receive:

  • Complimentary registration to the ISTSS Annual Meeting (excludes Pre-Meeting Institutes)
  • A plaque presented at the Annual Meeting
  • An announcement will appear in the ISTSS newsletter Stresspoints and be posted to the ISTSS website.

Nomination Requirements

  • A statement addressing the award criteria (up to 500 words)
  • A two-page CV (minimum 10 point font)

Upload your nomination for the award in one PDF document. Please adhere to the following naming convention when uploading your document: 
First Name_Last Name_2024_Sarah_Haley_Memorial_Award (please use the first and last name of the nominee). 

Nominations submitted after the deadline of March 1, 2024, 11.59pm US Eastern Time. Incomplete nominations or nominations that do not adhere to submission requirements (word and page limits) will not be considered.

Past Haley Award Winners

2023 Dr. Jessica Carlsson
2022 Bluehub clinical team at Phoenix Australia
2021 Janine S. Shelby, PhD
2020 KCSARC Clinical Team
2019 Michael Wm. Marks, PhD, ABPP
2018 B. Heidi Ellis, PhD
2017 Lori S. Katz, PhD
2014 Mary Beth Williams, PhD, LCSW, CTS
2013 Elizabeth A. Hembree, PhD
2012 Judith A. Cohen, MD
2011 EMDR-Humanitarian Assistance Programs and Vanessa Kelly, PsyD
2010 Stuart Turner, MD, MA, FRCP, FRCPsych
2009 Linda A. Piwowarczyk, MD, MPH
2008 Charles Zeanah, Jr., MD
2007 Howard Osofsky, MD, PhD, and Joy Osofsky, PhD
2006 Anica Mikus Kos, MD
2005 Minna Barrett, PhD, and Thomas Demaria, PhD
2004 Greg Passey, MD
2003 Christine A. Courtois, PhD
2002 Robert Abramovitz, MD
2001 James F. Munroe, EdD
2000 Medecins sans Frontieres -- Doctors without Borders
1999 Lucy Berliner, MSW
1998 Sandra L. Bloom, MD
1997 Laura Brown, PhD
1996 Mary Harvey, PhD and Laurie Anne Pearlman, PhD
1994 Chaim F Shatan, MD