Core Teaching & Supervising Faculty
(This page is currently being updated.)
Mary Olson, PhD is director of the Institute for Dialogic Practice and an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at the Yale School of Medicine. She is a family therapist, psychotherapist, educator, researcher and writer.
A key turning point in her career came in 2001 when she became a Fulbright Scholar to Finland in Clinical Psychology, University of Jyväskylä. While there, she studied Nordic advances in mental health treatment, like “Open Dialogue” in Northern Finland and the closely related “Reflecting-Process Work” developed by a group in Tromso, Norway.
Inspired by the Fulbright experience, she established a research project on Open Dialogue at University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA. In 2011, she established the Institute for Dialogic Practice to provide training.
Her background in teaching and training is extensive. For many years, she was on the faculty of Smith College School for Social Work, 1991-2017, and her advanced course on family therapy was rated by students perenially as one of the top ten electives. During the 1990s, she directed the Clinical Externship in Systemic Family Therapy at Family Center, Berkshire Medical Center, Pittsfield, MA.
As a national and international lecturer, she has given talks at Harvard Medical School, Yale School of Medicine, University of Helsinki, Royal Society of Medicine (UK), University of Bergamo, University of Rome, Women’s College, Beijing, China, Tokyo University and Kyoto University, Japan among other academic institutions. She also has been a sought-after guest trainer in many clinical programs and given numerous conference keynotes, plenaries, and workshops.
Mary graduated from Wellesley College and earned a master’s in English and comparative literature, with honors, from Columbia University. After editing books on family therapy to earn extra money in graduate school in New York City and discovering simultaneously that the ivory tower was too remote, she decided to pursue an MSW at Smith College. She obtained advanced family therapy training at the Family Institute of Cambridge and the Ackerman Institute, New York, NY. While working at Berkshire Medical Center, she completed her PhD in interpersonal communication at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, where she was a recipient of the prestigious University Fellowship.
A lifelong learner, Mary recently completed training in Internal Family Systems Therapy.
A member of the American Academy of Family Therapy, she maintains an active private therapy and consulting practice in-person and online in Connecticut and Massachusetts. Drawing on 30 years of experience, she treats individuals, couples and families presenting with a variety of concerns.
Nazlim Hagmann, MD
Nazlim Hagmann, MD is a psychiatrist and trauma specialist. For many years, she worked in public, community settings before establishing a private practice in Manhattan in 2008. Throughout her career she has been interested in learning, understanding and working in alternative ways with people in extreme states.
Nazlim earned her medical degree at Albert Ludwigs University in Freiburg, Germany and completed her residency training at SUNY Downstate and Albert Einstein University. She then came to the U.S. and did a fellowship in public psychiatry at Columbia University. She has a master’s degree in Public Health from Heinrich Heine University in Duesseldorf, Germany and a Certificate in Trauma Studies from New York University. In 2013, she completed the two-year training at the Institute and then certification as a trainer in Dialogic Practice/Open Dialogue.
Nazlim sees individuals and families and provides psychiatric consultation in her private practice in New York City.
Rebecca Hatton, PsyD
Trainer & Supervisor
Rebecca Hatton is a clinical psychologist in independent practice in Ann Arbor, MI specializing in psychotherapy with people experiencing psychosis. She worked 17 years in public sector clinics in Detroit and Ann Arbor, leaving due to creative differences 10 years ago. She began a life-changing immersion in Open Dialogue and related practices at that time. She was among the first group of Americans to complete international certification in 2013, followed by training certification in 2020, at the Institute for Dialogic Practice. During this time she also studied with Betram Karon, PhD, an inspiration for the creators of Open Dialogue. She has been peer-trained in a variety of approaches to engaging with voices, including Maastricht Interviews, and started and facilitated the Ann Arbor chapter of Hearing Voices Network. She is well-versed in CBT, psychodynamic, compassion-focused, and acceptance and commitment therapies modified for psychosis.
Trainer & Supervisor
Jorma Ahonen is a is a social psychologist and advanced-level psychotherapist in Helsinki, Finland.
Visiting International Lecturers
Russell Razzaque is an internationally-recognized psychiatrist and researcher in the UK. He is currently leading a national initiative in the UK, “Peer-Supported Open Dialogue to the National Health Service,” coordinating a multi-centre, randomized-design, controlled trial. He trained at the Royal London Hospital and has worked for the UK Ministry of Justice, the University of Cambridge, and the National Health Service. He currently works as a Consultant Psychiatrist in northeast London, where he is also Director of Research. Additionally, he currently serves as an elected member of the national governing Council of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, and he is a Visiting Professor at London South Bank University. Russell has published numerous academic papers as well as books on spirituality. He is a regular contributor to several national and international media outlets including Psychology Today, The Guardian, The Telegraph and The Independent.
Peter Rober, PhD is a professor of family therapy at the Institute for Family and Sexuality Studies at the University of Leuven, Belgium and an internationally-recognized clinical psychologist, family therapist and family therapy trainer at Context: The Center for Marital and Family Therapy (UPC KU Leuven, Belgium. Peter has made key contributions to the development of dialogical therapy and published widely on various topics, including the inner dialogue of the therapist, anti-colonizing practices, working with refugees, and loss. He is the author of several books, including “In Therapy Together: Family Therapy as a Dialogue (2017). His research interest areas focus on the practice of family therapy and on the therapy process, including especially the self of the therapist and the therapist’s inner conversation.
Jaakko is an emeritus professor of psychotherapy at the University of Jyväskylä, Finland, with over 40 years of experience in clinical, research and teaching. From 1981 to 1998 he was chief psychologist at Keropudas Hospital in Finland and is a founding member of the Open Dialogue approach. He has been a lecturer and trainer in Europe, Asia and America, and has more than 190 published articles and books on the principles, practice and evidence of the Open Dialogue approach and dialogical practices in mental health. He has also won awards for his research career at the European Family Association (EFTA) and the American Family Therapy Academic (AFTA).
The agency where I am Medical Director, Advocates Inc., a non-profit based in Framingham, Massachusetts, supported a project to train a team of 35 people over three years in Dr. Olson’s Institute. Our experience has been transformational, both for those of us who have had the direct experience of learning from Mary and her amazing faculty, and for the individuals and families we’ve served since undertaking this process. All of us feel that this is the best work that we have ever done, and that if any one of us or anyone we loved were touched by madness or other emotional distress, this is the model we’d most desire. Over and over again we have heard from the people and families we’ve served that this, finally, is what they have been seeking. As one mother of a young person we serve remarked, “In all of US psychiatry, this is the only model that makes sense!” To be able to learn from Mary and directly from the people who developed Open Dialogue in Finland has been a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.’
Christopher Gordon, M.D.
Level II Graduate – IDP
Medical Director, Advocates, Inc.
Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry,
Harvard Medical School