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Conscious COmmunity Series
(Black History Month)

Part 1 of 4:

Black American Veterans & Psychedelic Therapy

Wednesday, February 1st, 2023 4:00-5:30pm Pacific Time


Dr. Strayhan will outline a brief history and the current status of Black American Veterans and highlight the lack of racial diversity in the current psychedelic movement being led by military Veterans. He will comment on cultural considerations regarding set and setting and include a ketamine-assisted psychotherapy case study of an African American male with PTSD. 

Robert Strayhan, MD graduated from Meharry Medical College in 1983 and completed Psychiatry Residency training at Wilford Hall Medical Center USAF in 1987. He completed a fellowship in Forensic Psychiatry at UT Medical Branch-Galveston in 1995. He served a total of 16 years combined active duty and as an Air Force psychiatrist. During his active duty career, he served as the Consultant in Psychiatry to the PACAF Command Surgeon in 1993. He is a 2020 graduate of the California Institute of Integral Studies Center for Psychedelic Therapies & Research program and is now a mentor for the program. He is currently a staff psychiatrist in the Unity Health System located in Searcy, Arkansas. He also serves as the Program Director for the Unity Health Psychiatry Residency Training Program.

Part 2 of 4:

Black-Centered MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy

Tuesday, February 7th, 2023 4:30-6:00pm Pacific Time

In 2022, psychedelic therapists Picolya McCall, Psy.D. and Joseph McCowan, Psy.D. made history by becoming the first Black co-therapy pair to conduct an experimental session within a clinical trial of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD sponsored by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). MAPS' Health Equity Program aims to expand MDMA therapist training to include, empower, and train therapists, supervisors, and trainers from communities who experience high rates of trauma and insufficient access to care, which includes Black communities. Join a panel of MDMA therapists, supervisors, and trainers in a discussion about centering Black identities in the forefront of PTSD intervention research.

Joseph McCowan, PsyD is a licensed clinical psychologist and psychotherapist who received his Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara and a doctorate in Clinical Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. He currently working in Los Angeles as a co-therapist in MAPS-sponsored clinical trials of MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy for PTSD. He is an alumni of MAPS August 2019 MDMA Therapy Training for Communities of Color and is a Supervisor and Assistant Trainer for MAPS’ MDMA-Assisted Therapy Training Program. Joseph is deeply passionate about furthering education and awareness of the healing benefits of psychedelics for communities of color and in working to improve mental health outcomes for historically underserved communities.


Picolya McCall, PsyD is currently an adjunct instructor at the Los Angeles Community College District, as well as the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. She is currently the clinical director at PACC Mental Health services where she provides individual therapy to children, adolescents, and adults struggling with various mental health issues. Dr. McCall-Robinson also serves in the role of a Psychologist in a Long-Term Care (LTC) working to support not only the residents, but those invested in the resident’s care and quality of life, including staff and family caregivers.


Jennifer Jones, PhD, LCSW is a multiracial Black, queer, fairly able-bodied, cisgender woman in her 50’s living with citizenship in the US. Jennifer incorporates an economics human rights perspective, a harm reduction framework, and Gestalt Therapy principles in her work and engagement with others. For the past 2 years, Jennifer has collaborated with Aisha Mohammed to develop the Rising Caps Collective with the mission to heal the collective trauma caused by legacies of colonization, slavery and capitalism by using expansive healing methods including plant-based medicines. After being trained in MDMA-assisted therapy in 2019, Jennifer began working with the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) as a Justice, Equity Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) consultant and MDMA-assisted Therapy Training Assistant. Since 1998, Jennifer has worked with individuals in psychotherapy who identify as: lgbqa; transgender or gender non-binary; people of color; sex workers; substance users; struggling with class oppression; living with a positive HIV status; and/or healing from physical, sexual and/or emotional pain. In addition to supporting people in therapy, Jennifer has served as the Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer of Philadelphia FIGHT Community Health Centers and a faculty member and the Executive Director of The Gestalt Therapy Training Institute of Philadelphia (GTIP). She earned her undergraduate degree from Northwestern University, her MSW from Smith College School for Social Work, and her PhD. from Bryn Mawr College Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research. As a parent of a teenager and someone who believes a just world is possible, Jennifer is committed to organizing across color lines creating unity among poor and dispossessed people around the world to fight for all of our economic human rights.


Aisha Mohammed, LMFT is a cigender, queer, Pakistani-American woman who immigrated from Karachi to Los Angeles as a child. She has been working in harm reduction for a decade with Project SAFE, providing direct services and advocating for the human and labor rights of people who trade sex and use substances. Aisha trained as a family therapist at Drexel University and has worked primarily with low-income families of color, immigrants and people who use substances in community mental health and educational settings. She currently works as a private practice therapist and is co-founder of Rising Caps Collective. She has been doing healing work with people in expanded states for 2 years with her co-founder, Jennifer Jones.

Part 3 of 4:

Addressing Racial Trauma with Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy

Wednesday, February 15th, 2023 4:00-5:30pm Pacific Time

We will explore the research and realities of healing racial trauma with psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, including a discussion of Black medicine circles and ongoing integration and community.

Joseph Zamaria, PsyD, ABPP is a licensed and board-certified clinical psychologist and an associate clinical professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the UCSF School of Medicine. At the UC Berkeley Center for the Science of Psychedelics, he directs the psychotherapy curriculum as well as the clinical science and research curriculum. He has been a researcher of psychedelics for over fifteen years, and at UCSF, has served as a therapist and researcher in clinical trials examining the potential of psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy to treat a range of conditions. Dr. Zamaria is a founding member of the American Arab, Middle Eastern, and North African Psychological Association (AMENA-PSY) and serves on the advisory board of the Fireside Project.


Mary Sanders, LCSW is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with extensive history addressing trauma in communities of color and marginalized populations. She currently provides community mental health services for formerly unhoused Veterans at Veteran Affairs in San Francisco, CA and recently opened a private practice called EMPATH Center in Oakland, CA serving Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC). Mary has future plans to integrate psychedelic-assisted therapy and community integration in her private practice. She graduated from the 2019 Center for Psychedelic-Assisted Therapies and Research at California Institute of Integral Studies, certified in Trauma-focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and is currently enrolled in the Somatic Experiencing Trauma Institute. Mary is involved in development of the national organization, People of Color Psychedelic Collective which involves increasing content, awareness, and access to psychedelic medicine practices that represent BIPOC voices.

Part 4 of 4:

Black Affinity Spaces & Psychedelic Peer Support

Tuesday, February 21st, 2023 4:30-6:00pm Pacific Time

Hanifa Nayo Washington will speak to her vision of the Beloved Psychedelic Community, discuss the Fireside Project's identity-based integration support service on the Psychedelic Peer Support Line, and why affinity/identity-centric spaces matter in the psychedelic field. James Dixon will discuss their varied expertise in peer support, including as a Black, Queer-identified Veteran working as a psychedelic facilitator in the Social Neuroscience & Psychotherapy Lab.

Hanifa Nayo Washington is the Founding Team Member and Chief Ambassador at Fireside Project, a nonprofit that is creating systemic change in the field of psychedelics in three key domains: safety, diversity, and equitable access. Through their Psychedelic Peer Support Line, Fireside Project has created a nationwide safety net that has substantially decreased 911 calls and hospitalizations while democratizing access to free high-quality care. The line has supported thousands of callers since launching in April of 2021. A burgeoning thought leader in the field of psychedelic activism, Hanifa, is also the Co-founder and Organizing Principal of One Village Healing, an online BIPOC centered healing, resilience, and psychedelic wellness space.


James Dixon PSS, MHFA is a Research Associate and Psychedelic Facilitator at the SNaP Lab and completed MAPS MDMA-assisted therapy training in 2022. As a theatre maker (SDC) and a service-connected US Air Force Veteran with the lived experience of being Black and Queer identified, James also works as a Black Youth Suicide Prevention Program Specialist for Multnomah County, a Peer Support Specialist Facilitator and he currently serves on the Accountability Collective which works to preserve equity within the local theatrical arts administration. While focusing on uplifting solutions that dismantle barriers to equity and improve access to trauma-informed care, equity and inclusion are at the core of his work as a storyteller and mental health practitioner. James also supports the Portland City Council as an appointed member of the Arts Education and Access Fund Citizen Oversight Committee

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