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Guerda Nicolas, PhD

Co-Founder & President, Ayiti Community Trust

Born and raised in Haiti, Guerda Nicolas obtained her doctoral degree in clinical psychology from Boston University. She completed her predoctoral training at Columbia University Medical Center and her postdoctoral training at the New York State Psychiatric Institute/Columbia University, Department of Child Psychiatry. She is a licensed psychologist and focuses her practice in the area of children, family, and community well-being. Prior to coming to the University of Miami, she held faculty positions at Boston College as well as the College of Saint Elizabeth in New Jersey.

As a multicultural (Haitian-American) and multilingual psychologist (English, Spanish, French, and Haitian kreyòl), her research is reflective of her background and interests. Her current research focuses on developing culturally effective mental health interventions for people of color, with a specific focus on immigrant children, adolescents, and families. In addition, she conducts research on social support networks of the Caribbean population with a specific focus on Haitians; spirituality and adolescents; and social support and mental health of Blacks. She has authored books, articles, and book chapters and delivered numerous presentations at national and international conferences on women’s issues, depression, cultural interventions, social support networks for ethnic minorities, and spirituality. Most recently, she co-edited the book Contemporary Parenting: A Global Perspective.

Dr. Nicolas is an active member of the American Psychological Association (APA), having served on committees for Divisions 12, 17, 35, and 45. In addition, she was a member of several APA committees including the committees on international relations in psychology, strategic planning, and early career psychologists. In addition to APA, she has been an active member of the Caribbean Studies Association, the Haitian Studies Association, and the Caribbean Alliance of National Psychological Associations (CANPA). She served as president of the Haitian Studies Association, the Psychology of Black Women of Division 35, and the Section of Ethnic Minorities of Division 12. Currently, she serves as the secretary-general of CANPA.