Dr. JoAnne Pedro-Carroll is a clinical psychologist, author, speaker, and the mother of seven children and step-children. She is an advisor to Sesame Street on its initiative, Little Children, Big Challenges: Divorce and is engaged in a new initiative with Sesame Street and the Veterans Administration to reach military families dealing with separation and divorce. Her great passion is helping children and families survive and thrive in the wake of the big transitions that accompany and follow separation, divorce and remarriage.

Her book, Putting Children First: Proven Parenting Strategies for Helping Children Thrive Through Divorce (Avery/Penguin, 2010) provides sound advice based on an abundance of research and the wisdom acquired through three decades of research and clinical experience with thousands of children—all offered with clarity and genuine compassion.

Dr. Pedro-Carroll is recognized internationally as an authority in the field of children and divorce. She regularly appears as a keynote speaker at major conferences in the U.S., The Netherlands, Italy, Turkey, and other countries, where she addresses professionals in the fields of psychology, law, and mediation. She has served on national panels to advance policy and practice in the field of children and families. She has addressed members of Congress and the White House staff at briefings as an invited expert on parenting and divorce. She has served on numerous advisory boards in the U.S. and abroad and regularly consults with universities, schools, courts, and health agencies on matters relating to divorce, child mental health, resilience, and parenting. Along with her efforts to share her knowledge through forums for professionals, workshops for teachers, and lectures for parenting organizations, Dr. Pedro-Carroll continues to work with children and families in her private clinical practice devoted to promoting healthy relationships, and she serves as a child specialist in collaborative law.

From 1984 to 2008, she held faculty positions in psychology and psychiatry at the University of Rochester and was a Senior Researcher at the Children’s Institute in Rochester, New York. There, she co-founded A.C.T.—For the Children (Assisting Children through Transition), a court-endorsed parent-education program. She also founded and directed the Children of Divorce Intervention Program (CODIP). Her programs have earned widespread acclaim, including: a Program Excellence Award from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Lela Rowland Award from the National Mental Health Association, and citation as an exemplary program for children from several national organizations. CODIP has been selected as the model for programs adopted in Canada, Australia, Germany, South Africa, the Netherlands, and elsewhere around the world. Earlier in her career, Dr. Pedro-Carroll co-directed Early Periodic Screening, Diagnosis and Treatment programs and served as a Supervising Psychologist of Social Skills Development Program for the Cincinnati (OH) Department of Health.

Among the long list of major professional honors Dr. Pedro-Carroll has received are:

  • American Psychological Association – Award for Distinguished Contributions to Public Service
  • American Psychological Association – Fellow
  • Association of Family and Conciliation Courts – Distinguished Research Award
  • Genesee Valley Psychological Association – Outstanding Psychologist Award
  • The Daily Record (Rochester) – Nathaniel Award (for exceptional service in the justice system)
  • Putting Children First received a NAPPA Gold Award from the National Parenting Publications Awards

Dr. Pedro-Carroll earned her Ph.D. and M.A. degrees from the University of Rochester in clinical psychology, and M.Ed. and B.S. from University of Cincinnati, both summa cum laude.


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