Neufeld Institute Conference

Gordon Neufeld, PhD is a Vancouver-based developmental psychologist with over 50 years of experience with children and youth and those responsible for them. A foremost authority on child development, Dr. Neufeld is an international speaker, a bestselling author (Hold On to Your Kids), and a leading interpreter of the developmental paradigm. Dr. Neufeld has a widespread reputation for making sense of complex problems and for opening doors for change. While formerly involved in university teaching and private practice, he now devotes his time to teaching and training parents, educators, and helping professionals. His Neufeld Institute is now a world-wide charitable organization devoted to applying developmental science to the task of raising children. He is a father of five and a grandfather to seven.

Tamara Strijack

Tamara Strijack, MA is a Registered Clinical Counsellor who lives and works in the Vancouver Island area. She is co-author (with Hannah Beach) of the book, Reclaiming our Students: Why our children are more anxious, aggressive and shut down than ever, and what we can do about it. Tamara has worked with children and adolescents in various roles over the last thirty years. She is currently the Academic Dean of the Neufeld Institute, where she develops and delivers courses on child development for parents, teachers and helping professionals. She is a keynote speaker, workshop facilitator, and educator of counsellors and educators in training. Tamara works primarily as a parent and educational consultant, helping put adults back in the driver’s seat in a way that facilitates growth and learning for the child. Connection, relationship and play continue to be central themes in all her roles, both personally and professionally.

Deborah MacNamara

Deborah MacNamara, PhD is a clinical counsellor and educator with more than 25 years’ experience working with children, youth, and adults. She is on faculty at the Neufeld Institute, operates a counselling practice, and speaks regularly about child and adolescent development to parents, child care providers, educators, and mental health professionals. She is also the author of the best-selling book Rest, Play, Grow: Making Sense of Preschoolers (Or Anyone Who Acts Like One), which provides a 360-degree developmental walk around the young child, and The Sorry Plane, a children’s picture book. Her new book, Nourished: Connection, Food, and Caring for our Kids (and everyone else we love), will be published September 19, 2023. Deborah resides in Vancouver, Canada with her husband and two children.

Gabor Maté, MD (pronounced GAH-bor MAH-tay) is a retired physician who, after 20 years of family practice and palliative care experience, worked for over a decade in Vancouver’s Downtown East Side with patients challenged by drug addiction and mental illness. The bestselling author of four books published in thirty languages, Gabor is an internationally renowned speaker highly sought after for his expertise on addiction, trauma, childhood development, and the relationship of stress and illness. His book on addiction received the Hubert Evans Prize for literary non-fiction. For his ground- breaking medical work and writing he has been awarded the Order of Canada, his country’s highest civilian distinction, and the Civic Merit Award from his hometown, Vancouver. His books include In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction; When the Body Says No; The Cost of Hidden Stress; Scattered Minds: The Origins and Healing of Attention Deficit Disorder; (with Gordon Neufeld) Hold on to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers; and the International Best-Seller, The Myth of Normal: Trauma, Illness and Healing in a Toxic Culture.

Daniel Mate

Daniel Maté, MFA, BA is an award-winning Brooklyn-based musical theatre songwriter. He has received the prestigious Kleban Prize for Lyrics, a Jonathan Larson Foundation Grant, and the Cole Porter Award for Excellence in Music and Lyrics. His other musicals include The Trouble With Doug, The Longing and the Short of It, Middle School Mysteries, and an adaptation in development of the Russell Banks novel The Sweet Hereafter. An avid enthusiast of all things song-related, he co-hosts the new podcast Let’s Get Lyrical with Carice and Daniel, with Game of Thrones actress Carice van Houten. With his father Dr. Gabor Maté, Daniel is the co-author of the New York Times bestselling book The Myth Of Normal: Trauma, Illness, and Healing in a Toxic Culture; the two are currently writing their next book, Hello Again: A Fresh Start for Parents and Their Adult Children, based on their popular workshop of the same name. Daniel also runs the world’s only “mental chiropractic” service, Take a Walk with Daniel.