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For the last five years, Joe has worked part-time as a clinical psychologist for Tri-Counties Regional in California. His behavioral consultation has focused on developing behavioral intervention and supports to persons who display violent and aggressive behaviors.

With over 20 years of experience in school behavioral threat assessment, Joe was one of the first school psychologists to receive threat assessment training in San Luis Obispo County. He is the lead psychologist for two school districts, and he has conducted behavioral threat assessments for several districts, and has revised threat assessment procedures and board policies for school districts where he worked.

Joe has trained educators and mental health providers to implement and conduct behavioral threat assessment. He has extensive experience in the treatment and design of behavioral interventions for youth with severe emotional and behavioral difficulties, and has provided in-service training to school staff on the behavioral management of disruptive and aggressive behaviors in schools. He is well-versed in Section 504 and special educational processes and procedures specific to behavioral assessment and intervention, as well as Manifestation Determination practices.

In 2018, Joe researched threat assessment practices in California among agencies providing services to persons with developmental disabilities, presenting preliminary findings to the California Association of Regional Center Agencies (ARCA) in 2020. In 2019, he was awarded a competitive state mental health grant and developed a pilot research protocol. He is in the final stages of data collection examining Level 1 and Level 2 training outcomes using the Salem-Keizer Threat Assessment System and tabulating the coaching effects of Level 2 Team Case Reviews by an expert trainer. He is also examining the effects of training teachers on warning signs. Joe is developing metrics of engagement in community threat assessment design and implementation, as well as creating a threat assessment workshop for mental health providers in the community setting. He has made numerous presentations, trainings, and workshops on the topic of threat assessment to law enforcement agencies, school districts, mental health professionals, and directors of mental health agencies.

Joe is an active member of the Association of Threat Assessment Professionals (ATAP), American Psychological Association (APA), California Psychological Association (CPA), National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), and California Association of School Psychologists (CASP).

During his time away from work, Joe enjoys spending his weekends hiking and biking with his wife Charlotte and golfing with friends. With children attending college, he looks forward to hearing updates about their higher education experiences. Joe is an avid basketball fan for both college and NBA teams, and follows the University of Kentucky Wildcats and Los Angeles Clippers.

Joe Holifield, Associate

Psychologist. Threat Assessment Coordinator. Trainer

Joe Holifield is the grant coordinator and threat assessment coordinator of the Behavioral Health Assessment Response Project (B-HARP), a California Mental Health Services Act INNovation Grant progam. Using the Salem-Keizer Cascade and Los Angeles County's School Threat Assessment Response Team (START) models as templates, B-HARP is designed to create a community-based threat assessment and response system with a mental health provider focus. Joe recently was invited to testify about B-HARP to the California State Senate Education Committee in June of 2022 in support of proposed school safety legislation. In addition, Joe collaborated with the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office and was recently awarded a U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau Justice of Administration (BJ-A)-STOP School Violence grant for a multi-county, multi-year threat assessment project.

In his early career, Joe trained and worked as a psychologist in inpatient hospital settings, residential treatment centers, and therapeutic day treatment schools for children and adolescents. He is trained in pediatric neuropsychological assessment, with particular focus on memory retention for youth with ADHD and learning disorders.

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