Dr. Ross Greene

Dr. Ross Greene

Well, if you click on my picture, you're going to end up here on my bio page. And if you stay here long enough, you'll learn far more about me than you could have possibly wanted to know. You'd probably be a lot better off reading about the evidence-based model for understanding and helping behaviorally challenging kids -- it's now called Collaborative & Proactive Solutions (CPS) -- I originated and described in my books The Explosive ChildLost at School, Lost & Found, and Raising Human Beings. If you don't find the biographical stuff to be riveting, there are lots of links to help you navigate away from this page.

Officially, I'm currently adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at Virginia Tech and adjunct Professor in the Faculty of Science at the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia, after having served on the faculty at Harvard Medical School for over 20 years. Along the way, I've also been on the faculty in the Departments of Psychiatry and Pediatrics at University of Massachusetts Medical Center and in the Department of Education at Tufts University. Way more important than the titles is the non-profit organization I founded – called Lives in the Balance – which aims to disseminate the CPS model through free web-based programming and to support and advocate on behalf of behaviorally challenging kids and their parents, teachers, and other caregivers. One component of our advocacy efforts is our forthcoming documentary, The Kids We Lose. If you haven't visited the Lives in the Balance website yet...well, it's not my place to tell you what to do, but that website is going to do you a whole lot more good than reading about me.

Still here? As you wish. I attended the University of Florida as an undergrad, where I was very lucky to have crossed paths with Dr. Betsy Altmaier, who sparked my interest in psychology (she's now retired, but was at the University of Iowa for a long time). I'm a proud graduate of the clinical psychology program at Virginia Tech -- which received the 2017 Clinical Science Training Program Award from the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (ABCT) -- where it was my remarkable good fortune to have had Dr. Tom Ollendick as my mentor and Dr. George Clum as a clinical supervisor. And I completed my psychology internship at Children's Hospital in Washington, DC, where I got lucky again: a psychologist named Mary Ann McCabe and social worker named Lorraine Lougee were among my clinical supervisors there.

I consult extensively to families, general and special education schools, inpatient and residential facilities, and systems of juvenile detention, and have come to know some truly amazing people through this work...people who care deeply about kids (especially the most vulnerable) and are passionate about treating them and their caregivers in ways that are humane and effective. I also lecture widely throughout the world. Lots of research has been published on the CPS model, and I've been fortunate to receive funding for that research from, among others, the Stanley Research Institute, the National Institute on Drug Abuse/National Institutes of Mental Health, the U.S. Department of Education, and the Maine Juvenile Justice Advisory Group. My media appearances have included The Oprah Show, Good Morning America, Dateline NBC, the CBS Morning Show, and National Public Radio, and my work has been featured in The Atlantic, Mother Jones magazine, and The Washington Post.

I'm very fortunate to be associated with some wonderful and talented colleagues at Lives in the Balance these days: Liz Rudman, who oversees conference planning and lots of other things; Kim Hopkins-Betts, our Director of Outreach and Communications; Jenny Winkler, our Research Director; and Ann Landsberg, who oversees the Care Package program. It's also my great pleasure to work with nearly 100 certified providers across the world who have received intensive training in the CPS model, and to work with staff in many schools and facilities that are implementing the model.

On the personal side, I grew up in North Miami, Florida, and currently live in Portland, Maine. My 20-year old daughter and 18-year old son are now in college. Maine is one of my favorite places in the world. Mainers tend to be down-to-earth, honest people who don't take well to pretense, privilege, or duplicity, and that's just my speed. And the natural beauty of Maine is pretty amazing too. I'm also partial to southwestern Virginia (that's where Virginia Tech is located); the view of the Ellett Valley from Tom Ollendick's back deck is quite something, there aren't many hikes better than McAfee Knob, and there aren’t many things in life better than tubing down the New River in the summer (or rafting it further north, where it's not so tame). And I always look forward to my frequent visits to Scandinavia and Australia.

If I hadn't become a psychologist, I would have been a musician or teacher. I enjoy hanging out with my family, hiking, whitewater rafting, hanging out on Thompson Lake in my old bowrider, teaching people about solving problems collaboratively, and advocating on behalf of vulnerable kids and their caregivers. Sometimes I still long for the simpler life I had before I wrote The Explosive Child, but I'm very glad that it and my other books seem to have been helpful to many kids and their caregivers.

Just in case you were wondering, yes, I originally called my model "Collaborative Problem Solving," and most of my chapters, articles, research papers, and books prior to 2013 refer to the model by that name. Regrettably, Massachusetts General Hospital contested my ownership of that name and took legal action in federal court to prevent me from using it (and actually won). So please be aware that I have nothing to do with folks who are marketing what is now called "Collaborative Problem Solving," and I don't endorse what they're doing with my work or how they've gone about doing it. That appalling, unpleasant story includes all the usual ingredients -- power, hubris, money, dishonesty, manipulation, betrayal -- and you can read more about it here.

I'd say that's enough about me, which is good, because I can't think of anything else. Did I mention that you should check out the Lives in the Balance website?

Ross