Decorative top bar
Apply Events Alumni Hotane
Apply Events Alumni Hotane

Postdoctoral Psychological Assistant/ Fellowship Position

Postdoctoral Psychological Assistant/ Fellowship Position

Hanna Boys Center in Sonoma, California is pleased to offer trauma-focused postdoctoral positions.

Hanna Boys Center is a private non-profit that provides a residential treatment center/ boarding school that helps under-resourced adolescent boys who come to us voluntarily. Each client has recognized his life needs help and has taken the initiative to change his course. Many are struggling at home, in their community and/or school. Additionally, Hanna provides training and consultative services, in the area of childhood trauma, to other youth serving organizations. We work collaboratively with these organizations to help them improve care and enhance program outcomes. Hanna transforms the lives of youth, families and communities impacted by trauma and adversity through resilience, connection and spiritual wellness.

Our clients are a diverse group of young men, with 38% Latino, 9% African American, 27% Caucasian, and 10% identifying as gay or bisexual. 95% are in lower SES brackets. Most of our population has experienced at least 1 ACE or Urban Ace, with 50% of our population endorsing 4 or more ACEs.

A postdoctoral position at Hanna provides the opportunity to gain specialized training in adolescent trauma as well as implementing trauma informed systems in both school and residential settings. This fellowship is primarily clinical, but can support a research component as well. This fellowship follows the National Postdoctoral Association’s Core Competencies. Training components can be modified to fit training needs.


Training involves weekly didactic seminars, usually on implementing trauma informed care, cultural humility, and various required training for a licensed residential facility. In addition, there are weekly group case presentations focused on trauma-informed and culturally infused assessment and case formulation. There are also periodic speakers and half day or full day trainings, usually on trauma, culture, and/or an evidence-based assessment or intervention. For example, last year included talks by Dr. Nadine Burke, Father Gregg Boyle (of Homeboy Industries), Ashanti Branch, Dr. Joop de Jong, and Dr. Leonard Sax. We had trainings on the evidence-based CANS-Trauma Comprehensive, Let’s Connect, and Trauma and Grief Component Therapy for Adolescents, as well as several trainings on neurophysiologically informed interventions. This year we have planned talks with Dr. Julian Ford and Dr. Christine Courtois along with trainings on more trauma-specific interventions focused on individual treatment, group therapy, and family therapy. Last year we also ran two extended professional development series on equity and “Black Minds Matter” which we hope to continue into future years.

Training also involves participation in a trauma-informed services learning community. This will entail reading articles and book chapters and listening to podcasts on trauma, social justice, adolescent development, and/or spirituality and then discussing them as a group and thinking of ways to apply what you are learning to the professional work.

Supervision consists of weekly individual supervision with a licensed psychologist as well as team meetings/group supervision.

Clinical Activities:

  • Individual, group, and family therapy
  • Socio-emotional and/or cognitive assessments
  • Supervision of externs
  • Consultation, including participating in team meetings, with teaching and residential staff
  • Optional participation with on-site substance abuse program
  • Possible training and facilitating of restorative justice protocols.
  • Opportunity to consult with agencies in the area on how to implement trauma-informed services
  • Design and implementation of one project in the areas of practice innovation/ program development, community outreach, or clinical scholarship.Practice innovation/Program Development includes working with senior staff in developing new or improved ways of better engaging with our students. Possible ideas include a group modality, psychoeducation program, socio-emotional curriculum, social justice initiatives, and therapeutic recreational activities. Hanna is just beginning to expand the activities we offer to include various activities that can positively impact the neurophysiological sequaelae of complex trauma. Some activities we are already actively pursuing include yoga, glass-blowing, drumming, and animal-assisted therapy. Community outreach would entail deigning a project which will end in an experience which promotes the well-being of individuals in the community or engages community providers. The clinical scholarship option includes presenting helpful clinical material to staff and working towards publishing or conference presentation.


While not mandatory, there is ample opportunity to pursue your own research interests that are aligned with foci of the program (e.g. trauma, adolescence, education, residential care, faith/ spirituality). We collect fairly extensive data on all our residents that can be utilized to pursue a relevant scope of research. In addition, we conduct annual program evaluations. Any research or evaluation project must be approved by the Chief Clinical Officer.

The postdoctoral position will include protected hours for you to work on publishing your dissertation.

The Hanna Boys Team

Hanna Boys Center is led by Brian Farragher, co-author of two books with Dr. Sandra Bloom entitled “Destroying Sanctuary: The Crisis in Human Service Delivery Systems,” and “Restoring Sanctuary: A New Operating System for Trauma Informed Systems of Care.” He is also the author of many articles on developing trauma-sensitive treatment programs and reducing the use of physical interventions in residential settings. As a leading thought leader in this space, Mr. Farragher is often requested to present at regional, national and international conferences. Mr. Farragher is a past recipient of the Samuel Gerson Nordlinger Child Welfare Leadership Award, presented by the Alliance for Children and Families to recognize individuals who make outstanding contributions to the child welfare field, advancing quality services for children and families.

The Clinical Department is led by Stefanie F. Smith, Ph.D., a licensed clinical psychologist.   Prior to coming to Hanna, Dr. Smith had served numerous roles including director of a doctorate program, university professor, trauma-focused private practitioner and consultant, research and evaluation director for a non-profit for adolescents and families in at-risk situations, clinician and researcher at trauma-focused clinics (including the renowned Trauma Center at JRI in Massachusetts), and acute responder. Presently, she is co-chair for the Diversity and Cultural Competency SIG for ISTSS and also serves on the Diversity Committee to ISTSS’s board. She continues to teach as a founding faculty member for UC Berkeley Extension’s Trauma Certificate Program. Dr. Smith presents and trains in trauma at the local, national, and international levels and has numerous publications. Current foci include the neurophysiological impact of complex trauma, body-based interventions for trauma, the impact of trauma on health, and implementing trauma-informed systems.

The Clinical team comprises of 6 Master’s level clinicians, 2 predoctoral externs, and one master’s level trainee. Orientations vary and include Cognitive-Behavioral, Psychodynamic, Humanistic, Rogerian, and Somatic/ Sensorimotor. Most clinicians are trained in EMDR and TF-CBT. We also have youth providers trained in Classroom, Community, Culture Based Intervention (CBI®), an evidence-based, psychosocial continuum of care for youth and communities exposed to extreme stressors.

Hanna Boys Center also has about 56 residential staff led by a Chief Operations Officer and 13 full-time high school teachers led by a Principal, along with a contracted health provider team and psychiatrist.

Our Students:

We serve 90-100 adolescent males from the ages of 13-18. 12% are African American, 4.5% Asian American, 39% Caucasian, 35% Latino, 1.5 % Pacific Islander, and 7.5 % mixed. About 10% identify themselves as homosexual. 95% of our students receive financial aid and pay under $500/year for tuition; 30% of families live below the poverty line; the median household income is $48,000. 51% identify as Catholic, 20% as another type of Christian, 10% Protestant, 5% Jewish, 2% Muslim, 2% Buddhist, and 10% no affiliation. About 8% are wards of the court (either juvenile or child protective services). 50% have experienced 4 or more ACEs.

The Campus:

Hanna Boys Center is an unlocked licensed residential care facility with an accredited high school on campus. The boys live in cottages and group homes spread across a 170-acre campus in the beautiful Sonoma Valley. The high school campus includes a gym, pool, baseball and football fields, tennis courts, woodworking and welding shop, agricultural program with sheep and gardening, and of course, a small vineyard. Hanna also has an on-site Chapel, full kitchen that serves 3 meals a day, as well as dorm-type residences for some of the staff.

For more information, visit our website at www.hannacenter.org


  • Completed an APA-accredited doctoral academic program
  • Completed an APA-accredited or APPIC or CAPIC member doctoral internship
  • Doctoral degree must be in Clinical or Counseling Psychology. Must have successfully completed all requirements for their doctoral degree before the residency program’s official start date.
  • Ability to develop case formulations and relevant treatment plans that are informed by theory, culture, socio-historical context, and trauma.
  • Experience with adolescent males.
  • Ability to provide trauma informed or trauma-specific interventions.
  • Strong communication skills that demonstrate the ability to communicate effectively in writing and verbally. Ability to communicate in a direct and constructive manner with colleagues and work in multi-disciplinary teams.
  • Knowledge of conflict resolution strategies.
  • Experience in a residential and/or school milieu a plus
  • Bilingual (Spanish/ English) a plus
  • Must pass a criminal background check and physical, including a drug and TB test

In addition to full-time salary and standard benefits, there is opportunity for free room and board. The housing option is in a gender-specific dorm-type residence with a single room and shared bathroom. Kitchen provides food 3 times day except for the occasional holiday closure. Position is full-time with 3 weeks and 2 days of personal time off plus 9 paid holidays. Flexible hours possible, even preferred. Benefits include Health, Dental, Vision, Life insurance, a Flexible Spending Account, Short and Long-term Disability, and a 401k Pension Plan.

Possibility for partner hire in school or residential setting.

Prefer 2 year commitment, running from September 2019 to July 30, 2021.

Please submit to training@hannacenter.org:

  1. A Cover Letter.
  2. A detailed curriculum vitae.
  3. Official academic transcript of graduate work.
  4. A sample of your work. This may include, but is not limited to, a case summary and
    conceptualization, published book chapter, integrated report, peer-reviewed article, or dissertation chapter.
  5. Three letters of recommendation. Include one from a faculty member familiar with your academic work and at least one from a primary clinical supervisor during your predoctoral internship.

Applications being accepted now. Positions will remain open until filled.