The Center on Violence and Recovery (CVR) was founded in 2004 to advance knowledge on the causes and consequences of violence and trauma, and develop solutions that foster healing among individuals, families, and communities.

What We Do

We innovate by developing cutting-edge solutions to promote healing and transformation, study by conducting research on critical issues related to trauma and restoration, and educate by offering trainings, workshops, and lectures on topics related to trauma and healing. 

To learn more about CVR check out our latest news and events, read more about our research, explore our past and current partners, view and access our publications, and check out what's catching our attention on the CVR blog.




executive director, founder

Dr. Linda G. Mills is the inaugural Lisa Ellen Goldberg Professor at New York University, where she is also Vice Chancellor for Global Programs and University Life. Influenced in part by personal experiences, Dr. Mills has been working on issues related to violence and recovery for more than 20 years. Her theory and research on trauma and recovery challenge traditional boundaries and explore the importance of memory in our everyday lives. The focus of her research ranges from domestic violence to genocide studies. Dr. Mills is also a filmmaker, she was the Co-Writer, Co-Director, and Co-Producer of Auf Wiedersehen, ‘Til We Meet Again (2007), the Director of Of Many (2014) and the Director of Better to Live (2015).

Dr. Mills has been published by Princeton University Press, Basic Books, and Cornell and Harvard Law Reviews, and in USA Today and the Los Angeles Times. She has been a blogger for Psychology Today and has been featured in the New York Times Magazine, People, Harper’s & Queen, and Glamour. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Justice, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Defense. She has also appeared twice on The Oprah Winfrey Show, among other television appearances, including The O’Reilly Factor.



director of research

Dr. Briana Barocas oversees CVR’s research initiatives and is also a Research Associate Professor at the Silver School of Social Work. She has taught as an adjunct faculty member at the Stern School of Business and the Silver School of Social Work. Her interests in trauma, resiliency, and recovery have led to research on first responders, individuals and families affected by domestic violence, and survivors of 9/11. Her research has been supported by the National Institute of Justice, the National Science Foundation, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Defense.  

She was the Principal Investigator on a National Science Foundation Innovation Corps (I-Corps) team to develop an online platform for domestic violence treatment. She participated in the 2011 Faculty Fellowship Summer Institute in Israel co-sponsored by Scholars for Peace in the Middle East. For the 2010-2011 academic year, she was a fellow of the American Psychoanalytic Association. In 2007, she was selected to participate in the Disaster Mental Health Research Mentoring Program, a two-year program funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, in which she focused on disaster mental health in workplace settings.

Previously, Dr. Barocas was a consultant and researcher at Columbia University’s Center on Social Policy and Practice in the Workplace. She was the former Assistant Director of Cornell University’s Institute for Women and Work. Her earlier research on work-family issues and current work on the response to and recovery from violence and trauma have strengthened her commitment to developing and researching programs and services that better the lives of individuals, families, and communities. She has presented at national and international conferences and published in Criminal Justice and Behavior, International Journal of Emergency Mental Health, Journal of Experimental Criminology, Journal of Family Violence as well as International Terrorism and Threats to Security: Managerial and Organizational Challenges and Stress in Policing: Sources, Consequences and Interventions. She holds a Ph.D. in Social Policy and Policy Analysis from Columbia University, a M.S. in Gender Studies from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and a B.S. in Human Development and Family Studies from Cornell University.

Contact Briana at:


fellow, senior circle trainer

Dr. Faye Zakheim serves as a field instructor and faculty educator at the NYU Silver School of Social Work. Dr. Zakheim has co-chaired the Task Force for Families and Children at Risk for more than a decade, collaborating with over 35 agencies serving metropolitan New York. As the co-founder of Project Eden, and as a resource person for the Kings County District Attorney’s Office, she has worked with the justice system to assist those dealing with domestic violence and to train professionals in various fields who seek to help them.

Drawing on her dissertation research, Dr. Zakheim has pioneered the use of Healing Circles in the Orthodox Jewish community, and has also helped to bring this innovative treatment model into the Hispanic community of Nogales, AZ; the LDS community of Salt Lake City, UT; and the Asian and Orthodox Jewish communities of greater New York. She has presented at international gatherings of social workers and been published in both scholarly journals and the popular press, the latter of which serves as a resource to the wider community on issues of domestic violence, divorce, and mental health. Both in her role at CVR and in her involvements with the wider community, Dr. Zakheim seeks to harmonize scholarly research with hands-on clinical work and community involvement, offering students and advisees the insights of direct experience while also providing members of the non-academic community the knowledge gained through serious scholarship. She holds a Ph.D. in Social Work from the NYU Silver School of Social Work.

Research Assistants



research assistant

Jessamin E. Cipollina is a graduate of the M.A. Human Development and Social Intervention program at NYU's Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development. She was previously the Project Coordinator for the Transgender Identity Formation Study being conducted in NYU's Department of Applied Psychology at Steinhardt where she had the opportunity to explore research related to transgender and gender-nonconforming identity development and social issues, as well as engage in qualitative thematic and grounded theory investigation. She has also held research internships at the Center for Health, Identity, Behavior and Prevention Studies at NYU and the Council for Aid to Education in New York. As an undergraduate student at Pace University NYC, where she received her B.A. in Psychology, she was a part of the Individual Differences in Development Lab at Pace and completed internships at Growth and Development Services and the National Eating Disorders Association, both located in New York.


graduate research assistant

Michaela Cotner is a second year M.A. student in General Psychology at NYU’s Graduate School of Arts and Science with an emphasis on social psychology. Her research interests include the social construction of race and gender and how these factors impact an individual's identity and mental health. In addition to being a research assistant at CVR, she is also a research assistant at NYU’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development working with two doctoral student team members to transcribe and code data related to racial/ethnic development and body image development in second-generation Korean-American women. Michaela is currently working on her Master’s thesis, a qualitative and quantitative observation of racial identity formation of Black/White biracial women and the impact this has on body image development. She received here B.S. in Psychology from the University of Georgia.


graduate research assistant

Nancy Murakami is a D.S.W. student at NYU’s Silver School of Social Work and adjunct lecturer at NYU Silver's Trauma-informed Clinical Practice Certificate Program. She is program manager of a psychosocial support program in Nyakabande Refugee Transit Centre in Kisoro, Uganda, with the community-based organization Friends of Kisoro. She has held clinical and leadership positions at the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture, in NYC, and Burma Border Projects, in Thailand, and she practiced as a clinician at the Safe Horizon Counseling Center in NYC, working with adult and child survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, and sexual violence. Ms. Murakami conducts live and web-based trainings domestically and internationally on topics including trauma-informed approaches, refugee services, social work approaches in working with survivors of forced displacement, clinical practice with interpreters, and staff wellbeing. She is co-editor of Trauma and Recovery on War's Border: A Guide for Global Health Workers, a book in the Geisel Series in Global Health and Medicine. Ms. Murakami served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Malawi, Africa. She holds a M.S.W. from Columbia University. 


graduate research assistant

Yangjin Park is a Ph.D. student at NYU’s Silver School of Social Work. Yangjin’s research interests include mental health, family conflict and intervention, and family therapy. His research has benefited from using both quantitative and qualitative methodologies. Yangjin has presented at numerous conferences, including the 2017 American Psychological Association Annual Convention and the 2016 Joint World Conference on Social Work, Education and Social Development, and has published in Psychiatric Quarterly and the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy (in press). He holds a M.S.W. from Soong Sil University.


graduate research assistant

Rei Shimizu is a Ph.D. student at NYU’s Silver School of Social Work. Her research interests include intersections of domestic violence intervention and international policies, intersections of cultural competence and empowerment, violence resolution, and trauma recovery. She served as a research assistant at Children’s Rainbow Center in Japan, focusing on child abuse and familial suicide and funded by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare. Rei was also a Women’s Initiative for Summer Empowerment Fellow in 2016 at the Japan Institute of Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship, advocating for mental health awareness in Japan. She holds a M.S.W. from Columbia University.



CVR welcomes student interns during the academic year, including the summer semester. If you are interested in learning more about the opportunities available for interns, please email