Lu Hanessian is an award-winning journalist, author, and twenty-five year veteran former network television anchor turned consultant, adjunct professor, trauma and resilience researcher, speaker, and conflict resolution facilitator working across sectors with companies, non-profits, educational institutions, individuals, and communities.
Lu distills multidisciplinary scientific research and practices in her design and implementation of trauma-informed, resilience-centered programs; facilitates neuroscience-based adaptive leadership development; supports staff and schools in developing stress resilience and trauma-sensitive, strengths-scaffolded communities K-12 and Higher Ed; works with teams and companies to integrate collaborative resilience-building skills as foundational to co-creating cultures that center safety, trust, dignity and diversity, belonging, voice, and choice; and works with non-profits focused on human rights and humanitarian aid work in active- and post-conflict zones to facilitate trauma-sensitive trainings and what Lu refers to as a "first do no harm beginning with ourselves" approach to practitioner support and sustainability in the field.
She integrates interdisciplinary science, research and practices from interpersonal neurobiology; attachment science and development; affect and cognitive sciences; the neuropsychology of conflict; generational trauma and epigenetics; trauma healing and resilience, and multiple factors which contribute to creating bio-psychosocial ecosystems of connection as central to individual and collective resilience and trauma-informed workplaces.
As an adjunct professor, Lu designs and teaches graduate courses, certificate programs, workshops and trainings, and consults on developing and implementing trauma-literate pedagogies and interdisciplinary trauma-informed curriculum development as well as campus-wide initiatives that foster engagement, courage, and transformation.
As an independent researcher, Lu is exploring the reciprocal dynamics of personal adversity and resilience, the role of co-regulation and agency in growth processes, how agency manifests the (in)formation of new narratives and meaning-making around our embodied sense of transformation experienced through adversity, and how these experiences can generate restorative processes which promote the deepening of trust, the emergence of hope, and community orientation toward resilience, not as a 'bouncing back' experience, but as an experience of a "forward spiral."
Since 2010, Lu has been the founder and executive director of Parent2ParentU, an online educational resource and community supporting parents and families, through strengths-based, trauma-sensitive, biopsychosocial education, grounded in attachment science, interpersonal neurobiology, developmental and affect psychology, and the science of relational resilience.
Lu Hanessian is an award-winning journalist, author, former NBC network anchor and Discovery Health Channel host, as well as host of more than thirteen shows, with more than 25 years of national and international broadcast journalism experience. Her articles and essays have been published in The New York Times, Mindful, Mothering, USA Today, and more. She has been a guest on CNN, NPR, MSNBC, Today, The View, and other programs. She has parlayed her experience into resilience-centered media literacy, research, advocacy, and consultation, with a lens on trauma-informed journalism, public health, and the "neuroethics of news".
Her newest book Return to Tender, on the power of tenderness and parent-child connection will be published later this year. She has written two illustrated books The Garden: A Parenting Parable and Picnic on a Cloud, brought to visual life by artist Tanya Leonello.
Lu holds a Master of Science degree in Conflict Management and Resolution from the University of San Diego Kroc School for Peace and Justice Studies.
She is host of the new podcast "The Foreseeable Now."
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