2018 Conference

The Wisconsin Chapter of the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (WI-ATSA) 2018 Conference

The Wisconsin Chapter of ATSA invites you to an affordable training opportunity covering a variety of innovative research, treatment, and public policy topics.

June 14 & 15, 2018

8:30 am – 4:30 pm

Promega Biopharmaceutical Technology Center

5445 East Cheryl Parkway Madison, WI 53711


Registration is Now Closed

Registration Fee: $199

Fee includes registration, lunch on both days, and 12 CEUs.


2018 Conference Information

Restaurant and Hotel Information

Schedule and Featured Topics and Speakers

Thursday, June 14th

 9:00 am

Joan Tabachnick, MBA—Why Prevention? Why Now?

Presentation Material

Over the last decade, ATSA has expanded its prevention work beyond reducing sex offender recidivism through specialized treatment (tertiary prevention) to include the primary and secondary prevention of sexual abuse – before it is perpetrated. With the vast media attention on this issue in recent months, ATSA members have a lot to offer the current conversation. This session will provide an overview of prevention as well as some practical tools, specific resources, and concrete examples of how to integrate primary prevention strategies into clinical practice, research, and our everyday lives.

Using a public health model of prevention and change, topics covered will include: the importance of bringing ATSA’s unique perspective into the prevention dialogue, practical examples of how ATSA members have engaged in prevention, and a deeper dive into some prevention strategies such as understanding bystander interventions.

Speaker Profile
Over 25 years, Joan Tabachnick has developed educational materials and innovative prevention programs for national, state and local organizations. Her primary focus is on preventing the perpetration of sexually harmful behaviors, particularly in adolescents and young adults. Joan created the educational programming for Stop It Now! before starting her own consulting practice. Since then she has been director of NEARI Press, founding co-chair of ATSA’s prevention committee, executive director of MASOC, and currently is a fellow with the Department of Justice, SMART Office.

1:15 pm

Dr. Joy Ippolito —Human Trafficking 

This session will explain the basics of youth sex trafficking—who is most vulnerable, why it happens, how traffickers and buyers of sexual acts prey on vulnerable youth, and why removing youth from trafficking situations can be difficult. Warning signs of sex trafficking will be reviewed and statewide resources will be shared.

Speaker Profile
Dr. Joy Ippolito is the state-level Anti-Human Trafficking Coordinator for the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families (DCF). She is the principal policy advisor on human trafficking issues, with substantial authority to advise, develop, and lead the implementation of policies and programs that will provide a coordinated and comprehensive state response. She also provides strategic direction and informs changes and initiatives related to Wisconsin’s child welfare and juvenile justice systems, and their interactions with the courts, law enforcement, health, and other systems as it relates to human trafficking. Dr. Ippolito chairs the Wisconsin Anti-Human Trafficking Advisory Council. She also assists stakeholder groups at the local, regional, state, and national levels.

Prior to joining DCF, Dr. Ippolito was a researcher and professor at the University of Chicago. She has extensive experience working with stakeholders in education, child welfare, juvenile justice, mental health, hospital settings, and community based organizations. She has a doctorate in Human Development and Education and a master’s degree in Prevention Science & Practice from Harvard University. She also has a master’s in Social Work from the University of Chicago, a bachelor’s in Psychology from Loyola University Chicago, and was previously a licensed social worker in Massachusetts.

3:00 pm

Christopher Tyre, Ph.D., Bruce Erdmann, Ph.D., and Oralia Rivera, MS — Child Pornography Offenders in WI DOC: issues in the assessment and treatment of this growing population 

Presentation Materials

One of the growing populations of sex offenders under the care and custody of the WI Department of Corrections is child pornography offenders. With mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines, the population of incarcerated child pornography offenders has increased significantly in the past few years. This presentation will attempt to summarize the issues related to the assessment, treatment considerations, and supervision of this growing offender population. The Child Pornography Offender Risk Tool (CPORT) is a recently developed risk assessment instrument that may offer some promise in understanding this population of sexual offenders (Eke and Seto, 2015). A brief overview of this instrument will be provided in conjunction with a discussion of the preliminary findings of a dissertation proposal attempting to understand the utility of the CPORT in applied settings.

Speaker Profiles
Dr. Tyre received his Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee in 1996. He has been employed by the Wisconsin Department of Corrections for 22 years providing psychological treatment to incarcerated males and performing forensic evaluations of high risk sexual offenders to determine potential eligibility for civil commitment. In addition, Dr. Tyre routinely provides forensic consultative services to District Attorneys, Attorneys General and defense counsel on a wide array of forensic psychological issues including Competency and Not Guilty by Reason of Mental Defect pleadings. Dr. Tyre has served as a consultant to the US military providing forensic psychological services in Courts Martial proceedings. Additionally, Dr. Tyre serves as a consulting psychologist for Marquette University and Carroll University, performing risk assessments of violence potential for undergraduate and graduate students. Dr. Tyre serves as a Special Consultant Psychologist for the Suburban Critical Incident Team, working directly with the hostage negotiation unit. Finally, Dr. Tyre is an Associate Professor at the Wisconsin School of Professional Psychology and has been a clinical member of ATSA for nearly 17 years.

Oralia Rivera is a doctoral candidate in her fourth year at the APA-accredited Wisconsin School of Professional Psychology (WSPP). She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Loyola University Chicago in Psychology and her Master’s degree from WSPP in Clinical Psychology. Oralia will begin her 1-year doctoral internship at the Florida Department of Corrections in September 2018. She has experience in providing individual, group, couples, and family therapy, as well as conducting psychological evaluations. Currently, she is working as the Office Operations Associate at Wisconsin Department of Corrections Forensic Evaluation Unit, Chapter 980. Oralia is also working on her dissertation with Dr. Christopher Tyre on the utility of the CPORT as a measure of risk in a Wisconsin male sex offender population.


Friday, June 15th

9:00 am

Dr. Jason Smith —Sand Ridge Secure Treatment Center Programming and Measurement of Treatment Progress 

Presentation Material

This presentation will provide a brief overview of the characteristics of programs that have been shown to be effective in reducing sex offending recidivism.  Sand Ridge Secure Treatment Center’s (SRSTC) application of these principles will described as well as the way in which progress in treatment is measured.

Speaker Profile
Jason Smith, Psy.D. is a licensed clinical psychologist and a certified health services provider. He served as the Administrator for the Civil Commitment Unit for Sexual Offenders (CCUSO) in Cherokee, Iowa for 11 years, with the last four years also serving as the Superintendent of the Cherokee Mental Health Institution. He was recognized as Leader of the Year for the Iowa Department of Human Services in 2006 and is a past President of the Iowa Psychological Association. Dr. Smith is currently the Treatment Director at Sand Ridge Secure Treatment Center in Wisconsin. He has conducted SVP program reviews in several states and is currently functioning in a treatment advisory capacity for the Iowa SVP program. He maintains a private practice in Iowa providing assessment and treatment services for individuals with sex offending histories. Dr. Smith has held many different clinical and administrative roles in non-profit organizations serving individuals with intellectual disabilities and mental illness. He has also worked in community based corrections and held adjunct faculty positions at Columbia College and Buena Vista University as well as various community colleges. Dr. Smith has been active in mental health legislative committees, policy development, and pursuing prescriptive authority for psychologists.

10:45 am

Dr. Amy Karn, Dr. Michele Leslie, and Dr. Hitomi Gunsolley —Out with the Old and In with the New: How OSCI is Changing how we do Treatment

Presentation Material

Grab a ride on the risky train as we head down the behavior road of how the DOC came to overhaul how we do treatment and upcoming stops along the track. Buckle up and enjoy the ride as we start at the station, encounter bumps on the track and arrive at our destination measuring progress along the way. Gone are the days of in depth offense disclosures and the requirement that participants admit to every detail in order to participate in treatment. Here to stay is the emphasis on increased awareness of how risk factors are activated in the present and working to build and develop protective factors for successful reintegration.

Speaker Profiles
Amy Karn is a psychologist at OSCI. She developed and implemented the SOT-4 Adaptive (GOALS) group at OSCI. She has been doing this for the past 11 years.

Michele Leslie is a psychologist at OSCI. She co-facilitates groups for high risk sex offenders. She is a co-chair for the CSEM committee to determine how to treat inmates with convictions for CSEM only.

Hitomi Gunsolley is a psychologist at OSCI. She co-facilitated groups for high risk sex offenders with and without special needs. She is a co-chair for the CSEM committee to determine how to treat CSEM only inmates.

Nathan Melanson, LPC and Mark Wakefield, LPC —Community programming for clients convicted of sexual misbehaviors

Presentation Material

Community treatment for people convicted of sexually inappropriate behavior offers a unique set of challenges. The treatment team must balance development of client protective factors with community safety concerns in real time. Clients experience “live” risks as they re-enter the community, and treatment providers are tasked with helping each individual navigate his/her particular challenges in this process. Through the use of validated instruments and current best practices, programming in the community looks to first place a client in an appropriate intervention based on risk level, then apply the appropriate treatment dosage based on an individualized case plan. Once a client is placed, ongoing assessment is utilized to monitor client progress, address risk/need areas, bolster client strengths, and enhance community safety. If a client struggles with certain targets, supplemental programming can be made available.

Speaker Profiles
Nathan Melanson is a Licensed Professional Counselor with ATTIC Correctional Services working primarily with sexual offenders in the community. Nathan graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater with a Master’s Degree in Community Counseling. He has been with ATTIC Correctional Services for the past nine years working with clients that have been charged or convicted of a sexual offense(s) and are reentering the community in five Wisconsin southwest counties including: Dane, Iowa, Richland, Grant and Lafayette. Nathan employs best practices by utilizing the RNR model and relies heavily on validated risk assessment tools to place clients in appropriate groups to ensure proper treatment dosage hours.  He also supervises ATTIC staff that are involved in Iowa county’s drug and OWI treatment courts. Nathan is currently the Vice President for the Staff Advisory Committee for ATTIC Correctional Services which is responsible for matters regarding the employment, strategic plans, wellness activities and professional development, etc. for the employees of the non-profit. In 2017, Nathan was recognized with the Dr. Juliette Martin-Thomas award for commitment and excellence in the field of human services.

Mark Wakefield is a Licensed Professional Counselor with ATTIC Correctional Services.  His clinical work in the community is primarily with people who have committed sexual assaults.   Mark has been with ATTIC Correctional Services for over eighteen years.  He has provided clinical services to correctional clients in outpatient, residential, and institutional settings.  Mark implements current best practices such as motivational enhancement techniques, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and a team approach to treatment in an effort to provide superior results to clients and the community.  He clinically supervises a wide variety of programs throughout the state and provides quality assurance support to all ACS programs.

1:15 pm

Zachary Wisniewski, Daniel Schroeder, Jeb Newton, and Erich Wuerslin —Supervision of Sex Offenders

Presentation Material

This 90 minute presentation will focus on the different elements of sex offender supervision. Individuals from the Sex Offender Registry will provide an overview of the law, reporting elements required, and answer questions related to the registry. Individuals from the Electronic Monitoring Center will provide an overview of how electronic monitoring equipment works and discuss what happens when there are alerts on the equipment. Agents and Corrections Field Supervisors will discuss how determinations are made regarding level of supervision, discretionary GPS, rules, and activities. Additionally, they will discuss how they interact with treatment providers to ensure continuity between treatment and the supervision case plan.

Speaker Profile
Zachary Wisniewski has been a Senior Probation & Parole Agent for the Wisconsin Department of Corrections since 2002. Since 2010 Zachary has supervised a sex offender caseload, with an additional emphasis on mentally ill offenders. In addition to his work supervising a caseload Zachary has been an assistant trainer for Agent Basic Training for new Probation & Parole Agents and he has assisted in updating the Agent Basic Training revocation process and home search modules using Adult Learning Theory. Zachary has a B.A. degree in Social Work from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

Dan Schroeder is a Field Supervisor for the Department of Corrections, covering the Wood County area. During his first twelve years with Department, he worked as a Probation and Parole Agent and helped establish a sex offender specific caseload, which he supervised in Marshfield. Since promoting to Supervisor in 2014, Dan’s main focus has included the supervision of sex offenders and encouragement of the education and training in this area. In 2014, Dan identified a need for Sex Offender staffings in the northern half of Region 8. These supervision staffings are now held bi-monthly, promoting the exchange of information between agents and advancing their skills and knowledge. His training and knowledge of Sex Offender Supervision has also expanded to a larger area and been recognized, as he now facilitates bi-annual meetings for Region 8, and is a member of the state-wide Supervision of Sex Offender committee. Some of his current projects involve assisting in re-writing the Sex Offender Manual for agents and being a part of the State-wide Sex Offender Pilot Program. In addition to that, he is working to further agents’ knowledge and understanding of sex offenders by facilitating trainings with current treatment providers and establishing inter-regional trainings for sex offender agents. Dan’s accomplishments include: graduating from the 2008 Leadership Training Series, being a member of the Region 8 COMPAS Ambassador Team which received the 2013 TEAM Salute Award for “Excellence,” and being the recipient of two Discretionary Merit Compensation Awards in 2013 and 2017 for his work as an Agent and Field Supervisor.

Jeb Newton is a Probation and Parole Agent with the Department of Corrections. He was hired as a Probation and Parole Agent in 2016 and has a specialty caseload of sex offenders. He received his Bachelors of Arts in Criminal Justice in 2016 at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh and minored in Spanish. While attending college, Jeb worked as a Community Service Officer at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Police Department where he gained on the job knowledge of how law enforcement works. Jeb also interned with Probation and Parole and the Wisconsin Sex Offender Registry Program in Oshkosh Wisconsin. Jeb interned with Probation and Parole Agents who specialized in the supervision of sex offenders while also interning with the Sex Offender Registry Specialist.

Erich Wuerslin began his career with the Wisconsin Department of Corrections in 1992 as Probation/Parole Agent supervising both a generic and sex offenders in Racine County.  In 1994, Erich Wuerslin transferred to Waukesha County to begin supervising a High Risk Sex Offender caseload and also generic offenders.  In 2001, Erich Wuerslin transferred to the Department of Corrections Sex Offender Registry as a Registration Specialist and continued in that position until becoming the Corrections Services Supervisor in 2014 for Sex Offender Registry for the Western District of Wisconsin.


3:00 pm

Attorney Robert Peterson, Wisconsin Office of Public Defenders —Wisconsin Supervised Release Laws: A Struggle for Coherence

This discussion will focus on the current structure and challenges of Chapter 980 Supervised Release community placement.  Topics will include placements before and after 2017 Act 184 and a review of literature and litigation dealing with protective zones.