Elections 2016 Candidates

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Deepu George, PhD., LMFT-A, for Member at Large: 

"My name is Deepu George, a behavioral science faculty at the University Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine's Department of Family & Preventive Medicine. As a behavioral health consultant in a primary care setting, my work involves connecting physicians with latest evidence based behavioral interventions that have direct impact on patient care. I was fortunate to learn ACT during my fellowship in Medical Family Therapy and Integrated Care and have been a curious student and practitioner since 2013. My current interests are extending ACT based interventions in primary care, finding creative ways to teach family physicians benefits of psychological flexibility for patient care and self-care. In close collaboration with Preventive Medicine in my Department and Public Health in our University System, I aim to link the philosophy of functional contextualism and psychological flexibility both in patient care consultations and broad public health research on obesity and the triad of diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidemia.

As a member at large with the Contextual Medicine in SIG, I aim to recruit interested medical practitioners to our fold, become a consistent voice in the intersection of ACT and medicine, and support the important mission of this group to integrated CBS with all aspects of medicine. I also hope to be influenced in return by the various experts and practitioners in this field to direct my own application of ACT in my practice. In short, by serving this board, I will be able to live one more step closer to my value of alleviating human suffering in compassionate ways and facilitate psychological flexibility as a powerful mechanism for providers and patients." 


Reza Hosseini Ghomi, M.D., M.S.E., for Member at Large:

"I first became interested in ACT when I completed the "Get Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life" workbook about 10 years ago after recovering from Hodgkin's Lymphoma and finding that somewhere along the line of treatment and recovery a huge amount of anxiety was unlocked. The workbook changed my life and dramatically altered my path. Ever since I have been developing my personal life and career aimed at total wellness and my goal has always been to return to ACT in a professional setting. I'm finally in a stage of training where I can appreciate ACT from the "other side". My goal has always been to work with the most severely ill and how to bring ACT to this population.

I became involved with the CM SIG after meeting Steve Hayes in 2013 while in medical school, at which point he made me aware of this resource. I've most enjoyed the international reach and community here and would like to promote the ACT/ACBS model across medicine, especially in psychiatry where we are often dominated by "biological" approaches." 


Direnc Sakarya, M.D., for Vice-President/President-Elect:

"I have had experience in practising psychiatry in different countries and cultures. I have been fascinated by eastern philosophy and ACT in the last years. I think there is a big potential in working on developing the communication between psychiatry and ACT, which would result in better care for patients/clients. Patient behaviour is an essential but generally underrated component of medical practice. Contextual medicine would provide a productive and reasonable ground for this purpose. I would be willing to work in this as good as I can and I hope to provide some contribution."