Skip to Content

Agenda: BIAA-Maine Defining Moments in Brain Injury Conference 2022

Check out the sessions below at the 2022 Brain Injury Association of America-Maine Defining Moments in Brain Injury Conference. To register, visit:

Conference Agenda

7:30 – 8:00 a.m. Registration and Morning Refreshments
  Pick up your badge and program, and enjoy some coffee and morning snacks.

8:00 – 8:15 a.m. Conference Welcome
  Join us as we kickoff the 13th annual Defining Moments in Brain Injury Conference, presented by BIAA-Maine.

8:15 – 9:15 a.m. Keynote Address
  Let’s Talk About It: The Importance of Communication and Advocacy in Brain Injury Recovery
Kelly Lang
Kelly Lang, co-author of The Miracle Child: Traumatic Brain Injury and Me, has been both a brain injury survivor and caregiver for more than 20 years. She has served on the Board of the Brain Injury Association of Virginia, and is a member of the Brain Injury Association of America’s Brain Injury Advisory Council as well as the Virginia Brain Injury Advisory Council. Her advocacy experience includes working with the National Center on Advancing Person-Centered Practices and Systems’ Brain Injury Learning Collaborative, and serving as a member of the Traumatic Brain Injury Leadership Group and the Person-Centered Advisory Group.

In this keynote presentation, Kelly will share her family’s introduction to the brain injury world, and her unique perspective on the importance of effective communication in brain injury care. She will also explore how speaking up for her family’s care led her to speak out on a national scale, advocating for the care she feels her family and other individuals with brain injury deserve.

This presentation will include examples of both positive and negative outcomes of communication with medical providers, school administrations, and other professionals involved in brain injury recovery, along with tips to make conversations more beneficial for everyone involved. She will also share advocacy strategies to attain medical, educational, therapeutic, and job support needed to maximize recovery as well as quality of life.

9:15 – 9:30 a.m. Break

Grab a cup of coffee, connect with a colleague, or meet a new friend.

9:30 a.m. –  4:30 p.m. Youth Concussion Management Track (presented by Maine Concussion Management Initiative)
  Paul Berkner, D.O. and Katie Stephenson, Ph.D.
Level 1 and Level 2
Level 1 is an excellent opportunity to learn about the multitude of new advances in the realm of concussion recognition and management. Even the mildest trauma can have lasting effects, especially if it occurs during the formative middle school and high school years. Level 2 will cover the role of neurocognitive testing in concussion management.

It is intended that attendees participate in both levels 1 and 2 of the youth concussion management track.

9:30 – 10:30 a.m. Concurrent Session Block 1
  • Independence through Assistive Technology
    Jessi Wright, ATP, MBA
    What assistive technology devices are available to help brain injury survivors increase their independence? This session will provide an overview and demonstration of assistive devices and resources available for brain injury survivors. Learn how these devices can increase independence, open up new opportunities, and improve the quality of life for survivors.
  • Modern Stroke Care
    Robert Ecker, M.D., MBA, FAANS
    Neurosurgeon Robert Ecker, M.D. will share insights on stroke care, with a special focus on stroke in settings of acute trauma. Learn about current innovations and best practices in stroke treatment at this information-packed session.
  • A Primer on Special Needs Trusts and ABLE Accounts
    Rachel Trafton, Esq.
    Learn how special needs planning with trusts and ABLE accounts can maximize resources for individuals with disabilities and protect financial eligibility for means-tested public benefits like SSI and MaineCare. Topics include: who benefits from special needs planning, how to identify beneficiaries, identifying means-tested public benefits and eligibility criteria, and the differences between means-tested and non-means tested benefits. You will also learn about the types of special needs trusts, and the eligibility, mechanics, and limitations of the ABLE accounts.
  • Rebuilding a Meaningful Life after Brain Injury
    Alyson Maloy, M.D.
    After sustaining a brain injury, patients can be kept busy addressing numerous physical injuries. What can be overlooked by clinicians and patients is acknowledging the patient’s loss of the self that existed prior to the brain injury. In this talk, Dr. Maloy, who is board-certified in both neurology and psychiatry, will focus on the self-identity problems that can occur after brain injury and the ways clinicians can help patients reconstruct meaningful lives after experiencing this disruption.
10:30 – 10:45 a.m. Transition

Stretch your legs, visit with exhibitors, and head over to the next session.

10:45 – 10:55 a.m.

Lewis and Clara Lamont Brain Injury Advocacy Award

10:55 – 11:55 a.m. Beverley Bryant Memorial Lecture
  Rethinking Victory: How a Stroke Survivor Completed a Solo Thru Hike of the Appalachian Trail
Guy and Sue Pilote
There are so many unknowns when a loved one suffers a stroke. It can be easy to give up, coddle, or stifle a survivor’s recovery–even with the best of intentions. In this inspiring Beverley Bryant Memorial Lecture, learn how one couple went from catastrophe to victory, and how the attitude of a caregiver can positively or negatively impact a survivor.

As a police officer and firefighter in Lewiston, Maine for 25 years, Guy Pilote always took good care of himself. At the age of 49, after a three-mile run, he suffered a catastrophic left ischemic stroke. A large portion of the left hemisphere was damaged, and doctors were not sure whether he would be able to walk, talk, or use his right hand and arm again. After intensive therapy he proved them wrong: he regained limited speech and the use of his body, although he still has limitations with his right hand and experiences aphasia.

When Guy told his wife that he wanted to hike the Appalachian Trail, she was not at all surprised. She knew he had the determination, intelligence, and strength to complete the 2,190+ mile hike. He started in Georgia in April 2021, hiking an average of 12 miles a day. The trail ends on the summit of Mount Katahdin in Maine, and only one in four people make it all the way to the end. Guy reached the base of Mount Katahdin in October 2021, where he encountered dangerous snow and ice conditions and was unfortunately unable to complete the last 1.5 miles of the trail. However, he inspired many brain injury survivors with this amazing accomplishment and is here to share his story.

11:55 a.m. – 12:55 p.m. Lunch

Lunch is provided for all attendees. Take a break, enjoy delicious food, and network with fellow attendees.

1:00 – 2:00 p.m. Concurrent Session Block 2
  • Anxiety Disorders after Brain Injury
    Jen Blanchette, Psy.D.
    A brain injury can be a life-altering event, and the effects can last long after the initial injury has healed. One of the most common long-term effects of a brain injury is anxiety. Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress, but for people with a brain injury, it can be more intense and harder to control. Moreover, people with a brain injury are also more likely to develop other anxiety disorders, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or social anxiety disorder. The prevalence of co-occurring anxiety disorders after a brain injury underscores the importance of comprehensive treatment. During this talk, we will explore the treatment options and recommendations for mental health concerns after a brain injury. 
  • A Collaborative Approach to Community Resource Management Post-Acute Inpatient Rehab
    Carolyn Sarich, MS, OTR/L, CBIS and Katy Bizier, M.Ed.
    Join us for an inside look at the collaborative work between the Brain Injury Association of America – Maine Chapter and New England Rehabilitation Hospital of Portland to support our patients transitioning back into the community after inpatient rehab. Learn about neuro-resource facilitation activities, community resources, and how to incorporate supports into hospital-based treatment.
  • Strategies for Establishing Healthy Habits after Brain Injury
    Melissa Emmons and Jen Paquet
    The training manager for Healthy Living for ME and a Community Programs Coordinator for MaineGeneral Medical Center team up to provide practical strategies for issues that affect a healthy lifestyle, such as problem-solving, medication use, making informed treatment decisions, reading food labels, and managing challenging care partner behaviors.
  • When Can I Drive? An Overview of the Process and Resources for Returning to Driving after Brain Injury
    Heather Shields, OT
    How do you return to driving after a brain injury? What do you do if it is determined it is not safe for you to drive? This session will examine the evaluation process and list the steps needed to return to safe driving after a brain injury. Learn what to expect in the Clinic Evaluation and Driving Assessment, the adaptive equipment options available and how to finance them, community resources, and the importance of coordinating with your doctor and the Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles. If it is determined that it is not safe for you to drive, learn about community resources and transportation alternatives available.
2:00 – 2:20 p.m. Break
  Grab a cup of coffee, connect with a colleague, or meet a new friend.

2:20 – 3:20 p.m. Concurrent Session Block 3
  • Intensity of Aerobic Training in Brain Injury
    Cory Hall DPT, ATC, NCS
    What are the specific aerobic capacity deficits of individuals with brain injury? Learn about the indications and contraindications for aerobic exercise in individuals with acquired brain injury, and the modifications and feasibility of modifying exercise for individuals with varying levels of functional capacity. A case study that exemplifies a complex return to walking program will be reviewed.

  • Let’s Make a Scene: Use of Improv in Community Brain Injury Programs
    Craig Werth, M.Ed. and Kelly Redwine-DePierre, MS, OTR/L, CBIS
    Representatives of Krempels Center in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, will share their experience using “Improv” classes in their community of individuals living with brain injury. They will review the many benefits observed by staff and reported by members. This session will feature video and live demonstrations of improv to better illustrate its use. You will also learn how to facilitate an improv program at your facility.

  • Self-Determination in Maine and the Brain Injury Waiver
    Kirsten Capeless and Derek Fales, LSW, CBIS
    This session will focus on the expansion of self-direction, under the temporary standalone Appendix K to Maine’s Brain Injury Waiver, as a service delivery option. This training will be an introduction to self-direction. Participants will gain knowledge about the services under the brain injury waiver and those that can be self-directed and navigating the person centered planning process to choose self-direction. They will also leave with information on the authorization and monitoring of self-direction in Maine.
  • Neurobehavioral Issues & Strategies (Part 1)
    Pritesh Parbhoo, Psy.D.
    This session will explore the issue of challenges in engagement in a rehabilitation program. Topics include the different domains of noncompliance, and neurologically-based reasons that can influence behavior. (This is part 1: part 2 is scheduled for 3:30-4:30 p.m.).
3:20 – 3:30 p.m. Transition

Stretch your legs and head over to the next session.

3:30 – 4:30 p.m. Concurrent Session Block 4
  • Music & Neuroscience: Clinical Applications in Neurorehabilitation
    Brian Harris, MA
    This presentation will cover the impact of music on the human brain and its applications in neurorehabilitation. It will present the neuroscience foundation of music perception and how this research can be clinically applied to aid in the recovery of movement, language and cognition. The information will be presented through lecture, interactive demonstration and video examples.
  • Neurobehavioral Issues & Strategies (Part 2)
    Pritesh Parbhoo, Psy.D.
    In this follow-up to the previous session, Dr. Parbhoo will discuss ethical considerations relevant to neurobehavioral case management for brain injury patients. You will learn about intervention procedures likely to promote and maintain positive behavioral change, and the unique dynamics and complexities of substance misuse/dependency and barriers to recovery.
  • Pathways to Recovery – New Models of Care
    Christine Martin, MS, OTR/L, CBIS
    What are recovery options after brain injury? In this presentation, two brain injury survivors will share their stories of recovery. A clinician will then discuss continuum of care options, benefits of home and community-based rehabilitation services, and provide tips on advocating for alternative/new care options, along with tactics and strategies for support.
  • Puzzle Activity
    Navigating life post brain injury can be like finding puzzle pieces that you can’t see the picture for. Help us design and assemble a literal puzzle to help others find support as they navigate this journey.
4:45 – 6:45 p.m. Maine Acquired Brain Injury Advisory Council Public Hearing

Maine Acquired Brain Injury Advisory Council will hold a public hearing during the Brain Injury Association Annual Conference to receive information from persons with brain injuries, their families, rehabilitation experts, providers of services and the public to generate greater understanding of this growing public health issue. The ABIAC is seeking responses to the Council’s published priorities, the Brain Injury Waiver, and the unmet needs of persons with brain injuries and their families.  The council encourages written or spoken testimony during the public hearing. 

Contact Hours

Certified Brain Injury Specialists (CBIS/CBIST)

The Academy of Certified Brain Injury Specialists will recognize up to 6 hours of continuing education credit for attendance at the full conference.


The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine (UNE COM) is accredited by the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) and the Maine Medical Association (MMA) Council on Continuing Medical Education and Accreditation to provide continuing medical education for physicians. UNE COM has requested that the AOA Council on Continuing Medical Education approve this program for a maximum of 6.0 hours of AOA Category 2-A CME credits. Approval is currently pending.

UNE COM designates this educational activity for a maximum of 6.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM and 6.0 University of New England contact hours for non-physicians. Contact hours may be submitted by non-physician, non-PA health professionals for continuing education credits. 

Social Workers

This program has been approved for 6 Category A Continuing Education Credits by the National Association of Social Workers, ME Chapter.

Case Managers

This program has been pre-approved by The Commission for Case Manager Certification to provide continuing education credit to CCM® board certified case managers. The course is approved for 6 CE contact hour(s).


Nurses will receive a Certificate of Attendance for 6 contact hours.


The conference has been approved for 6 credit hours from the State of Maine Board of Examiners of Psychologists.

Certificate of Attendance

All attendees are eligible to receive a certificate of attendance.

For any questions regarding CE credits, contact