• 25 Feb 2024
  • 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
  • zoom


  • Suggested Donation of any amount to go towards conference scholarship funds



This sneak preview will feature three of our pre-conference events. Geri Chavis and Barbara Kreisberg will give us more details about the exciting Day Trip that they have planned for us at the National Portrait Gallery USA/Smithsonian American Art Museum. Peggy Osna Heller and Sherry Reiter--both considered master mentors—will give us an enticing glimpse into the subject matter of their pre-workshops. We will take a short but captivating adventure of the mind as Peggy introduces us to her subject “Strangers in A Strange Land: Finding Home with Poetry Therapy.” And Sherry will delve into “Life Lessons from Mermaids, Monsters, and Immortals.” Both workshops involve discussion and short “writes.”

Bring your metaphorical compass, your poetic GPS, and your hope that what you know now will help to prepare you for the unknown. If you are a word artist, you will call on all your skills that express what is subtly taking form in your consciousness as you begin to make your way. If you are a seeker of learning in the field of poetry therapy, this workshop will be a fun-filled experience.

  • When: February 25, 2024
  • Time: 2:00pm-3:30pm EST
  • Where: Zoom
  • Members and Non-members - Suggested Donation of any amount to go towards conference scholarship fund
  • Facilitators: Geri Chavis and Barbara Kreisberg, Peggy Osna Heller, and Sherry Reiter


Geri Chavis, CPT, LP, PhD, CM is a certified mentor, certified poetry therapist, licensed psychologist, and literature professor emerita at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota. She has published numerous articles, reviews and three books related to biblio/poetry therapy, two of which are required texts for individuals pursuing biblio/poetry certification: Poetry and Story Therapy: The Healing Power of Creative Expression and The Healing Fountain: Poetry Therapy for Life’s Journey, co-edited with Lila Weisberger. Geri has served as president and board member of the National Association for Poetry Therapy, has won numerous awards including NAPT’s Lifetime Achievement and Pioneer Awards, presented a wide variety of workshops, and taught interdisciplinary courses within the U.S., the Republic of Ireland, and UK. She has developed and taught courses for trainees in Poetry Genre; Literature of Other Genres (with thematic focus on Marriage and Family Relationships); and more recently, Creative Writing.

Barbara Kreisberg, MS, CPT has served on the NAPT Board as Vice President and Conference Chair.  She is a contributing author of The Healing Fountain. She has worked for over 25 years in both Boston and Miami with a variety of inpatient and outpatient populations in the area of mental health using reflective writing and poetry therapy to promote personal growth and wellness. She has presented workshops at NAPT conferences, local universities, hospitals, cancer support  groups and other community settings on the healing power of writing reflectively using poetry therapy and journal writing techniques. She currently facilitates ongoing writing groups in her community in Miami, FL. In 2014 she received the Outstanding Service Award. In 2019 she received an award In Appreciation of 5 Years as NAPT Vice President and Conference Chair. In 2022, she received the Luminary Award for Lifetime Achievement.

Peggy Osna Heller, PhD, LCSW-C, PTR, social worker, clinical poetry therapist and master certified mentor, served as president of the National Association for Poetry Therapy, the NAPT Foundation, and the National Federation for Biblio/Poetry Therapy. She was staff biblio/poetry therapist at Psychiatric Institute, Mt. Vernon and Dominion hospitals, has taught poetry therapy in universities and as co-director with Kenneth Gorelick, MD of the Wordsworth Center for Growth and Healing. Peggy is author of professional journal articles and co- author of chapters in Life Guidance Through Literature and The Healing Fountain. She co-edited with Carol Thayer Cox Portrait of the Artist as Poet. Her poetry therapy memoir, Word Arts Collage was published by Pudding House in 2009. She founded the Last Friday Play Reading Club, the Over the Speed Limit Memoir- Writing Group, and the Second Sunday of the Odd Month Community Poetry Gathering. A member of Potomac Village Community, she tutors fellow elders in computer skills. Peggy practices psychotherapy and poetry therapy in Potomac, Md.

Sherry Reiter, Phd, LCSW,PTR-M/S is a poet, clinical social worker, and creative arts therapist. She is Director of The Creative “Righting” Center, mentoring poetry therapists nationally and internationally. Dr. Reiter is an Associate Professor of Speech and Psychology at Touro College and teaches Poetry and Drama Therapy at Hofstra University. In 2010, she was voted Teacher of the Year for Touro College & University. She is the creator of Poets-Behind-Bars. Dr. Reiter is editor and co-author of Writing Away the Demons: Stories of Creative Coping Through Transformative Writing and Twice Chai: A Jewish Road to Recovery. She is recipient of numerous awards for her pioneering work in the field of poetry therapy. Dr. Reiter is past president of The National Association for Poetry Therapy and The International Federation for Biblio/Poetry Therapy and is currently Chair of Education for NAPT

Her online resources in bibliotherapy:

"NAPT" The National Association for Poetry Therapy

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