Mary Jo Harwood, MSW, LSW, is a licensed social worker and owner of Resilience Resources, LLC. She has over 30 years of professional experience working with families, individuals and school communities. Mary Jo’s clinical expertise is built on a foundation of diverse and comprehensive professional experiences, including oppositional defiant and conduct disordered youth. She also has extensive experience working with traumatized youth impacted by accidental deaths and suicide, inner city violence, child abuse, homicide, sexual assault and domestic violence.
Mary Jo began her professional career as a special educator. Her classroom was comprised of students with a variety of challenging behaviors. She devised and implemented classroom procedures and intervention techniques that addressed skill deficits, emotional regulation, problem-solving and appropriate peer interaction. As a school social worker, Mary Jo assessed, diagnosed, provided classroom consultation and clinical treatment to students who manifested behaviors that were barriers and disruptive to academic achievement and detracted from acquisition of age appropriate social skills. As a trauma specialist working with victims and witnesses of violence and crime, Mary Jo utilizes assessment and intervention strategies that address the impact of trauma on youth who manifest challenging behaviors. Her primary focus is teaching pro-social and replacement behaviors that can be transferred to daily living skills, easily monitored by educational staff, parents and care-givers.
Mary Jo has developed and delivered trainings on creating trauma informed classrooms. She has presented nationally and internationally on the impact of trauma on learning and communities thriving. Mary Jo has also consulted and implemented Restorative Justice Programs/Practices for educational and juvenile justice systems. Restorative Justice Practices provide opportunities for repairing harm, developing empathy and building healthy relationships as an alternative to suspension and punishment for adolescents.