Dr. Mark C. Russell, PhD, ABPP, is a recently retired U.S. Navy Commander and military clinical psychologist with over 26 years of military service. He is an Operations Enduring and Iraqi Freedom veteran with numerous awards, including the Navy’s Meritorious Service Medal, Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal (with 3 Oak Leaf clusters), Navy Achievement Medal (with 2 Oak Leaf clusters), and the 2006 “Distinguished Psychologist Award” from the Washington State Psychological Association for his persistent efforts to improve military mental healthcare.
As a top recognized military expert on war stress injuries, Dr. Russell was called upon to testify before the congressionally-mandated 2007 Department of Defense (DoD) Task Force of Mental Health regarding his efforts to prevent a military mental health crisis, as chronicled by USA Today. His views proved prescient, as evidenced by ongoing news reports of problems encountered by veterans seeking help, and how their unhealed trauma may also be responsible for acts of violence. Dr. Russell was the first EMDR trainer in the Department of Defense (DoD), conducting consultation for DoD practitioners and EMDR therapy trainings, including one for the U.S. Army’s 113th Combat Stress Control Unit deployed to Afghanistan last year.
Dr. Russell’s publications include articles on EMDR therapy with battlefield evacuees at a field hospital for combat-related acute stress disorder and PTSD, and the treatment of military outpatient clients. Outcomes included clinically significant changes of PTSD and depression symptoms after four to eight sessions, even if wounded in action. Dr. Russell currently chairs the PsyD program at Antioch University Seattle, where he is researching war stress injuries and compassion fatigue in collaboration with several military agencies.