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 National Board of  Forensic Evaluators

NBFE News Page

Please note that as of the summer of 2020, NBFE discontinued its newsletter, but we continue to post newsworthy items here on our news page.  To view the archived newsletters page, click here.

  • 18 Jun 2022 1:05 PM | Aaron Norton (Administrator)

    The NBFE Board of Directors would like to honor our most outstanding and generous members. Today, we want to recognize the contributions of Dr. Tommy Black.  Dr. Black serves as the Chair of the Policies and Procedures Committee of NBFE and is a distinguished forensic evaluator with expertise in the following specialized forensic evaluation categories:

    ·  Child Abuse and Neglect 

    ·  Child Custody/Parenting 

    ·  Competence to Stand Trial 

    ·  Criminal Responsibility 

    ·  Disability 

    ·  Domestic Abuse/Violence 

    ·  Harassment and Discrimination 

    ·  Juvenile Justice 

    ·  Personal Injury 

    ·  Sexual Violence 

    ·  Substance Abuse/Addiction 

    ·  Suicidal Risk Assessment 

    ·  Violent Risk Assessment 

    ·  Workplace Violence  

    Dr. Black was first certified as a CFMHE in September 2005. Since then, he has been a contributor and a benefactor supporting NBFE with his testing acumen and his well of knowledge in the forensic arena.  Dr. Black has conducted a plethora of “on demand” webinars, providing our webinar attendees with outstanding forensic mental health information as well as producing revenue to aid in NBFE’s continuing educational programs.  


    Recently, he and Dr. Aaron Norton, NBFE’s Executive Director, and Valentino, our Administrative Assistant, have teamed up to update Phase I of our “Testing for Forensic Populations” training, which has enhanced our revenue stream, allowing us to continue providing quality training and certification for mental health professionals specializing in forensic evaluation.

    Additionally, Dr. Black has volunteered on numerous occasions for professional advocacy work, protecting the rights of all appropriately trained forensic mental health professionals to conduct forensic evaluations for the courts, administer and interpret psychological tests, and serve as expert witnesses in courts.  For example, Dr. Black and NBFE’s Executive Director are testifying for a senate committee hearing on whether counselors should access to psychological testing in response to a psychological association’s efforts to prevent counselors from fair and equal access.

    On the behalf of the NBFE Board of Directors, we thank you, Dr. Black!

  • 03 Jun 2022 12:08 PM | Aaron Norton (Administrator)

    On 6/3/22, Dr. Beverly Smith, President of the American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA), interviewed Dr. Aaron Norton, Executive Director of the National Board of Forensic Evaluators (NBFE), for AMHCA's "Perspectives" Vodcast on the topic of appropriately trained counselors specializing in forensic mental health evaluation.  Click here to watch the full video.

  • 28 Feb 2022 12:03 AM | Aaron Norton (Administrator)

    Counselor, a peer-reviewed professional magazine for addiction and behavioral health professionals, published an article authored by NBFE's President, Vice President, and Executive Director providing guidelines clinicians can use when clients present with medical cannabis use in mental health and substance use treatment settings.  Click here to read the full article, provided with permission from Counselor Magazine.

  • 04 Dec 2021 9:46 PM | Valentino Norton (Administrator)

    By Dr. Richard Stride

    Click here to access article. 

    My grandma on my mother’s side had a favorite saying: “what cannot be cured must be endured.”

    As a child, I never really liked it when she would tell me that because it usually meant I wasn’t getting what I wanted. I’ve been thinking about my grandma lately. I have to say the women in my family have always been very strong, sometimes stubborn, very practical and always — well mostly — no nonsense.

    My grandma, before she passed away, left all her grandchildren a little money and her life story. When I called to thank her for the money, she told me she wanted to give it all away before she passed.

    My grandmother had leukemia. She had already decided she didn’t want treatment. I never really knew why, but she didn’t. A few months later, on a Sunday morning as she was getting ready to go to church, she told my mom and my sister that she was tired and wanted to lie down.

    She laid down on her bed and passed away that morning a couple of hours later. My grandma — strong, level headed, stubborn, deeply religious — had outlived two husbands and raised seven children (my mom being the youngest). She was gone, just like that.

    Grandma was a child of the 1920s. She was born in Protection, Kansas, in 1914. She died in Grand Junction, Colorado, in 1990. She married my grandpa in September of 1931 when she was 17 and he was 28. She married during the Great Depression (1929-1933).

    My grandpa was a dairy farmer. He, my grandma and the children who were old enough milked the cows every morning and delivered milk to the surrounding community in the afternoon. My grandpa continued to deliver milk during the Great Depression, even to those who could not pay.

    My grandparents were not well off by any means, but they had food and they all worked.

    The saying, “what cannot be cured must be endured” is a quote from Robert Burton’s book “The Anatomy of Melancholy.” I never knew where my grandma got the quote until I discovered it in Burton’s book.

    As I thought about the quote, and what it might have meant to my grandma, I realized that my “no nonsense” grandmother never complained about anything. I mean literally, nothing.

    She was not always a glass half full person, but she never, ever looked at tragedy as the end.

    In her life story you got a peek behind the curtain of this no “hogwash” woman.

    As she is explaining the circumstances of her raising her seven children, she says, “even though I didn’t always say it I hope all my children realized how much I loved them.”

    She had a hard time expressing feelings and probably viewed the expression of feelings as weakness.

    I wish I could have told her that it’s OK to express what you feel, but I never got the chance. There is another memorable, deeply touching passage in her life story.

    The passage is about a mother mouse.

    As my grandmother tells the story, “mice were always a problem on the farm and in the farmhouse. We did our best to rid the house and farm of these nasty vermin. One early morning I was in the kitchen and noticed a mouse running across the floor. I went to get my broom to kill it. When I got my broom there it was again, scampering across the floor, but this time it had a baby mouse in its mouth. This little mother mouse paused, and just looked at me for a moment, as if to say, ‘go ahead do your worst,’ then it ran to the other side of the kitchen. I was astonished to say the least. But what happened next was even more astonishing. I watched as this little mother mouse run three more times across the floor and retrieve three more babies all the while looking at me. I couldn’t bring myself to kill it. I thought if this little mouse was brave enough to risk being killed to retrieve its babies, it deserved to live.”

    The story made me well up with tears as I envisioned this little mouse braving death, my grandmother standing there, broom at the ready, but stubbornly, and bravely, scampering across the floor time and time again to rescue her babies. My grandma, being the type of person that she was, admired bravery, perseverance, tenacity and hard work. It appears the little mother mouse reflected all of that to her. As I said, my grandmother rarely showed feelings, but here, from her own hand, was a rare glimpse of her caring heart.

    Now back to her favorite phrase.

    I see now that she used the phrase to convince herself that she could make it through anything. Extreme loss, horrific financial times, and at times, I am sure, struggles with depression. I find myself thinking about that phrase today in my own life. I take solace in the fact that sometimes I may not be able to do anything about some things I wish I could change. But just like grandma, I can endure it. Maybe you need to hear that as well.

    Maybe we all need to hear the message, “what cannot be cured must be endured.”

    It means you, me and everyone else will make it just like the little mother mouse if we endure. Persevere, keep going and don’t give up, even in the face or seemingly certain tragedy.


    Richard Stride is the current CEO of Cascade Community Healthcare. He can be reached at drstride@icloud.com.

  • 26 Aug 2021 12:11 AM | Aaron Norton (Administrator)

    The American Mental Health Counselors Association published an analysis comparing the graduate-level training of counselors, marriage and family therapists, social workers, and psychologists in The Advocate Magazine.  Authored by NBFE's Executive Director, Dr. Aaron Norton, the article demonstrates tremendous overlap between the mental health professions, thought to support a conclusion that all mental health professions should have an equal place in the forensic mental health area.  Click here to read the article. 

  • 10 Jun 2021 1:54 PM | Aaron Norton (Administrator)

    The American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA) and NBFE collaborated to create and publish a set of standards for knowledge and skills of mental health professionals specializing in forensic evaluations.  This publication is a historic event, marking the first occasion in which a national counseling association has established standards for the specialty of forensic evaluation.  The full copy of AMHCA's Standards for the Practice of Clinical Mental Health Counseling can be downloaded by clicking here (forensic evaluation standards can be found on page 38 through 40). 

  • 01 Jun 2021 11:14 PM | Aaron Norton (Administrator)

    Kimberly Soban, Ph.D., LPC, a Certified Forensic Mental Health Evaluator (CFMHE) credentialed by NBFE, was recognized in a recent Yahoo News article for her contributions to forensic mental health evaluation:

    "Soban is one of only four individuals in North Carolina — and one of only 122 in the country — to be certified through the National Board of Forensic Evaluators.  'You only have to look at the daily headlines and listen to the news to know the work she's doing is critical,' says MHA Director Ellen Cochran."

    Read the full article by clicking here.  

  • 10 Mar 2021 10:21 PM | Aaron Norton (Administrator)

    The National Board of Forensic Evaluators is pleased to announced that the Louisiana Counseling Association has now been added to our list of professional partners.  LCA members can now enjoy NBFE "members only" perks, such as free/complimentary attendance at select live NBFE webinar events, discounted "members only" rates for on-demand webinars and homestudies, and a discounted fee for the Certified Forensic Mental Health Evaluator (CFMHE) credential.  Keep your eyes peeled for announcements about joint NBFE-LCA training events in the future!

  • 09 Feb 2021 12:13 AM | Aaron Norton (Administrator)

    Dr. Rebecca Cowen, one of NBFE's Certified Forensic Mental Health Evaluators (CFMHEs), co-authored a study questioning whether the role of mental health problems in mass shootings has been underestimated.  Dr. Cowen and her colleague, Dr. Adam Lankford, conducted statistical analyses of 171 mass shooters from 1966 to 2019.  Their findings were published in the Journal of Threat Assessment and Management.  Read it by clicking here.  

  • 24 Jan 2021 4:07 PM | Aaron Norton (Administrator)

    Antisocial Personality Disorder and Opioid Use Disorder often co-occur, making differential diagnosis important.  In this article, Dr. Norman Hoffman (NBFE's President and Founder), Dr. Valerie Watt (NBFE's Vice-President and Chair of the Oral Examination Committee), and Aaron Norton (NBFE's Executive Director) collaborated on a unique article that funnels differential diagnosis of these two pathologies through a psychodynamic lens.  The article was published in the December 2020 issue of Counselor Magazine, a peer-reviewed professional magazine.  Click here to read it!

All webpages received an update on 11.19.23 

Time 11:48:34 PM EST 


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