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Katara Watkins-Laws, PhD

Clinical Psychologist
Specialty Population(s): Children, Adolescents, Young adults
Specialty Area(s): Psychoeducational and Comprehensive Psychological Evaluations, Forensic Evaluations

Dr. Watkins-Laws is a licensed psychologist in the District of Columbia. She earned an doctorate in Counseling Psychology from Howard University.  She also holds a Graduate Certificate in Working with Survivors of Trauma and Torture from the University of Maryland.  She completed her predoctoral internship at Lawrence Hall Youth Services/Therapeutic Day School in Chicago, IL. Dr. Watkins-Laws has primarily worked with children and adolescents in the Washington, DC area for approximately 10 years, conducting therapy, psychological and forensic assessments (e.g., competency to stand trial, risk for violent or sexual re-offending). Currently, Dr. Watkins-Laws also supervises graduate students in clinical assessment and psychotherapy.

Her research interests are related to the impact of trauma and victimization on systems involved children and adolescents.  She has presented at multiple professional conferences and has authored and/or co-authored articles in peer-reviewed journals, which include the NSHA Dialog, The Journal of Negro Education, and Psychology and Public Policy, and Law.  Dr. Watkins-Laws was previously a research intern in the Research Initiative for Student Enhancement program (RISE) at Kennedy Krieger Institute Family Center and John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland and was a federal intern at Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) in the Office of Policy and Political Planning in Rockville, Maryland.

In addition to her clinical work and research, Dr. Watkin-Laws has a passion and interest for providing education and consultation about recognizing and addressing mental health disorders in children and within families. She presented at several community and church events on topics related to reducing stigma related to mental illness and improving communication and connections within families.