Members of the Executive Board
Dr. Monique Swift, proprietor of Swift Solutions Consultant Services, LLC, is a psychologist, a NJ Licensed Professional Counselor, and a NY Licensed Mental Health Counselor. She has over 20 years of clinical experience in the field of mental health and operates a private practice in Rahway, NJ where she specializes in couple's therapy and trauma.
In addition to her clinical work, Dr. Swift also offers keynote talks, curriculum design, personal development workshops, and professional training. She consults with religious, community-based, and non-profit organizations, public and private schools, as well as with private groups. She offers Trauma-Informed Care consultation to organizations that want to become trauma-informed.
Dr. Swift is often involved in efforts toward racial social justice. She does extensive volunteer work which tends to either directly or indirectly benefit oppressed and under-served populations and typically involves grassroots and civic organizing, personal and community empowerment, and addresses issues of racial inequality, and racial trauma. Dr. Swift serves as a member of the Board of Advisors for Volunteers of America, the Newark Community Collaborative Board, Torchlight Educational Academy, and the Union County Juvenile Conference Committee under the Family Division of the Superior Court. Since 2014, she has served as an executive board member of the New Jersey chapter of the Association of Black Psychologist, where she currently serves as Chapter President.
Dr. Swift’s special interests include youth empowerment, race and social issues, and holistic health.
Dr. Barbara A. Prempeh received her Psy.D. in Clinical and School Psychology from Kean University, MA in Educational Psychology from Kean University, MA in Forensic Psychology from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and a BS degree in Psychology from her beloved undergraduate alma mater, Howard University. Dr. Prempeh is currently the Externship Program Coordinator of a doctoral-level psychology training program at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center. In addition to running the externship program, Dr. Prempeh provides psychological assessment and treatment to children who have experienced abuse and neglect and testifies in child abuse court cases as an expert witness.
Dr. Prempeh has worked for over 15 years with children, adolescents, and families providing assessments, crisis intervention, and therapy across multiple settings including school, hospital, community outpatient center, juvenile correctional facility, and residential treatment facility. Dr. Prempeh has conducted presentations at conferences and to organizations on numerous topics including, psychological disorders, the impact of trauma, juvenile justice, racial/cultural issues, resilience, and trauma-informed practices. Specifically, as a Consultant for Equal Justice USA, she is the co-developer and co-facilitator of a curriculum for police officers and community members in Newark, NJ that focuses on understanding trauma, Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), and trauma-informed responses. Dr. Prempeh also co-facilitated a training to teachers and administrators in the Newark public school system on school-based trauma-informed practices. In addition to her clinical experience, Dr. Prempeh has ten years of experience in academia teaching undergraduate and graduate psychology courses at Essex County College, the University of Texas at San Antonio, Kean University, and Montclair State University as an Adjunct Professor.
Dr. Crystal Molyneaux is a NJ Certified School Psychologist and graduate from the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology (GSAPP) at Rutgers University. Presently, Crystal works in Dr. Maurice Elias' Social-Emotional Character Development (SECD) Lab on the Students Taking Action Together (STAT) project, which has researched and developed materials embodying social action pedagogy and SECD for integration into middle and high schools throughout New Jersey. Crystal is passionate about social-emotional learning (SEL), restorative justice (RJ), empowering women and girls, decreasing systemic racism and oppression, amplifying student voice, creating and maintaining student support systems, while also using evidenced-based methods to build confidence. Her ultimate goal is for the work done with students and staff within the school to impact families and communities as a whole. In addition to working on the STAT project, Crystal has conducted research about students' perceptions of RJ with Dr. Anne Gregory. Crystal also works with students in group and individual settings to assist in self-awareness, self-efficacy and self-management in hostile/adverse situations. In an effort to keep youth who are disproportionately represented in juvenile justice systems off the school-to-prison pipeline, Crystal aids youth of minority backgrounds in discovering new and more adaptive ways to cope and express themselves. Not only does Crystal work with youth in schools to prevent entry into the school-to-prison pipeline, she also provides therapeutic services to adult individuals who were formerly incarcerated. Outside of her work, you can find Crystal with family enjoying activities such as attending basketball games, hosting movie nights, as well as attending concerts and the theatre.
Jennifer R. Jones
Dr. Jennifer R. Jones-Damis is a licensed psychologist in New York and New Jersey and a Licensed Professional Counselor in New Jersey. She is the Associate Director of Mental Health for the Young Adult (18-21) population at Riker's Island Correctional Facility, where she facilitates the mental health in the alternative to solitary confinement program.
Dr. Jennifer Jones-Damis is a licensed Psychologist in NY and NJ. She has focused her career on understanding and addressing traumatic stress and racial trauma in individuals and systems. Dr. Jones-Damis facilitates trainings and workshops for schools, organizations, and companies to
increase knowledge about the impact trauma and racial trauma has on mental health. Dr. Jones-Damis was the Associate Director of Mental Health for the Young Adult (18-21) population at Riker’s Island Correctional Facility where she oversaw the mental health aspect of the Alternative to Solitary Confinement Program. She was the Director of Mental Health for the largest jail in New Jersey Essex County Jail.
Currently she is the Associate Director of Clinical Services at Rutgers University.
Dr. Jones-Damis’ research interests focus on the disproportionality of Black students receiving exclusionary discipline in school systems and issues of the overrepresentation of Black youth in the juvenile justice system. Dr. Jones-Damis is an active participant with the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) and holds positions on the state and national boards of The
Association of Black Psychologists. Dr. Jones-Damis co-authored a chapter for the International Handbook of Student Achievement concerning issues of race and school discipline.
Immediate Past President
Joseph A. Connell, Sr.
Dr. Joseph A. Connell, Sr. is a pastoral counselor and an ordained minister with over 20 years' experience in the counseling profession. He earned his doctoral degree in counseling psychology with a concentration in neuroscience. His work is concentrated on integrating Christian faith and the disciplines of psychology. Dr. Connell is board certified through the American Association of Christian Counselors. His experience and research interests include the care of the clinically emergent patient, treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and anxiety disorders, and cognitive neuroscience.
Dr. Connell has lectured in universities and professional schools of psychology, medicine, social work, nursing, and theology, including the NYC & Connecticut Emergency Medical Services, the New York City Health & Hospitals Corporation, and the United States military. He is also on the board of directors of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of New Jersey, Inc., a national network of non-profit programs that advocate for children removed from their families because of abuse or neglect.
Dr. Joseph A. Connell, Sr. is also a licensed attorney, admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, United States Federal District Court, the Supreme Court of New Jersey, as well as the United States Southern and Eastern District Federal Courts of New York. His admission to the District of Columbia Bar is pending. He maintains both law and counseling practices in Toms River and Mt. Holly, New Jersey.