New Member Spotlight: Christine (Chris) Bowerman, Ph.D.

1)  What is your background in psychology (e.g., education)?

My undergraduate studies were completed at California State University, Fresno, where I double-majored in Criminology, Law Enforcement emphasis (BS) and Psychology (B.A.). I was one of few students to be selected and inducted into the university’s first Criminology Honors Program, and graduated with highest honors. In 2008, I began my graduate career in forensic psychology at Alliant International University, Fresno. In 2010, I was awarded a Master of Arts (M.A.) in Forensic Psychology, and a Doctorate of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Clinical Forensic Psychology in 2013.

Throughout my academic years, I practiced and volunteered in a variety of forensic-based clinical practicum settings, pursuant to my dream of becoming an expert in the field of serial murderers and sexually violent predators.  These professional experiences included conducting an assortment of psychological assessments with the Fresno County Public Defender’s Office; assessing and treating sexual offenders on probation; evaluating and treating seriously mentally ill female offenders in a high security prison. During my final year of graduate school, I was selected to attend and completed my pre-doctoral internship at the Minnesota Sex Offender Program (MSOP) in Moose Lake, MN.

Upon completion of internship, I was advanced as an assessment psychologist at MSOP. During this time, I excelled in conducting psychological, psychosexual, neuropsychological, developmental and intellectual evaluations. Further, I provided treatment recommendations, diagnostic updates, crisis intervention, and phase assessments. I supervised and trained pre-doctoral interns in assessment tools and report writing; trained clinical teams in accurate and meaningful treatment planning, including differential diagnoses, individual client care, psychopharmacological management; and, assisted in statewide policy and curriculum edit and review.Throughout both undergraduate and graduate studies, I was heavily involved in research within psychological branches of the law and judicial system, e.g., law enforcement, corrections, criminal and mental illness resource sites (including domestic violence shelters, 5150-holds), gender and treatment in the legal system, and so forth. My doctoral dissertation, Consensual Sexual Sadomasochists and Sexual Offenders: An Analysis of Influential Characteristics, provided an opportunity to create and undertake an independent study using multiple assessment measures analyzing variables between community BDSM practitioners and convicted sexual offenders throughout central and northern California. My dissertation is available at 

2)  Describe your current occupation and any involvement in the Minnesota Psychological Association if applicable.

I am currently employed as an Employment and Educational Specialist for individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities. I further work as an SAT Rater/Constructed Response Scorer with Educational Testing Service. I recently fulfilled my position as IRB Coordinator and Reconditioning Specialist for 23rd Veteran, a nonprofit organization aimed at improving the lives of combat veterans upon their return to the United States. I continue to serve on 23rd Veteran Board of Directors. Currently, I am working toward establishing my own practice in conducting forensic evaluations and providing expert testimony, including but not limited to psychological, psychosexual, neuropsychological, developmental and intellectual evaluations, and risk assessment. I am not yet directly involved with MPA but look forward to the opportunities available, such as serving on one or more boards.

3)  What inspired you to pursue a degree in psychology?

I have always wanted to be involved in the psychological underpinnings of the judicial system. My focus and specialty lies with evaluating sexual offenders and levels of psychopathy. I am fascinated with human behavior – the causes and consequences of – and aiding in rehabilitation. Everyone has a story to tell, and I am endlessly curious to hear it and be of assistance in any role necessary. I have had the privilege of learning to conduct thorough, efficient, and accurate clinical and forensic evaluations from a variety of referral sources and addressing a vast array of referral questions. This is my passion.

4)  Why did you join the Minnesota Psychological Association?

I find it very important to get to know professionals in our field, particularly on a local and regional level. One can never have enough connections to consult with, learn from, teach to, and continue to encourage the highest level of competency, knowledge, and care. MPA provides access to many professionals whom I hope to become acquainted with, both professionally and personally, as well as a wide variety of trainings, volunteer and committee positions, and a common goal of uniting and bettering our mental health care system. All these pieces are of great importance to me, and to have access to them regularly and in “the area” provide for an abundance of opportunities for career advancement and enthusiasm.

5)  What do you hope to learn/gain from your new membership?

I always seek to attend workshops, trainings, and conferences to further my knowledge in various subfields of psychology. Of particular importance to me is networking: I believe our field is one that is small enough to really take advantage of knowing as many like-minded professionals as one can. I would like to serve on one or more MPA committees to assist in the promotion of our profession, give back to the community, and aid others in following their dreams and aspirations. 

6)  Any outside hobbies/interests you do not mind sharing?

I enjoy being out in nature, including fishing with my husband, Greg. I love to cook! With such, wine tasting and food-pairing is a true treat. I have traveled since I was very young and will never forget or forgo my love for visiting foreign lands and absorbing the beauty of different cultures, languages, foods, and so forth. I find great joy in painting on canvas, reading, meditating, and collecting, experimenting, and manifesting with crystals and essential oils!

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