The Riggs Blog

Dr. Jane Tillman Has Been Selected as the Next Director of the Erikson Institute

Following a national search, Jane Tillman, Ph.D. has been selected as the next Evelyn Stefansson Nef Director of the Erikson Institute for Education and Research.  Dr. Tillman is a board certified clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst. Medical Director/CEO James Sacksteder, M.D. comments “we were most fortunate to have a diverse field of finalists but in the final analysis, the selection committee deemed our own Jane Tillman as the best individual to steward the Erikson Institute into a new and exciting chapter.”

Dr. Tillman came to the Austen Riggs Center in 1995 and completed a four-year fellowship in psychoanalytic psychology.  Dr. Tillman has been a valued psychotherapist, supervisor and teacher and has served in various capacities including the manager for clinical and organizational evaluation and clinical team leader.

Dr. Tillman is the principal investigator on an externally funded study, States of Mind Preceding a Near Lethal Suicide Attempt.  Her research interest on suicide has led her to direct the Erikson Institute’s research laboratory on Suicide and Self-Destructive Behaviors.  Active in many professional organizations, Dr. Tillman serves on the Accreditation Council for Psychoanalytic Education’s Board of Trustees, is the chair of the Ethics Committee for Division 39, and serves on the editorial boards of Psychoanalytic Psychology as well as the Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association.  Dr. Tillman earned her undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and M.Div. from Duke University, and a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville.  She is a graduate of the Berkshire Psychoanalytic Institute.

Founded in 1994, Riggs’ Erikson Institute was named after the humanist-psychoanalyst, Erik Erikson, who was a member of the Austen Riggs Center staff in the 1950s and 70s.  With a mission to promote training and research in psychodynamic thought and treatment, the Erikson Institute provides funding for special scholars and seminars and fosters expansion of the work at Riggs to include aspects of human development and larger social issues. 

Dr. Tillman will assume her new role on July 1 as M. Gerard Fromm, Ph.D. retires as director having served in that capacity since 2002.  Well respected for his thoughtful and visionary leadership, Dr. Fromm forged a path for the Erikson Institute exploring issues at the nexus of social and human behavior. Under Dr. Tillman’s leadership, the Erikson Institute will continue to develop a range of educational offerings, an extensive research program and a consultation service.

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