Heather Forouhar Graff, MD, is a staff psychiatrist and assistant team leader at the Austen Riggs Center. Dr. Forouhar completed her residency training at The Institute of Living in Hartford, CT, where she served as co-chief resident and was the recipient of the Boelhouwer Award for excellence in research, teaching, and leadership. She was the recipient of the Scott Schwartz Award (formally known as the Frieda Fromm-Reichmann award) for best original, unpublished paper on psychodynamic psychiatry, by a training resident. She has presented nationally on the nocebo effect in treatment resistance and on the value of process groups in the experiential learning of group dynamics in psychiatric residents. She has presented professionally on the narcissistic vulnerabilities of trainees and the subsequent obstacles to learning within the supervisor and supervisee dyad. Dr. Forouhar completed the two-year scholars program at The Western New England Psychoanalytic Institute in New Haven, CT. Dr. Forouhar is a cadidate at The Western New England Institute of Psychoanalysis.
Dr. Forouhar began her experience at Austen Riggs as a medical student doing research into the psychodynamics of medication non-responsiveness. As an undergraduate, she did research at The University of Chicago into the neural correlates of learning and memory in birdsong as a template for human language development. She began her advanced education in Fine Arts at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in painting with an interest in the perceptual phenomena of pattern recognition and the interaction of color. In addition to psychoanalytic studies, her current interests include the psychodynamics of groups and leadership.