Who Are We
EDAM is a network of like-minded people and organizations dedicated to promoting health and wellness at every size, body acceptance, and the prevention of eating disorders and disordered eating throughout Maine. We provide identification of resources, training, education, awareness, and support for individuals, families, treatment providers and communities throughout the state. EDAM wishes to offer hope, help and support to all who are impacted by eating disorders.
Mary O’Rear, the Executive Director of Mainely Girls, noticed in her work related to promoting girls’ success that she often heard stories of girls who struggled with eating disorders. She recognized that this struggle was very common among both girls and boys, and could quickly become an obstacle to living a full, healthy and rewarding life for many. The issue of eating disorders became a central part of her work at Mainely Girls, and Mary focused time and effort into joining together professionals who work with eating disorder to form collaborative treatment teams. Because eating disorders are complicated and often come with complex medical, mental health, and nutritional issues, Mary understood the importance of collaborating among treatment providers about their shared clients. Today, thanks to Mary’s leadership, there are treatment teams throughout Maine, and people with disordered eating are well-supported by medical professionals, mental health counselors, and registered dieticians. Mary’s energy and passion was contagious, and in 2012, a group of like-minded individuals formed EDAM.
The Need for the Eating Disorder Association of Maine
An estimated 10 million females and 1 million males are battling eating disorders according to the Centers for Disease Control and the National Eating Disorders Association. Anorexia nervosa has the highest fatality rate of any mental illness in the country.
- 40% of newly identified cases of anorexia are in girls 15-19 years old, and the incidence continues to increase.
- The mortality rate associated with anorexia is 12 times higher than the death rate of all other causes of death for females 15-24 years old.
- Only 30% of people with anorexia receive mental health care.
- Only 6% of people with bulimia receive mental health care.
- Intervention and treatment within the first 6 months of developing disordered eating is crucial and is associated with better recovery outcomes.
- In Maine, there are no residential treatment centers that specialize in treating disorders, and there is one program that provides intensive outpatient and partial hospitalization—the New England Eating Disorders (NEED) Program at Mercy Hospital in Portland.
- Many medical and mental health providers in Maine are not aware of the resources and treatment options available, are isolated from other providers with whom they may collaborate, and could benefit from more training and experience in the treatment of eating disorders.
- Teachers, coaches, guidance counselors, college professionals, and other concerned adults who work with children and young adults are aware of the prevalence of eating disorders, but are unsure of how to respond. They could benefit from collaboration with others, especially in the areas of prevention, screening and early intervention.
- Primary Care Physicians, Pediatricians and other health professionals are challenged by knowing mental health providers or registered dieticians who specialize in eating disorders treatment.
- There is a lot of confusing and incorrect information circulating about healthy eating, obesity, exercise, and other eating and weight issues that may influence a person’s eating behaviors and distorted thinking. Our nation’s “war on obesity,” diet mentality, and thin ideal is a primary and constant factor in the development of eating disorders.
Meet the EDAM Board Members
Kathleen Hart, Ph.D., President
Kathleen received her doctorate from Boston College and trained in clinical psychology at Boston Children’s Hospital and The Cambridge Hospital. Dr. Hart completed her Predoctoral Internship at The Children’s Hospital of Colorado. She also worked at Bethesda Hospital, Colorado both on the adult Eating Disorders and Substance Abuse units. Now in private practice, Dr. Hart works with teens and adults with eating and anxiety disorders using behavioral treatments including: Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT), Cognitive-Behavior Therapy (CBT), Family Based Treatment (The Maudsley Method) and Mindfulness Training. In addition to her clinical work, Dr. Hart devoted a portion of her career to research. She studied the relationship between parental attachment, sex roles and eating disorders. Her findings are published in the Journal of Psychological Assessment, Journal of Counseling and Clinical Psychology and the Journal of Sex Roles.
Patrice Lockhart, MD, Vice President
In October 2014 Dr. Patrice Lockhart was unanimously voted onto the board of directors for EDAM. Patrice brings a a strong and unique presence to the board with nine years experience as the Medical Director of the New England Eating Disorders Program at Mercy Hospital. Patrice is passionate about treating those with eating disorders and educating and empowering parents to set appropriate safety boundaries for their children. She is a faculty / staff consultant to the Hyde School in Bath, ME and maintains a private practice in psychotherapy and medication management in Gorham, ME. Patrice hopes to bring coordination of care options and evidenced based, congruent education efforts throughout the state of Maine. “I hope to offer my knowledge and experience in treating eating disorders and become more accessible as a resource to practitioners, patients and the community at large.”
Trisha Brink, LCSW, Treasurer
Trisha is an outpatient therapist at her private practice location in Portland, Maine. She began working with eating disorders during her internship at the New England Eating Disorder program over 10 years ago and has been active in the eating disorders community since. Trisha is a member of the Portland Collaborative Treatment Team and partners with other treatment providers in the community who treat eating disorders. She also participates in a DBT consultation team affiliated with DBT Maine and has co-facilitated DBT groups for both adults and adolescents which she integrates into the treatment of eating disorders. Trisha joined the board of EDAM to advocate for awareness, prevention and improved treatment efforts throughout the state.
Wendy Kjeldgaard, PsyD, Community Outreach Coodinator
Dr. Kjeldgaard is a clinical psychologist who works at the Bates College Health and Counseling Center and is a principal at Smith, Kjeldgaard and Hayes. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at the University of Massachusetts/Amherst and her post-doctoral fellowship at the Cambridge Eating Disorder Center. She has served as the eating disorders treatment specialist at the Johns Hopkins University Counseling Center as well as at Bates College. Dr. Kjeldgaard has spent much of her career thus far providing psychotherapy to individuals with eating disorders, offering specialized trainings in eating disorder treatment to mental health and medical practitioners and developing outreach events and projects on college campuses on the topic of eating disorders. She joined the board in 2014 because of her desire to continue to educate the public, develop more treatment options and advocate for individuals with eating disorders in her home state of Maine.
Amy Taylor, RD, Secretary
Amy Taylor is a registered dietitian who has specialized in eating disorders for over 20 year. Her private practice is located in Portland, ME. Amy also worked at the New England Eating Disorders Program for over fifteen years. Amy supports Health at Every Size as a treatment method to overcome compulsive and binge eating behaviors.
EDAM is actively recruiting Board Members. If you are interested in serving on the board, please contact EDAM at email@example.com. We are a very active and engaged board, and would love to have you add your talents and passion to this worthwhile association.