Stories from the Founder: The Origins of TBRI®

The TBRI® Podcast | Season 1, Episode 8

We’re wrapping up season 1 of the TBRI Podcast with a conversation with Dr. David Cross all about the origins of TBRI and the history of the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development.

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Show Notes:

Linked References from this episode:

About our guest:

Dr. David Cross is the Rees-Jones Director of the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development and a Professor in the TCU Department of Psychology. Dr. Cross leads the Institute in its triple mission of research, education and outreach to improve the lives of children who have experienced abuse, neglect, and/or trauma. He has authored many peer-reviewed publications about issues regarding at-risk children.

Dr. Cross earned his B.S. from California State University Fresno with a major in Psychology, and then attended The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor for graduate study, beginning in 1980.  He earned an M.A. in Psychology and an M.A. in Statistics. He later earned a Ph.D. in Education and Psychology.  In 1985, he accepted a position as Assistant Professor in TCU’s Department of Psychology.

Dr. Cross, with his former colleague Dr. Karyn Purvis, co-authored “The Connected Child: Bringing Hope and Healing to Your Adoptive Family” to help adoptive parents understand the needs of children who have experienced trauma. “The Connected Child” continues to be a best-seller among adoption books. Together, Drs. Purvis and Cross created Trust-Based Relational Intervention® (TBRI®), a holistic, attachment based, trauma-informed, and evidence-based intervention for children who have experienced relational trauma.

Dr. Cross and his staff at the Institute regularly train professionals from around the world in TBRI®. The Institute is actively engaged in research that not only demonstrates the efficacy of TBRI® as an evidence-based intervention, but also in research about how to grow trauma-informed organizations and communities.

In addition to his responsibilities at the Institute, Dr. Cross has taught many TCU courses including Case Studies in Child Development, Generalized Linear Models, and Graduate Developmental Psychology.

Dr. Cross’s wife, Trudy, is a retired Kindergarten teacher and a practicing Grandmother.  He has two adult children, Jennifer and Nate.

About the host:

Sarah Mercado is a Training Specialist with the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development (KPICD). As training specialist, Sarah’s main focus is instructing professionals working with children who have experienced trauma, in Trust-Based Relational Intervention® (TBRI®). TBRI®, a holistic, attachment-based, and trauma-informed intervention designed to meet the complex needs of vulnerable children, offers practical tools for caregivers to help those in their care reach their highest potential.

Sarah earned her Bachelor’s Degree from Sweet Briar College in Virginia. She began her career as a direct care staff working with adolescent boys living in a Residential Treatment Center (RTC). After serving in the RTC for several years, she shifted her focus to foster care, where she was Regional Director for a foster and adoption agency.

Sarah spent 20 years serving youth and families within residential and foster care settings as a direct-care worker and trainer before beginning her work with the Purvis Institute in May 2016. Sarah lives near Austin, TX with her husband, AJ, and their two children.

15 Responses to “Stories from the Founder: The Origins of TBRI®”

  1. Ruth Velez

    Thank you for this amazing pod cast and information. I did not know that Dr. Karyn Purvis had passed, it broke my heart as she was an amazing woman. It is so encouraging to see how someone like her was able to give so much in her life that made such a huge impact!

  2. Julio Trujillo

    Thank you for sharing this, I’m new to this program, I’ve been working with Juveniles since 2014, Now I can better understand where they are coming from.

  3. Danny

    Thank you for the POD Cast. I am happy to be attending this program. I have been involved with juvenile corrections since 2011, Case Management,LCDC and Parole, this has been an amazing journey in it self. I have spent many a day Trying to figure out what makes these youth tick, what make them so angry, so defient. Many are so artiistic, amazing writers, but let others or their atitudes and beliefs get in thier way of being successful. Thank you for this program to help guide us in changing their lives, change thinking, feelings and emotions so they have the chance to be successful.

  4. Gena

    It is deeply affirming to see the TBRI work of healthy attachment and connection paving a pathway for trauma informed care. Theses principles are practical enough to be woven into daily practice, and profound enough to heal the human soul from hurts.

  5. Elizabeth Boston

    Great information on how TBRI began. I am excited about my course in June.

  6. Crizelda

    I too want to say thank you for this program. I thought I was just going to learn how to better deal with the incarcerated youths I work with. Instead, I found myself checking what I have done with my life, since I left my home at age18 running from a childhood full of trauma. I have always wondered if I knew enough to do enough to heal myself enough to not affect my clients, since deciding to be a counselor last 40 years. This program validated my traumas, as l read, as I viewed videos and as I listened to each podcast. This information inadvertently gave me feedback about what happened to me, what began and sat in therapy 5 years at age 40. Why I went on to be a counselor even though I started as a huge introvert at the beginning of this journey. I have been involved with juvenile corrections since 2010 doing LCDC. Thank you for shedding light and feedback to my journey and for giving me a space to talk about what happened and what I did about it. Thank you for being a beacon to trouble young soles, to me and to past, present and upcoming TBRI practitioners.

  7. Bishop Byron L. Smith Sr.

    Wonderful information! I am looking forward to the Trauma training next week.

  8. Bishop Byron L. Smith Sr.

    The information on TBRI was very enlightening and I looking to see how I can implement the training into the faith community and Veterans who are work with foster care. Thank you!

  9. Bishop Byron L. Smith Sr.

    Great insight on TBRI and assisting foster parents and around attachment opportunities.

  10. Bishop Byron L. Smith Sr.

    This podcast was very good! I love gaining insight on how TBRI great work with Dr. Karen Purvis come into fruition.

  11. Bishop Byron L. Smith Sr.

    It was great gaining insight on how TBRI can work around attachment issues and help with foster families.

  12. Bishop Byron L. Smith Sr.

    The work around TBRI has become a big inspiration towards me working with children and their family around trauma and trauma informed care.

  13. Tarasha Robinson

    TBRI is trauma informed care that I think should be a requirement if you work with children. This should not limited to people who work with children in hard places. The break down and function of this training is powerful.

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