Deborah Bradbard serves as a Senior Research Associate at the IVMF where she focuses on veteran and military spouse employment as well as financial readiness. Previously, she served as the Director of Research and Policy at Blue Star Families and was one of the primary authors of the 2013 and 2014 Blue Star Families Annual Lifestyle survey whose results have influenced policy on mental health, military spouse employment, and military child education. The results of the survey and her work on financial literacy, have been cited by the White House, members of Congress, CNN, the Center for Deployment Psychology, and the Defense Center of Excellence (DCoE).
Dr. Bradbard frequently serves as a guest speaker for national conferences, educating providers, policy makers, and elected officials about the mental health needs of military families. She has been subject matter expert on national news programs such as MSNBC, Fox News, and NPR. Dr. Bradbard previously worked as a management consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton providing subject matter expertise and developing hands-on products focused on a variety of military mental health issues including PTSD, military sexual trauma, suicide, substance abuse, and traumatic brain injury.
Dr. Bradbard received her Ph.D in Counseling Psychology from Auburn University where she also completed specialized coursework and clinical training in marriage and family therapy.
Dr. Bradbard has worked in a variety of settings including community mental health, providing counseling and forensic assessment to court involved families. She also served as Director of the Norfolk Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Victim and Witness Assistance Program working with victims of violent crime and developing community based partnerships on behalf of crime victims.
Dr. Bradbard is a small business owner where she consults with nonprofits, universities, and corporations on a variety of military family issues including mental health, veteran and military spouse employment, and program development and evaluation. Dr. Bradbard also is an affiliated faculty member at George Mason University where she has assisted in developing resources to train educators to work more effectively with military families and children in the classroom.
Along with her family, she has experienced 15 military moves including PCS moves to both Germany and Japan. Dr. Bradbard’s husband completed his eighth operational deployment in 2012 and retired from the US Navy in 2014. She is personally familiar with the challenges of the military lifestyle, military spouse employment, military transition, and the emotional impact of deployment on families.