Meet Valerie Porr, MA
Ms Porr is the Founder and President of the Treatment and Research Advancements National Association for Personality Disorder (TARA4BPD), a non for profit organization founded in 1995. TARA is a research, advocacy and education organization focusing on people with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), their loved ones, the clinicians treating BPD and the researchers trying to decipher it.TARA is the oldest international not for profit education and advocacy organization representing consumers, families, clinicians and researchers affected by Borderline Personality Disorder
Valerie Porr is the author of the award winning book (ABCT) Overcoming Borderline Personality Disorder, A Family Guide to Healing and Change, Oxford University Press, co-author of New Hope for People with BPD, (Bockian, N, Porr, V 2002 ) Ms. Porr co-edited the Borderline Personality Disorder Journal of the California Alliance of the Mentally Ill, ,andhas published numerous articles on family experiences and BPD advocacy issues. She is the recipient of the ISITDBT, International Society for the Improvement and Teaching of DBT, 2001 Service Award.
Ms. Porr, intensively trained in Dialectic Behavior Therapy (DBT) and Mentalization Based Therapy (MBT), is the developer of The TARA Method, a principle-based family psychoeducational program. (FPE) based on evidence-based treatments such as DBT and MBT that teaches family members how to help their loved ones with BPD while helping themselves.. She has conducted family psychoeducational seminars and Family Survival Skills Workshops implementing the TARA Method for well over 2000 family members of people with BPD. Ms. Porr trains family leaders, speaks at family and professional conferences nationally and internationally, and has coordinated BPD research conferences with the support of the NIMH.
For nearly two decades Ms. Porr suprvises operation of TARA's National Helpline for BPD that provides callers with information and referrals to experienced, evidence based clinicians specialized in treating BPD. She has interviewed thousands of Helpline callers and collected data such as the caller’s age, age of onset of the disorder, history of diagnosis, history of treatment including number of hospitalizations or suicide attempts, along with other pertinent information. As she refers callers to treatment, she is aware of available BPD programs, their reputations, available openings and wait lists. Operation of TARA’s Helpline allows her to take the national BPD pulse, providing her with a window into the treatment and diagnosis experience of callers in communities across the country, the severe lack of services in most communities, the length of time between initial awareness of symptoms and the eventual diagnosis of BPD, and the difficulties faced by families and clients searching for appropriate BPD treatment. The information TARA provides is always based on current research findings. She answer questions with science based responses.
Valerie Porr advocates locally and nationally for improved treatment and increased research funding for those suffering with BPD. Ms.Porr has been a public participant grant reviewer for the National Institute of Mental Health. She is also a teacher, artist-designer and a successful businesswoman