Courageous Conversations Series

An invite from Kentucky NASW 

Please join us in our second annual Lunch-time series: Courageous Conversations

This series will be about Child Loss: The Power of Grief


Date: Wednesday, September 22 

Time: 12:00-PM-1:00PM (EST) 

ZOOM: Presenter: Sarah Brandenburger, LCSW 

Topic: Prevention of Suicide and Homicide

Sarah Brandenburger, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, earned her Master’s degree from Northern Kentucky University with a focus in trauma informed care. Sarah has experience and training providing evidenced based treatment for individuals and families regarding depression, anxiety, interpersonal violence, child abuse and neglect and substance use disorder.Sarah exhibits tremendous passion in her work and is dedicated to partnering with people to help them improve the quality of their lives through building relationships, providing education, counseling and promoting self-advocacy. It is her goal to normalize discussion and access to mental health care in the United States of America. Sarah takes a collaborative approach to therapy by building on patients’ strengths to raise their awareness of ineffective behaviors and distorted thinking patterns. As a specialized trauma clinician, Sarah has education and experience in treating both children and adult populations using a variety of strengths based, person centered therapies including: Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Focused Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Motivational Interviewing and Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction.Sarah has been trained as a Nurturing Parenting programs facilitator and a Stewards of Children facilitator. Currently Sarah is employed by St. Elizabeth Physicians providing services to patients of the primary care office.

Sarah resides in Northern Kentucky and enjoys spending time with her children, a good podcast and a great cup of coffee.


Date: Wednesday, October 20 

Time: 12:00-PM-1:00PM (EST) 

ZOOM: Presenter: Christine Whelan 

A Mother’s Journey—One Step at a Time

Christine Whelan is a wife, mother, advocate and healer. As a medical massage therapist, she cares for the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs of her clients. As an advocate, she works hard to raise awareness and increase prevention of child sexual abuse and the mental health needs of children and adolescents. She serves on the Patient/Family/Employee Experience Committee with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and mentors other parents with children in crisis. For these efforts, Christine was recognized with the “Making a Difference” award from Cincinnati Children’s in 2018. Christine is a facilitator for the Stewards of Children training, which empowers adults to recognize the signs of child sexual abuse and reduce the risks to children. Most importantly, Christine is a wife to Mike and mother to Meg, Joe and Grace. Their family fought tirelessly for Joe’s life as he struggled with the effects of child sexual abuse. Joe died by suicide in September 2020. In their grief, Christine and her family continue to be intentional in the ways they care for themselves and the world around them.


Date: Wednesday, November 17 

Time: 12:00-PM-1:00PM (EST) 

ZOOM: Presenter: Renee Sartin, Ph.D. 

A Call to Action: Grief and Growth

Dr. Sartin studied Organizational Leadership with an emphasis on Higher Education at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix Arizona, and graduated with a doctorate degree in Education. She earned her Master's degree in Social Work from Kent School of Social Work at the University of Louisville, and her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Kentucky State University. Dr. Sartin retired after 25 years of service with the Cabinet for Health and Family Services as a Service Region Administrator (SRA) for the Salt River Trail Service Region. Her region included 17 counties and her responsibilities were to enhance organizational development of the region and ensure the effectiveness of the social welfare programs within the departments of child protection, adult protection services, foster and adoption recruitment, and TANF programs.
After retiring from the Cabinet, Dr. Sartin began her teaching career at the HBCU Kentucky State University, and is currently the BSW Site Director and lead instructor for Social Work Programs at Campbellsville University’s Louisville Campus, and has been for nine years. In addition, she serves as the Branch Chair of the Jefferson Region for the National Association for Social Workers (NASW).
Dr. Sartin loves teaching students because she wants to make a difference in their lives. However, later in life she realized the student’s made and continue to make a difference in her own life.