Pamela Joy Miller
Pamela Joy Miller
|Born||March 17, 1983|
|Citizenship||United States of America|
|Known for||Expertise on child sexual abuse and child torture in families|
|Spouse(s)||Robert Del Vicario|
Pamela Joy Miller is an American clinical social worker, attorney, social reformer, and child abuse advocate associated with APSAC’s Center for Child Policy. Miller is considered a national expert on child maltreatment.
Miller currently serves as a senior policy analyst for the Center for Child Policy. Miller has previously worked for Lighthouse Youth Services, Children's Law Center, Homefull and others. She also founded The Children's Justice Project, a two-year action research project that provided economic assistance and food security to children in the public mental health system. Miller is known for her work in social welfare-related projects and has actively worked on issues of child maltreatment, sexual abuse, and child torture in families.
Early life and education
Miller was born in Pittsburgh, PA and was raised in Oxford, Ohio. During her childhood, she became an accomplished pianist and vocalist and appeared in music theater. She graduated from Miami University, cum laude, with a B.A. in philosophy. Miller scored in the 99th percentile on the LSAT and was immediately recruited by top-10 law schools. She chose to attend the Ohio State Moritz College of Law where she accepted the Moritz Merit Scholarship. Her studies focused on child welfare law. She eventually transferred to the University of Cincinnati and completed her joint law degree in 2009. She spent a year training in child welfare administration, and a year training to be a psychotherapist for children at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Department of Psychiatry.
After graduation, Miller moved to Washington D.C. and worked as an administrator in the public mental health system, and as a volunteer attorney for Children's Law Center. She joined Threshold Services and implemented a pilot program in coordination with Melinda Fox of the Dartmouth Research Institute. Miller represented children in D.C. family courts as Attorney-Guardian ad litem, and in education law matters, such as IDEA manifestation hearings and IEP conferences, ensuring protections for children with emotional disturbance.
In 2012, Miller moved to California and worked for Legal Aid, representing abused women and children seeking Civil Protection Orders (restraining orders). She eventually moved back to Cincinnati and engaged in intensive training to be an Early Childhood Psychotherapist. She began working as a psychotherapist for young children in foster care, using play-based interventions to treat the sequelae of sexual abuse, child torture, and other severe trauma. She was trained by Dr. Bruce Perry in the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics, and by Dr. Judith Cohen to become certified in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT). Miller became a Certified Trauma Practitioner by the National Institute for Trauma and Loss in Children and trained in Theraplay, PCIT/CARE, and Child-Centered Play Therapy. She developed a specialty in testifying in dependency court about sexual abuse disclosures in young children.
From 2016 to 2020, Miller served on the Board of the National Association of Social Workers Ohio (NASW Ohio) and Director of the Southwest Ohio Region, including chairing their Political Action for Candidate Endorsement Committee, and coordinating fundraising, event planning, and continuing education for social workers.
In 2017, she became active with American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC). Miller joined their Amicus Committee and contributed to briefs filed with the U.S. Supreme Court. She also co-authored several policy briefs, and the official statement of APSAC regarding family separation at the U.S./Mexico Border. In 2019, Miller appeared at Senate Briefings in D.C. and co-authored the briefing book provided on the trauma of family separation at the border. In 2018, Miller became the subject of a media blitz in Cincinnati after she posted on Facebook that she had witnessed the police remove an apparently homeless man from a cafe unnecessarily. Miller stated that the man was sleeping and drinking water in the cafe, on a day where it was over 90 degrees outdoors. The police refused to allow Miller, who identified herself as a social worker, to give the man information about homeless shelters and cooling centers. The post went viral after it was shared by a member of Cincinnati City Council. Miller was subjected to harsh criticism and threats by supporters of the restaurant owner and police. After an officer's body-cam footage was released, the media concluded that the police had been absolved of any wrongdoing. But, Miller noted that the entire scene was not displayed on the single officer's camera, and she stood by her statement that the sleeping man was surrounded by 4 police officers and put out in dangerously hot weather unnecessarily. Miller has also appeared in the news advocating for pedestrian safety and advocating on behalf of a public official who later sued for gender and sex discrimination.
In 2018, Miller was invited to join a national expert panel for APSAC's Center for Child Policy and was eventually hired as their Senior Policy Analyst. She also chairs the work group on child torture in families, and has written papers on mandated reporting of child abuse and retaliation against mandated reporters.
Pamela Joy Miller speaks frequently at conferences and industry events on the topics of child abuse and maltreatment. She has published numerous white papers and two single-author peer-reviewed journal articles.
Award and recognition
- 2020- Awarded for Outstanding Service to Social Work, NASW Ohio
- 2019- Chosen to give the Hennon-Joseph Memorial Lecture at Miami University
- 2019- Awarded for Outstanding Service to NASW.
- 2018- Certificate of Award for providing Outstanding Education on Child Sexual Abuse to community partners; Lighthouse Youth & Family Services
- 2018- Featured in Union Leader Spotlight for leadership in the field of Social Work, Union Institute and University
- 2018- Honored and asked to speak as Distinguished Alumni, Miami University Department of Philosophy
- 2018- National expert on child maltreatment by APSAC's Center for Child Policy
- 2018- Cited by a project of the American Psychiatric Association's Foundation for her trainings in Trauma-Informed Care
- 2017- President’s Award as Regional Director of the Year, National Association of Social Workers Ohio
- 2015, 2013, 2012- Capital Pro Bono Honor Roll for donating 50+ hours of free legal services to low-income clients, D.C. Access to Justice Commission
- 2006- Bergstrom Fellowship, University of Michigan College of Law
- 2005- Moritz Merit Scholarship, Ohio State Moritz College of Law
Miller has authored many articles and whitepapers. Below are some of her selected publications
- Miller, P.J. (2020). "Intrafamilial child torture: Training mandated reporters". American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC Advisor, Issue 1). Retrieved 27 May 2020.
- Piper, K., Vandervort, F., Miller, P.J., Devoe, E., Henry, J. (2019). Policy Brief: Children’s presence in court during child protection hearings: Empowering or re-traumatizing? American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children, Center for Child Policy.
- Piper, K., Vandervort, F., Miller, P.J., Devoe, E., Henry, J.. (2019). Policy Brief: The role of the child’s attorney in child protection proceedings: When to advocate a child’s best interest vs. expressed wishes. American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children, Center for Child Policy.
- Miller, P.J. (2019). Research to practice brief: The prevention of child maltreatment through the nurse-family partnership. Republished in Stormer, B. (Ed.) The 2018 Research to Practice Brief Compendium. American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children.
- Miller, P.J. (co-author and editor) (2019). Custody and care of children at the border: 2019 congressional briefing book. Coalition on Children at the Border. Presented at House and Senate briefings, September 2019.
- Hughes, K.N. and Miller, P.J. (2019). Immigrant children at the southern border: Effects of separation and detention. Center for Child Policy. Prepared for Rep. Anthony Brown, United States House of Representatives.
- Miller, P.J. (2018). Research to practice brief: The prevention of child maltreatment through the nurse-family partnership program: mediating effects in a long term follow-up study. American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children.
- Dillingham, M. & Miller, P.J. (2018). Protecting vulnerable clients from unsafe charter schools. NASW Ohio Update, 42(3).
- Miller, P.J. and Hughes, K.N. (2018). Separating Immigrant Children from their Families at the United States Border. Position Statement of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children.
- Miller, P.J. (2018). Sexual abuse and family visits: Summary of scientific knowledge and points of authority. The Children’s Justice Project.
- Miller, P.J. (2018). Sexual abuse findings: Summary of scientific knowledge and points of authority. The Children’s Justice Project.
- Miller, P.J. (2018). Sexual abuse disclosures in young children: Summary of scientific knowledge and points of authority. The Children’s Justice Project.
- Miller, P.J. (2016). Agency in vulnerable families: a critical response to goh. Social Work, 61 (3): 273-275.
- Miller, P.J. (2016). Social workers’ testimony: when you get subpoenaed. NASW Ohio Update, 39(5), 5-7.
Licenses and certifications
- TF-CBT Therapist by Allegheny Health Network
- Certified Trauma Practitioner by the National Institute for Trauma and Loss in Children
- Member of the bar by DC Superior Court
- LISW-S by Ohio CSWMFT Board
Miller is married to business executive Robert Del Vicario. They have one daughter.
- "Center for Child Policy, Experts".
- Brownfield, Andy (June 20, 2018). "Cheapside Cafe owner responds to viral Facebook post about police incident". Cincinnati Business Courier.
- Brownfield, Andy. "Here's the latest on Cheapside Cafe's Facebook controversy". Cincinnati Business Courier.
- WCPO Staff. "Councilwoman responds to Cheapside Cafe online controversy". Cincinnati Channel 9 ABC News.
- Brookbank, Sarah (June 21, 2018). "Cincinnati councilwoman apologizes after Cheapside Cafe bodycam video released". The Cincinnati Enquirer.
- "miamioh miller".
- Watkins, Sean (2018-03-29). "Leadership Spotlight – Pamela J. Miller". Community | Union Institute & University. Retrieved 2020-05-26.
- "APSAC Library - Home Page". www.apsaclibrary.org. Retrieved 2020-05-28.
- "February 6th - 8th - 2019 Violence Intervention and Prevention (VIP) Summit". Zero Abuse Project. 2019-01-06. Retrieved 2020-05-26.
- "American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children". www.memberleap.com. Retrieved 2020-05-28.
- Miller, Pamela Joy (2016-07-01). "Agency in Vulnerable Families: A Critical Response to Goh". Social Work. 61 (3): 273–275. doi:10.1093/sw/sww034. ISSN 0037-8046.