Hospital Sponsors Adverse Childhood Experiences Seminar


Helping area youth overcome the adversity and challenges that come with life is the focus of the seminar “Building Community Resilience” set for Sept. 25 at Benzie Central High School’s Auditorium.

The program will feature a short film, expert panel discussion and question-and-answer opportunities, and a presentation by Traverse City pediatrician Megan Stilwill, D.O., titled “The Way We Treat Children Matters.” Dr. Stillwill practices at Traverse Area Pediatric and Adolescent Clinic and works extensively with children with developmental disabilities.

“We are excited to be able to bring this event to our community,” said Peter Marinoff, president of Paul Oliver Memorial Hospital, which is sponsoring the evening. “Our children represent the future and we want to make available to area families resources and information that we think will be helpful as we all seek to strengthen our community.”

Doors to the event open at 5 p.m. and will feature an exhibit area that showcases area resources. At 5:30 p.m. the film “Resilience: The Biology of Stress & the Science of Hope” will be shown. A panel discussion follows at 6:40 p.m. with time for questions and answers. Dr. Stilwill will share her address at 7:15 p.m.

In addition to Dr. Stilwill, panelists include: Mary King Gruman, MS, LPC, NBCC, of Birchbark Counseling and board member of the local chapter of the National Alliance for Mental Illness; Kristen Ryder, a school psychologist with the Traverse Bay Intermediate School District and adverse childhood experiences champion; Robert Sprunk, M.D., a pediatrician with Grand Traverse Children’s Clinic, whose medical interests have included ADD/ADHD in children.

Refreshments and onsite childcare will be available at the event. While the evening is free and open to the public, advance registration is requested at

For more information, call 231-352-2273.

Benzie Central High School is located at 9300 Homestead Road, Benzonia, Mich.