Lise Van Susteren

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Lise Van Susteren is an American psychiatrist in private practice in Washington, DC and environmental activist.


Van Susteren received her medical degree in 1982 from the University of Paris. She interned at the Hospital St. Anne and the American Hospital of Paris, and at Hospital Tokoin in Lomé, Togo. She completed her residency training in psychiatry at St. Elizabeths Hospital in Washington, D.C. Van Susteren is board certified in general and forensic psychiatry. She has worked as a consultant to the Central Intelligence Agency conducting psychological assessments of world leaders, as an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Georgetown University Department of Psychiatry, and at community mental health centers in the metropolitan Washington, DC area. Van Susteren is a volunteer with Physicians for Human Rights, evaluating and testifying on behalf of torture victims seeking political asylum in the United States. She has been a volunteer reader for Metropolitan Washington Ear, an organization that records written material for the blind, and as a volunteer provider at homeless shelters, for victims of Hurricane Katrina, and the earthquake in Haiti.

Van Susteren is a frequent commentator on television and publishes a blog at the Huffington Post.[1] She hosted a weekly radio segment on WTNT (AM)-570's The Paul Berry Show called The Doctor Is In. Her publications in professional journals include articles on the Insanity Defense, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Psychiatric Abandonment.

In 1984, Van Susteren co-founded The Friends of St. Elizabeths, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the humane treatment of the mentally ill and the historic preservation of St. Elizabeths Hospital.

In September 2005, Van Susteren campaigned for a seat in the U.S. senate as a democrat from Maryland. By 2006, Van Susteren dropped out of the race as she was unable to raise enough money.[2] [3]

In September 2006, Vice President Al Gore trained Van Susteren at The Climate Project to educate the public about global warming. She was named to the Board of Directors of The Climate Project in 2009. Van Susteren speaks frequently to civic, educational, religious, labor, and environmental groups about the impacts of climate change, particularly the health impacts, in the Washington, DC area, nationally, and abroad. In 2009, she organized the first conference to focus on the psychological impacts of climate change. She co-authored "The Psychological Effects of Climate Change" published by the National Wildlife Federation.

In 2011, Van Susteren collaborated with "Our Children's Trust" in a lawsuit against the federal government for breach of its fiduciary duties to preserve and protect the atmosphere for children and future generations.[4][5]

Van Susteren serves on the advisory board of the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School and the grassroots advocacy group The Climate Mobilization, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Wildlife Federation and the Chesapeake Climate Action Network. Since 2009, she has served on the Climate Energy and Environmental Committee of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments in Washington, DC. She also serves on the Policy Advisory Board of Gender Rights Maryland.[6]

In 2011, Van Susteren co-founded "Interfaith Moral Action on Climate," a multi-faith coalition dedicated to organizing people of religion and spirituality to speak out against climate change. She also co-authored the 2013 piece, 'Assessing "Dangerous Climate Change": Required Reduction of Carbon Emissions to Protect Young People, Future Generations and Nature,' published by PLOS ONE, an open access peer-reviewed scientific journal published by the Public Library of Science.

Personal life[edit]

Van Susteren is the founder and CEO of "Lucky Planet Foods," a company dedicated to providing low-carbon, plant-based, healthy foods for sustainable living.

Van Susteren's father, Urban Van Susteren, was an elected judge in Appleton, Wisconsin. Judge Van Susteren was also a campaign manager for Senator Joseph McCarthy (R-WI), although they eventually came to disagree about the Senator's views on communism in government. She has two siblings: Dirk Van Susteren, a journalist, and Greta Van Susteren, attorney and former host of a national television show, On the Record.

Van Susteren's husband is Jonathan Kempner, President of TIGER 21, headquartered in New York City. He is the former President and CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association and the National Multi Housing Council. They have three daughters.


  1. ^ "Lise Van Susteren". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2013-12-05.
  2. ^ Wagner, John (September 2, 2005). "Van Susteren Joins Senate Race". Washington Post. Retrieved April 17, 2019.
  3. ^ "Lose Van Susteren Drops Out of Md. Senate Race". April 21, 2006. Retrieved April 17, 2019.
  4. ^ The Point of No Return: Climate Change Nightmares Are Already Here; The worst predicted impacts of climate change are starting to happen—and much faster than climate scientists expected Eric Holthaus Rolling Stone August 5, 2015
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Policy Advisory Board". Gender Rights Maryland. Archived from the original on February 21, 2013. Retrieved February 4, 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)