Clinical Director ~ Forensic & Clinical Psychologist
Dr Karen Owen is a Registered Psychologist and a Member of the Australian Psychological Society (APS) Colleges of Forensic and Clinical Psychologists. She is a Clinical Member of the international Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abuse (ATSA) and the Australian and New Zealand branch (ANZATSA) and a member of the International Association for the Treatment of Sexual Offenders (IATSO).
Karen has 30 years experience working with people who display challenging and dangerous anti-social behaviours in mental health, correctional and community settings.
Karen is recognised both nationally and internationally as a leader in sex offender assessment and treatment and is regularly called upon to provide expert evidence in the Supreme, County, Melbourne Magistrates, Children’s, and Federal Circuit Court of Australia. Karen has and continues to provide consultancy and training extensively on sexual offending and related issues around Australia.
Karen is the former Manager of Corrections Victoria’s Sex Offender Programs and was instrumental in the programs development, implementation and its subsequent success across prison and community correctional services. The program was highly regarded throughout Australia as delivering best practice assessment and treatment. Karen developed the original training package regarding working with sex offenders and delivered training together with Bea Raymond to well over 500 correctional staff on sexual offending between 1996 to the mid 2000’s.
Karen was awarded a Public Service Medal in the 2007 Queen’s Birthday Honours in recognition of her outstanding public service in the development of policy and the management, treatment and rehabilitation of sexual offenders. She also received a Justice Award in 2007 for her role in the development of Corrections Victoria’s Sex Offender Management Branch.
Karen is a former elected Chair of the Victorian Offender Treatment Association and Honorary Fellow, University of Melbourne. Karen was also the Victorian Representative on the National Working Party for Sex Offender Management. In 2006 she was appointed as the first corrections representative on the Expert Advisory Panel for Braveharts, Australia’s primary sexual assault survivor advocacy agency.
Karen has co-authored two book chapters focusing on treatment issues of sexual offenders and has presented at numerous national conferences plus international conferences.
Today Karen is the Clinical Director of Vicpsychplus, founded by her in 2005. Karen’s other roles include, consultancy to the Department of Justice under the Serious Sex Offenders (Detention and Supervision) Act 2009, the Federal Circuit Court of Australia as a Regulation 7 Family Consultant and is actively involved as a consultant to government and not for profit and community agencies.
Karen is often called upon to make comment to the media on sexual offending and related issues.