College of Social and Behavioral Sciences
An expert in grief, death and dying, Kriss Kevorkian, PhD, MSW, holds a doctoral degree in thanatology, the study/science of death, dying and bereavement. She combined her passion for thanatology with her love of whales and the environment through her research on environmental grief® and ecological grief®. Hailed as a true visionary, Dr. Kevorkian coined these terms years before many in the field considered these particular forms of grief as they questioned, "Why would anyone grieve the loss of the environment?"
Her work experience includes deputy coroner, unit social worker for a skilled nursing facility, and hospice medical social worker offering emotional support and counseling to terminally ill patients, including young children to elders, and their families. As a hospice social worker, she received Certificates of Recognition for her Outstanding Contribution in the Field of Social Work from local politicians. In addition to having been Co-Chair of the San Fernando Valley End-of-life Coalition, she was Co-Chair of the Los Angeles County Bar Association Bioethics Committee and Chair of their Death and Dying Subcommittee.
She works in academia, lectures and presents workshops on aging, trauma, end-of-life care, death, bereavement, grief and loss. She writes about dying/death, caregiving, grief/loss, animal companion loss, and grief related to environmental loss and destruction.
Dr. Kriss Kevorkian hosts/facilitates a Death Café, is a Climate Reality Project – Leadership Corps Mentor, a member of the Steering Committee of the Meaningful Movies Gig Harbor, and is a member of the Gig Harbor Sustainability Coalition. She is Founder of the Legal Rights for the Salish Sea, an organization educating communities and stakeholders about giving legal rights of Nature to save the Southern Resident Orcas and the Salish Sea herself.
Her private practice includes helping clients with end-of-life care issues, as well as working with those reacting to environmental and ecological grief, and the “global” grief we experience daily as we do our best to cope with the political chaos taking place.