Lisa Pescara Kovach



  • Dr. Lisa Pescara-Kovach is a tenured professor of educational psychology at The University of Toledo (UToledo) where she also serves as Director for the Center for Education in Mass Violence and Suicide.  Outside of the university, at the international level, she serves as an advisory board member for the International Alliance for Care and Threat Teams (InterACTT) and as an expert content creator for the ALICE Training Institute (ATI). She also provides expert advise to prosecutors in connection with bullying-related suicides and child abuse.

    Her research agenda involves prevention through recovery with suicide, mass shootings, and foreign and domestic terrorism.  She has a national reputation as a scholar, as is evident in interviews and open editorials provided to USA Today College, The Hill, Salon, and The Californian. Her most recent peer-reviewed publications include Debunking the Myths: Mental Illness and Mass Shootings and The Contagion Effect as it Relates to Public Mass Shootings. She has conducted post-incident analyses on dozens of school, campus, and workplace shootings. She is an active shooting STRIVE (Simulation Training in Violent Events) to Survive threat assessment, case management, and postvention educator along with faculty in the colleges of medicine, public health, and nursing. Dr. Pescara-Kovach is co-author of White Supremacist Violence: Understanding the Resurgence and Stopping the Spread (publication date: November 2022) through Routledge/Taylor and Francis, and available on the Taylor and Francis sites in addition to online book sellers in the United Kingdom, Australia, the United States, and other countries.

    In terms of teaching, Dr. Pescara-Kovach has created an undergraduate course geared toward meeting the Ohio Department of Education's State Licensure Standards involving social and emotional development. Other undergraduate courses she has taught at UToledo include issues and innovations in learning and instruction, child development, social psychology, cognitive development, atypical development, abnormal psychology, and childhood psychopathology.  She has designed and currently teaches graduate level seminars on the causes, consequences, and prevention of school and workplace violence, case management in suicide and mass shootings as well as prevention, intervention, active response, and recovery in public mass shootings, terrorist recruitment, and suicides.

     Early in her career, Dr. Pescara-Kovach was selected as The University of Toledo Outstanding Teacher as well as Hiram College’s Margaret Clark Morgan Scholar, an award reserved for scholars who make a considerable difference in their fields. She was also the 2016 recipient of the National Exchange Club Champion for Children Award and recently received the University of Toledo Edith Rathbun Award. The Rathbun Award honors those faculty who recognize community engagement as an applied, effective and socially valuable means of using their disciplinary knowledge to advance the human condition.

    In addition to the aforementioned work, Dr. Pescara-Kovach volunteers her time as a mental health and safety consultant in several school districts. She has given dozens of peer-reviewed presentations on the topic of bullying and its link to suicides and homicides, mental health and the student-athlete, public mass shooter traits, PTSD in emergency response personnel, and threat assessment at the state, national, and international levels.

    Within the community she has also served as northwest Ohio’s Crisis Intervention Team ‘Fundamentals of Mental Illness’ trainer since 2014 and recently created the Northwestern Ohio Critical Incident Stress Management team. She also donates her time as an advisory board member for the Lucas County Suicide Prevention Coalition.


selected publications

full name

  • Lisa Pescara Kovach


Cumulative publications in Scholars@UToledo