Dr. George Dabdoub, Psy.D., Clinical Director, First Responder Unit, Institutes of Health
Dr. Dabdoub began his career with the Los Angeles Police Department in 1993. His last duty assignment was with the Major Crimes Division, where he served as a Detective and a Reserve Police Officer after retirement. Throughout his tenure in the Department, he completed a wide variety of assignments. His duties included undercover operations, informant handling, gang intervention, asset protection, drug interdiction, cyber investigations, patrol operations, and administrative procedural compliance. He was a court qualified Gang Expert and Narcotics Expert, and firearms and tactics instructor.
Dr. Dabdoub’s interest in psychology developed during his career in law enforcement when he was first exposed to the Crisis Negotiation Team (CNT) as a linguist and Mental Health Intervention Training (MHIT). MHIT is aimed at helping police officers understand and assist individuals struggling with mental illness, which fostered his curiosity in psychology in order to better serve the community.
Dr. Dabdoub completed his doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology at the University of La Verne. His original research recruited active and retired police officers of all ranks and job specialties throughout the United States. His work explored the costs associated with serving in law enforcement and looked at various factors including burnout, compassion fatigue, suicidality, and use of force. In his clinical training and experience, he worked with diverse groups including adults who were at risk for suicide, struggling with severe mental illness, or who experienced trauma throughout their lifespan. Dr. Dabdoub worked in several hospital settings, including private hospitals and the Veteran’s Health Administration. While at Loma Linda VA, he completed rotations with the PTSD Clinical Team, Behavioral Health Interdisciplinary Program, Substance Treatment and Recovery, Inpatient Consultation & Liaison Emergency Service Team, and Health Psychology. As a postdoctoral resident, he began the PTSD Clinical Team’s law enforcement specific VA Outreach program, educating local law enforcement organizations on PTSD and its impact on the Veteran community. His outreach team provided police officers with resources that were available through the VA to assist them in their duties when encountering Veterans. In addition, the program was designed to help law enforcement officers understand compassion fatigue, burnout, suicidality, and their effects on the law enforcement community.
Before joining Institutes of Health, Dr Dabdoub served as the Clinical Psychologist for an active duty Marine Corps unit on the East Coast that was actively involved in combat operations all over the world. In addition to his clinical work, he implemented various programs aimed at preventing and mitigating mental health concerns, reducing stigma, increasing resilience, and improving overall mission performance. Dr. Dabdoub continues to focus his clinical skills on PTSD, burnout, chronic pain, traumatic brain injury, compassion fatigue and suicidality, where he can now serve his law enforcement and veteran communities.