Welcome Ann Wolbert Burgess

The AISOCC welcomes Ann Wolbert Burgess as new consulting member.

Dr. Ann Wolbert Burgess is an internationally recognized pioneer in the assessment and treatment of victims of trauma and abuse. Currently Professor of Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing at Boston College, Dr. Burgess is Board certified by the American Nurses Association as a Clinical Specialist in Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing and as a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner. She received her D.N.S. from Boston University, her MS from University of Maryland and her BS from Boston University.

She worked with FBI Academy special agents to study serial offenders, and the links between child abuse, juvenile delinquency, and subsequent perpetration. Dr. Burgess co-founded one of the first hospital-based crisis intervention programs for rape victims at Boston City Hospital in 1972. Research at that program introduced the Rape Trauma Syndrome in 1974. This diagnosis has since gained admissibility in over 300 appellate court decisions. Dr. Burgess has long since expanded her prolific research interests to explore the use of children in pornography; sexual abuse and patterns of crime scenes; elder abuse in nursing homes; cyber stalking; sexual abuse and exploitation of children; and infant kidnapping.

Author of nine textbooks on psychiatric nursing and crisis intervention, Dr. Burgess has also authored ten books on assessment and treatment of child, adolescent, and adult sexual assault victims and serial offenders, including rapists, murderers, child molesters, and abductors. Her books include the award-winning Crime Classification Manual, and most recently, Practical Rape Investigation. She has co-authored over 135 articles and chapters in rape victimology, as well as six monographs for the Department of Justice on child sex rings, adolescent rape victimization, adolescent runaways, child molesters and abductors, juvenile prostitution, and infant abductions. Dr. Burgess has also maintained a private psychotherapy practice in the Massachusetts area since 1966.

Dr. Burgess was recognized in 1994 for her continuing achievements and contributions by being elected to the Institute of Medicine, a part of the National Academy of Sciences. In 1996, she chaired the National Research Council’s Task Force on Violence Against Women. She has received many other honors including the Sigma Theta Tau International Audrey Hepburn Award, the American Nurses’ Association Hildegard Peplau Award, and the Sigma Theta Tau International Episteme Laureate Award. Her courtroom testimony has been described as “groundbreaking,” and she has been called a “nursing pathfinder.”

Dr. Burgess has frequently offered expert courtroom testimony, including at the trial of the Menendez brothers in Los Angeles. A professor emeritus at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, Dr. Burgess is the recipient of the Sigma Theta Tau International Audrey Hepburn Award and the American Nurses Association’s Hildegard Peplau Award.


•Douglas, J.E., Burgess, A.W., Burgess, A.G. & Ressler, R.K. (2013). Crime Classification Manual, 3/ed. New York: Wiley.
•Carretta, C. & Burgess, A.W. (2013) Symptom responses in a continuum of rape. Victims & Violence.
•Burgess, A.W. S.D., H.P. (2013). Military Sexual Trauma. Journal of Psychosocial Nursing,51(2),20-26,
•Burgess, A.W. (accepted). When the parent is a suspect in child murder. To appear in The Forensic Examiner.
•Burgess, A. W., Burgess, A. G., Safarik, M. (2012). False Confession vs. Investigative Logic. The Forensic Examiner, 21(1),

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About Kenneth L. Mains

Founder and President of the American Investigative Society of Cold Cases.

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