Julie Poehlmann

Julie Poehlmann-​Tynan

Dorothy A. O’Brien Professor in Human Ecology
Human Development and Family Studies Department and Major
Office 4130

I am a child clinical psychologist who studies child and family health disparities and well-being from an interdisciplinary perspective. The purpose of my work is to facilitate social justice for young children and their families and to understand and promote resilience processes while decreasing risk and trauma exposure. To do this, I study the health and social, emotional, and cognitive development of high-risk infants and young children and their families, including children with incarcerated parents, children raised by their grandparents, and children born preterm, including examining the intergenerational transmission of risk, trauma, resilience, and healing. I use both quantitative and qualitative methods in my work, especially observational methods that focus on young children and families in their natural contexts as well as physiological measures. I also design and evaluate interventions for children and their parents, including interdisciplinary multimodal interventions that can be used in the criminal justice system and contemplative practices aimed at decreasing stress and increasing well-being in children and families.

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Postdoctoral Fellowship, Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin–Madison
PhD, MS, Clinical Psychology, Syracuse University
BA, Psychology and History, Marquette University
Marquette University Language Institute, Berlin, Germany


Institute for Research on Poverty
Center for Healthy Minds
American Psychological Association
Society for Research in Child Development
National Council on Family Relations
Wisconsin Alliance for Infant Mental Health


Licensed Psychologist, Wisconsin

Recent press

How witnessing violence impacts a child’s life, Wisconsin Public Radio, September 1, 2020
Reaching out to dads in jail: Fathers and children do better when parental identity is supported, Cap Times, June 17, 2020
Behind a door with a teddy bear on it, inmates reconnect with their children in the jail’s new child-friendly visitation room, Charlotte Agenda, January 21, 2020
Compassion training could help parents and their children, Wisconsin Public Radio, January 15, 2020
How a Muppet can help kids of incarcerated parents, Spectrum News 1, July 2, 2020
Parental guidance, Isthmus, July 11, 2019
‘I’m not the only one who has a mom in jail’: Camp reunites locked-up mothers with their kids, Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service, July 11, 2019

Social Media

Twitter: @poehlmann_tynan

Personal Website



  • Infancy and the Family (HDFS 760)
  • Incarceration and the Family (HDFS 766)
  • Attachment Theory and Relationships Across the Lifespan (HDFS 853)
  • Developmental Theory and Research: Prenatal to Middle Childhood


  • Developmental and Family Assessment (HDFS 663)
  • Children with Incarcerated Parents (HDFS 501)
  • Research Experience (HDFS 592)

Poehlmann‐Tynan, J. and Turney, K. (2020), A Developmental Perspective on Children With Incarcerated Parents. Child Dev Perspect. https://doi.org/10.1111/cdep.12392

Eddy, J. M., & Poehlmann-Tynan, J. (Eds.) (2019). Handbook on Children of Incarcerated Parents, 2nd edition. New York: Springer.

Poehlmann-Tynan, J., Engbretson, A., Vigna, A.B., Weymouth, L.A., Burnson, C. F., Zahn-Waxler, C., Gerstein, E., Fanning, K., & Raison, C. L. (2019). Cognitively-Based Compassion Training for parents reduces cortisol in infants and young children. Infant Mental Health Journal.

Poehlmann-Tynan, J., Burnson, C., Weymouth, L. A., & Runion, H. (2017). Attachment in young children with incarcerated fathers. Development and Psychopathology, 29, 389-404.

Poehlmann-Tynan, J., Gerstein, E., Burnson, C., Weymouth, L., Maleck, S., Bolt, D., & Schwichtenberg, A. J. (2015). Risk and resilience in children born preterm at age 6. Development and Psychopathology, 27(3), 843- 858.

Poehlmann, J., Dallaire, D., Loper, A. B., & Shear, L. D. (2010). Children’s contact with their incarcerated parents: Research findings and recommendations. American Psychologist, 65 (6), 575-598.

Poehlmann, J. (2005). Representations of attachment relationships in children of incarcerated mothers. Child Development, 76, 679-696.

Dr. Poehlmann-Tynan has served as an advisor to Sesame Street on its Emmy-nominated initiative for children with incarcerated parents. She has served as a psychology supervisor in the Waisman Center’s Developmental Disabilities Clinic and teaches a community-based course in conjunction with campus and community early childhood education centers. Dr. Poehlmann-Tynan has consulted with Wisconsin Public Television on an outreach effort for families struggling with methamphetamine addiction, worked with Madison Area Urban Ministry to evaluate their mentoring program for children of incarcerated parents, and evaluated Camp Reunite, a summer camp for children with imprisoned mothers. She is on the leadership teams of the International Coalition for Children with Incarcerated Parents and the Wisconsin Alliance for Infant Mental Health. Learn more in her full biographical statement and her public speaking opportunities with Badger Talks.