Prof. Leo Wolmer

Baruch Ivcher School of Psychology Ph.D., Tel Aviv University

Areas of expertise

  • Prof. Leo Wolmer is a clinical psychologist specializing in children and adults, and until 2019 directed the research unit at the Cohen-Harris Resilience Center. Prof. Wolmer has published over 60 articles and chapters in the professional literature, and serves as a reviewer in international journals. He has edited the book on post-trauma of children for the Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America.

    Prof. Wolmer is considered a pioneer in developing the paradigm in which educators in the education system are empowered to serve as clinical mediators for the purpose of reducing mental illness following exposure to mass disaster. Together with Prof. Danny Hamiel and the staff at the Cohen-Harris Resilience Center, he also applied this model in order to develop the coping ability and mental resilience of students from kindergarten to high school in more than a thousand educational institutions in the country.

    Prof. Wolmer's research deals with the development of personal resilience, the assessment of the defensive style of children and adolescents, the development of post-trauma and its consequences, as well as clinical skills at the individual, family and organizational level. A study that applied the development of a parent-child group intervention in anxiety disorders won the Best Clinical Article Award in 2000 from the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

    In addition, Prof. Wolmer served as the director of assessment of the National Urban for Preparedness and Resilience Program that the Cohen-Harris Resilience Center implemented in 18 local authorities in Israel under the Ministry of Home Front Defense. His undergraduate teaching areas include Abnormal Psychology, Trauma and Resilience, and Psychological and Legal Aspects in Family Business Management, and in the Masters Program Principles of Dynamic Therapy and Dynamic Models in Psychopathology.

  • Original Articles

    R. Weizman, N. Laor, Y. Barber, A. Selman, A. Schujovizky, L. Wolmer, Z. Laron, I. Gil-Ad. The impact of war on anxiety cortisol and growth hormone levels of Israeli Civilians. American Journal of Psychiatry; 1994, 151:71-75.

    R. Weizman, N. Laor, L. Karp, E. Dagan, A. Reiss, D.E. Dar, L. Wolmer, M. Gavish. Alteration of platelet benzodiazepine receptors by stress of war.  American Journal of Psychiatry; 1994, 151:766-767.

    R. Mester, P. Toren, I. Mizrachi, L. Wolmer, N. Karni, A. Weizman. Caffeine withdrawal increases lithium blood levels. Biological Psychiatry, 1995, 37:348-350.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, L.C. Mayes, A. Golomb, R. Weizman, D. Silverberg, D.J. Cohen. Israeli preschoolers under SCUD missile attacks: A developmental perspective on risk-modifying factors. Archives of General Psychiatry; 1996, 53:416-423.

    Y. Barber, P. Toren, A. Achiron, S. Noy, L. Wolmer, R. Weizman, N. Laor. T-cell subsets in obsessive compulsive disorder. Neuropsychobiology; 1996, 34:63-66.

    R. Weizman, N. Laor, A. Schujovitzky, L. Wolmer, P. Abramovitz-Schnaider, A. Freudstein-Dan, M. Rehavi. Platelet imipramine binding in patients with posttraumatic stress disorder before and after phenelzine treatment. Psychiatry Research; 1996, 63:143-150.

    M. Gavish, N. Laor, M. Bidder, D. Fisher, O. Fonia, U. Muller, A. Reiss, L. Wolmer, L. Karp, R. Weizman. Altered platelet peripheral-type benzodiazepine receptor in posttraumatic stress disorder. Neuopsychopharmacology; 1996, 14:181-186.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, L.C. Mayes, R. Weizman, A. Gershon, D.J. Cohen. Israeli preschool children under Scuds: A 30-month follow-up. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry; 1997, 36:349-356.

    P. Toren, A. Silbergeld, S. Eldar, N. Laor, L. Wolmer, S. Koren, R. Weitz, D, Inbar, A. Reiss, R. Eshet, R. Weizman.  Lack of effect of methylphenidate on serum growth hormone (GH), GH-binding protein, and insulin-like growth factor I. Clinical Neuropharmacology; 1997, 20:264-269.        

    P. Toren, A. Karasik, S. Eldar, L. Wolmer, I. Shimon, R. Weitz, D. Inbar, S. Koren, C. Pariente, A. Reiss, R. Weizman, N. Laor. Thyroid function in attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder. Journal of Psychiatry Research, 1997, 31:359-363.

    J. Alster, H. Oren, L. Wolmer, S. Ron. Multicomponent biofeedback for achieving lower arousal in insomnia. Sleep Research, 1997, 26:539.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, Z. Wiener, A. Reiss, U. Muller, R. Weizman, S. Ron. The function of image control in the psychophysiology of posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 1998, 11:679-696.

    R. Weizman, N. Laor, Z. Wiener, L. Wolmer, H. Bessler. Cytokine production in panic disorder patients. Clinical Neuropharmacology, 1999, 22:107-109.

    P. Toren, S. Eldar, O. Zendorf, L. Wolmer, R. Weizman, S. Koren, N. Laor. The prevalence of mitral valve prolapse in children with anxiety disorders. Journal of Psychiatry Research, 1999, 33:357-361.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, Z. Wiener, O. Sharon, R. Weizman, S. Ron. Image vividness as a psychophysiological regulator in posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, 1999, 21:39-48.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, Z. Wiener, P. Toren, R. Weizman, S. Ron. Image control and symptom expression in posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 1999, 187:673-679.

    P. Toren, N. Laor, D.J. Cohen, L. Wolmer, A. Weizman. Ondansetron treatment in patients with TS. International Clinical Psychopharmacology, 1999, 14:373-376.

    L. Wolmer, P. Toren, N. Laor. Image control from childhood to adolescence. Perception and Motor Skills. 1999, 89:471-485.

    P. Toren, M. Sadeh, L. Wolmer, S. Eldar, S. Koren, R. Weizman, N. Laor. Neurocognitive correlates of anxiety disorder in children: A preliminary report.  Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 2000, 14:239-247.

    L. Wolmer, N. Laor, A. Gershon, LC. Mayes, DJ. Cohen. The mother-child dyad facing trauma: A developmental outlook. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 2000, 188:409-415.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer.  Image control and posttraumatic symptoms in children following Scud missile attacks. Perception and Motor Skills, 2000, 90:1295-1298.

    P. Toren, L. Wolmer, B. Rosental, S. Eldar, S. Koren, M. Lask, R. Weizman, N. Laor. Case series: Brief parent-child group therapy for childhood anxiety disorders using a manual- based cognitive-behavioral technique. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 2000, 39:1309-1312.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, D.V. Cicchetti. The comprehensive assessment of defense style: A new measure of defense mechanisms in children and adolescents. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 2001, 189:360-368.

    L. Wolmer, N. Laor, D.V. Cicchetti. Validation of the comprehensive assessment of defense style (CADS): Mothers’ and children’s responses to the stresses of missile attacks Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 2001, 189:369-376.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, D.J. Cohen. Mothers functioning and children’s symptoms five years after a Scud missile attack. American Journal of Psychiatry, 2001, 158:1020-1026. Reprinted also in Annual Progress in Child Psychiatry and Child Development, 2002.

    P. Toren, S. Eldar, N. Laor, L. Wolmer, E. Samuel, R. Weizman. Fluvoxamine is ineffective in the treatment of enuresis in children and adolescents: an open-label pilot study. Human Psychopharmacology and Clinical Exp, 2001, 16:327-332.

    P. Toren, L. Wolmer, R. Weizman, O. Magal-Vardi, N. Laor. Retraumatization of Israeli civilians during a reactivation of the Gulf War threat. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 2002, 190:43-45.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, M. Kora, D. Yucel, S. Spirman, Y. Yazgan. Posttraumatic, Dissociative and Grief Symptoms in Turkish Children Exposed to the 1999 Earthquakes. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 2002, 190:824-832.

    L. Wolmer, N. Laor, Y. Yazgan. School reactivation programs after disaster: Could teachers serve as clinical mediators? Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America, 2003, 12:363-381.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, S. Spirman, Z. Wiener. Facing war, terrorism, and disaster: Toward a child-oriented comprehensive emergency care system. Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America, 2003, 12:343-361.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, D. Cohen. Attitudes toward Arabs of Israeli children exposed to missile attacks: The role of personality functions. Israel Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences, 2004, 41:23-32.

    O. Magal-Vardi, N. Laor, A. Toren, L. Strauss, L. Wolmer, B. Bielorai, G. Rechavi, P. Toren. Psychiatric morbidity and quality of life in children with malignancies and their parents. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 2004, 192:872-875.

    N. Laor, Z. Wiener, Z. Spirman, L. Wolmer.  Community Mental Health Procedures for Emergencies and Mass Disasters: The Tel-Aviv Model. Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment and Trauma. 2005 10(3/4): 681-694.

    L. Wolmer, N. Laor, C. Dedeoglu, J. Siev, Y. Yazgan. Teacher-mediated intervention after disaster: A controlled three-year follow-up of children's functioning. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 2005, 11:1161-1168.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, M. Alon, J. Siev, E. Samuel, P. Toren. Risk and protective factors mediating psychological symptoms and ideological commitment of adolescents facing continuous terrorism. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 2006, 194:279-86.   

    N. Horesh, T. Nachshoni, L. Wolmer, P. Toren. A comparison of life events in suicidal and non suicidal adolescents with major depression and borderline personality disorder. Comprehensive Psychiatry, 2009, 50:496-502.

    N. Laor, A. Yanay-Shani, L. Wolmer, O. Khoury. A Trauma-Like Model of Political Extremism: Psycho-Political Fault Lines in Israel. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 2010, 1208:24–31.

    L. Wolmer, D. Hamiel, N. Laor. Preventing children's post-traumatic stress after disaster with teacher-based intervention: A controlled study. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 2011, 50:340-348.

    L. Wolmer, D. Hamiel, J.D. Barchas, M. Slone, N. Laor. Teacher-delivered resilience-focused intervention in schools with traumatized children following the Second Lebanon War. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 2011, 24:309-316.

    L. Wolmer, D. Hamiel, M. Slone, M. Faians, M. Picker, N. Laor. Post-traumatic reaction of Israeli Jewish and Arab children exposed to rocket attacks before and after teacher-delivered intervention. Israel Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences. 2013, 50, in press.

    D. Hamiel, L. Wolmer, S. Spirman, N. Laor. Comprehensive child-oriented preventive resilience program in Israel based on lessons learned from communities exposed to war, terrorism and disaster. Child and Youth Care Forum, 2013, 42:261-274.

    P. Toren, B. Bregman, E.Zohar-Reich, G. Ben-Amitay, L. Wolmer, N. Laor. Sixteen-session group treatment for children and adolescents with parental alienation and their parents. The American Journal of Family Therapy, 2013, 41:187-197.

    Edited Books

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer. Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Special issue of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America, Elsevier, 2003.

    Chapters in Books

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer. Children exposed to disaster: The role of the mental health professional. In: M. Lewis, ed. Textbook of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 3rd ed. Baltimore: Williams and Wilkins, 2002, p. 925-937.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, S. Levi. Relief programs in communities affected by disaster: Theory, implementation principles and a case study. In: E. Caffo (ed), Emergenza nell’infanzia e nell’adolescenza - Interventi psicoterapeutici e di comunità, McGraw-Hill, 2004.

    N. Laor and L. Wolmer. Preface. In: N. Laor and L. Wolmer (Eds.), Posttraumatic syndrome in children and adolescents and the challenge of war, terrorism and disaster. A special issue of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America. W.B.Saunders, Philadelphia, Penn., 2003.

    N. Laor, Z. Wiener, Z. Spirman, L. Wolmer. Community mental health procedures for emergencies and mass disasters: The Tel-Aviv Model. In: Y Danieli, D Brom, J Sills (Eds). The Trauma of Terrorism: Sharing Knowledge and Shared Care, An International Handbook. NY: The Hawarth Press, 2004.

    H. Remschmidt, E. Caffo, B. Forresi, G. Nicolais, N. Laor, L. Wolmer. Innovative interventions in the community. In: H Remschmidt, M Belfer, I Goodyer (Eds.) Facilitating Pathways: Care, Treatment and Prevention in Child and Adolescent Mental Health. Springer, 2004.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, Z. Friedman, S. Spirman, H.Y. Knobler. Promoting the psychosocial well being of children following war and terrorism. In M.J. Friedman & A. Mikus-Kos (Editors). Disaster Intervention: An Integrative Systemic Perspective for Health and Social Service Professionals. NATO Security through Science Series - E: Human and Societal Dynamics. The Netherlands: IOS Press. 2005; pp 33-43.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, B. Bregman. Emergency Care Systems. The Encyclopedia of Psychological Trauma, Edited by G. Reyes, J.D. Elhai, J.D. Ford. Hoboken, New Jersey, John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 2008.

    N. Laor, L. Wolmer, S. Spirman, D. Hamiel, Z. Wiener. Child-Oriented Perspective on Community Resilience. In Pat-Horenczyk R., Brom, D., Vogel, J. & Chemtob, C.M. Helping children cope with trauma: Individual, family and community perspectives. London: Routledge, 2013.