Minnesota's Road to Volunteer Drivers Virtual Forum Series with State of Minnesota wordmark over an aerial view of a road and autumn leaves on treesWednesday, April 21, 2021
9:30 – 11:30 a.m. and 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. CDT



This will be the sixth stop in the MCOTA volunteer driver virtual forum series, Minnesota's Road to Volunteer Drivers. The event will focus on training about trauma-informed care and provide community education about people who are deaf and hard of hearing.



9:30 - 9:40 a.m.

Tom Gottfried, MCOTA Executive Director

Trauma-Informed Care Training

9:40 – 11:30 a.m.

Steven Loos, Psychologist and Director of Outpatient Services, Central Minnesota Mental Health Center

Providing Community Education About People Who Are Deaf and Hard of Hearing

1:00-3:00 p.m.

Elise Knopf, Rehabilitation Area Manager, Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development


Steven Loos is a psychologist and director of outpatient services at Central Minnesota Mental Health Center (CMMHC). He has extensive training on treating trauma and exploring its impacts on interpersonal relationships. Steven has been the clinical supervisor of the co-occurring disorder program at Park Avenue Center and an adjunct professor at the University of St. Thomas. In 2013, he was selected to participate in a National Council for Behavioral Health leadership program addressing health disparities. As part of the program, he was named the team lead of trauma-informed care for CMMHC. CMMHC is in its seventh year of its trauma-informed care initiative. During the past several years, Steven also has made presentations on trauma-informed care through the National Council. Steven has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from St. John’s University and a master’s and doctorate in counseling psychology from the University of St. Thomas.

Elise KnopfElise Knopf is rehabilitation area manager for the St. Paul Deaf and Hard of Hearing team within Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS) under the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). She supervises a team for the seven county metropolitan area and provides technical assistance, support, and guidance to VRS Administration and staff regarding the provision of quality services statewide to consumers that are deaf and hard of hearing. Elise earned a master's degree in rehabilitation counseling from Gallaudet University and a bachelor's in history from Cornell College. She also is a graduate of the Emerging Leaders' Institute with the state of Minnesota. In addition, Elise worked with U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin on the Subcommittee on Disability Policy during the passage of the ADA and has more than 30 years of experience in a variety of educational, employment, state, federal, and non-profit settings.


The virtual forum is free to attend, but registration is required. After you register, you will receive an email confirmation with Zoom login information for the forum. You will also receive an email reminder with the login information one day prior to and one hour prior to the start of the event. Your login information should not be shared with others; each person must register individually.

Please note: By registering for this forum, you will automatically be registered for all forum series events. You may attend as many as you wish using the same Zoom information. If you have previously registered for any other forum events, you do not need to register again.

If you're unable to join the live broadcast, a recording with captioning and ASL interpretation will be available here following the event.


MnDOT invites and encourages participation by all. This event will include live captioning and ASL interpretation.

If you need a foreign language interpreter, documents in an alternative format (such as braille, large print, or a different language), or another reasonable accommodation for this web page, registration, or event, please contact Kaydee Kirk at least two weeks before the event by email at kkirk@umn.edu or by phone at 612-626-5854.

Questions for the MCOTA Volunteer Driver Virtual Forum Series

You can submit questions for any of the virtual forum series topics now or at any time. Questions will be shared with the relevant speakers ahead of time. You can also submit questions during the live events through the Zoom webinar Q&A feature. Submit questions related to the MCOTA Volunteer Driver Virtual Forum Series topics before the event.

Virtual Forum Access

This webinar will be hosted using Zoom. We recommend that all registrants test their connection prior to the workshop using Zoom's test meeting. If you are new to Zoom, we recommend viewing the Zoom Tips for Joining and Participating in Webinars tutorial page.

Professional Development Hours

To the best of our knowledge, this course meets the continuing education requirements for 2.0 Professional Development Hours (PDHs) for the morning session and also 2.0 PDHs for the afternoon session. If you participate in the virtual forum and would like to request a PDH form, please email kkirk@umn.edu after the event. We will email the form to you following the event.

More Information

Please contact Kaydee Kirk at 612-626-5854 or kkirk@umn.edu with any questions.


Sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT), the Minnesota Council on Transportation Access (MCOTA) in partnership with the Minnesota Volunteer Driver Coalition.