• Dr. Christine Mayor
  • Assistant professor
    Pronouns: she/her

    Room 145 William Norrie Centre
    485 Selkirk Avenue,
    University of Manitoba (Inner City campus)
    Winnipeg, MB R2W 2M6 Canada

    Fax: 204-663-8857



Awards & Honours

Research Affiliations


Dr. Christine Mayor’s critical and interdisciplinary research program focuses on the intersection of trauma, (anti-)racism, educational equity, and the arts.  

Recent and ongoing projects include: 

  • Imagining White Victims and Punishing Black Trauma: Whiteness, Anti-Blackness, Trauma, and Social Work in Canadian K-12 Schools
    • Funded with the support of Ontario Graduate Scholarships and a SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship 
  • Community-led Safety as Wâhkôhtowin: A Study of Community Safety Hosts’ Relational, Kinship, and Anti-Carceral Practices 
    • Co-led with Dr. Julie Chamberlain and in partnership with Fearless R2W and Persons Community Solutions, funded by the Manitoba Research Alliance-SSHRC 
  • Exploring School Social Work and Anti-Racist Advocacy in K-12 Manitoban Schools  
    • Funded by the Research Fund and Endowment Fund 
  • A Critical Thematic Analysis of Manitoba Education Policy Enactment and the Marginalization of Indigenous Youth in Child Welfare 
    • With Dr. Melanie Janzen and Samir Hathout 
  • A Scoping Review on School-Based Drama Therapy in Early Childhood 
    • With Dr. Jason Frydman and The Collaborative for Creative Arts Therapy in Schools  
  • Towards an Abolitionist and Anti-Carceral Drama Therapy 
    • With Britton Williams 

Her research interests include:

Teaching and supervision

Dr. Mayor teaches from an anti-racist, decolonizing, and intersectional feminist perspective using creative and innovative pedagogy. She is a trained Walls to Bridges instructor (Centering lived experience and using creative methods when teaching in carceral settings). She has also been profoundly impacted by the teachings she has received from Centre for Indigegogy, including circle work and the Advanced Decolonizing Education Certificate.

As a white settler instructor teaching in the Inner City Social Work program, she strives to teach and learn from a place of relational accountability and mutual respect.

In addition to her social work teaching at the University of Manitoba, she is internationally sought out as a teacher, trainer, and supervisor in drama therapy.

Recent courses: 
SWRK 1200 Introduction to Canadian Social Welfare 
SWRK 3100 Systematic Inquiry in Social Work 
SWRK 3130 Contemporary Canadian Social Welfare Policy 
SWRK 4200/4300 Field Focus, Mental Health 

Courses Under Development: 
SWRK 4256 Trauma-Focused Social Work Practice 
SWRK 4628 Creativity and Arts-Based Methods for Social Work Practice 

Practice experience

Dr. Mayor’s academic work is built on 12 years of critical practice and community experience as a Board Certified Trainer and Registered Drama Therapist (BCT/RDT) and Registered Psychotherapist (RP) with a specialization in trauma. Her practice work often includes Theatre of the Oppressed and Developmental Transformations.

Prior to her doctoral studies, she was the Director of ALIVE, a multi-city, trauma-centered K-12 school program where, in addition to training and managing a team of clinicians, she provided direct clinical service to primarily low-income Black, Latinx, and/or immigrant and refugee students who had experienced complex trauma. She was also the Assistant Clinical Director of the Post-Traumatic Stress Center in New Haven, Connecticut, where she supported children, youth, and adults who had experienced interpersonal, state-produced, and systemic forms of trauma in individual, couples, family, and group settings.

Dr. Mayor also served as a researcher for state-level policy and legislation at the Commission on Children at the Connecticut General Assembly. In Ontario, she maintained a small clinical supervision and private practice.

Service and membership

Dr. Mayor was a long-time member of the Walls to Bridges Collective at the Grand Valley Institute for Women, a collective comprised of individuals who are currently incarcerated and those working in solidarity, and is part of the national Walls to Bridges Network.

She has a history of service with the North American Drama Therapy Association and has held leadership roles on a variety of committees, including Ethics Competencies, Education, International, Research, Diversity, Journal Creation, and Annual Conference committees. She is the founding and current Associate Editor of Drama Therapy Review, the first peer-reviewed journal focused on drama therapy in North America.

Since joining the faculty, Dr. Mayor has served on a number of committees, including the Research Committee, Tenure Committee, Tenure and Promotion Revision of Guidelines Committee, Inner City Social Work Part-Time Selection Committee, Inner City Social Work Full-Time Selection Committee, and several Hiring Committees. She is also a member of the Senate Committee for Admissions Appeals.  

During her doctoral studies at Wilfrid Laurier University, she served on Divisional Council and the Equity Committee, along with being a founding member of White Accountability in Social Work.


Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Mayor, C. (in press). Punishing Black trauma: Anti-Black racism and ‘trauma-informed’ school social work. Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research. https://doi.org/10.1086/726043  

Frydman, J. S. & Mayor, C. (2023). A scoping review on the use and potential of school-based drama therapy to enhance socio-emotional skills in early childhood. Early Childhood Education Journal. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10643-023-01471-1 

Walls to Bridges Grand Valley Institution for Women Collective. (2023). Staying  connected across the wall during the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of Prisoners on Prisons, 31(1), 46-63. https://doi.org/10.18192/jpp.v32i1.6742 

Pollack, S. & Mayor, C. (2022). The how of social justice education in social work:  Decentering colonial whiteness and building relational reflexivity through circle pedagogy and image theatre. Social Work Education. Online First. https://doi.org/10.1080/02615479.2022.2104244 

Mayor, C. (2022). Anti-racist research praxis: Feminist relational accountability and arts-based reflexive memoing for qualitative data collection in social work research. Affilia, 37(4), 624-644. https://doi.org/10.1177/08861099221102702 

Mayor, C. & Pollack, S. (2022). Creative writing and decolonizing intersectional feminist critical reflexivity: Challenging neoliberal, white, gendered colonial practice norms in the COVID-19 pandemic. Affilia, 37(3), 382-395. https://doi.org/10.1177/08861099211066338 

Mayor, C. (2021). Teacher reactions to trauma disclosures from Syrian refugee students. Children & Schools: A Journal of the National Association of Social Workers, 43(3), 131-140. https://doi.org/10.1093/cs/cdab013

Mayor, C. & Frydman, J. S. (2021). Understanding school-based drama therapy through the core processes: An analysis of interventions. The Arts in Psychotherapy, 73, 101766. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aip.2021.101766 

Frydman, J. S. & Mayor, C. (2021). Implementation of drama therapy services in the North American school system: Responses from the field. Psychology in the Schools, 56(6), 955-974. https://doi.org/10.1002/pits.22481

Mayor, C. (2020). Embodied tableaux: A drama method for social work arts-based research. Qualitative Social Work, 19(5-6), 1040-1060. https://doi.org/10.1177/1473325020923000

Sajnani, N., Mayor, C., & Tillberg-Webb, H. (2020). Aesthetic presence: The role of the arts in the education of creative arts therapists in the classroom and online. The Arts in Psychotherapy, 69, 101668. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aip.2020.101668

Mayor, C. (2019). “It’s just not what we see”: Trauma training for teachers working with Syrian refugee students. Critical Social Work, 10(2), 3-26. 

Mayor, C. (2019). Whitewashing trauma: Applying neoliberalism, governmentality, and whiteness theory to trauma training for teachers. Whiteness and Education, 3(2), 198-216. https://doi.org/10.1080/23793406.2019.1573643

Mayor, C. & Suarez, E. (2019). A scoping review of the demographic and contextual factors in Canada’s educational opportunity gaps. Canadian Journal of Education/Revue Canadienne de L’Education, 42(1), 42-87. https://journals.sfu.ca/cje/index.php/cje-rce/article/view/3397

Mayor, C. (2019). Drama therapists as “double agents”: Being caught by and creatively resisting neoliberal school reform climate. Drama Therapy Review, 5(1), 49-67. https://doi.org/10.1386/dtr.5.1.49_1

Mayor, C. & Frydman, J. S. (2019). The prevalence and practice of drama therapy in the North American school system: A descriptive report of contemporary service delivery. Drama Therapy Review, 5(1), 7-25. https://doi.org/10.1386/dtr.5.1.7_1

Sajnani, N., Mayor, C., Burch, D., Davis, C., Feldman, D., Kelly, J., Landis, H., & McAdam, E. (2019). Collaborative discourse analysis on the use of drama therapy to treat trauma in schools. Drama Therapy Review, 5(1), 27-47. https://doi.org/10.1386/dtr.5.1.27_1

Mayor, C. (2018). Political openings in Developmental Transformations: Performing an ambivalent love letter. Drama Therapy Review, 4(2), 233-247. https://doi.org/10.1386/dtr.4.2.233_1

Frydman, J. S. & Mayor, C. (2017). Trauma and early adolescent development: Case examples from a trauma-informed public health middle school program. Children & Schools: A Journal of the National Association of Social Workers, 39(4), 238-247. https://doi.org/10.1093/cs/cdx017

Pitre, R., Mayor, C., & Johnson, D.R. (2016). Developmental Transformations short-form as a stress reduction method for children. Drama Therapy Review, 2(2), 167-181. https://doi.org/10.1386/dtr.2.2.167_1

Mayor, C. (2016). Performativity, role reversal and disruptions in Joshua Oppenheimer’s The Act of Killing. Drama Therapy Review, 2(1), 123-135. https://doi.org/10.1386/dtr.2.1.123_1

Mayor, C. (2012). Playing with race: A theoretical framework and approach for creative arts therapists. The Arts in Psychotherapy, 39(3), 214-219. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aip.2011.12.008


Book Chapters

Johnson, D. R., Sajnani, N., Mayor, C., & Davis, C. (2021). The Miss Kendra Program: Addressing toxic stress in the school setting. In D. R. Johnson & R. Emunah (Eds.), Current approaches in drama therapy (3rd ed., pp. 362-298). Charles C. Thomas.

Sajnani, N., Mayor, C. & Boal, J. (2021). The Theatre of the Oppressed. In D. R. Johnson & R. Emunah (Eds.), Current approaches in drama therapy (3rd ed., pp. 561-586). Charles C. Thomas.

Mayor, C. & Dotto, S. (2014). De-Railing history: Trauma stories off the track. In N. Sajnani, & D. R. Johnson (Eds.), Trauma-informed drama therapy: Transforming clinics, classrooms, and communities (pp. 306-328). Charles C. Thomas.



Pollack, S. & Mayor, C. (2023). Editorial: Walls to Bridges: Introduction from the issue   editors. Journal of Prisoners on Prisons, 32(1), 1-7. https://doi.org/10.18192/jpp.v32i1.6739 

Frydman, J. S. & Mayor, C. (2019). Editorial: Drama therapists in schools: Holding and exploring multiple paradigms. Drama Therapy Review, 5(1), 3-6. https://doi.org/10.1386/dtr.5.1.3_2