I am a board certified child and adolescent psychologist with over 25 years of clinical experience working with all types of problems that confront children and adolescents. I am also trained to work with adults and couples.
I received my doctorate from Colorado State University and my clinical training at Harvard University and did postdoctoral training in child and adolescent clinical psychology at Boston's Children's Hospital and the Judge Baker Children's Center.
I perform evaluations for learning disabilities, ADHD, early kindergarten entrance, and evaluations for gifted education. I enjoy psychotherapy with children experiencing divorce, anxiety, life transitions, and adjustment problems. Counseling parents about effective parenting skills is also one of my specialties. I also dedicate a percentage of my practice to working with individuals, couples and families.
I have been a member of Rainier Behavioral Health clinical staff since 1992. I graduated from California School of Professional Psychology and was also on the Dean’s list at California State University. My training is in adult and adolescent psychology, and I am trained and experienced in marital therapy. I have worked in a variety of settings such as a crisis counselor, teaching assistant and is currently a dedicated Psychologist since 1983.
My primary areas of specialty include: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Attention Deficit Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, Anxiety Disorders, Depression, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Anger, Stress, Grief, and a wide range of life and adjustment issues. I have a vast knowledge base in social, religious and cultural areas. I work with individuals and couples in need of marital therapy. My primary goal is to ensure that the client reaches their goal.
I also do evaluations and testing for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder/Attention Deficit Disorder and Bipolar for individuals age 15+.
I am a licensed psychologist in the state of Washington. I joined Rainier Behavioral Health in 1999 after completing an internship at Duke University and earning a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) in counseling psychology from Washington State University in 1998.
I work with adolescents and adults who are facing a variety of concerns such as: depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, bipolar disorder, adjustment to life stressors, adolescent issues, post-partum depression, sexual assault/abuse, divorce, marital issues, grief, gay/lesbian/bisexual issues.
I view psychotherapy as a powerful process with the potential to change unhealthy life patterns, reduce uncomfortable emotional symptoms, restore a feeling of control over life, and improve self-esteem. I draw from a variety of therapeutic approaches, especially cognitive-behavioral and interpersonal, based on the needs of the individual client and knowledge of research findings for effective treatments.
My goal is to form a partnership with you and, through collaboration, build a treatment plan that will address your concerns and ultimately leave you empowered and prepared to manage your life with success.
I have been working at Rainier Behavioral Health since 2001. I am board certified in psychiatry and completed residency training at Duke University. My clinical practice spans the breadth of general psychiatry, including medication management and psychotherapy or a combination of both.
Additionally, I treat people ranging in age from early adolescence to geriatrics.
Credentials and experience: I am a clinical social worker, specializing in psychotherapy with adults. I received my Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology and social work from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, WA, and my Master of Social Work degree from Catholic University in Washington, D.C. I have worked in a variety of settings, including hospital, mental health agencies, and private practice. In my practice in the greater Washington, D.C. area as well as in Tacoma, I have developed a broad scope of experience in my work with clients from diverse social, cultural, and religious backgrounds who present with a wide range of needs.
Current Practice: My primary areas of practice include generalized anxiety, panic disorder, phobias and specific fears, post-traumatic stress disorder, survivors of abuse, depression, self-esteem, interpersonal issues, grief and loss, and a wide range of adjustment issues.
Approach: Combined with other methods, I use strengths-based and solution-focused models of therapy to assist clients in both recognizing and further developing the strengths they already have, as well as helping them look toward solutions or goals rather than focusing primarily on the problem or concern. Utilizing various treatment approaches including cognitive/behavioral therapy, desensitization, exposure with response prevention, problem-solving, as well as other therapeutic interventions, I build on the client's strengths to help them move toward emotional healing, development of effective coping skills, problem/conflict resolution, personal growth, and improved wellness. I choose the model(s) and interventions most appropriate to each client's unique needs in order to most effectively work toward their individual goals. In addition, I strive to help each client develop 'tools,' which they can implement in their own lives for current and future needs
I earned my doctorate in Clinical Psychology in 2005 from George Fox University and have been a member of the American Psychological Association since October of 2000. My practice includes the treatment of children, adolescents and adults for individual therapy and psychological evaluations in various forms. My Primary focus is the treatment of anxiety and depression.
I also do testing to diagnose adult ADHD, and can provide Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Some of my other areas of expertise include workplace issues, PTSD, grief, and anger.
I am a licensed psychologist in the state of Washington. I joined Rainier Behavioral Health in January 2011. Originally from New York, I completed my graduate schooling in the Midwest, before deciding to settle in the Pacific Northwest. I earned a masters degree in marriage and family therapy from Indiana State University (ISU) in 1994, and a doctoral degree, also from ISU, in counseling psychology in 1998.
I provide therapy to individuals, couples, and families exhibiting a wide range of presenting concerns including relationship difficulties, depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders, life transitions, eating disorders, grief and loss, and trauma. Regarding the latter, trained in EMDR, I will sometimes additionally utilize EMDR to assist clients, diagnosed with PTSD, in resolving their traumatic and disturbing experiences.
I view my clients as the real "experts" with respect to themselves and their personal experiences. Throughout my therapy work, I attempt to tap into my clients' frame of reference; and through so doing, provide them with the skills, knowledge, and awareness to arrive at their own solutions and achieve their goals. I am an energetic, enthusiastic therapist who has much faith in the therapy process and people's inherent capacity to make desired changes in themselves and their lives. My goal-directedness is balanced by a gentle sense of humor and interactions with others are comfortable, respectful, and genuine.
I received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology from Oregon State University in 1997 and a Master's of Social Work Degree from Portland State University in 2002. I have worked in outpatient and inpatient mental health settings since 2002. My professional experience includes individual, family, and group therapy in the treatment of children, adolescents, and adults. I have been trained in several evidence-based practices, including Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Depression and Anxiety, Trauma Focused Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, Aggression Replacement Therapy, and Dialectic Behavior Therapy.
I believe in a collaborative approach to therapy. In partnership, we will work to explore your needs and develop a treatment plan to address identified issues. I primarily employ a cognitive-behavioral approach as this treatment modality has been shown to be effective in therapy. In addition, I use a strengths-based framework. Together we will address symptom management, build on your pre-existing strengths, and further develop your coping strategies. In addition, our work will likely include making meaning of important life events. Treatment work with children, adolescents and families also routinely includes exploring developmental issues and providing strategies for caregivers.
My training incorporates various counseling approaches: Family Systems, Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and Humanistic and Experimental theories. Because of my interest and belief in the connection of body, emotions, and cognition, my preferences of therapies are Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) which is a psychotherapy that enables people to heal from symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences, and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, a body-centered therapy that brings attention to the body with non-judgment and curiosity to help either develop inner resources in order to regulate affect or to help work out habitual fight, flight or freeze responses. With couples and families, I work from an attachment lens and lean greatly on Emotionally Focused Therapy. I have experience working with issues such as depression, anxiety, dependency (drugs, alcohol, food, shopping, sex etc..), trauma (big and small), grief and loss, as well as other aspects of the human condition in this modern era.
I work with individuals, couples, and families. I believe that therapy is first about gaining awareness and understanding, and once that is accomplished, there is a choice to make a change or not. Making a change takes courage, energy, and risk on your part, and a strong therapeutic alliance is greatly needed…key really. Research shows that despite the therapeutic modality used in therapy, it is the relationship between therapist and client that is most important. That makes sense since therapy requires such intimacy. My job is to witness, and I feel immensely grateful to have the honor to do so. My belief is that you are the expert of your mind, emotions, body, and spirit. You do the work in session; my role involves navigating, challenging, mirroring, and supporting you on your path. My job is to hold…to be present…to be authentic…to create a safe, nourishing, comfortable space for you to explore, get to know yourself (body, mind, and spirit), and hopefully, create within you a greater sense of acceptance, empowerment, and agency.
"Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy - the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light." Brene' Brown
I fully welcome diversity and am a LGBTQ ally.
I provide individual and couples counseling. I am open to providing outreach including presentations, workshops, and training to various groups in the community. My professional interests include stress/anxiety, depression, peak performance, eating disorders, substance abuse/addictions, relationship issues, adjustment, trauma and intersections of identity and culture. I consider myself to be a generalist with recent experience in higher education working with undergraduate and graduate students, medical/law students, and those hoping to improve focus, attention, motivation, and work efficiency.
I consider social justice an important piece of my work striving for equity and social opportunity. I use a wide variety of collaborative approaches in therapy, depending on the nature of the work, identities present in the room, and cultural considerations. I enjoy being creative using a variety of interventions including cognitive-behavioral(CBT), psychodynamic, humanistic, and feminist modalities. I utilize the relationships in the room, motivational interviewing, mindfulness, and interpersonal process to further personal development and positive change.
I tend to use a casual and open approach to the therapy process and appreciate humor. My overall goal is to help individuals maximize their life potential and thrive.
I am a licensed psychologist in the state of Washington. I earned a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) in Clinical Psychology from the University of Kentucky and completed my predoctoral internship at the VA Puget Sound: American Lake Division, where I stayed for a postdoctoral residency in chronic pain management from a biopsychosocial perspective.
I work with adults, and I treat depression, anxiety, chronic pain, post-traumatic stress, grief and loss, and a broad range of adjustment and general life issues.
My primary treatment modalities are Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. Both of these are designed to help increase your awareness of your thoughts, emotions, and behavioral patterns, and to empower you to create real and lasting change in your life. I believe that therapy is not only a safe place to be heard and understood without judgment, but also an opportunity to grow and change in ways that reduce suffering and make life more meaningful.
I am a general psychiatrist interested in an integrative care approach to healing, incorporating medication, psychotherapy and exercise.
After graduating Hartwick College, in upstate New York, summa cum laude with departmental honors in Biology, I attended Michigan State Medical School in East Lansing. I went on to complete four years of residency training in Psychiatry at the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit and moved to Washington in 1999. My background is in working with individuals disabled by mental illness.
In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, hiking, skiing, and practicing yoga and meditation.
I feel very fortunate that in clinical psychology I have found a field where I have been glad to go to work since I saw my first client in 1974. My training has been ‘eclectic’. My undergrad work was in philosophy of science at University of Michigan. After a short stint in medical school, I went to San Diego State University, where my professors were Rogerians, cognitivists and behaviorists (that was before the latter two got hyphenated and finally acronym-ized into CBT), plus one crypto-Freudian who spoke little but offered the most amazing insights. I also had some years of personal psychoanalysis.
In 1975 I moved back to Ann Arbor, where I trained in psychodynamic therapy and community mental health. I then lived almost four decades in Cambridge, MA, doing clinical work, teaching, and supervision. And in 2017, when my husband was offered a job here, we came to Tacoma.
Along the way I have had training experiences in Gestalt, psychodrama, Transactional Analysis, family systems, hypnotherapy, 12-step and other approaches to alcohol and other addictions, CBT, DBT, EMDR, Mindfulness, Meditation and Spirituality, and Internalized Family Systems (IFS). I have seen many “schools” of psychotherapy arise and gradually blend into the mainstream, contributing their perspectives, insights, and techniques. Whenever I see a set of fonts, I first seek out the ampersand (&).
So I am a generalist. My earliest “specialty,” being one of the first gay grad students in clinical psych at Michigan, has been working with the LGBTQIA community (starting back when it was L&G). During the early years of the HIV epidemic I was among the first to work in therapy with AIDS patients. But I have seen so many different kinds of individuals and couples over the years — artists, writers, actors, musicians, scientists, doctors, lawyers, other therapists; students and teachers; parents, pregnant women; people going through illnesses, deaths, divorces, job loss, retirement; administrators, clerks, business people; people from other countries, cultures, and languages; people with various medical conditions — that I really don’t have a specialty group.
In therapy I try to understand each person in their own terms, working together to see how various issues have emerged and played themselves out over time —from childhood through today, recognizing the importance of the various stages of life — introducing additional ways of looking at them and ways to experimentally make changes in what they do and say to themselves and others. I have often thought that if I ever wrote a book about therapy, it would be called “Prisoners of Metaphor,” because the very images and phrases we use to describe our experience express and amplify our understanding and future behavior, but also unintentionally limit our lives.
Sometimes an issue will occur within the therapy itself, so we get to compare notes on how each of us experienced a moment, an interaction, a reaction. Sometimes we cry together; very often, we laugh. (I have learned as much from stand-up comedians as from any other single source.) And sometimes we talk about spiritual and religious matters, which have little formal place in therapy teaching, but may have a huge importance in the quality of our lives.
I provide a space for people to be with all aspects of who they are – mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. I believe we are all experts on our own lives and have within us the knowing of what is best for us. There are times when we feel disconnected from that knowing and can benefit from support in reconnecting with it. I offer space to enter into a deeper exploration of one’s life. I provide support to enter into one’s inner process in order to be with all of the parts of one’s personality and all the information and wisdom held there. I assist others in connecting with a feeling of more internal space and a greater sense of ease from which to reflect on what they are needing. I believe therapy is a collaborative process and feel grateful to have the privilege to join others in their personal process.
I work with individual adults and adolescents. The issues and symptoms I have worked with is extensive and as a result I would call myself a generalist. I draw largely from a family systems perspective as well as a wide range of trainings – Internal Family Systems, DBT, Trauma Focused CBT, Mindfulness, Play Therapy. I also often incorporate Expressive Art Therapy – visual art, imagery and movement in my work.
I received a Bachelor of Science in Psychology at Santa Clara University in 1990, a Certificate in Expressive Arts from John F. Kennedy University in 1996 and a Master of Arts in Counseling (Marriage, Family, & Child Counseling) from Sonoma State University in 1998. I worked with youth and families in social services and crisis residential from 1990 – 1996. I have been working as a therapist since 1996 and have worked in a variety of settings. I was licensed by the State of Washington as Marriage and Family Therapist (No. LF00001495) in 2001.
I have associate licenses in Marriage and Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling in the State of Washington. I also recently completed 2,000 hours in chemical dependency counseling - all client contact. I earned a Master of Arts degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Chapman University and completed my practicum at the Army Substance Abuse Program on Fort Lewis. I work to uphold the highest ethical standards of care and am also committed to any culturally-sensitive awareness and understanding.
I view psychotherapy as a powerful process of behavioral change. I also view psychotherapy as a chance for individuals to explore a deeper understanding of themselves while working to achieve a complete and healthy life. In our time together, I hope to develop a trusting therapeutic relationship from which we can identify strengths, support, and effective measures to be taken toward living a more meaningful life. With the use of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), psychoeducation, and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), we will examine how to overcome internal and external obstacles to reach our goals by understanding the past, but working toward changing the future.
There are a lot of great therapists out there who are good listeners and will help you feel safe and comfortable with where you're at in your life. That's not me. Don't get me wrong, I will listen and explore with you, but if you're coming to see a therapist, it's likely that not everything in your life is going the way you want. I'm invested in helping you move forward towards your goals, not just listening to you while you stay stuck.
I am a licensed psychologist in Washington State and completed my doctoral training at BYU in counseling psychology. Before joining Rainier Behavioral Health, I spent 10 years working in public hospitals as part of integrated healthcare teams. I learned quickly that mental health and physical health are interconnected and have adopted a view of well-being grounded in functional medicine. In order to move towards well-being, we need to focus on all aspects of health were we might be stuck including sleep, nutrition, movement, relationships, career/education, meaning/purpose and our relationship with our thoughts and feelings.
In order to help you make changes in those areas, I utilize elements of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) in conjunction with existential and humanistic approaches. Most importantly, I tailor my approach to your needs. The best predictor of success in therapy is the relationship between therapist and client, so our relationship is my primary focus. I use regular outcome tracking to make sure we are working well together and moving in tandem towards your treatment goals.
I am skilled in working with a variety of problems including depression, anxiety, panic, insomnia, and PTSD as well as helping people live with chronic health conditions such as chronic pain, IBS, MS, and additional medical complications. I have over a decade of experience working with military veterans and am familiar with concerns specific to those who have served and their families that have served along with them. I also specialize in working with individuals struggling with a religious faith crisis or navigating a religious transition from fundamentalist traditions.
I value diversity and make my approach flexible to the cultural backgrounds of my clients. I have experience working with people from a variety of ages, races, ethnicities, and nationalities. I am an LGBTQ+ affirmative therapist and have worked with people from a wide range of gender and sexual identities.
In conjunction with my psychotherapy services, I also provide health coaching, performance coaching for athletes, executive coaching, and psychological assessment.
I began my career in January 1972 after finishing 3 years of Psychiatry Residency at the program of Western State Hospital in conjunction with the University of Washington. I began as the Psychiatric Consultant for Purdy Treatment for Women, the new Women’s State Correctional Facility of Washington State. After a year and a half at part-time, I became the Medical Director of the Puyallup Mental Health Center, Good Samaritan Hospital. I served there from May 1973 – November 1978. I started in Private Practice in December 1978. I have remained in private practice for the next 40 - plus years.
The scope of my practice is adult psychiatry. I see individuals, couples and families for psychotherapy in conjunction with medication management. I subscribe to the bio-psycho-social model of understanding emotional disorders and plan my treatment accordingly.
Our patients will continue to receive the same comprehensive and compassionate care from the same providers. Over the coming months, this website will redirect to a site our new online home where you’ll find access to our online scheduling, expanded resources, and important information. Please click here to learn more about this exciting new chapter for Rainier Behavioral Health.