Clinical modalities used with clients
- Play Therapy
- Motivational Interviewing
Therapy services location
In-person in our Berkeley offices
Warm, eclectic, client-centered, use humor when indicated, down-to-earth, strengths-based, creative.
Licensed Clinical Social Worker #101440
University of Bridgeport | B.A. Music | 1987
University of Northern Colorado | M.A. Professional Psychology | 1999
EMDR- Basic Training | Mark Nickerson, EMDR Institute Sponsored | 2021
Registered Play Therapist | Association for Play Therapy | 2019
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Intensive Training and Certificate | PESI, Instructor John Ludgate, Ph.D. | 2019
TF-CBT Training | Child Help Partnership, Instructor Elissa Brown, Ph.D. | 2017
The Most Effective Techniques for Treating Traumatized Children, Adolescents and Families | PESI, Instructor Robert Rhoton, PsyD. | 2017
Motivational Interviewing | Yale Child Study Center | 2012
Dialectical Behavioral Therapy | Yale Child Study Center | 2012
Why I do this work
I truly enjoy and value the opportunity to help change young lives. In addition to experience working with children and adolescents as a therapist in outpatient and in-home settings, I have a background in the arts (I am a former elementary school music teacher and singer). This background informs my approach to therapy, enabling me to bring to it a sense of creativity. As a Registered Play Therapist (RPT), I recognize that play is the language of children. I believe in the power of therapeutic play to achieve emotional well-being and facilitate change. Children express their challenges, learn to label and manage emotions, increase self-confidence, and develop new ways of interacting with the world through play. Therapeutic play improves communication and social skills. I am strongly committed to involving parents in the therapeutic process, as change is most supported in the context of the family. I help parents develop a neuroscience-informed parenting style that emphasizes relationship. In therapy parents learn and practice new ways of being with their children. My approach is grounded in neuroscience, attachment, developmental and systems theories, is focused on strengths, and is trauma-informed. I have a down-to-earth, non-judgmental style, and am not afraid to bring humor into sessions at times. I’m genuinely interested in each client, and convey that interest to them.
The best part of my job
It's an enormous privilege to facilitate and witness change. Small changes in even one individual lead to enormous improvement in the lives of the whole family! It’s so wonderful to see families having joyful interactions and re-discovering the love and connection that had been clouded by trauma, defensiveness, and communication struggles. Helping people find their self-worth, improve their ability to self-advocate, set boundaries, and discover their strengths is a joy. When I work with a child, and see over and over again the power of play as an emotional expression and release for them, it’s terrifically rewarding.
How I spend my free time
I have recently moved from Connecticut to California so that I can be an involved grandmother, and I am loving spending time with my toddler grandson and teenage step-grandsons, not to mention my daughter and son-in-law! I am an animal lover, and my hound dog Clara and I are enjoying exploring the wonderful parks in San Francisco.
“Everything you want is on the other side of fear.” George Addair
Top trauma recovery resources
- EMDR Therapy and Adjunct Approaches with Children: Complex Trauma, Attachment, and Dissociation by Ana Gomez, MC, LPC
- EMDR Toolbox: Theory and Treatment of Complex PTSD and Dissociation by Jim Knipe, Ph.D.