Licensed Psychologist, Director of Mental Health Services
I was born and raised in Michigan, but left for several years (living in Washington, Idaho, and California) before returning in 2014.
My family consists of my husband, my son, and a whole host of pets (dog, cats, gecko, fish, chickens!).
I love cooking, gardening, nature, and connecting with friends and family.
My path to specialization in child clinical psychology emerged from a drive to advocate for vulnerable populations and a fascination with developmental psychology. Along the way I found that working with youth and families is not only rewarding, but also fun! I strive to forge meaningful collaborative relationships with children and their families, with the understanding that therapy is hard work and requires placement in a vulnerable position to move toward recovery. Our work will involve identifying and interrupting maladaptive, chronic patterns of thinking, behaving, and relating to others, patterns that are ingrained and often serving a function that has yet to be elucidated. Depending on the presenting concerns and goals for treatment, work may include such tasks as bolstering self-confidence, establishing effective coping mechanisms, learning mindfulness and relaxation techniques, and building social skills. I use a blend of empirically-supported treatment approaches against the backdrop of a safe, supportive, and empowering therapeutic relationship.
My conceptualization of any individual is rooted in thoughtful consideration of the multiple systems and contexts in which that individual is expected to function, as well as collaboration with the family to uncover contextual and systemic factors contributing to any identified concerns. This process not only clarifies risk factors but also allows for the identification and harnessing of protective factors in service of promoting one’s natural propensity for resilience. A developmental lens further focuses the clinical picture (i.e., examination of what developmental tasks an individual is faced with at a given time and how success or struggle with such tasks intersects with the demands of family life, school and/or work, society/culture, and relationships).
Kalamazoo College, Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
Idaho State University, Master of Science in Clinical Psychology
Idaho State University, Ph.D in Clinical Psychology
I have worked extensively with youth and families (and adults) across a variety of settings, including hospital clinics, private practice, community mental health, university counseling, inpatient psychiatric, and developmental disabilities agencies. I have specialized post-doctoral training with foster children and their families, as well as in infant and early childhood mental health. I utilize an integrated and collaborative therapeutic approach, drawing heavily from evidence-based treatments. I have a comprehensive background in psychological assessment, including training in the assessment and diagnosis of attachment disorders, anxiety disorders, mood disorders, externalizing problems, developmental disabilities, learning disabilities, autism spectrum disorder and ADHD.