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  My Background  

I received my doctorate in clinical psychology from the PGSP-Stanford Psy.D. Consortium.  My dissertation research in the Stanford Bipolar Disorders Clinic examined the relationship between creativity and bipolar disorder.  I work currently as Outreach Director and staff psychologist for The Wise Mind Institute (WMI)Prior to joining the WMI team, I co-founded and served as coordinator for the Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) program at Kaiser Oakland Adult Psychiatry, where I completed my post-doctoral residency in 2014.  I provided additional leadership at Kaiser on several pilot programs and conducted group and individual therapy there, while starting a small private practice.  Psychology is a second career for me, following over a decade working as an actor and director in New York, Boston, and the Bay Area.  

My approach to therapy is integrative, blending mindfulness, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), and psychodynamic sensitivity.  This means that I focus on experience in the moment, and that I integrate two historically opposed concepts of psychotherapy:  (1) I believe lasting change starts with understanding why we do what we do, and how that came to be.  At the same time, (2) I employ research-supported models of learning and change, and I believe therapy should be collaborative and active, using explicit goals to direct treatment.

Psychotherapy is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor.  I adapt my approach to each client, and I have experience with a wide range of problems and cultural backgrounds.  If, however, I believe you would be better served by another clinician, I will let you know and provide a referral.  Depending on my client’s needs, I blend client-centered exploration, supportive therapy, and cognitive behavioral techniques (CBT) drawn from my training in a number of modalities, including mindfulness, dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT), Somatic Experiencing (SE), motivational interviewing, solution-focused, and problem-solving therapy.

I began studying psychology after many years of working in the arts.  A filmmaking and photography major in college (Harvard University, 1996), I went on to a ten-year career in the theater as a stage director, creative collaborator, and producer.  During this time, I was fortunate to study for a Master of Fine Arts (2003) at the Moscow Art Theater School, where Stanislavski and Chekov gave birth to modern theater; at that same moment, a thousand miles away in Austria, modern psychology was born with Sigmund Freud's seminal work (flawed as it was), The Interpretation Of Dreams.  This is no mere coincidence, in regards to both cultural history and my own personal interest.  Both psychology and modern theater take as their subject the relationship between our inner lives and our outward behaviors, and I find that my experience in both disciplines enriches my practice. 

I am a licensed psychologist in the state of California (PSY27420).

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