The therapist and therapy
The therapeutic relationship is a key to most successful therapeutic experiences. To anticipate how such a relationship may evolve is, at best, highly speculative.
There are no fail-safe means to ensure any therapist will be a ‘fit.’ References from respected friends, from family members, from other professionals may be a useful avenue to finding a therapist. Additionally one may access various lists of "credentialed therapists" through state licensing boards, insurance companies’ lists of preferred providers, or various professional organizations.
During the initial appointment with a therapist, I would encourage you to ask whatever questions you may have to assure yourself that this therapist is one with whom you may develop a helpful working relationship. Sometimes the therapist’s background and training can be an orienting factor in choosing. Below I provide you with some of my professional background.
I have been in the human services field for over thirty years, beginning during my college years when I worked in various summer wilderness camps as a guide-counselor with adolescents. I was intrigued with three professions as I surveyed my vocational options: Pastor, Teacher, Psychologist.
My formal schooling reflects these options:
B.A. from the University of Minnesota with an emphasis in mathematics and philosophy, and a teaching credential.
Three years of seminary-affiliation and training at Union Theological Seminary in New York City.
M.A. from the University of Minnesota in higher education and educational psychology.
PhD from the Union Institute in Cincinnati, Ohio, in clinical psychology. My dissertation was entitled, "Shame and Violence in Men."
During my school-years, I worked in a variety of settings, either as part of my formal training or as a means to support my life. Among these work-experiences were: Intern chaplain for dying patients in a hospital setting, student teacher in an inner-city school, hospital orderly in a public hospital, therapist at a drug detoxification center, organizer of humanistic psychology conferences, mental health worker in a residential adolescent treatment center.
Prior to entering private practice in 1983, I held four different professional jobs:
Adjunct professor at the University of Minnesota working with a drug and alcohol prevention programs throughout a ten-state region in the upper Midwest.
Director of the student counseling center at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Director of Male Awareness Project, a project to assist batterers in choosing nonviolent means to resolve conflicts-- affiliated with the Abused Women’s Aid In Crises (AWAIC) in Anchorage.
Director of Aftercare for the Alaska Regional Hospital Chemical Dependency Unit in Anchorage providing assistance to individuals and families seeking to live a sober and drug-free lifestyle.
For the past twenty-plus years, I have been in private clinical practice in Anchorage. I am a licensed psychologist in Alaska. I am a member of the American Psychological Association and the Alaska Psychological Association.
My practice is with individuals, couples, families, and groups.