I absolutely love working with people from all backgrounds and cultures. This passion for people drew me to the social work profession at an early age. In my life, social work provides the perfect avenue to affect positive change in the lives of individuals and in our world. I hold a Doctorate in Social Work (PhD) from Washington University in St. Louis and a Masters in Social Work (MSW) from New York University. I am also a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and have over 10 years of clinical experience.
Before beginning my doctoral work, I worked as a therapist at St. Francis of Assisi Counseling Center in New York City, focusing on issues related to spirituality and women's empowerment. During my time in New York, I also had the privilege of working in hospice care and in cancer centers, assisting individuals and families with the process of illness, grief, and loss. These experiences helped me to understand the beauty and fragility of human life, and the importance of love and connection as central to the human experience.
I currently run my own private counseling practice where I provide counseling to clients on a range of issues. My practice is entirely online, which provides accessibility, convenience, and ease of access to clients wherever they are in life. I am honored to accompany my clients on their journey toward transformation and wholeness.
I am also the Director of the Social Work Program and an Assistant Professor at Trevecca University and I adore working with students. I love the chance to teach students about the healing impact of this work and walk with them on their professional journey.
I was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri and currently reside in Nashville, Tennessee. I love yoga and jogging, and although I'm not really good at either of these things, they both make me feel centered and energized. I am a musician and spend much of my time writing, singing, and playing piano. I love incorporating creative expression into my work as part of the journey toward holistic healing.
I think it's also important to note that I grew up in a conservative, evangelical, Christian setting...for better or for worse...and to this day, spirituality intrigues and fuels me. As I've grown and changed and questioned and journeyed, my understanding of faith has morphed a million times, but this desire to keep seeking has remained ever-present. Despite all of my questions, fears, and failures, I've always known that I am part of a larger, more encompassing love. And because of my culture and inheritance, this is best framed for me through the lens of the Christian tradition. For me, love, joy, and peace have always been embodied in this person of Christ. I love working with all people regardless of religion, race, creed, or culture, and I have no hidden agenda or desire to proselytize. I say all of this simply to attend to the fact that my faith journey has been so formative for me, and this is the reason that much of my blog content wrestles with issues of spirituality. I don't have all of the answers, but I invite you to journey with me!
I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) in the states of Tennessee and Missouri, and I provide online counseling to individuals in these states. My practice is dedicated to helping individuals become their best selves by journeying alongside them through the healing process. Click here to learn more.
Empowering my clients to engage and transform the world through their unique strengths is key to my work. My hope is that our work together can reignite those things that bring you the most joy and life. Often this process involves working through the impact of loss, pain, trauma, and various forms of oppression in a safe and supportive therapeutic relationship. I would love to accompany you on this journey.
My therapeutic work is heavily informed by humanistic and existential perspectives of psychotherapy and I am influenced by the work of Carl Rogers and Irvin D. Yalom. I am also trained in EMDR therapy, which is a type of therapy specifically designed to treat trauma. In addition, I have a history of working with grief, loss, and bereavement issues.
The services listed here are available online via Skype sessions. Please call 615-988-0122 for more information.
I currently work with clients who are 18 and older, and I specialize in the following areas:
In addition to being a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), I am also certified to supervise social workers who are working toward their LMSW or LCSW. Please contact me if you are interested in pursuing supervision toward your clinical social work license.
I love teaching and mentoring students and I take great pride in coming alongside others on their social work journey. I teach numerous classes in both micro and macro practice.
Health disparities among under-served populations
International social work
Women’s health and mental health
Spirituality and mental health
I completed my PhD at Washington University in St. Louis where I was an NIMH pre-doctoral fellow and the recipient of the American Cancer Society Doctoral Training Grant for four years. To see a list of publications, presentations, and to learn more about my research, please click here to see my CV.
Misfit. Kind of a strange thing to mention about yourself on the web, huh? I bring this up because this one word actually has a lot to do with my approach to social work and my understanding of the field. In general, I don't check boxes very well, I'm not great with authority, and I don't really do things by the book. I stay out too late and listen to music that is too loud; I talk too much, I have no filter between my brain and mouth, and I have crazy opinions regarding just about everything. I'm oozing with creative energy, which means I don't sit still very well and I don't look like your typical academic.
This may explain why after finishing my PhD, instead of initially pursuing the traditional academic path, I spent a number of years traveling to some of the most remote villages in Mozambique, Africa working on various humanitarian projects. My peers thought I was nuts. As the Associate Director of the Mozambique Initiative, I oversaw the drilling of safe water wells, the building of schools for children, and the care of orphans and widows throughout this beautiful but impoverished country. I blogged about this experience under the name "Misfit Missionary" and I had a blast documenting this journey. These blogs are now here on my website and help to tell my story. I'm not sharing this information to look like a saint - far from it - I'm simply sharing this because these experiences have shaped my world view, my professional goals, and my approach to working with clients.
a person whose behavior or attitude sets them apart from others in an uncomfortably conspicuous way.
a person who is not suited or is unable to adjust to the circumstances of his of her particular situation.
I think that anyone who claims to be a pursuer of justice falls into this misfit category. Anyone who is striving to live authentically and give of themselves is set apart from the mundane. Those of us who are aware of the conditions of poverty throughout our world naturally become unable to adjust ourselves to these particular, live-the-American-dream-while-turning-a-blind-eye circumstances in which we live. We are not suited to ignore the reality of suffering for the benefit of our own comfort. We are also not suited to live blindly, numbly, and without passion. My hope is that my life shines in ways that are set apart and even uncomfortable sometimes. I want my actions to center on radical love and humble service in order to demonstrate and bring about social justice in a world that desperately needs a few more misfits.