I am a Licensed Psychologist, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and have been in private practice for 34 years. I hold a Masters Degree in Speech-Communication (with an emphasis on group and interpersonal communication) and a Ph.D. in Family Social Science. I hold certificates in Chemical Dependency Counseling, Family Therapy and Addiction Counseling and Chemical Dependency and Family Intimacy (Sex Counseling).
Presently I am a core faculty in the Psychology Program at Capella University located in Minneapolis. Previously I was Chair of the Addiction Psychology program, and prior to that I was the co-founder and Associate Dean, Director of Training and the Director of Continuing Education of the School of Psychology at Capella University. I am a founding faculty member of Capella University, where I was also the Dean of the School of Human Services.
Before joining Capella I served in a variety of academic and administrative roles at the University of Minnesota. I was the Program Director for Continuing Education for Alcohol and Drug Abuse Professionals at the University of Minnesota. For nine years prior to that I was on the faculty of the Alcohol and Drug Counselor Training Program in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota. I have also served as a training consultant and clinical supervisor at the Program in Human Sexuality at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
I am listed in Who's Who of the Midwest and Who's Who of Emerging Leaders in America. I have been a nationally recognized trainer and consultant for 34 years in the areas of chemical dependency and family dysfunction and their impacts upon the individual and family. During my career I've provided over 500 training workshops for lay people and professionals as well as serving as a training consultant for numerous Fortune 500 corporations, non-profits and smaller businesses.
I have also authored a number of professional articles in the areas of shame, substance and sexual addictions, family therapy, suicidal behavior, music and healing, and teaching psychology. Feel free to email me for a .pdf of my classic article on the process of healing shame.
My therapeutic approach
I am empathic, warm, supportive, direct and practical. I am active in therapy; in other words I don't just sit and listen! I ask questions, share ideas and suggestions, and create a sense of presence with you in the therapy. While I attend to behavioral issues, I can help identify and heal the deeper issues that often underlie behavioral problems. Some of these include attachment problems, issues of shame and self doubt, difficulty with emotional expression, differentiation from family of origin, unresolved losses and grief and resolving internal conflicts. I find that sometimes it is helpful to explore and resolve issues from the past in order to help you get "unstuck" in the present. In a general sense my goal in treatment to help you integrate your shame and vulnerabilities into a healthy identity grounded in self-esteem and pride.
I approach psychotherapy as a collaborative effort - so we need to work together to meet your concerns and goals in therapy. I find the use of humor is also beneficial in therapy. There needs to be some fun in this process that can sometimes be challenging and painful.
I've been trained in a number of therapeutic approaches including family therapy, addiction counseling, clinical hypnosis, NLP (neurolinguistic programming) Ericksonian psychotherapy, dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), Cognitive Therapy (CBT), Bowen family therapy and psychodynamic psychotherapy. I'm eclectic in my approach; that means I will adjust my approach to what is comfortable and helpful for you.
individual therapy for teens and adults
marriage or couple therapy,
group psychotherapy - both mens and women's groups
Areas of Expertise
I work with:
unresolved grief and loss
chemical dependency and other addiction problems such as sex addiction
shame (self-esteem problems)
attachment and intimacy issues
rebuilding your life and esteem following a divorce
sexual concerns and dysfunctions
anger problems and strategies for anger management
personality disorders (including borderline disorder)
coping with chronic illness
unresolved problems resulting from childhood neglect, abuse and/or trauma