I've been a social worker for more than 20 years and have worked with individuals and groups in a large variety of settings. I have a PhD in Social Welfare and a Masters in Social Work from the University of Washington as well as advanced training in Buddhist Psychology. Along with my private practice, I am a faculty member at the University of Washington where I teach courses on community, family and group practice and direct the Bachelor's in Social Work program. I am a licensed social work associate and independent clinician (LSWAIC) in Washington.
More personally, I grew up outside New York City but have spent most of my adult life in the Pacific Northwest. I identify as a queer, white cis man. Outside of work, I have an 11 year old son and love spending time with my family, traveling, and being outdoors. I have hiked all over the west. I'm also in the process of learning Spanish - which I fear I may never master!
My Approach to Therapy
My work with clients is informed by three key streams of thought. First, I have been deeply influenced by meditation and mindfulness, as well as Buddhist and existential psychology. All of these schools of thought offer deep insight into the human experience. They have deepened my appreciation for how our minds work and how we can find spaces of greater refuge and peace, even under challenging circumstances.
Second, I am drawn to therapeutic approaches that focus on emotions and feelings. In my work I have learned that the first step to making sense of our experience - and to making change in our lives - is to fully understand how we feel. I believe shame about who we are or how we feel can be corrosive if left unaddressed. The relationship between therapist and client is critical to this work. I strongly believe that by learning how to work wisely with our feelings, we can live more fully and joyfully.
Third, I feel strongly about the social work approach to counseling. For me, this means that the environments that surround us wield great influence on our lives. Our surroundings and the political structures we live in, including systems of power and oppression, have a profound impact on us. I believe understanding the implications of these environments on our lives - and finding a way to chart our own course amidst them - is essential to wellness.