I received my undergraduate degree in Sociology/Psychology from the
University of California, Santa Barbara.
After getting my B.A. I worked at a variety of positions in the Health Education and Medical fields. I trained and supervised Peer Heath Educators at UCSB, taught a 2-unit Communications Skills class at UCSB, and worked on a Patient Education program for an M.D./allergist in Berkeley.
I have a special interest in "where the mind meets the body" and consider our mental health a key contributor - either positively or negatively - to physical health. And vice versa...
I worked in the technology field for a number of years, teaching large classes on computer skills/word processing to first-time users who worked for state agencies and private businesses. It was here I noticed something fundamental - most people entered these classes nervous and intimidated. Often they were frightened - worried that they would be inadequate, unsuccessful and end up shamed/embarrassed.
I quickly realized that it didn't matter how much technical knowledge I had: until my students felt safe and supported they wouldn't learn well. I carefully slowed down, was reassuring, pointed out what they were doing right, patted them on the back for their accomplishments, and conveyed a calm confidence that they would succeed. And they did.
I became known as the instructor who "could teach anyone" and enjoyed transforming students whose hands were shaking so much they could barely touch the keyboard into confident and competent computer users. I like to think that I have transferred these same skills and awarenesses into my work with counseling clients.
After getting my Master's in Marriage and Family Counseling, I worked as a Counseling Intern for three years in the San Juan Unified School District providing school-based and mental health counseling services to children, teens, women and couples.
I have a special interest/specialty in assisting those who struggle with emotional or binge eating find different ways of comforting, consoling or distracting themselves. I am very interested in working towards a goal of successful long-term weight management, and a positive relationship
with food and eating.
In my personal life I enjoy travel, different cultures, teaching aerobics, music, movies, reading, hiking, dancing, photography, wine, cooking, and keeping my sense of humor.