MEET THE COLECTIVO

Growing From Our Collective Wisdom

 
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Elizabeth González, MSW, LMSW, CYT
Founder, Therapist, Yoga Instructor

Pronouns: she/her/hers
Language(s): English, Spanish

Read Elizabeth's Bio

Education & Training:

  • University of Michigan School of Social Work
  • Texas Association of Nonprofit Organizations - Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership and Management.
  • Mota Thai Yoga Teacher Training, 200 hours

Professional Interests: Elizabeth provides individual and group psychotherapy to adolescents and adults. Her work with children is specific to gender identity. She has supported clients with depression, anxiety and LGBTQQ+ concerns. She has specialized training in eating concerns, gender identity, and trauma.

Approach to Therapy: She works with clients through a holistic health lens that emphasizes the inseparable connection between our health, mental health, and environment. Her approach to therapy is strength-based and client centered rooted in cultural humility and multicultural counseling. She takes an integrative approach that includes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Mindfulness and other evidence-based techniques depending upon the goals of each client.

Approach to Training & Supervision: Elizabeth's approach to supervision incorporates an integrative developmental model based in multicultural and feminist frameworks. In addition, supervision is tailored to the individual needs of the practitioner such as focusing on particular clinical approaches, clinical issues, or populations.

Approach to Yoga: Elizabeth has been practicing yoga since 2009 and in 2015 participated in a 200-hour yoga teacher training. Her classes focus on honoring the history behind yoga and co-creating a space to explore, feel good, have fun, and just be. She has developed a passion for sharing the way yoga can teach us about self-compassion, on and off the mat.

Selected Professional Experience: She has experience working in higher education institutions, nonprofits, and community mental health settings in Texas, Michigan, and Costa Rica. She has worked for the Upward Bound program at Huston-Tillotson University and for the AmeriCorps - Community Mentor Program at St. Edward's University. In addition, she worked at the National Domestic Violence Hotline, Breakthrough Austin, Safe House Center in Ann Arbor, Southwest Counseling Solutions in Detroit, and Casa de Derechos in Costa Rica. Elizabeth has presented both nationally and internationally on the following topics; vicarious trauma, interpersonal violence, suicide prevention, and ethical clinical work with transgender clients.

 
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Leonia Gregory, MBA
Operations Specialist

Pronouns: she/her/hers
Language(s): English

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Education:

Professional Interests:

Selected Professional Experiences:

 
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Esther Ayers, MSW, LMSW
Therapist

Pronouns: she/her/hers
Language(s): English, Spanish

Read Esther's Bio

Education: University of Michigan School of Social Work

Professional Interests: Esther has experience in working with a diverse caseload that come from various backgrounds, and with various diagnoses. Esther specializes in psychotherapy with children, youth and adults that have endured some form of trauma. In addition to clinical work, Esther is passionate about supporting the growth of the Latino/a community in Washtenaw County. Current project includes consulting with Catholic Social Services of Washtenaw County on best practices for serving the Latino/a community.

Approach to Therapy: Esther strives to respectfully integrate culturally adaptive evidence-based practices to assist clients along their journey towards their goals. Esther's work with clients is grounded in her values of dignity, integrity and humility. Esther utilizes Person Centered Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Mindfulness and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

Selected Professional Experiences: Esther has over 20 years of volunteer and professional experience supporting underserved populations through various local organizations such as; the Spanish Healthcare Outreach Collaborative, Washtenaw Health Plan Advisory Board, and the YMCA. Her professional experience includes; Bilingual Outreach Specialist at a school-based health center, Research Coordinator for the Office of Health Equity and Inclusion, and Clinic Coordinator for the Family Assessment Clinic. Esther has co-presented nationally at the 2016 American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children in New Orleans, Louisiana on the topic, "Addressing Trauma in the Family: A Comprehensive Family Treatment Using Play and Adventure-Based Therapeutic Strategies."

 
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Raina LaGrand, MSW, LLMSW, MPH, CYT
Therapist, Yoga Instructor, Wellness Coach

Pronouns: she/her/hers
Language: English

Read Raina's Bio

Education:

  • University of Michigan School of Social Work
  • University of Michigan School of Public Health
  • A2 Yoga Teacher Training, 200 hours

Professional Interests: Raina has supported clients through challenges with body image, life transitions, sexualized violence, anxiety, grief and depression. She specializes in trauma-informed practices and especially enjoys working with adolescents and young adults. Raina also recognizes that for many, these issues are embedded in lived experiences related to identity and marginalization and believes it can be important, if not vital, to discuss how these forces influence your wellness.

Approach to Therapy: Raina believes that providing an affirming space for clients to be both safe and courageous is the first step to any successful therapeutic relationship. While keeping client's primary motivations for seeking therapy at the forefront, she invites clients to deepen self-awareness by considering the many factors and layers that influence mental and emotional wellness. Raina integrates a number of treatment modalities including Psychodynamic practice, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Mindfulness and Somatic processing, and Motivational Enhancement Therapy.

Approach to Yoga: Raina has been practicing yoga since 2009 and in 2013 participated in a yoga teacher training with Ana Hough of A2 Yoga. She believes her role as a yoga teacher is to hold space for students to safely and courageously connect with and learn about themselves. Raina finds the communal aspect of group classes important and inspiring, and for those who are interested, recommends private lessons as an opportunity to focus on your unique needs, whether therapeutic, athletic, emotional, or otherwise. Private lessons may also incorporate mindfulness, wellness coaching, and other modalities. For more information about Raina's yoga philosophy and educational offerings, visit her website [https://rainalagrand.wordpress.com/][1]

Selected Professional Experiences: Raina has over six years of experience designing and facilitating health education workshops on a variety of topics, including sexual assault, HIV, nutrition, and stress management. Raina has also been teaching yoga, mindfulness, and self-care classes, workshops, and private lessons since 2013. She has primarily worked with young people and is an advocate for youth's voice and vision.

 
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Manuela Uribe, MSW, LLMSW
Therapist

Pronouns: she/her/hers
Language: English, Spanish

Read Manuela's Bio

Education: University of Michigan School of Social Work

Professional Interests: Manuela has experience doing individual and group therapy to help individuals who struggle with severe and persistent mental illnesses. She has co-facilitated groups for individuals struggling with conditions such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, PTSD, substance abuse, borderline personality disorder, and schizophrenia. Additionally, Manuela has training certificates in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Parent-child Interaction Therapy, and Cognitive Processing Therapy to help children, youth, and adults who have experienced trauma.

Approach to Therapy: Manuela’s goal is to help human beings enhance their well-being and help them make positive changes in order to live a life worth living. In order to provide individuals with high quality services, Manuela has learned multiple evidence-based practices that have allowed her to treat a wide range of mental health problems. Some of the evidence-based practices include, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, and Solution-Focused Therapy.

Selected Professional Experiences: Manuela has experience working in Community Mental Health settings in the Adult Outpatient Therapy program. She has volunteer and professional experience helping individuals who have physical and/or cognitive limitations. Manuela completed her undergraduate major degree in psychology and has a minor degree in nutrition.

 
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Paul D. Jacobs, MSW, LLMSW
Therapist

Pronouns: he/him/his
Language: English

Read Paul's Bio

Education:

  • University of Michigan School of Social Work

Professional Interests: Paul has worked with clients who have faced challenges such as depression, anxiety, ADHD, and bipolar disorder. He has worked in the juvenile justice system, athletics, school systems, hospital settings, and mental health systems. His experience with case management services and mental health care navigation spans almost two decades. To date, his clinical work has involved providing therapy for adolescent and young adult clients, including conducting psychosocial assessments; developing client-centered care plans; linking clients with community resources; and engaging in coordination of care, communication, and follow-up.

Approach to Therapy: Paul’s approach to therapy involves meeting people where they are. He believes it is important to engage in conversations with people to get a deeper understanding of their preferred communication styles, topics, and approaches to therapy. He exercises patience and is open to going at a pace most comfortable with the client. Paul believes everyone has a story to tell, and that their stories are incredibly important. His goal is not to change the world on a grand scale, but rather to foster change one individual at a time.

Selected Professional Experiences: Paul worked as a both a teacher and teaching assistant for the young adult special education program at Washtenaw Intermediate School District. He has worked at the Northeast Guidance Center in Detroit, Michigan where he worked with marginalized youth and young adults. Similarly, he also worked as an Outpatient Therapist with young adults at the Guidance Center in Taylor, Michigan. In addition to community mental health, Paul has also worked with professional and semi-professional athletes for nearly twenty years.

 
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Marna Clowney-Robinson, MSW, LLMSW, MLIS
Therapist

Pronouns: she/her/hers
Language: English

Read Marna's Bio

Education:

  • University of Michigan School of Social Work
  • Wayne State University School of Information Science

Professional Interests: Marna has experience with case management working with homeless individuals in a nonprofit setting; and has co-facilitated support groups for eating disorders, substance abuse, and safe space dialogues. Marna specializes in identity issues, eating disorders, trauma issues, and mixed race identity issues. Current projects include identifying strategies for multicultural community-based research and practice, multicultural education for social work practice, and identifying effective methods for learning about social justice.

Approach to Therapy: Marna utilizes evidence-based therapies such as; Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Acceptance Commitment Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy, Modified Dialectical Behavior Therapy, and Motivational Enhancement Therapy. Marna's therapeutic approach is to provide support and feedback to help clients effectively address personal life challenges.

Selected Professional Experiences: Marna has lectured on the topic, "African-Americans and Eating Disorders" at Eastern Michigan University and the University of Michigan in 2009, 2011, and 2017. She has also presented at the 2005 National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders on the topic, “Internet-based chat support groups for eating disorders." Marna has been featured on National Public Radio (NPR) discussing issues related to eating disorders in marginalized populations and has extensive lecture experience on this issue.

 
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Stephanie Hicks, PhD, CYT
Yoga Instructor

Pronouns: she/her/hers
Language: English

Read Stephanie's Bio

Education:

  • University of Illinois at Chicago College of Education
  • Karuna Yoga School Teacher Training, 200 hours

Professional Interests: Stephanie is a justice-focused educator with a passion for creating interactive, dialogue-based curriculum and facilitator training. She is also a qualitative researcher informed by Critical Theory that challenges and deepens traditional educational practices, while supporting collaborative teaching and learning.

Approach to Yoga: Stephanie teaches yoga as an expression of gratitude and admiration: gratitude for all that she’s been allowed to experience through the practice, and admiration for students who have the courage to come - and return - to the mat. She hopes to help people recognize that the they have the tools within themselves to create a home for their spirits and for loving relationships with people and communities. For more information about Stephanie's yoga philosophy, visit [www.yogaforblacklives.com][1]

Selected Professional Experiences: Stephanie has developed, implemented and assessed dialogue-based diversity and social justice education curricula for educational institutions and the non-profit sector. She also worked as an Educator for the University of Illinois at Chicago, Women’s Leadership & Resource Center/Campus Advocacy Network, the University’s advocacy center for survivors of interpersonal violence.

 
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Yvette Colón, PhD,  MSW, LMSW, BCD
Therapist

Pronouns: she/her/hers
Language: English & Spanish

Read Yvette's Bio

Education & Training:

  • New York University School of Social Work (PhD)
  • Smith College School for Social Work (MSW)
  • Eastern Michigan University Graduate Certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies

Professional Interests: Yvette provides individual, couple, and family psychotherapy to adults ages 18+. Her work with children is specific to family therapy. She works with a diverse caseload of clients, supporting those with depression, anxiety, chronic pain, serious illness, relationship and family conflict, LGBTQQ+ issues, and general life concerns. She has specialized training in family therapy, pain management, EMDR, and Acceptance & Commitment Therapy.

Approach to Therapy: Yvette creates a safe, non-judgmental therapeutic environment with clients in which they can build upon their pre-existing strengths and resources, examine their lives within their cultural contexts, and envision psychological change and growth. She helps clients focus on important values and beliefs that provide meaning in one’s life. She maintains a strong commitment to social justice and strives to be a culturally competent and culturally humble clinician. She integrates respectful multicultural evidence-based practices to help clients reach their goals. Her clinical practice is informed by contemporary psychodynamic and family systems theory. She uses a combination of relational, attachment, feminist, mindfulness, and strength-based practices.

Selected Professional Experiences: Yvette has 28 years of professional and volunteer experience supporting underserved populations in a variety of nonprofit settings focused on mental health, family and couple services, pain management, and psychosocial oncology. She has taught, presented, and published extensively on pain management, psychosocial oncology, diversity, LGBT-affirmative practice, and technology-based social work services. She also is a faculty member at Eastern Michigan University School of Social Work where she teaches graduate theory and practice courses.

 
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Lance Hicks, MSW, LLMSW

Pronouns: he/him/his
Language: English

Read Lance's Bio

Education & Training:

  • University of Michigan School of Social Work *

Professional Interests:

Approach to therapy:

Selected Professional Experience:

 
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Sharon Alvandi, MSW, LLMSW, MAT
Therapist

Pronouns: she/her/hers
Language: English

Read Sharon's Bio

Education & Training:

  • University of Michigan School of Social Work, Certificate in Jewish Communal Studies
  • Bard College Masters of Art & Teaching

Professional Interests: Sharon began her career as an educator and found that she can provide more effective healing to communities by working with one person or one group at a time. With experiences developing curricula, advocating for youth, and collaborating with nonprofits that organized around themes of identity and faith, Sharon carried forward and received her education in interpersonal work and therapy in Michigan. Sharon specializes in mindfulness based intervention, trauma-informed cognitive behavioral therapies, and motivational interviewing. Sharon works to end gender based violence by working with victims, survivors, and perpetrators. Sharon also has experience counseling students, university staff, and professionals at all levels in transitions. Sharon is passionate about alternative medicine and working with others to personalize faith/spirituality practices to achieve healing.

Approach to Therapy: Sharon works with humans to identify motivation and patterns in thinking through reflection. Sharon works to guide people through identifying and lifting up elements of identity in systems. She likes using psychoeducation, teachable moments, organizational structures, experiential learning, body and mind connection, critical questioning techniques, and mindfulness practices as a means for empowerment in her therapy sessions.

Selected Professional Experience: Sharon has worked with different nonprofits that work to resettle refugees, create dynamic educational enrichment programs, encourage practice of multi-partial dialogue, celebrate Middle Eastern identity, teach progressive faith based practices, and end gender based violence. Sharon is certified in communal leadership and works with a board to maintain standards for battering intervention services.

 
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Kei Kaimana, MA, RYT
Yoga Instructor

Pronouns: they/she
Language: English

Read Kei's Bio

Education & Training:

  • Smith College
  • The New School
  • The University of Texas, Austin
  • Red Yoga Teacher Training, 200 hours

Professional Interests: Kei is a dedicated yoga practitioner and teacher, a PhD dropout, and a writer. They once hustled hard on the academic track teaching film history, media theory, and works by femme of color media artists. Then, a diagnosis of chronic illnesses helped them reassess life balances.

Approach to yoga: Kei believes that each person has the right to learn the movement of their own body, to know its strength and to feel its support. Kei began doing yoga in the 1980s and trained in modern dance, ballet, martial arts, and boxing before returning to yoga in the early aughts. . They are a trauma survivor and have practiced yoga intermittently for their entire life, utilizing breath and movement to come back to the present. Kei’s approach to teaching is rooted in capacity— the capacity of all people to find their own embodied rhythm, and the capacity for embodied knowledges to effect change.

Selected Professional Experiences: Kei holds degrees from Smith College and The New School, and completed coursework at The University of Texas, Austin. Kei has taught undergraduate courses in film & media and gender studies at UT Austin, Smith College, and Michigan State University, and has facilitated workshops at The Allied Media Conference, The University of Michigan, and the Society for Cinema and Media Studies. They have lived in many states across the USA, and their first love will always be working with young people to fortify creative imaginings for the future. Before getting serious (then unserious) about their degrees, Kei worked in NYC’s public schools, planning and executing large scale painting projects with grades 4-12.

 
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Richard Robles, MSW, LLMSW

Pronouns: he/him/his
Language: English, Spanish, & Italian

Read Richard's Bio

Education & Training:

  • University of Michigan School of Social Work

Professional Interests:

Approach to Therapy:

Selected Professional Experience: