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News and Commentary For The Mental Health Professional
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  • Mon, October 04, 2021 9:31 PM | Raquel Pizano-Hazama

    Newly remodeled cozy ADA compliant office building with three office spaces for lease; one furnished office space. Available for F/T use or partial/full day. Utilities, Wifi and on premise parking included. Available space for group and meditation optional. Walking distance from the Myrtle Gold Line Train station and to Old Town Monrovia.  (Close to Pasadena, Sierra Madre, Arcadia and Duarte). For information contact Raquel Pizano-Hazama (626) 786-0341   

  • Fri, September 17, 2021 6:03 PM | Anonymous


    I am pleased to announce Deanna Hudgins as the recipient of the first ever Rudy Hayek Honorary Scholarship! This scholarship of $1,000 was created in honor of Rudy Hayek (former SGV-CAMFT Board Member and Programs Chair) to support a current student in the field of Marriage and Family Therapy who demonstrates a similar spirit of service, civic engagement, and the desire to advance the profession. Join me in congratulating Deanna on her achievement!

    -Kathryn Bikle, President

    Rudy Hayek Honorary Scholarship Recipient Deanna Hudgins’ Personal Statement:

    Service and support have been guiding principles throughout my life. Prior to pursuing a path in Marriage & Family Therapy, I sought out professions and volunteer opportunities through which I could leverage my skills and contribute to a positive impact on individuals and my community. I was fortunate to teach high-school music programs for 12 years and I have volunteered as a group leader and coach for nonprofit programs such as Team in Training for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Professionally, I currently serve as an event coordinator for the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to finding cures for Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis and improving the lives of children and adults who are affected by these diseases. It was my work with students and patients, coupled with my personal growth in individual therapy, that inspired me to apply for an MFT program.

    Since joining the Department of Marriage & Family Therapy (DMFT) at Azusa Pacific University, I have been dedicated to forging deeper connections among the student community, with the knowledge that we might one day lean on each other as colleagues. During the pandemic I founded and facilitated a study group to give an opportunity for classmates to meet online in both a practice and personal capacity, and in 2021 I was fortunate to be elected to the position of DMFT Student Union Co-Representative. I am excited to be working with a supportive faculty and a willing cohort as we build and launch programs designed to benefit the DMFT student body, including a Peer Mentor Program for incoming students. I am glad to volunteer for the Membership Committee of SGV-CAMFT and am excited for future opportunities to be of service as I move through my journey towards licensure. 

    I am proud to be under the supervision of longtime SGV-CAMFT member Patty Gieselman at Living Success Center and would like to thank Rudy Hayek for his guidance, support, and contributions to SGV-CAMFT as well as the SGV-CAMFT Scholarship Committee for this wonderful and meaningful award. 

    -Deanna Hudgins


  • Sun, September 12, 2021 5:58 PM | Anonymous

    From Kathryn Bikle, President

    The slow lazy days of summer are drawing to a close and with the onset of Fall challenges and opportunities both new and familiar, arise to greet us. Who would’ve thought back in March 2020 that we’d still be navigating shutdown procedures and safety precautions to keep us safe from the Covid-19 virus? And yet, we continue to adapt and seek to find creative ways to do the important work we do serving the mental and behavioral health needs of our community. In these stressful times it is essential that we practice healthy self-care and take the time we need to re-charge and refresh ourselves in whatever ways feel most nourishing. Having the energy to dream creates hope. And hope creates an environment for positive things to happen! 

    Let’s take a look at some of the positive things that are happening in our SGV-CAMFT community!

    Are you eager to grow your leadership muscles? SGV-CAMFT is always eager to involve future community leaders as volunteers on our Board of Directors. Currently, we have openings for participation in Membership Outreach, Programs, Social Media Communications, 3000 Club (in support of pre-licensed members) and SIG Infrastructure planning. If you have any interest in volunteering on our Chapter’s board in any capacity large or small, please contact me at president@sgvcamft.org.

    SIG Program Planning Kickoff Events in September:

    SGV-CAMFT is forming a Special Interest Group Program for professionals to come together around topics and interests related to our field. A Special Interest Group (SIG) is an opportunity to make connections, dig deeper into specialty areas, and form relationships around common interests. We are currently looking for participants and facilitators to help us launch this program! 

    Do you have a passion for working with couples, trauma, or a specific diagnosis, and would like to share that with your colleagues? 

    Do you work with a specific population and could use some support? 

    Would you enjoy co-hosting educational or social programs for Marriage and Family Therapists? 

    We are open to your ideas for SIGs. What group would you like to see form? What group could you imagine being a part of?

    Imagine….

    • Therapists who knit, crochet, embroider, or needlepoint

    • Guerilla Garden MFTs

    • Therapists who work with Polyamory and Open Relationships

    • Happy Hiker MFTs

    • BIPOC Therapists in Private Practice

    • Somatic Therapists

    • Cinematherapy for MFTs

    • Ecopsychology

    • Therapists for Social Justice Action

    • Growing a Sustainable Private Practice

    • Vegan Therapists 

    • LGBTQ therapists who brunch

    • Therapists who write together

    • Art Therapists of the SGV

    • (your ideal group here)

    Join us for one of our virtual kick-off events to understand how to launch a group, how the chapter can help, imagine ways of forming community, and finding out what comes next.

    Saturday, September 25th  10-11am

    Register to attend: https://www.sgvcamft.org/event-4487870

    Monday, September 27th  7-8pm

    Register to attend: https://www.sgvcamft.org/event-4487891 


    PROGRAMS

    Here are some exciting programs and events coming up this fall! Register on our website at sgvcamft.org

    Sunday, September 12th, 7 – 8:30 pm join our monthly Book Club meeting! Attendance is free but you need to make a reservation in order to attend this online Zoom event. See the Home page of our website at sgvcamft.org to Register. Email Natasha at pastpresident@sgvcamft.org for more information.

    Thursday, September 16th 6 - 7:30 pm Register to attend Connect ‘n Learn Online Program “Using the Body to Regulate Emotion: Perspectives from DBT” with Suzette Bray, founder and Executive Director of Village Counseling and Wellness. Register on our website at sgvcamft.org for Online Zoom event.  $20 – Licensed SGV CAMFT members and licensed members of other CAMFT Chapters, $5 – Pre-licensed SGV CAMFT members, $10 – Pre-licensed non-members. Deadline to Register Tuesday, September 14th 8 pm. This program does not offer CE credit. Register at https://www.sgvcamft.org/event-4428683

    Friday, September 24th, Noon – 1:30 pm: “CAMFT State of the Profession” Online workshop. Join CAMFT Executive director, Nabil El-Goroury, PhD, CAE for an understanding about events, legislation, and internal association processes that are currently impacting CAMFT members. This 90-minute presentation will discuss issues and the importance of a Professional Will. It will include updates from BBS and both the California and Federal legislatures as well as discussion on why it is important to avail yourself of the Legal Consultation service provided by CAMFT. $20 – Licensed SGV CAMFT members and licensed members of other CAMFT Chapters, $5 – Pre-licensed SGV CAMFT members, $10 – Pre-licensed non-members. 1.5 CE’s available. Deadline to Register Wednesday, September 22, 8 pm. Register at: https://www.sgvcamft.org/event-4437443
  • Mon, July 26, 2021 3:00 PM | Mike Johnsen (Administrator)

    Happy Summer!

    I hope people are finding some time to relax and enjoy themselves despite the confusion of opening up from the pandemic only to partly shut down again. It’s a challenging time. I hope you know how essential all of you are to the overall mental health needs of our SGV community! Your hard work and dedication is much appreciated.

    Although SGV-CAMFT is slightly less active during the summer there are still a few exciting things to bring to your attention!

    First, and most importantly, I would like to say a huge THANK YOU! to Susan Lowe, LMFT, who has been a member of SGV-CAMFT since 2014 and an enormously vital and active Board member for all or most of that time! Susan is moving out of the San Gabriel Valley and so will be bringing her vibrant energy and enthusiasm to the San Bernadino Chapter. We will miss her terribly and wish her well! During her time on the SGV-CAMFT Board Susan has been active on the Membership Committee, promoted Hospitality at in-person events, she was active on the Programs Committee, and most recently, as the Chair of the 3000 Club, she has generously guided and nurtured our pre-licensed members on their journey towards licensure. Susan has helped to spearhead SGV-CAMFT’s new Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiative, which is making slow but steady progress this year. In addition, she was instrumental in bringing us Dr. Sayida Peprah’s July 9th program “Cultivating Humility: Dismantling Implicit Bias and Building Allies in Therapy.” For those of you who attended, I’m sure you can attest to what an important and eye-opening program that was! So again, THANK YOU, SUSAN! We are so grateful for all of your hard work and generosity of spirit on the SGV-CAMFT Board all of these years! Please join me in thanking Susan Lowe! She will be missed but we wish her well and hope that our paths will cross often in the years to come!

    Of course, the departure of Susan Lowe leaves a glaring hole in the SGV-CAMFT Board roster! Fortunately, we are excited to welcome Deanna Hudgins into our fold! Beginning in August, Deanna will be joining Michael Bauer to assist with membership outreach! Deanna is just over halfway through her 3-year track at Azusa Pacific University and is proud to be pursuing her traineeship at Living Success Center under the supervision of Patty Gieselman. Deanna, we’re excited to meet you and have you join us! Thank you for coming on Board! And just a plugwe are always looking for enthusiastic folks to join us on the Board for specific projects or a Board position! We are currently needing additional support with our Programs Committee, Membership, Social Media and Communications, and 3000 Club. You must be both a member of SGV-CAMFT and CAMFT to be on the Board. Please contact me if you are interested: president@sgvcamft.org

    Mark your calendars! We have some exciting activities on the horizon!

    Sunday, August 1st, 7 – 8:30 pm join our monthly Book Club meeting! Attendance is free but you need to make a reservation in order to attend this online Zoom event. See the Home page of our website at sgvcamft.org to Register. Email Natasha at pastpresident@sgvcamft.org for more information.

    Thursday, September 16th 6 - 7:30 pm. Register to attend the Connect ‘n Learn Online Program “Using the Body to Regulate Emotion: Perspectives from DBT” with Suzette Bray, founder and Executive Director of Village Counseling and Wellness. Register on our website at sgvcamft.org for this Online Zoom event. $20 – Licensed SGV-CAMFT members and licensed members of other CAMFT Chapters, $5 – Pre-licensed SGV-CAMFT members, $10 – Pre-licensed non-members. Deadline to Register: Tuesday, September 14th 8 pm. This program does not offer CE credit.

    Friday, September 24th, Noon – 1:30 pm: “CAMFT State of the Profession” Online workshop. Join CAMFT Executive director, Nabil El-Ghoroury, PhD, CAE, for an understanding of events, legislation, and internal association processes that are currently impacting CAMFT members. This 90-minute presentation will discuss issues and the importance of a Professional Will. It will include updates from BBS and both the California and Federal legislatures as well as discussion on why it is important to avail yourself of the Legal Consultation service provided by CAMFT. Register on our website at sgvcamft.org. $20 – Licensed SGV-CAMFT members and licensed members of other CAMFT Chapters, $5 – Pre-licensed SGV-CAMFT members, $10 – Pre-licensed non-members. 1.5 CEs available. Deadline to Register: Wednesday, September 22, 8 pm.

    Kathryn Bikle, MA, LMFT
    President, SGV-CAMFT

  • Fri, June 04, 2021 11:19 PM | Anonymous

    Happy June! We’re so close to opening up from our COVID-19 shutdown! I’m sure we are all looking forward to returning to something that resembles “normal” and yet, at the same time, have reservations about what that will be like. SGV-CAMFT will not be returning to in-person events just yet. But we have an exciting line-up of online programs and events in June and July that I’d like to bring to your attention!

    Our new Book Club launched on May 2nd and will continue to meet the first Sunday of every month at 7 pm. Our next meeting is June 6th.  The meetings are free but you need to make a reservation in order to attend this currently on Zoom event. See the Home page of our website at sgvcamft.org to register. See the post below for Natasha Morisawa’s blog account of our first Book Club Meeting on our and her suggestions for what upcoming meetings may hold. Register on the website. Email Natasha at pastpresident@sgvcamft.org for more information.

    Saturday, June 26th 10am-12pm look for a stimulating virtual panel presentation geared towards helping our pre-licensed and early career members with “The Road to Private Practice for Pre-Licensed Therapists!” Learn from our experts what to look for in a supervision site and a supervisor, how to evaluate a private practice internship setting, ways to build professional relationships, and how to make the most out of your professional organization. Whether you are pre-licensed, early career, a supervisor, or a seasoned therapist who wants to learn more about developing your professional persona you won’t want to miss this important opportunity to learn the most effective ways to put your best foot forward as a counseling professional! This event is posted on our calendar and Registration for it is now open! See our website for details.

    Friday July 9th from 11 am-12:30 pm we have a very special virtual presentation by Dr. Saida Peprah entitled “Cultivating Humility: Dismantling Implicit Bias and Building Allies in Therapy.” You may recall that Dr. Peprah was on our schedule to present this important topic in March of 2020 just as we were all being shut down for Covid safety precautions. We’re very excited to be able to book her virtually despite her very busy schedule! Look for registration details to come. 

    The deadline for applying for The Rudy Hayek Honorary Scholarship Program has been extended! The new deadline is June 20, 2021. If you know an SGV-CAMFT member who is a pre-licensed student and is currently enrolled in an MFT program who is civic minded, active in community service, and has a desire to advance the field of Marriage and Family Therapy please encourage them to apply! The award is for $1,000. The winner will be announced in August. Details and information about the application process can be found on our website.  

    Thanks to all of our Board members and volunteers for helping to bring these wonderful opportunities to you! We are always on the look-out for new and enthusiastic volunteers! If you have a desire to join a group of hard-working therapists dedicated to supporting your colleagues in the community, we would love to have you join us! Feel free to contact me anytime at president@sgvcamft.org

    Thanks for being a member of SGVCAMFT! I look forward to seeing you (virtually) soon!

    Best,

    Kathryn Bikle
    President, SGVCAMFT

  • Mon, May 31, 2021 11:15 PM | Anonymous

    SGV-CAMFT launched our newly forming Book Club on May 2nd on the heels of an article about joining a professional reading group which felt very fitting. Our intimate group met virtually and discussed several options for how we could see this book club develop over time. We dared to dream about holding these meetings in person soon. There were discussions about the benefits and challenges of reading the same reading material and getting deeper with the content. We also considered the option of leaving the group loosely formed with the ability for some members to share as their passions and interests arise. As we move forward, we want to include reading styles and interests of as many members as possible.

    Our topics of discussion in this first meeting also included what we are currently reading and books that have influenced us personally and professionally. I personally enjoyed hearing about books that impact and challenge my colleagues’ practices like Ghosts from the Nursery: Tracing the Roots of Violence by Robin Karr-Morse, Meredith S. Wiley,T. and Berry Brazelton, These Truths: A History of the United States by Jill Lepore, and My Grandmother's Hands: Racialized Trauma and the Mending of Our Bodies and Hearts by Resmaa Menakem.

    Our next meeting is on June 6th at 7pm and will meet virtually. If you read and are a member, join us. If you are thinking about adding a few more books to your summer reading wish list, join us. If you want to find a book buddy to swap books with, join us. If you have never been in a book club or reading group and are curious, join us. Looking forward to seeing you there!

    – Natasha Morisawa, Book Club Facilitator
  • Fri, May 07, 2021 8:45 AM | Anonymous

    Spring has sprung! The birds are singing, flowers are blooming, and here in the Pasadena area our Covid numbers are going down! Slowly, things are starting to open up. Lots of exciting things are on the horizon. SGVCAMFT has a number of exciting opportunities for you as well! 

    Starting as soon as May 2nd, we are launching our new Book Club meeting the first Sunday of every month at 7 pm. For the first meeting we’ll be Virtual on Zoom but hope to move to in-person as things open up. Coordinator Natasha Morisawa suggests that for the first meeting we each bring a book we are currently reading or that has impacted our practice. Register on the website. Email Natasha at pastpresident@sgvcamft.org for more information.

    Friday May 7th we are hosting our Membership Appreciation Mixer from 7-8 pm on Zoom! Let us provide you with some well-deserved nurture in the form of Yoga Nidra with Lauren Maher, exciting raffle items like beautiful jewelry hand-made by Julie Gigante, gifts baskets, fun surprises, and more! Register ASAP on our website. We look forward to relaxing and connecting with you!

    An exciting line-up of CE Programs and Connect and Learn lunch time events are in the works. We’ll update you as details are confirmed but here’s what we have so far:

    Save the Date: Saturday, June 26th 10am-12pm look for a stimulating virtual panel presentation geared towards helping our pre-licensed and early career members with “The Road to Private Practice for Pre-Licensed Therapists!” Learn from our experts what to look for in a supervision site and a supervisor, how to evaluate a private practice internship setting, ways to build professional relationships, and how to make the most out of your professional organization. Whether you are pre-licensed, early career, a supervisor, or a seasoned therapist who wants to learn more about developing your professional persona you won’t want to miss this important opportunity to learn the most effective ways to put your best foot forward as a counseling professional! Mark it on your calendar: Registration details to come.

    And looking ahead: Friday July 9th from 11 am-12:30 pm we have a very special virtual presentation by Dr. Saida Peprah entitled “Cultivating Humility: Dismantling Implicit Bias and Building Allies in Therapy.” You may recall that Dr. Peprah was on our schedule to present this important topic in March of 2020 just as we were all being shut down for Covid safety precautions. We’re very excited to be able to book her virtually despite her very busy schedule! Look for registration details to come. 

     Thanks to all of our Board members and volunteers for helping to bring these wonderful opportunities to you! We are always on the look-out for new and enthusiastic volunteers! If you have a desire to join a group of hard-working therapists dedicated to supporting your colleagues in the community, we would love to have you join us! Feel free to contact me anytime at president@sgvcamft.org

    Thanks for being a member of SGVCAMFT! I look forward to seeing you (virtually) soon!

    Best,

    Kathryn Bikle
    President, SGVCAMFT

  • Fri, June 19, 2020 4:13 PM | Anonymous


    Dear SGV-CAMFT Members,

    I struggle to use the words "unprecedented times" right now, because it lacks the depth of what we are all experiencing. I'm actually struggling to synthesize what I'm experiencing as a clinician and as Board President into a concise message.

    Some of us may be contemplating how and when to resume face-to-face sessions with clients, or to give up our offices to permanently practice via Telehealth. Some may be reflecting, discussing, and educating themselves on how and when to address racism and racial disparity in our practice or agency. Others of us may be acutely aware of the impact of being a wounded healer in these uncertain and changing times and are taking new measures to care for ourselves and each other. Wherever you are in your professional journey, I hope that you have the tools, support, and health to sustain you. The work you do builds the kind of resiliency your clients and community need right now.

    As Marriage and Family Therapists, we have had training and practice in systems theory which gives us a unique advantage to incorporate our voice in the finding of solutions to complex social issues. At the heart of what we do we are agents of social change. Our chapter leadership stands behind and support's CAMFT's position regarding California Therapists Disavow Racial Injustice, Voice Concern over Mental Health Impacts of Racial Trauma.This is echoed in the AAMFT Statement on MFT Responsibility to Counter Racism.

    Your SGV-CAMFT Board is not giving you a statement of our chapter values at this time. To do so would put the focus on us when that is neither helpful nor productive. Rather, I challenge our SGV-CAMFT board and chapter members to actively discuss, educate ourselves, take a hard look at our role in perpetuating and dismantling racial disparity in our field, and find sustainable action to move in the direction of mental health and racial equity.

    We have begun formal discussions as a board to identify our current capacity and potential avenues to make meaningful change. As our board gets more familiar with the technological tools available to us, we will open discussion to all our members. We are committed to finding and creating safe spaces in which to do this work. We will make mistakes and want to hear feedback. We expect that discomfort that comes with growth will show up.

    As always, please reach out to me or any board member with your comments or ideas. And if you're ready to roll up your sleeves and get more involved, reach out to a Committee Chair or myself for volunteer positions. The world needs more leaders who have the vision and training of MFTs!

    We see you and the work you do.

    In gratitude,

    Natasha Morisawa, LMFT

    SGV-CAMFT Board President


  • Fri, June 19, 2020 4:11 PM | Anonymous

    Are you feeling a little bit isolated working from home? Could you use a friendly mentoring relationship to help you keep your bearings in these challenging times? Might you like to have someone to bounce ideas off of about how to grow your practice? Or brainstorm ways to create a safe space for your clients while using TeleHealth? The Mentor-Mentee Program may be just what you need! SGVCAMFT members are all eligible to participate. And right now, we're eager to encourage new Mentors and new Mentees into the program!


    For more information and to sign up, go to our SGVCAMFT website at https://www.sgvcamft.org/Mentor-Mentee-Program or email facilitator Kathryn Bikle at Kathrynbiklemft@gmail.com.


  • Fri, May 01, 2020 12:00 PM | Anonymous


    It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our dear friend, John Pio, who died on April 19th. He had been recovering from surgery performed in January but was never able to regain his strength.

    John was a member of SGVCAMFT for 15 years and joined the Board in 2004. He served for ten years as Treasurer and as President in 2005-2006. John was instrumental in bringing the chapter into the digital age. When he joined in 2001, all transactions were paper-based, and all business was conducted by mail or telephone. He was part of a leadership team that introduced online communications and a website that automated chapter transactions. At a time when membership was dwindling, he was instrumental in growing the chapter so that it continued as a viable entity. He will be remembered as a friend by many chapter members.

    We send our deepest condolences to John's family and to his partner, Ricky. We are grateful to him for all his contributions to SGVCAMFT, and we will miss him dearly. Please email susanjanss@yahoo.com if you would like contact information.

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