Our Therapists

At Cathexis, we take seriously the need for an individualized approach to counseling. Therefore, we have assembled a clinical team of highly skilled therapists who incorporate a variety of clinical approaches and theory into their practice.

 

We welcome requests for specific clinicians and will make every effort to accommodate; however, we cannot guarantee availability.

Stephan Ackermann

Stephan Ackermann, M.A, LAC, MBA

 

Stephan uses a person-centered approach to create a safe, therapeutic space for all his clients. Stephan integrates evidence-based treatments (CBT, EMDR, Mindfulness) and a depth-psychology approach in working with adults on issues related to life transitions, self-esteem, anxiety, depression, loss and grief.  Stephan also works with couples in need of resolving conflicts and improving their relationship.

 

Stephan is a board member and former vice president of the Southern Arizona Friends of Jung organization. In his work, Stephan promotes individuation, a process of transformation whereby the unconscious is brought into consciousness (dream analysis, sand-play, artistic expressions, active imagination) for an eventual integration of the psyche resulting in psychological health and somatic well-being.  Stephan is originally from France and had a distinguished business career prior to becoming a psychotherapist. Stephan joins Cathexis from the Tucson Medical Center Hospice (TMC) where he interned as a Grief Counselor.

Amanda Bergstrom

Amanda Bergstrom, LCSW

 

In Amanda’s experience, she feels moments of great suffering also provide unique opportunities for growth. Her aim is to provide a safe and nurturing place for you to heal. Amanda believes the path to healing is unique to each person, and offers a range of interventions that are designed to help you tap into your strengths and create resilience; such as mindfulness, meditation, cognitive therapies, expressive art therapy and strengths based interventions. Amanda specializes in working with youth and LGBTQ identified individuals, and looks forward to walking alongside you on your path to healing.

Jessican De La Ossa

Jessica De La Ossa, LAC, MSC, PhD

 

Jessica is a Licensed Associate Counselor specializing in helping clients improve their relationships with themselves and others — which ultimately enhances their overall quality of life. She uses an array of therapy methods to help clients discover something they never knew was there, in themselves and in their relationships.

 

She also works with clients experiencing grief, loss, anxiety, depression and big life changes. Drawing from her mixed educational background, she utilizes a tailored approach to help her clients feel empowered and excited about life again. She holds a Master of Science in Counseling from Prescott College and a Doctor of Philosophy in Human Geography from the University of Arizona.

 

In addition to her clinical work, Jessica has published works in the edited volume Psychoanalytic Geographies and the journal Emotion, Space and Society. She has presented research findings at national conferences and remains dedicated to bridging psychotherapy with insights emerging from psychoanalytic geography.

Priscila Matei

Priscila Matei, MA, LAC, CRC, CCTP

 

Priscila is a Licensed Associate Counselor, Certified Rehabilitation Counselor and Certified Clinical Trauma Professional. She holds a Master’s degree in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling from the University of Arizona. She has worked with patients in assisting with disabilities, vocational rehabilitation and support to address the psychological, behavioral, cognitive and social factors affecting the patient’s well-being.

 

Priscila integrates evidence-based treatments (CBT, DBT and Solution-focused) and psychodynamic approaches to working with late adolescence and adults on issues relating to phase of life problems, adjustment disorders, depression, anxiety and trauma. She also utilizes specific relaxation techniques to address those concerns.

Traci Grabb

Traci Grabb, LPC

 

As a licensed professional counselor, Traci provides therapy to adults, adolescents, and children. She sees her role as helping you feel better in the areas of your life that bring you anxiety and emotional pain. Whether that is from relationship difficulties, trauma, loss or stressful situations, Traci’s great passion is to work with each individual to uncover the deeper issues, to build on strengths and to provide new tools and the skills needed to improve their relationships and quality of life.

 

Her style is interactive, inspiring, supportive and solution-focused while providing compassion, understanding, empathy, and practical feedback in a relaxed environment. Having years of experience counseling clients from diverse backgrounds with a wide range of challenges, she uses a variety of modalities in a highly personalized approach tailored to each client.

 

Traci holds a Master of Mental Health Counseling and graduated from Argosy University. In 2016 she became a published editor of the book Identifying, Treating, and Preventing Childhood Trauma in Rural Communities (Advances in Psychology, Mental Health, and Behavioral Studies). Traci is a member of the American Counseling Association and its local branch, Arizona Counselors Association.

 

Making the decision to contact a therapist can be difficult and her goal is to make the process as welcoming as possible in a comfortable and calm office setting.

Bernadette Roumbos

Bernadette Roumbos, MAPC, LAC, RD, CDE, PYT-C

 

Bernadette is a Licensed Associate Counselor, Registered Dietitian, Certified Diabetes Educator, Registered Yoga Teacher, and Professional Yoga Therapist–Candidate. She earned her Master’s of Arts in Professional Counseling from Liberty University integrating Christ centered counseling with Biblical principles for mental and spiritual health. She has worked in the health care industry for over 20 years; both inpatient and outpatient in a variety of roles. Her passion is to provide hope and healing from life’s challenges in a safe place. She provides a Christian based perspective for those seeking to integrate their Christian faith into the counseling process and general therapies and welcomes clients from all backgrounds.

 

Bernadette integrates therapies and counseling to best meet the needs of the client. She has experience working with children, teens, adults, couples, and families.

 

Treatment areas include: *Addictions: Substance and Process addictions * Anxiety * Depression * Eating Disorders, body image, and weight management * Health Issues: cancer recovery, diabetes control * Premarital/ Marriage counseling and is Certified to administer Prepare & Enrich Assessment/Relationship issues * Obsessive Compulsive Disorders * Self harm * Spiritual growth * Stress management * Trauma & PTSD.

 

Bernadette’s treatment approaches include: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectal Behavior Therapy (DBT), Interpersonal Therapy (IPT), Mindful based-Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Motivational Interviewing (MI), Certified Clinical Hypnotherapy (CCH), and Trauma- Sensitive Yoga. ​

Joshua Crosby, MA, NCC, LAC

 

Understanding who you are and how you relate to others when life is chaotic and overwhelming can feel impossible. Some of us tend to just keep pushing on without taking into consideration our own feelings, experiences, and perspectives. If you know what that’s like, you’re not alone. I believe in the value of improving our personal understanding, how we see the world, and how we relate with others. In doing so, we can take a firmer grasp on life and become more intentional about how we want to move forward. What I find most beautiful about this process is that it’s truly unique for everyone.

 

In a therapy session with me, you will get safe, personalized treatment. I’ll draw from evidence-based practices and we’ll explore your experiences, values, identity, and how you relate to others. I’ll use a person-centered approach to ensure your unique needs are met and we’ll identify and develop your strengths to help you through your situation.

 

If you find yourself looking for help, consider stopping here and giving me a call. Your journey starts today.

Jennifer Youngblood, CRC, LAC

Jennifer Youngblood, CRC, LAC

 

Jennifer takes an individualized approach to counseling and incorporates a variety of therapies such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution-Focused Brief Therapy, and mindfulness. Jennifer believes that vulnerability, authenticity, and compassion allow for the development of deep connections and self-assurance. Jennifer will provide a safe and supportive environment for you to find strength and growth through hardship, acquire the tools for self-healing, and become your most authentic self.

 

As a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, Jennifer understands the psychological and social aspects of disability and adjustment. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Georgia College & State University and a Master of Arts in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling from the University of Arizona. Jennifer joins Cathexis after working several years in the Behavioral Health field as a Residential Behavior Coach, Outpatient Behavior Coach, and Recovery Coach.

Emily Viola, LMSW

Emily Viola, LMSW

 

Emily provides strengths based, person-centered, and trauma informed therapy. She primarily works with children, adolescents, young adults, and families. She focuses on addressing experiences of anxiety, depression and stress, particularly those that arise from concerns regarding life and family transitions, chronic illness, traumatic events, body image, and issues unique to LGBTQIA individuals. With a background in social work, Emily considers the environment and systems that may be contributing to a problem, including social justice issues such as racism, sexism, and ableism (among others) that intersect with mental health concerns.

 

Emily utilizes a combination of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), mindfulness, play therapy, art, and writing to meet individual needs. Emily strongly believes that being able to tell your own story and have it heard is an important part of healing. She sees you as the expert on your own experiences, desires, and needs and views her role as providing support and guidance through the healing process.

David Ochoa, MC, NCC, LPC

David Ochoa, MC, NCC, LPC

 

As a Tucson native, David has the privilege to have worked in direct support services in our community for over 23 years.  As a graduate from the University of Phoenix, he holds a Masters degree in Counseling, and is a Licensed Professional Counselor and National Certified Counselor.

 

David has had the opportunity to work with many children, adolescents, adults and families to find healing in their lives.  Because we are all unique, he works to tailor his approaches towards the needs of the individual or family, and offers support in whatever way they require while on the path to healing.

 

He looks forward to meeting and working with you on your journey towards change and healing.

Jessica Flayer, MA, NCC, LAC

Jessica Flayer, MA, NCC, LAC

 

In a world that is constantly moving, I believe it is helpful to have a safe place where you feel heard and supported. My aim is to assist you in identifying your strengths to improve your relationship with yourself and others. I believe your needs are unique which is why I use an integrative approach when working with children, teens, and adults. I provide strength-based interventions to assist you in uncovering your own resilience to manage challenges as well as to grow and improve your overall quality of life.

 

I specialize in working with those experiencing anxiety, depression, trauma, and adjusting to life changes. I draw from modalities such as cognitive behavioral, reality therapy, psychodynamic, and behavioral activation while also utilizing the lens of performance/sports psychology.

 

If you are seeking meaningful support or you are curious about how counseling may help you, I encourage you to call today as immediate appointments are available. Your path to healing and success can begin today!

Veronica Machado, MA

Veronica Machado, MA

 

Veronica is a Tucson native, and prides herself in knowing the culture, people, and issues relative to her hometown. She completed her Master’s Degree at Northern Arizona University in Clinical Mental Health, received her undergraduate degree from Prescott College in Human Development & Psychology, and holds a post-Master’s certificate from the University of Denver in Equine Assisted Mental Health. She is a firm believer that the relationship between client and therapist is key to successful mental health services, and feels that finding the right professional to work with is as important as the techniques utilized in counseling. Veronica is passionate about social justice issues, equality, family systems, cultural issues, and psycho-education, and utilizes a mix of evidence-based and alternative modes of therapy tailored to each client’s needs. Veronica believes that we all experience human suffering at some of points of our lives, and it is important to understand the client’s experience and create a safe environment in which they feel unconditionally accepted. As a counselor, Veronica feels it is her duty to help clients realize their own answers and dreams on their journey.

Maria Lewis

Maria Lewis, LPC

 

Healing from traumatic experiences or working through phase of life changes is a difficult and personal process. That is why choosing an experienced counselor who can provide containment in a warm and empathic environment is important. My therapy style is tailored to fit each individual, while drawing from various clinical approaches to best meet their needs. My style is direct and honest. I will provide you with objective observations and feedback to help you reflect and explore your inner self.

 

As a bilingual professional counselor, I am passionate about helping individuals find healing, as well as inner strength. With over 10 years of experience in this field, I offer knowledge to help navigate community mental health. I have worked with children, adults, and families dealing with autism, anxiety, depression, and trauma. I look forward to assisting you on your journey and to improving your outlook on life.

 

I hold an undergraduate degree from the University of Arizona in Family Studies & Human Development, a master’s degree in Community Mental Health Counseling from the University of Phoenix, and I am an alumna of the Behavioral Health Interpreter Academy.

Kammy Willems

Kammy Willems, LCSW

 

Kammy believes there are times we all need extra support to get through life’s challenges and she works to offer a safe and non-judgmental place where you can explore whatever you are facing.  Her approach centers around meeting you where you are, working together to help you develop new insight into yourself and your relationships, and to discover new ways to respond to life’s challenges.

 

Kammy is trained in EMDR therapy and specializes in treating trauma and other distressing life experiences, and the problems that often accompany it.  She also utilizes talk therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Solutions-Focused Therapy and incorporates mindfulness and relaxation.  Kammy works with adults 18 years and older on a variety of concerns including anxiety, depression, phase of life changes, trauma, grief & loss, and relationship problems.

 

Kammy is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who is independently licensed in both Arizona and in the state of Texas, where she previously lived and worked.  She holds a master’s degree in Social Worker from the University of Texas in Austin and has over 15 years’ experience providing psychotherapy.

Dan Krepps, LPC, LISAC

Dan Krepps, LPC

 

Dan holds a Masters in Community Counseling and is a Licensed Professional Counselor. Over the past ten years his background includes a variety of specialty areas including substance abuse, mental illness, trauma, crisis resolution, couples therapy, self-esteem, fatherhood, process addiction and anger management. At the core of his values is providing clients with the best service possible tailored to their individual needs. Dan has worked in community based programs, gender specific intensive outpatient programs, and crisis centers. He believes in building on the strengths of his clients and providing services to the community rooted in compassion, individualized treatment and spiritual growth.

Leonard Corte

Dr. Leonard Corte, LCSW

 

Dr. Corte is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Certified Psychoanalyst with a Doctorate in Psychoanalysis from the Los Angeles Institute for Psychoanalytic Studies, with approval for membership in the American and International Psychoanalytic Associations.  He has been in clinical practice for over forty years working with clients suffering from depression, anxiety, loss, addictions, troubled relationships, trauma and low self-esteem.  He offers his training and experience to individuals and couples in a collaborative process in order to understand themselves more fully, addressing obstacles to build self esteem, relieving relationship difficulties, and improving attitudes when dealing with love and work.  He is published in “The American Journal of Psychotherapy”, Vol. 57, No. 4, 1997, and in the FIrst and Second Editions of “Counseling and Psychotherapy, Theories and Interventions”, Capuzzi and Gross, Prentice-Hall, 1999, 1995, contributing chapters on Psychoanalytic Theory and Technique.

 

Dr. Corte was a co-founder of the Arizona Center for Psychoanalytic Studies and served as a Teaching and Supervising Analyst for candidates in training.

 

Franc, his dog, was rescued from a puppy-mill and shares Dr. Corte’s priorities of looking deeply into the nature of suffering, providing a comfortable space for those needing care.

Becky Palmer

Becky Palmer MA, LAC, CRC, RYT

 

Becky is a Licensed Associate Counselor, Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, and a Registered Yoga Teacher. She holds two Bachelor’s degrees from the University of Arizona and a Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from The George Washington University. With a background in therapy and yoga, Becky tries to incorporate mindfulness whenever possible into all aspects of her work with clients and students. She aims to create a safe environment conducive to change, growth, and healing.

 

While it is her belief that mindfulness plays an essential part in the therapeutic process, Becky takes an integrative and creative approach to therapy, treating each individual with interventions best suited to their own unique experience. Becky has had the opportunity to work with individuals with disabilities in a vocational rehabilitation setting. She is also experienced in working with individuals adjusting to major life changes due to illness, existential uncertainty, or traumatic events, and those who are experiencing grief, loss, anxiety, and depression. She enjoys working with individuals of all ages, from young children to adults, as well as families.

Alaina Vega, Therapist

 

Alaina Vega attended the University of Arizona where she received a Bachelors Degree in Psychology. Alaina has been working with children and adolescents for over 5 years in the behavioral health field, and is currently attending Grand Canyon University to receive a Masters Degree in Professional Counseling.  Alaina started her internship at Cathexis in September of 2018 under the supervision of Tim Mills, LPC.

 

Alaina understands that searching for a therapist can be intimidating and difficult to do, which is why she aims to create a safe space to share openly and together explore the issues, experiences, and symptoms that are causing distress. She provides strengths based, person-centered and trauma informed therapy.

Rena Scharch, LMFT

 

e.e. Cummings said “It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.”  Whether you’re single, in a relationship, a parent or friend we tend to carry around the past, letting it define who we are today–so often when our past dictates who we are in the present it doesn’t work.  There may be some parts of us who are still the child but we’ve grown up and with that we have to change.  Some find that difficult but it can be done!  Let’s differentiate between what’s worth keeping and what needs to change.  You’ll find that everything gets better as you become more authentic, less defensive, more grateful, less angry and more content with your life.

 

I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with over 25 years’ experience, working with a variety of clients who presented with anxiety, depression, anger, low self-esteem, grief and loss, phase of life issues, domestic violence and cancer. I am trained in Family Systems and we will explore your family of origin in our work together.  I also utilize other therapies that will benefit your therapy.  What’s best for you comes first.

 

My passion is to help people create change in their lives.  I will be your cheerleader, your safe person, and I will help you find the tools to be who you want to be and have healthy relationships.

 

Find the courage today to go forward.   If it’s anxiety, depression, relationship issues, anger, grief, or whatever it is that’s holding you back, it’s time to work on it.  Realize that what you want in your life is possible, you just need a little courage!

Susie Mills, Chief Administrative Officer

Susie Mills, Chief Administrative Officer 

 

Susie Mills is the Chief Administrative Officer at Cathexis, and in this role she does her best to maintain the agency’s end to end administrative functions including contract compliance, accounts receivable and payable, compensation and payroll, financial analysis and budgeting, reporting, credentialing and contracts, purchasing, legal and tax obligations, coordination of information technologies, and facilities.

 

Starting Cathexis in 2016 with her husband, Tim Mills, was the fruition of a longtime dream to operate a socially responsible business which incorporates the highest standards of fairness, respect, dignity and inclusiveness for both staff and clientele throughout its business model.

 

Susie has over 20 years of experience in various managerial and Human Resources roles at both for-profit and non-profit organizations. Prior to the opening of Cathexis, she spent 10 years as the Office Administrator at her church while raising their two amazing kids. She has worn many hats in preparation for her work at Cathexis, but “Momma” remains her most valued title of all.

 

Susie holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Sociology from Texas A&M University.

Tim Mills

Tim Mills, Chief Executive Officer and Clinical Director

 

Tim founded Cathexis in 2015 out of a desire to bring the highest quality of therapy services to the Tucson community and gold-standard training and supervision to therapists.  At the heart of this drive, Tim wanted to ensure that all members of the Tucson community would have the opportunity to receive services, and in that aim, he began forming partnerships with the AHCCCS networks and the Tohono O’odham Nation.  Additionally, he structured the business model to be able to keep private-pay rates below the community average.

 

Prior to Cathexis, Tim worked in the field at Intermountain Centers for Human Development as a Clinical Supervisor, Pantano Behavioral Health Services as Deputy Clinical Director, and at Presidio Counseling and Center for Life Skills Development as a Therapist.  Prior to his work in the field, Tim has worked in several different careers, including Community Relations for a local university, Technical Support for Microsoft, Branch Manager for a bank, and he served time in the United States Marine Corps.

 

Tim enjoys many hobbies, and in true ADHD fashion, constantly seeks new experiences and challenges in both his work and play.  He is blessed to be married to his wife, Susie, for over 20 years and together they have raised two wonderful children (and now they HAVE to behave, or they make the website incorrect!).

520-303-8394

David Lewis, LPC, LISAC

Michele Harris, MC, BHT