Minority Fellowship Program Mentors
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Markie Blumer, PhD

Markie Blumer

Markie Louise Christianson (L. C.) Blumer, PhD is originally from Houston, Alaska. She is an Associate Professor in the Human Development and Family Studies Department and Marriage and Family Therapy Program at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. She earned her master’s in education from Northern Arizona University, master’s of arts in marriage and family therapy with emphasis in sex therapy from the University of Louisiana at Monroe, and her doctorate in human development and family studies with a specialization in marriage and family therapy at Iowa State University. She is a licensed marriage and family therapist (IA, NV), a licensed mental health counselor (IA), and an American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy Clinical Fellow and Approved Supervisor. She has published over 25 articles, 5 book chapters, and has presented at least 75 times at various local, regional, national and international conferences. Her first co-authored book, “The Couple and Family Technology Framework: Intimate Relationships in a Digital Age” was released in 2013. She also serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Feminist Family Therapy: an International Forum, and the Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy. Across her academic career, Dr. Blumer has won numerous awards for her teaching and research. Most recently she was honored with a 2013 University of Nevada, Las Vegas Students Organizing Diversity Activities Leading Lady Award for her commitment to consciousness-raising around diversity in the classroom. In 2011 the National Council on Family Relations Family Therapy Section awarded her with a Best Research New Professional Paper Award for her first authored work entitled, “Reflections on Becoming Feminist Therapists: A Model of Intergenerational Feminist Mentoring.”

Areas of Expertise

  • Publications
  • Evidence based practices with disadvantaged groups
  • Job Seeking

Darren Moore, PhD

Darren Moore

Darren D. Moore, PhD, LMFT, is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Mercer University School of Medicine, in Macon, Georgia. He teaches in the Masters’ program in Marriage and Family Therapy and also serves as the Community Placement Coordinator. Prior to arriving to Mercer, he taught full-time in the Masters’ program in Marriage and Family Therapy and also taught adjunct in the African American Studies undergraduate program at Valdosta State University, in Valdosta, Georgia. Dr. Moore is a Minneapolis native and received his Bachelors’ degree in African American Studies at the University of Minnesota, received his Masters’ degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Valdosta State University, and obtained his PhD in Human Development: Marriage and Family Therapy from Virginia Tech University.

Dr. Moore’s research, teaching, and clinical interests include the systemic examination and treatment of obesity, weight loss, eating disorders, and addictions within individuals as well as couple and family relational systems. He has a special interest in working with men, African American families, and other marginalized populations. Dr. Moore is also interested in African American male identity, men and masculinities, and human sexuality, as well as general mental health treatment.

He is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFT) in the state of Georgia and works with individuals, couples, groups, and families at Mercer Medicine Clinic. He has worked with all age groups and has experience in providing treatment in residential, in-patient, out-patient, agency, home-based, and college settings regarding a variety of mental health concerns including but not limited to obesity and health/mental health related issues, Anorexia, Bulimia, Binge Eating Disorder, and bariatric surgery patients. Dr. Moore’s Dissertation explored the topic of bariatric surgery within the context of couple relationships. Dr. Moore was a recipient of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy/Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Minority Doctoral Fellowship, among many others.

Dr. Moore is a clinical member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, a member of the National Council on Family Relations, and a member of the National Association of African American Studies. In addition, Dr. Moore is currently the chair of the Multicultural Issues Committee within the Georgia Association of Marriage and Family Therapy and currently serves as a Mentor for the AAMFT/SAMHSA Minority Fellowship Program. He is currently involved in a number of writing/research projects regarding obesity and weight loss which include both scholarly research as well as material for a mainstream audience. Likewise, he is currently working on his first book, “Less is Moore” which details his personal experiences of obesity and his subsequent weight loss of 185lbs. Dr. Moore also writes for a local newspaper as well as consults/conducts workshops regarding his areas of expertise as well as has been featured on a number of local radio programs.

Areas of Expertise

  • Research Design
  • Evidence based practices with disadvantaged groups
  • Job Seeking
  • Professional association leadership
  • Advocacy on State and National levels

Adriana Dunn, PhD

Adriana Dunn

Adriana Balaguer Dunn, PhD received her Master’s and PhD degrees from the University of Denver in Child Clinical Psychology with a focus on marital and family relationships. She did her internship at the Judge Baker Children’s Center/Harvard Medical School and a post-doctoral fellowship at the Long Island Jewish Medical Center specializing in work with children and families.   She has been an AAMFT Approved Supervisor since 1995. She was on faculty at Seton Hall University from 1994-2002, where she taught and supervised students in the Marriage and Family Therapy Master’s, Post-master’s and Doctoral Programs. Dr. Dunn was also adjunct professor and clinical supervisor at the Hong Kong Family Therapy Institute of Hong Kong University in 2008/2009.

Dr. Dunn is a clinical member of the American Psychological Association (APA) as well as the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.  She has presented at regional, state and national conferences in both psychology and marriage and family therapy and has been a reviewer for the Journal of Systemic Therapies since 2005.

Dr. Dunn is licensed in New Jersey as a psychologist and as a marriage and family therapist and is currently in clinical practice working with children, families and geriatric populations.

Dr. Dunn is a former APA Minority Fellowship recipient.  She is bilingual and has been engaged in clinical work and research with Hispanic populations over the course of her career.

Areas of Expertise

  • Research Design
  • Evidence based practices with disadvantaged groups
  • Job seeking
  • Working in an academic setting

Arnold Woodruff

Arnold Woodruff

Arnold Woodruff, currently the program manager for a series of community based programs in the Central Virginia region for individuals with serious mental illness, has been a Clinical Member of AAMFT since 1982. Nearly his entire professional career has been in public mental health and child welfare agencies with a couple of ventures into full-time or part-time private practice. Arnold received his MS degree from the COAMFTE approved program at Northern Illinois University and is also an Approved Supervisor. He has also served on the divisional boards in both Virginia and Illinois and is currently the Past President of the Virginia Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.

Areas of Expertise

  • Job seeking
  • Professional association leadership Advocacy on State and National levels
  • Working in an agency setting and supporting mft's in isolated practice settings, e.g., public mental health, etc.

Megan Oka, PhD

Megan Oka

I received my Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy at Brigham Young University in 2007 and my doctorate at Texas Tech University in 2010, where I was one of the first MFP Fellows. I have been at Brigham Young University since August 2010 as a visiting professor in their Marriage and Family Therapy Program, and will be moving to Utah State’s Marriage and Family Therapy Program as an assistant professor in Fall 2013. I am licensed in the state of Michigan, and will be fully licensed in Utah by the end of this month. I will be an AAMFT approved supervisor in September of 2013. I specialize clinically in the treatment of children and families, as well as intimate partner violence with couples. I have had several articles published on partner violence, attachment, and bridging the researcher/clinician gap. I have taught several graduate courses on MFT theories, domestic violence, addiction, cultural diversity, and play therapy.

Areas of Expertise

  • Research Design
  • Evidence based practices with disadvantaged groups

Mary Sue Green, PhD

Mary Sue Green

My background is in couple and family therapy, as well as human development. I am currently licensed as a LMFT in Texas and Iowa. In addition, I have the AAMFT-approved Supervisor designation and am a board approved supervisor in Texas. My clinical experience spans the substance abuse field, adult chronic mental illness, and childhood behavioral and mental health issues. I have provided services to a variety of underserved populations from diverse cultures and backgrounds.

As a faculty member and clinical supervisor, I believe that therapists need to be cognizant of what they bring to the therapeutic relationship that could influence therapeutic outcomes. From that position, I have been involved in research on communication and decision making in heterosexual couples and, most recently, I was the principal investigator for a funded project that explored communication and decision making in same-sex relationships. I have been successful in procuring small internal grants to explore family therapists’ comfort working with sexual minority couples and families and expanded on that research to include the influence of therapist religiosity on comfort working with sexually diverse clientele. I successfully completed a project on the influences on a common experience of therapy from the perspective of lesbian couples and their therapists and expanded to a funded study on the graduate school experience of lesbian and gay male therapists. In addition, a national organization’s research award allowed me the opportunity to explore the extent to which clinical supervisors in couple and family therapy programs attend to diversity in clinical supervision from the perspective of supervisors and supervisees and the influence of that attention on learning outcomes and satisfaction with clinical supervision. I also co-investigated the silence surrounding transgender issues in the family therapy field by co-conducting a content analysis of family therapy journals and addressed the lack of research and knowledge and the continued silencing about this marginalized population. An external grant from the Williams Institute allowed my colleagues and I to explore the relationships of same-sex couples who chose to marry in the state of Iowa after it became legal in 2009 utilizing a mixed-methods paradigm. Additionally, I have conducted research and published on the topic of mentoring in the family therapy field and was, in fact, honored with a Research Mentoring Award from the Dean of the College of Professional Education at Texas Woman’s University (TWU). Most recently, my advisee won the Chancellor’s Research Scholar award that is one of the highest student honors available at Texas Woman’s University. I have utilized both quantitative and qualitative research designs and posit that the methodology is influenced by the research questions being asked.

My primary teaching focus is the core curriculum in family therapy; however, I have also been fortunate to be able to teach across the curriculum in our department and that includes teaching research methods and doctoral level courses in theory building (the philosophy of science) and a readings class that covers classic and contemporary material in the family sciences field (e.g. family therapy, family studies, and child/adolescent development and early education).

As faculty, I have had the opportunity to serve on dissertation committees and am currently advising several dissertations and theses. Although I am fairly new to chairing dissertations and theses, I have a proven publication record that speaks for itself. Finally, I serve as the advisor for the TWU Student Association for Marriage and Family Therapy and truly believe that those of us who go before have a responsibility to mentor those who follow. In summary, I have demonstrated a record of successful and productive research projects from small internal and external grants, I truly believe in the mentorship process. I have had the honor of mentoring two FP fellows and look forward to continuing this journey as a way to contribute to the knowledge base in regard to underserved, diverse populations.

Areas of Expertise

  • Research Design
  • Professional association leadership

Fred Piercy, PhD

Fred Piercy

Dr. Fred Piercy is professor of family therapy in the Marriage and Family Therapy Doctoral Program, Department of Human Development, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia.  At Virginia Tech Dr. Piercy spent eight years as department head of the Department of Human Development and three years as associate dean of research and graduate studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences.   Prior to coming to Virginia Tech in 2000, Dr. Piercy spent 18 years teaching family therapy at Purdue University and, before that, seven years as a family therapy educator at East Texas State University (now Texas A&M Commerce).  Dr. Piercy received degrees from the University of Florida, University of South Carolina, and Wake Forest University.  He has served two times on the Board of Directors of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT), and as the chair of the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education.  Dr. Piercy is also a member and fellow in both AAMFT and the American Psychological Association (Division 43).  He is currently the editor of the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, the largest family therapy journal in the world and the flagship journal of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.

Dr. Piercy’s current scholarship has involved family therapy education, qualitative research and evaluation, trauma and resilience, infidelity treatment, and couples enrichment.  Dr. Piercy has written over 170 published journal articles and book chapters, five books, and 43 funded grants.  He is the co-editor of Research Methods in Family Therapy (2nd Edition) (with Douglas Sprenkle, Guilford Press, 2005) and Handbook for the Clinical Treatment of Infidelity (with Katherine Hertlein and Joseph Wetchler, Haworth Press, 2005) and co-author of Family Therapy Sourcebook (with Douglas Sprenkle, Joseph Wetchler, and associates; Guilford Press, 1986, 1996) and Stop Marital Fights Before they Start (with Norman Lobsenz, Berkley Press, 1994).  Dr. Piercy also has written for the popular press in magazines such as Reader’s Digest and Saturday Evening Post and wrote a newspaper column, Family Matters, for the Lafayette Courier for two years.

Dr. Piercy has won national, university, and college teaching awards, as well as college awards for administration, outreach, and graduate student advising.  Also, Dr. Piercy is the recipient of AAMFT’s 2007 Outstanding Contribution to Marriage and Family Therapy Award and Virginia Tech’s 2007 Alumni Award for Outstanding Graduate Student Advising.   He has collaborated extensively with colleagues from the University of Indonesia and Atma Jaya University (in Jakarta, Indonesia) and was the principle investigator of a World AIDS Foundation funded project in Indonesia.

Areas of Expertise

  • Research Design
  • Publications
  • Professional association leadership
  • Grant writing; substance abuse treatment

Shruti Poulsen, PhD

Shruti Poulsen

Dr. Poulsen is an Assistant Professor in the Counseling Program at the University of Colorado Denver. She teaches and supervises master’s level students primarily in the couple and family therapy track. Dr. Poulsen received her doctorate from the MFT Program at Purdue University in 2003. After receiving her doctorate, she continued to work at Purdue for five years as faculty in the MFT program, coordinating and running the MFT Training Clinic, and engaged in research project management activities.  She has been faculty at University of Colorado Denver for approximately five years. Courses that she has taught at CU Denver include Family Therapy Theories, Family Therapy Techniques, Counseling Couples, Introduction to Sex Therapy, Internship, and Practicum Supervision. Dr. Poulsen is the Chair on two master’s thesis committees currently and actively engaged in mentoring and guiding students through the master’s thesis process.

Dr. Poulsen has been actively engaged in leadership roles through her involvement with the state level MFT organizations; as a doctoral student, she was the Student Representative for the Indiana Association for Marriage & Family Therapy and then also served as Conference Committee Chair after receiving her doctorate. In Colorado, Dr. Poulsen served three years as Secretary the Colorado Association for Marriage & Family Therapy and one year as Conference Committee Chair for the Colorado Counseling Association. Dr. Poulsen also served on a working committee for the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies in 2010 for the development and implementation of professional development and continuing education requirements for the LMFT license in Colorado.

Dr. Poulsen’s research, teaching and service all focus on areas of multiculturalism; specifically access of mental health care to diverse populations and training culturally sensitive and competent therapists and counselors. Dr. Poulsen is also interested in empirically based treatments and their utility with diverse client populations; to this effort, Dr. Poulsen has obtained advanced training in EFT, Gottman Level I training, and training in IBCT. Clinically, Dr. Poulsen has been active as a therapist for over 18 years and as an AAMFT Approved Supervisor for almost 10 years. Dr. Poulsen has worked clinically in a variety of settings such as community mental health settings, crisis assessment, correctional settings, and private practice. She is licensed in Indiana and Colorado as an MFT, and is licensed in Illinois and Colorado as a Professional Counselor.

Personally, Dr. Poulsen has experienced a wide range of multicultural and cross cultural experiences as she was born in India and then lived and traveled in several different countries (England, Singapore, Zambia) before moving to the United States. Dr. Poulsen’s commitment to multicultural understanding and competence has been greatly influenced by her personal experiences as an immigrant and woman of color.

Areas of Expertise

  • Evidence based practices with disadvantaged groups
  • Publications
  • Professional association leadership
  • Well-being and functioning of diverse client populations
  • Diverse couple relationships and their functioning
  • Multicultural competence in supervision and training

Anibal Torres Bernal, PhD

Anibal Torres Bernal

Anibal Torres Bernal is an assistant professor of psychology in the mental health counseling program at Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus (IUPUC). He holds a BA in psychology from Universidad Interamericana de Puerto Rico: Recinto de San German and an MA and PhD in marriage and family therapy from Syracuse University. He has held academic appointments at the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV), Drake University, State University of New York: Empire State College, Syracuse University and Fairfield University.

His teaching interests include research methodology, issues in professional development and theories of psychotherapy. His scholarly endeavors have focused on exploring issues of accessibility, sustainability, diversity and social justice within the mental health professions and educational programs. Currently his research agenda includes projects that critically analyze and evaluate the delivery of mental health services / training while addressing questions of access and cost within these contexts. He has published and presented his work in multiple venues. Amongst these are ten publications in refereed journals and close to thirty presentations.

Anibal’s expansive clinical experience has provided him with the opportunity to serve in a variety of settings, including mental health clinics providing systemic therapeutic services to families dealing with mental illness, and a psychiatric hospital providing psychiatric services to adolescents with acute psychiatric crises. He has also extensively worked with varied and diverse populations, including Spanish-speaking immigrants. He has worked as both a direct provider and a clinical supervisor having supervised therapist assistants, mental health workers, family therapy clinical trainees, mental health counselor trainees, pre licensure marriage and family therapists and licensed mental health professionals.

Areas of Expertise

  • Job Seeking
  • Higher Education Administration and MFT Educational Programs
  • Minority Populations and MFT Educational Populations

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