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2021 Annual Conference Session Descriptions

Friday In-Person Sessions

Session 101: Burnout: Avoiding Fatigue for Parents and Providers

Presenters: Emily Coler Hanson, LMFT   and Barbara Stanton, PhD, LPCC, LMFT
Emily’s bio: Emily is an LMFT and AAMFT Approved Supervisor.  She has worked as a therapist for over twelve years and has primarily focused her work on children, adolescents, and their families.  She has a particular interest in working with people who have experienced trauma, are on the autism spectrum, and prefers a team approach to helping others reach their goals.  Her work often takes a strength-based approach and is influenced by the Nurtured Heart Approach.  She is currently the Clinic Director of Ellie Family Services in Moorhead, MN.
Barb’s bio: Dr. Stanton’s clinical work is focused on children, adolescents, and adults on the autism spectrum or who have related issues.  With over 30 years of experience, Barb has learned to appreciate the infinite skills and talents of these amazing individuals as well as their struggles to navigate their environment.  She works with community and family supports to develop creative solutions to difficult challenges.  She believes behavior is communication and enjoys discovering the why behind behavior.  Her approach is strength based and person centered.
Knowledge gained/workshop description:
Due to the nature of the clients we serve and the increased mental health needs of the past year, we often overlook care for those that are caring for others- often parents and providers. Research shows that workshops are effective, but only temporarily. The best way to combat burnout is ongoing consultation, support and practice, and ongoing positive peer interactions. This presentation aims to share useful tools for ongoing mitigation of caregiver /provider burnout.
Course length :  1.5 hours

Session 102 :  ADHD Impact on Marriage

Presenter: Judy Richardson-Mahre, LAMFT
Presenter’s bio: Judy is an LAMFT and a Certified Parent Coach and Certified ADHD expert.  Judy is a compassionate and action-oriented therapist and family educator.  She is also an outstanding ADHD expert, Coach, and Parent Coach.  Judy helps clients identify their strengths while providing structure and interventions to deal with their struggles.  Judy’s specialties include parenting, couples counseling, premarital counseling and working with individuals, families and couples impacted by ADHD. Judy works directly with adolescents from 12 years of age through adulthood. She also works with individuals who are struggling with anxiety, depression, grief and loss, goal setting and self-esteem.
Description: Marriage can be difficult! Especially when you add any extenuating circumstances such as disabilities, children with disabilities, mental health struggles, etc. When working with clients, how can you determine if ADHD might be a factor and then if it is a factor, what do you do about it? This workshop will help give you an understanding of ADHD, what it is and what it isn't. It will also help you identify if ADHD may be a factor impacting the couple sitting across from you in session. Then we will talk about the best practices in dealing with ADHD in Marriage Counseling. Know the signs and the solutions to bring peace, harmony and cooperation back to your clients' marriage.
Course length: 1.5 hours

Session 103 & Session 203:  Assessment of Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders (PMADS)

Presenter: Allison Peterson, MA, LP, PMH-C
Presenter bio: Allison Peterson, MA, LP, PMH-C is a licensed psychologist and Clinical Director of Mindful Families. She is certified through Postpartum Support International in Perinatal Mental Health. Allison is involved in the pregnancy and postpartum community as a member of Pregnancy and Postpartum Support Minnesota (PPSM), serving as the PPSM Helpline Director and steering committee member from 2015-2020. Through PPSM, Allison has trained medical, mental health and other perinatal providers in understanding and treating PMADS.

Description: Pregnancy and postpartum are one of the most significant developmental stages our clients experience. And yet, our training does not equip us to understand the unique impacts this stage has our clients and their mental health. This workshop is designed to support all clinicians in understanding and assessing mood and anxiety disorders that can arise during the pregnancy and postpartum period. Additionally, resources for referral and further training in this area will also be discussed.
Course length: 3 hrs

Session 104: The Roots of Regulation: Going Beneath the Surface of Emotions

Presenter: Shelly Melroe, MS, MA, LMFT

Presenter Bio: Shelly Melroe is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the state of Minnesota and a Certified Provider of the Safe and Sound Protocol. She is a member of the global research team with Dr. Stephen Porges studying adolescents with hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and functional GI disorders and the SSP at Children's Wisconsin Hospital. She has spent decades guiding systemic growth of individuals, teams, and organizations. Her current passion is integrating neuroscience research and trauma modalities into family and group therapy for healing and growth in community.

Description: As family therapists, we’ve been trained in the concept that a family gets held in patterns drawing back to their homeostasis. Trauma research, neuroscience, and polyvagal theory have provided insight that homeostasis is a biological necessity within each individual, not merely a nice-to-have. Maintaining autonomic regulation (returning to homeostasis) is required to survive. This opens a new paradigm for understanding not only post-trauma recovery and growth, but also addiction, symptomology, childrens mental health, and chronic pain. By adding this level of knowledge and intervention to your practice, your clients can loosen the hooks that hold them stuck in habits they want to break and see themselves and their potential in a life-giving perspective.

    Course Length: 1.5

      

    Session 105: Working with Clients Facing Divorce

    Presenters: Ron Ousky, JD  and Kimberly Miller, JD, MA, LMFT, CDFA

    Presenters’ Bios: Ron Ousky has worked in family law since his graduation from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1982. Since that time, Ron has become recognized as an international leader in developing innovative ways to help family law clients. He is a past president of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals and Minnesota’s Collaborative Law Institute. In 2015, Ron was awarded the Lawyer as Problem Solver Award by the American Bar Association. In 2006, Ron co-authored The Collaborative Way to Divorce: The Revolutionary Method that Results in less Stress, Lower Costs and Happier Kids, Without Going to Court, with Stu Webb, the founder of Collaborative Law. Ron has had the opportunity to speak at many events and forums on the topic of Collaborative Law and has conducted training seminars throughout North America, South America and Europe. Ron has handled thousands of family law cases, including hundreds of cases in each of the following areas: traditional negotiation; mediation; Collaborative Law and litigation. Since 2003, Ron has worked almost exclusively in the areas of Collaborative Law and mediation. Ron is also the cofounder of the Collaborative Alliance Executive Suites, believed to be the largest interdisciplinary family law center in the world.

    Kimberly Miller, Kimberly@kmfamilylaw.com . Twin Cities divorce professional Kimberly Miller, JD, MA, LMFT, CDFA is known for her ability to resolve challenging family issues without resort to aggressive legal strategies that are damaging to vital family relationships. After years of litigating business and family disputes at a prominent national firm, she recognized the devastating psychological and financial impact that litigation can have on individuals, couples, and other loved ones. She decided to establish her own practice to promote alternative forms of dispute resolution, such as collaborative law and mediation, to reach consensus. Kimberly's training at Brown University where she graduated with honors and her exceptional legal training at Cornell Law School have prepared her to be an effective legal advocate on behalf of her clients. Kimberly is a licensed marriage and family therapist, which enhances her ability to counsel and guide families toward collaborative resolutions. Her degree in family counseling and psychology at the University of St. Thomas provides her with the keen insight and wisdom needed to help families overcome difficult issues and create workable solutions that are agreeable for everyone involved. Kimberly is also a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst with expertise in the finances of divorce. Her training and experience demonstrate Kimberly is an experienced divorce professional who works to find resolutions and keep clients out of the courtroom. Kimberly has been named a "Super Lawyer" by Minnesota Law in Politics in 2014-2021. Before starting her own practice in 2010, Minneapolis divorce attorney Kimberly Miller had eight years of trial litigation experience with a top national law firm. During that time, she was named a "Rising Star" by Minnesota Law and Politics in 2006, 2007, and 2009 and an "Up and Coming Attorney" by Minnesota Lawyer in 2008. Kimberly also has a Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology, is a licensed marriage and family therapist, and is certified as a CDFA by the Institute of Divorce Financial Analysts. Education Brown University, B.A. with Honors, 1997 Cornell Law School, J.D., 2002 University of St. Thomas, M.A. Counseling Psychology with Family Concentration, 2011 Experience, Recognition, & Training Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Certified Divorce Financial Analyst Attorney at Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi L.L.P., Minneapolis, MN (2002-2010) Mental Health Intern at Family Means, Stillwater, MN (2010-2011) Qualified Neutral under Rule 114 of the Minnesota General Rules of Practice Collaborative Law Training with Stu Webb (founder of Collaborative Law) and Ronald Ousky Interdisciplinary Collaborative Law Training at Collaborative Law Institute of Minnesota Advanced Collaborative Law Training at Collaborative Law Institute of Minnesota Family Mediation Training, Hamline Law School's Mediation Center for Dispute Resolution Named a "Super Lawyer" by Minnesota Law & Politics (2014-2021) Named a "Rising Star" by Minnesota Law & Politics (2006, 2007, 2009) Named an "Up and Coming Attorney" by Minnesota Lawyer (2008) Cuccia Cup Moot Court Winner, Cornell Law School (2000) Winter Cup Moot Court Winner, Cornell Law School (2001).

    Description: Therapy Clients who face divorce are presented with some of the most important decisions of their lives; at a time when they often experiencing significant trauma. Therapists who work with clients in these difficult situations often face unique challenges as well as opportunities to help clients begin their new life. Understanding the divorce world, they are facing can be a crucial part of helping them during this important life changing event. This workshop taught by two experienced family law attorneys, (one of which is also a marriage and family therapist) is designed to help therapists guide their clients through this transition in a way that helps them create a better future for themselves and their children.

    Course Length: 1.5



    Session 201: Living and Working Through the Polyvagal Lens
    Presenter: 
    Michelle Hunt-Graham, MA, LMFT, CDWF

    Presenter’s Bio: Although I am trained in a number of therapeutic approaches, all of these are layered with the Polyvagal Theory. The Polyvagal Theory is the science of the nervous system and its constant effort to keep us safe. The Polyvagal Theory details how our Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) moves between three states: Safe & Social, Flight / Fight or Shutdown in response to cues of safety or danger. Depending on the state of the ANS, adaptive behaviors (things that we believe keep us safe) and narratives change. As a Certified Brainspotting practitioner I am able to help clients process past negative experiences / traumas that invite ANS state changes, affect vagal tone, and generate problematic narratives. Brainspotting works deeply in the brain and body by directly accessing the autonomic and limbic systems within the body’s central nervous system. Brainspotting is a physiological tool/treatment which has profound psychological, emotional, and physical affects. I am also a Certified Facilitator of The Daring Way™. This is a highly experiential methodology based on the connection and shame research of Dr. Brené Brown. That involves exploring topics such as vulnerability, courage, shame, and worthiness. It invites examining the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors (and ANS states / vagal tone) that are holding us back. The primary focus is on developing shame-resilience skills and developing daily practices that transform the way we live, love, parent, and lead. Education & Certification: Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, MN Board of MFT Brainspotting Certification NY, NY Certified Daring Way Facilitator Daring Way™ Houston, TX Master of Arts, Counseling Psychotherapy, Adler Graduate School, MN Life Coaching Certification, Adler Graduate School, MN Bachelor of Science, Business, University of Minnesota Living & Working Through the Polyvagal Lens

    Description: The experiences and skills attained in the workshop will help professionals be more aware of and understand how to influence Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) Participants will increase their understanding of the Polyvagal Theory and how it can enhance therapeutic theories, research and curriculum.
    Course Length: 1.5


    Session 202: The Couples Erotic Flow: Demystifying sex therapy with a simple, fun, and effective model

    Presenter: Kyle Zrenchik, PhD, ACS, LMFT
    Presenter bio: Dr. Kyle Zrenchik, better known on WCCO as Dr. Love, is a leading sex and relationship therapist in the Twin Cities. Dr. Z has been recognized for his unique and impressive contributions to the field, earning awards from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, AAMFT, and the University of Minnesota to name a few. He has been featured in numerous local and national media including the Journal of Family Psychotherapy, the Journal of LGBT Family Studies, the Star Tribune, Real Simple Magazine, Lovers Lane, Giddy, and was a former host of Sex Talk Radio on KBOO. He can also be found at ALL IN Therapy Clinic in Minnetonka
    Description/knowledge gained: Sexual problems are a commonly experienced by clients. However, even seasoned clinicians consistently report feeling underprepared and unsure how to provide help, often avoiding treating sexual problems altogether. When clinicians are provided a comprehensive model, they not only approach sexual issues more confidently, but also serve as an important catalyst for change in their clients’ lives. This presentation will introduce participants to the Couples Erotic Flow, an original model developed to assist therapists to feel more confident, knowledgeable, and skillful attending to sexual concerns, as well as provide a therapeutic framework for conceptualizing, assessing, and treating sexual problems.
    Course length : 1.5 hours


    {Session 203 & Session 103:  Assessment of Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders (PMADS)}


    Session 204: Play for All: Including the Youngest Members of the Family in Therapy
    Presenters: Karrie Ruedy, MA, LMFT and Ana Lewis, MA, LMFT
    Presenters’ bios: Karrie Ruedy is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. She graduated with a Master of Science from Capella University. Karrie is a certified play therapist, also from Capella University. Karrie currently works for Change Inc. as a school-based therapist at Waite Park Community School. In addition, she works with the Early Childhood Special Education program with the Minneapolis school district. Karrie is trained in ABC Interventions for children and caregivers ages 6 to 24 months and in DC: 0-5 evaluation and diagnosis.
    Ana Lewis is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and MN Board Approved Supervisor. Ana has worked in school based mental health for Change Inc. since 2015. In that time, she has worked with kids 3- 18. Ana immigrated to the United States at the age of 5 from El Salvador and is bi-lingual in English and Spanish. Ana practices trauma-informed, client-centered, strengths-based therapy and is certified in level 1 Internal Family Systems as well as Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and DC: 0-5 evaluation and diagnosis.
    Description: This workshop will help MFTs become comfortable with including young children in therapy by using play in the family therapy process with children ages 0-5. It will also help MFT's to increase their understanding surrounding the importance of play and how children communicate through play. Participants will learn how play therapy can be applied to the family system and some activities they can use during the therapeutic process. Play can help the family learn how to improve their overall ability to communicate with each other and it is an important tool when working with families with young children.
    Course Length: 1.5

    Session 205: TeleSupervision: Modern Ethical Supervision using Technology

    Presenter: Patrick Parker, MA, LMFT

    Presenter’s bio: Patrick Parker is an LMFT specializing in individual, couples, and family therapy. Patrick has worked in various mental health settings including outpatient, inpatient, residential, and volunteer programs. With over 15 years of experience in relational therapy Patrick works with a broad spectrum of individuals. Patrick is passionate about working with those who struggle with depression, anxiety, substance use, relational problems/attachment issues, existential crises, non-traditional relationships, and those who are a part of the LGBTQIA+ community.

    Description: Ethical and Practical Workshop to explore and expand participants knowledge of the changes for Supervisors and Supervisees.

    Course Length: 1.5


    Session 301 and Session 401: Emotionally Focused Therapy: Using the Power of Attachment and Affect with Individuals, Couples and Families in Distress

    Presenters: Renee Segal, MA, LMFT, Certified EFT Therapist and Supervisor   Kurt Wical, PhD, LMFT, Certified EFT Therapist and Supervisor
    Presenter bios: Renee Segal, MA LMFT is the owner and clinical director of Evolve Therapy group practice that helps people in relationships (individuals, couples, family members) who have been negatively impacted by affairs, addictions, betrayal, communication issues, emotional needs not being met, attachment injuries, narcissism, and unhealthy behaviors, using Emotionally Focused Therapy. Renee is actively involved in the Minnesota Center for Emotionally Focused Therapy (MNCEFT) community and runs a monthly free consultation group for therapists and helps to train and provide supervision for those learning EFT.
    Kurt Wical, PhD, LMFT Certified Emotionally Focused Therapist, Supervisor and Trainer. Dr. Kurt Wical, PhD, LMFT is the Director of the MN Couple Therapy Center, a clinic specializing in working with couples. He is passionate about the importance of providing excellent couple therapy through the use of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) for couples. Kurt is a certified EFT therapist and supervisor and trainer of EFT. He is on the board of the Minnesota Center for EFT which is the sponsor for EFT training in Minnesota.
    Description: With over a thousand different studies of psychotherapy, attachment theory has been linked to almost every positive index of mental health and general wellbeing outlined in the social sciences. People that are securely attached are able to be more resilient in the face of stress, maintain more optimism, have higher self-esteem, confidence, curiosity, are more tolerant for differences, have a strong sense of belonging and the ability to self-disclose and be assertive, tolerate ambiguity and the ability to regulate difficult emotions. Learn how Emotionally Focused Therapy is used for individuals, couples and families to help develop secure attachment. Building on Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy and the work of Dr. Sue Johnson, this workshop will share the set of proven interventions to shape transformational emotional moments for your clients through Emotionally Focused Individual Therapy (EFIT), Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy (EFCT) and Emotionally Focused Family Therapy (EFFT) will transform your clinical work by giving you: • A structured, on-target, effective roadmap for helping clients • Resolution for clients’ depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress • A more integrated coherent sense of self
    Course length: 3.0 hrs


    Session 302Medications, Testing, and Prescribers: A Collaborative Approach

    Presenter: Katey Schroeder, MPA, PA-C

    Presenter’s Bio: I am a physician assistant with over 12 years of experience in family and integrative medicine specializing in Integrative Mental Health.  I received my Masters in Physician Assistant Sciences at Loma Linda University in 2009 and a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology from California Polytechnic University San Luis Obispo in 2006.Being fortunate enough to study under Dr. Daniel Bressler as well as Dr. Chris Foley, I’ve acquired invaluable experience and skills in my career.  Moreover, I have also learned how to approach treating mental health conditions in a different way than the typical medical model.

    Description: In addition to psychotherapy, medication has provided benefit and relief for many clients seeking mental healthcare. Despite the complementary relationship therapists and prescribers have, the fields can notoriously be disconnected. This creates challenges in providing effective care, stifles innovation, and ultimately harms clients and families. This presentation aims to bridge the gap by providing a comprehensive, yet digestible overview on psychiatric medications, how to work collaboratively with medical providers and how alternative and complementary treatments can address psychosomatic complaints and offer another option for patients resistant to medications. This includes when medications should be initiated, how to get patients to consider medications when they are resistant, warning signs that dosages or medications need to be changed and how we can work together to do this effectively. Further, this presentation will address alternative and complementary treatments including supplements, diet changes, and addressing the "gut-brain" connection. This presentation will engage participants with relevant information and provide ready-to-use resources and tips to help improve their practice.

    Course length: 1.5

    Session 303: Things to Know about Family Law to inform Practice with Separating and Divorcing Families

    Presenter: Erin Guyette, MS, LAMFT
    Presenter’s bio: Erin Guyette, MS, LAMFT received her bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Minnesota in 2018. She graduated from Kansas State University in 2020 with a Masters in Couple and Family Therapy and is currently enrolled in the doctoral program in the Department of Family Social Science (Couple and Family Therapy track) at the University of Minnesota. Erin practices clinical work part-time in private practice and is the Editorial Assistant for the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. Her clinical and doctoral research specifically includes families in divorce/separation transitions. She studies and practices as a family therapist to improve alternative dispute resolution services and educates therapists on working with families involved in family court. Erin is on the education committee for the Minnesota Chapter of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts and is a member of AFCC, MAMFT, and AAMFT.
    Description: We often have clients who are contemplating separation, experiencing separation, or seeking therapy postseparation for themselves or family members. Therapists typically receive little training on aspects of family law, yet, it is part of our everyday work. Your clients are navigating the legal parts of divorce/separation, and there are things to know as therapists to provide influential therapy. In this workshop, we will discuss family law professional roles, Minnesota Best interest factors, working with coparents, and things to consider when working with separating/divorcing families. Systemic therapists have a lot to offer these complex family systems and this informative workshop will provide material to inform your practice with families experiencing separation.
    Course length: 1.5 hours


    Session 304: In (OVER) My Head: Better Understanding Historical Trauma’s Impact on the Brain
    Presenter: Sidney L. Frye, MDIV, MFT Post-graduate clinical trainee
    Presenter’s bio: Sidney Frye II is a mental health and racial equity speaker. He has a Master's of Divinity degree from Bethel University, as well as a Master's Certificate in Marriage and Family Therapy. Sidney teaches Adolescent Psychology at North Central University, and is a Child Welfare Program Supervisor, supervising programs that work to address disparities and disproportionality that result in negative educational outcomes for students of color.
    Description: Historical trauma is more than about what happened in the past. Learn how historical trauma affects the human brain today. Attendees will gain a deeper understanding of historical trauma from both personal stories and emerging scientific perspectives. Practical strategies will be outlined on how to translate newfound insights into fostering and developing a more trauma-informed approach, intentionally grounded in empathy.
    Course length: 1.5 hours


    {Session 401 and Session 301: Emotionally Focused Therapy: Using the Power of Attachment and Affect with Individuals, Couples and Families in Distress}


    Session 402: Hypnosis in Therapy: When it Works and Why

    Presenter: Jennifer Stoos, MA, LMFT, MDiv
    Presenter bio: Jennifer Stoos is an AAMFT Approved Supervisor, Board Approved Supervisor, and American Society of Clinical Hypnosis (ASCH) Approved Consultant. She is currently co-president of the Minnesota Society of Clinical Hypnosis (MSCH). Jennifer has a private practice and works with couples, families, and individuals.
    Description: Clinical hypnosis is a powerful adjunctive therapy methodology, particularly in certain areas. This workshop will share recent research on the efficacy of hypnosis, and information about integrating hypnosis into therapeutic work.
    Course length: 1.5

    Session 403: Babies in Session: Providing Attachment Work While Treating Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders

    Presenter: Amy Engelhard, MA, LMFT
    Presenter Bio: Amy Engelhard is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Board Approved Supervisor currently working at Mindful Families, where she primarily sees pregnant/postpartum parents, children, adolescents, and parents across the lifespan. She has advanced training through Postpartum Support International to work with clients during their pregnancies and the postpartum period. Over the past 15 years, she has worked in day treatment, schools, in-home, and outpatient clinics providing services to individuals and families. She obtained her Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology and Post-Master’s Certificate in Family Psychology from the University of St. Thomas. Amy is a member of Pregnancy and Postpartum Support MN, Postpartum Support International, the Minnesota Association of Marriage and Family Therapy, and the International Society of Accelerated Resolution Therapy.
    Description: Parents experiencing Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders (PMADs) may struggle more than others caring for their new baby. Children being raised with one or more parents with PMADs may also be more likely to not gain a secure attachment with their caregiver, which may result in a multitude of concerns for the child down the road. This workshop will focus on how to support the parent with their child in session with creating secure attachment in conjunction with the treatment of PMADs. The focus will both be on having infants in the office and in their homes through in-home and/or telehealth.
    Course length: 1.5

      Session 404:  Do Kink and BDSM-related Diagnoses Belong in the DSM?
      Presenter: Courtney Padjen, PhD, LAMFT
      Presenter’s Bio: Dr. Courtney Padjen (she/her) is a Wisconsin native. She recently completed her PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy from Northcentral University. She is the owner of Centre for Sexual Wellness where she works as a Sex & Relationship Therapist in Minneapolis, MN. She is an advocate ally  for the kink community and is dedicated to working to de-stigmatize and de-pathologize the BDSM & kink community.
      Description: In this discussion we will explore current kink and BDSM-related diagnoses listed in the DSM, the recent removal of some kink and BDSM-related diagnoses from the ICD, and what clinicians should consider before diagnosing BDSM practicing/kink-identified clients. This discussion reflects on how BDSM and kink-related diagnoses being listed in the DSM perpetuates stigmatization to this community and presents a challenge to mental health clinicians. This discussion will provide an overview of how a paradigm shift occurs and how a progressive paradigm shift has the potential to take place with the removal DSM diagnoses related of BDSM and kink practice.
      Course length: 1.5


      Session 405:  Demystifying Eating Disorders and Body Image Issues: Assessment, Treatment, and Prevention in Outpatient Settings
      Presenter: Ashley Baird Urbanski, MA, LMFT
      Presenter bio:  Ashley Baird Urbanski graduated with a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy from St. Mary's University of Minnesota. During her studies she volunteered on Crisis Connection's crisis line and the National Suicide Prevention Line. She also completed a practicum at Park Nicollet Melrose Center treating individuals and families struggling with eating disorders. She went on to take a position at The Emily Program where she furthered her specialty treating eating disorders. She began work at The Emily Program in the adolescent residential program and proceeded to work in adult day programs and adult outpatient services. Ashley then transitioned to private practice and worked at DBT Associates, becoming well-versed in providing DBT and RO-DBT treatments, both of which are primary theories of therapy used to treat eating disorders. Most recently, Ashley has taken on a therapist role at ALL IN Therapy Clinic where she continues to specialize in treating eating disorders and general body image and food concerns. Ashley has a passion for helping those struggling with eating disorders and hopes one day for a world without these struggles. 

      Description: Eating disorders are far more common than most of us realize and have far reaching psychological and physical consequences. Most mental health professionals are not provided the appropriate training to be able to diagnose and treat eating disorders; this training will give insight into how to diagnose eating disorders early on in order to work towards early intervention and prevention. Various eating disorder diagnoses will be discussed, including how to recognize the early warning signs of these diagnoses. The main tenants of how to treat eating disorders at different levels of care will be introduced, as well as strategies to clinically discuss eating, food, body image, and/or weight. Attendees will learn ways to assess for, diagnose, and treat eating disorders in an outpatient, non-specialty clinic/private practice. Throughout this training, discussion will also be had around current cultural narratives and how these narratives, in conjunction with one’s own biases, can get in the way of early intervention and prevention of eating disorders. Self-care strategies, and research on the influence of the family system will also be included.

      Course Length: 1.5


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