It is our philosophy that each client deserves to work with someone who best meets their individual needs. We have a variety of staff members who are each uniquely trained and specialized in a variety of treatment modalities. We are confident that we will offer you the specialization you deserve.
Melissa Amaya, LCSW
I have a strong personal commitment to working with couples. I believe it essential for couples to have supports available whether it is for issues that arise during dating, engagement or marriage. Relationships are hard work but they shouldn't be exhausting. One key question I have always found helpful is to ask yourself if having this person in your life offers more happiness or more pain. The reality is that issues will always arise in relationships. It is how we handle them and the role we play that determines whether or not the relationship is in our best interest.
Sherry Ware, LMHC
From a young age, Sherry always knew her calling was to help others. With 11 years of experience working as a counselor in the school system; children and their families have been her focus and passion. She is able to connect to children and teens with an honest, yet loving heart. Her areas of counseling practice are: parenting assistance & behavioral support, grief & trauma, anxiety, depression, and life stress. She connects easily with her clients by building rapport through genuine caring, non judgmental listening and humor. Sherry’s practice empowers her clients to find their own strengths to overcome adversity and to find balance and peace within themselves and their surroundings. She uses solution-focused therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, sand-tray therapy and sand play to assist her clients. Sherry is very methodical in her approach, using wisdom from her education & training, life experiences, and her colleagues.
Sherry received a Bachelor’s degree from Florida State University in Communications and Spanish. She earned her Master’s degree in Guidance and Counseling from University of South Florida. She is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor; a State Certified School Counselor PK -12th grade; and a Nationally Board Certified School Counselor. Sherry volunteers as a grief and trauma counselor at The Life Center of the Suncoast.
K. Charlotte Canning, LCSW
Charlotte has been active in the Tampa Bay mental health community for almost 20 years. During that time she has had the opportunity to work with clients across the life span who are dealing with issues of loss, life stress, family discordance, grief, relationship issues, parenting, and adjustment.
Charlotte firmly believes that by providing clients the opportunity, time, space and place, they have the capacity and strength to gain insight and effect changes that will enhance their lives on a day to day basis.
She received both her B.A. and M.S.W. from the University of South Florida and is a member of Phi Kappa Phi and the National Association of Social Workers. She has taught on both the graduate and undergraduate levels, has had extensive experience in medical settings and has done volunteer work both in the U.S. as well as Central America .
Amanda Hughes, LCSW
Amanda Hughes is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Florida. She received a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Maine in Psychology and completed her Master’s degree from the University of Maine in social work. Working in the mental health field since 2000, she has prior experience in a variety of settings and most recently worked at a community mental health center in the public school system.
Her approach to therapy is client centered and solution focused. She utilizes cognitive behavioral therapy, solution focused therapy, and play therapy in her practice. Amanda is experienced in treating a wide array of issues including grief and loss, anxiety, depression, trauma, adjustment, and behavioral issues. She enjoys working with children, adolescents, and adults. Through her work in the past, she has a particular passion to help children and adolescents and their families.
Ashley Dlugokinski LMHC
Ashley is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in the state of Florida. Ashley has a diverse range of mental health and family counseling experience with individuals of all ages. She has a passion for children and families and began her career as an advocate for at-risk youth. She continued her work with youth as a mental health therapist within the school system, residential settings, and crisis stabilization. She takes pride in serving as an advocate for adolescents. Her areas of specialty include: depression, anxiety, behavioral issues, anger, self-esteem, adjustment difficulties, relationship stress, and interpersonal difficulties. She also has experience with parental education and family communication. Ashley has advanced training in individual, couples, family, and group therapy. Her primary style of therapy is goal-oriented and supportive. She approaches the therapy process in a collaborative manner.
Ashley received her Bachelor’s degree from Florida State University with a double major in psychology and criminal justice. Upon graduating, she earned her Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy with a certification in Mental Health Counseling from the University of Central Florida.
Karen Siegel, MSW - Registered Intern
With a systematic and empathic approach to identifying, reshaping and redefining a client’s individual situation and issues, Karen specializes in the unique needs of children, teens and women. She believes that each person has a unique set of circumstances, conflicts, strengths and backgrounds. Her approach is to understand the whole person and tailor those needs to each individual, guiding them through a path where they feel validated and heard without judgement.
Karen is currently working as Counselor in the Hillsborough County Schools working with at risk teens. Previously Karen worked for the Scottsdale Prevention Institute in Arizona where she worked with individuals to improve their Self-Image, Coping Skills, Family Relations and Effective Communication.
She received her Bachelors degree in Social Work from Central Connecticut State University and her Masters in Social Work from University of Connecticut, with a concentration in Women’s Issues.
Alyssa Scott, LCSW
Alyssa has devoted a decade of combined mental health and rehabilitation services for persons diagnosed with disabilities towards independence, as well as life challenges individuals, children, and couples may be faced with. Throughout her career, she has valued the “human spirit” in the course of making forward and desired changes. Using a diverse set of interventions, strategies, assessments, and in session techniques, she focuses on adapting individualized plans for every person willing to reach goals and make desired changes. Alyssa also credits her counseling style as drawing from her rehabilitation background that focuses on a person’s strengths, skills, abilities, and aptitudes towards making progress in session. In closing, Alyssa is eager to contribute in facilitating resolution to concerns, as well as assisting a couple or individual to develop coping skills and resources to effectively move forward toward personal goals.
Lizette Ovalle, LCSW
Lizette has been a Social Worker within the Tampa Bay community for 18 years. She has always had a passion advocating for others throughout life’s struggles and helping people find their path and joy in life.
She has had the opportunity to work within many domains of Social Work including Child Welfare, Medical Social Work, Managed Care and Community Mental Health. Lizette has experience in dealing with persistent mental illness, depression, anxiety, trauma, adoption, behavioral concerns and grief and loss issues. She is an Adoption Competent Therapist and has experience working within trauma informed care approaches. Lizette utilizes various approaches in therapy including solution focused therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy and trauma informed care. She enjoys working with Children, Families and Couples.
Lizette received her Bachelor’s in Social Work from the University of West Florida and Master’s degree from University of South Florida. Lizette received her license as a Clinical Social Worker in 2012.
Diana Mitwalli, LMFT
Sometimes when life brings challenges and unwelcome stress, we may need a little extra support and clarity. Whether or not you have received counseling before, it takes insight and courage to reach out for help. Diana has a genuine and supportive way of connecting with and helping her clients.
Diana is a licensed Psychotherapist. Diana has helped people with various concerns including relationship problems, stress, depression, adjustment issues, trauma, anxiety, domestic violence, divorce and behavioral problems. Utilizing a cognitive behavioral approach within a systems modality, counseling is always individually tailored to meet the needs of each client. She has nearly 10 years of experience working with children, adolescents, and adults. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of South Florida, and her Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy from Argosy University. Diana is bilingual in English and Arabic.
Natalie Gordon, LCSW
Natalie has been a social worker since 2002 and has had an opportunity to work with in many settings with diverse populations which include child welfare, mental health, school social
work, medical social work, adult/juvenile justice systems, and managed care. However, the breadth of Natalie’s experience has been providing mental health services to children and their families. Natalie is experienced in treating depression, anxiety, trauma, grief and loss, adjustment disorders, behavioral issues, anger, and adoption and child welfare issues, and interpersonal difficulties. Natalie has advanced training in adoption competency and trauma informed care. Natalie’s primary style of therapy is cognitive behavioral, solution-focused, and supportive. Natalie received her Bachelor’s degree in social work from Oakwood College in Huntsville, Alabama and her Master’s Degree in Social Work from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ with a concentration in clinical social work. Natalie later received her license as a clinical social worker (LCSW) in 2015.
Trudy Farrier LCSW
Trudy Farrier is Licensed Clinical Social Work who completed her undergraduate degree at University of Florida and Master’s in Social Work at University of South Florida.
Trudy has over 11 years working with children, families, parents, and couples at their most stressful times. Trudy experienced started with children and parents in child welfare system and then with prevention. She then moved on to working with teenagers with at risk behaviors who were involved in the juvenile justice system and also worked in the school system. Trudy spent several years providing therapy to children with extreme emotional disturbances who are in the foster care system. Trudy is certified in trauma informed care, therapy and practices. She is certified in parent training, conducts parenting classes, and enjoys helping families in the healing and growing process. Trudy is also as certified as an adoption competent therapist and enjoys navigating the dynamics of a blended family and assisting them in becoming a cohesive unit.
Trudy utilizes person centered approach in therapy as she believes a trusting therapeutic relationship is essential for success and growth She also utilizes cognitive behavioral therapy, solution focused therapy, play therapy in her practice. Trudy is experienced in treating a wide array of issues including behavioral issues, child welfare involvement, blended families, grief and loss, anxiety, depression, trauma, adjustment, ADHD, and autism.
Albert Slicker, LMHC
Albert is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in the State of Florida and a CAP - Certified Addiction Professional. My approach to psychotherapy is a client-centered ideology to build on each individual's values and strengths to encourage personal growth and enhance resiliency through all stages of life. I have prior experience providing counseling to adolescents and adults in substance abuse outpatient and detox facilities, and individuals, couples, and families experiencing a variety of issues, including anger management, communication issues, depression, and anxiety.
I specialize in working with individuals experiencing depression, anxiety, substance use problems, and work well with teens. I also provide targeted support and problem-solving to address problems related to life transitions such as career issues, divorce, separation and other issues that may be causing acute stress or difficulties in adjustment.
Chad Exceen LMHC
Chad Exceen is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor who has over 10 years of experience in the field of behavioral health. Throughout his career, he has had the opportunity to work with many adolescents adults, and families in overcoming life changes and challenges. He uses a combination of therapeutic approaches, to include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, and Solution-Focused Therapy to treat presenting problems that arise. His areas of specialty include treating depression, anxiety, trauma, stress, anger issues, grief/loss and substance use related concerns.
Chad believes in the uniqueness of everyone in therapy and utilizes a person-centered approach to uncovering a person’s individualized strengths, needs, abilities, and preferences for treatment services. He builds on teaching and practicing appropriate coping skills that are proven to be effective and enhance a person’s well-being and happiness. He does this in a supportive manner, knowing that all life problems are not easily solved, and the support and guidance from a qualified professional is often highly beneficial.
Chad graduated with his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from Buena Vista University in Council Bluffs, Iowa. He then pursued and received his Master of Science Degree in Mental Health Counseling from Bellevue University, in Bellevue, Nebraska. He has worked in various setting to include, inpatient psychiatric care, day rehabilitation treatment, and community case management services. However, Chad’s passion is working with individuals and families in outpatient services. Chad has also had experience in working with armed forces veterans in the community. He proudly served his country in the United States Army and was honorably discharged after 6 years of active duty service. During his free time, he enjoys living a healthy and active lifestyle, as well as traveling with friends and spending time with family.