Witnessing resilience, curiosity, and self-discovery is what I love most about doing this work with my clients. My skills as a professional rest on the foundation of helping others recognize the influence of life experience, how these experiences filter current perceptions, and relationships.
I'm a firm believer in personal enrichment through active engagement with community and supportive mentorship. My career in this field was the result of supportive community and mentorship bonds that formed back in 2007. It was during that time I began my work as support staff at The Refuge- A Healing Place, a residential treatment center for substance misuse, trauma related issues, high risk behavior, and mood disorders located in Ocklawaha, Florida.
Here, I started as a House Manager providing support to clients in their inpatient community setting. In 2009, I earned certification as a yoga teacher and developed a program of mindfulness tailored specifically to our clients and their needs. I facilitated yoga classes, mindfulness, and substance abuse groups that addressed the relationship between trauma, high risk behavior, and recovery. Through Spirit2Spirit Healing I became a Certified Trauma Therapist (CTT), I also became a Certified Addictions Counselor in the state of Florida and was given a caseload. I often look back at my time at The Refuge with fond memories.
During this period I further explored my talents as an artist and musician. I flourished, donating works to The Refuge Foundation- a scholarship program for future clients, while I also participated in local art markets, and cultural events around Ocala, Florida. In addition, I continued a deep practice of yoga and developed a love for the depths of West African rhythm culture and the drum.
Since 2013, I have made my home in Asheville, North Carolina. While living here, I have furthered academic and career goals by earning a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Asheville and doing so with with honors. In 2017 I finished professional training to become a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner. In 2018 I completed a Master’s Degree in Social Work (MSW) at Western Carolina University. I maintained addictions credentials throughout this time and in the spring of 2019 became a fully Licensed Clinical Addictions Specialist. In the fall of 2019, I was trained in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) and continue my study in that modality.
In addition to my academic goals, I have remained dedicated to a well rounded career in helping others. While in Asheville, I have worked in private and non-profit settings for adults, adolescents, children, and their families addressing a wide range of health issues. While in school, I also managed my own private practice and provided sessions with clients as a CTT and Certified Substance Abuse Counselor (CSAC). This also including co-facilitated trauma healing intensives across the nation. Further, I provided case management for clients and families getting loved ones to treatment, providing support between treatment settings, or assisting clients re-integrating their daily lives after intensive rehabilitation services.
As a social work student and since completing my MSW, I have been an intern and Clinical Social Worker I at Mission Health, Asheville. In addition to practicum experience, my internship consisted of research related to intravenous substance use, it's impact on inpatient medical care, and our local community. My role as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker-Associate (LCSW-A) covered emergency room and adult inpatient settings with cross-training on pediatric units. While at Mission, I was a vigilant, dedicated, and assertive advocate for all my patients and colleagues. In addition to general clinical practice, I was an an outspoken proponent for marginalized communities, those struggling with intravenous substance use, and traumatic experience.
I established Lumen Creative Therapy Services to continue doing the work I love, helping. private practice in Asheville while continuing to do the work I love providing services for clients, professionals, and programs. Asheville continually provides the space for me to continue my growth as an artist, musician, meditator, and naturalist. While living here, I have had the special privilege of playing music with both traditional percussion, and contemporary dance groups in and around Asheville. My work as an artist is a deep well of personal resource and grounding in an embodied way. The space of the Appalachian Mountains seems to perpetually inspire personal insight, and curiosity, while never ceasing to humble my soul. Thanks for reading, I look forward to hearing from you.