Many Soultenders Psychologists provide both Psychological testing and psychotherapy. Please contact our admin department to see if your benefits cover Psychological Testing and to find out our cash-pay rates.
Everyone needs to be seen and heard. Sometimes, therapy is just that–a place where we are seen and heard. Other times, therapy delves deeper into our lives, our past, and our emotions. Therapy can also be a place to obtain skills, tools, and resources. Therapy has many shapes and forms. Each client has specific needs and it is my job to work alongside my clients in order to help meet those needs. I provide a therapeutic relationship that works to support clients in the best way possible and build upon client strengths. Along with therapy, I am also trained in psychological testing. This can be an excellent enhancement to therapy by providing further insight into a client’s challenges and strengths.
I am a licensed psychologist with training in multicultural and community psychology. I obtained my bachelor’s degree in psychology from Scripps College and both my master’s and doctoral degrees in clinical psychology from California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University. I have experience working with children, adolescents, parents and families in an intensive setting and have also worked with adult clients in various settings. I have experience treating anxiety, depression, ADHD, anger issues, personality disorders, crisis, and trauma. I have worked with many clients on behavioral difficulties, grief and loss, school difficulties, and parenting. I have research and treatment experience with gender diversity and have worked with many LGBTQ clients.
A good fit is important in therapy. Developing a safe and comfortable relationship with my clients is of utmost importance. I am here to help my clients be seen and heard and to become their best selves.
Martha Esquivel, Psy.D.
I believe therapy is the most successful in a collaborative relationship between the client and the therapist. This happens in an atmosphere in which both compassion and experience comes together to help you with your goals and to find your strengths and a path to positive change. I provide a non-judgmental and supportive environment to help you explore your personal issues and traumas and practice new and self-empowering behaviors.
I am a bilingual (Spanish and English) Licensed Clinical Psychologist (PSY2441) and earned my Master in Clinical Psychology, with an Emphasis in Marital and Family Therapy from Azusa Pacific University in 1999 and a doctorate in Forensic Psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology in 2009. I have worked in a variety of settings, including inpatient mental health, adult/juvenile case management, substance abuse, LGBT issues, diagnostic assessment, family therapy and clinical supervision services. In addition, I have also facilitated Suicide Prevention Training classes in correctional settings the last 10 years.
My area of experience is with depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, schizophrenia, grief, sexual abuse, substance abuse, male codependency, sexual orientation and gender identification, self-esteem, perpetrators, and families dealing with divorce, incarceration, migration, acculturation, and school behavioral issues. I use a broad range of cognitive, behavioral, family systems and insight-oriented techniques in the psychotherapy and counseling process. I work with individuals, adolescents, and families.
West L.A. Site Coordinator
Ray Hwang, PsyD
I completed my Bachelor’s Degree in Biological Sciences at the University of Southern California, and a Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology at Antioch University Los Angeles. I graduated from Antioch University Santa Barbara with a Doctorate of Psychology Degree in Clinical Psychology with emphases on family systems and family forensics. I am a member of the American Psychological Association (APA) and a licensed psychologist (PSY 27910) with the California Board of Psychology.
I have a keen interest in facilitating my clients’ understanding ofthe potential issues adversely affecting their mental health byexploring the dynamics involved in the interplay between theirinternal forces and factors in their external environments. My goal is to promote the well-being of my clients by encouraging and supporting their development of coping skills, perspective taking, confidence and competence, acknowledgment and acceptance of self, mindfulness, and insights as they engage fully and actively in the therapeutic endeavors. I have experience working with clients from a diverse ethnic, racial and cultural backgrounds. I have conducted individual, couples, family, and group sessions using a wide array of interventions from a range of therapeutic modalities to address issues related to adjustment, acculturation, anxiety, depression, life transitions, loss and grief, trauma, self-esteem, communication, intergenerational/parent-child/relational difficulties, and other behavioral or mental health problems.
I am a therapist with an integrative style and trained in a scholar-practitioner model in the field of clinical psychology. I am particularly sensitive and attuned to the multifaceted influences that shape, reinforce, or perpetuate the individuals’ physical, psychological and emotional experiences. I feel treatments must be individually focused and take into account all relevant content and contextual aspects affecting the individuals in order to be most effective, even though manualized or standardized protocols may afford the clients well intended guidance and structure to address the targeted issues at hand. I strive to work with my clients to identify constructive meanings or narratives of their personal experiences. My goal is to provide support and nurturance on their paths for self discovery and healing, and to encourage their taking the important and pertinent steps to affect positive and sustained change and growth. This may include the transformation and transcendence, not only within the context or scope of their respective selves, but also in the extent of their interpersonal relationships as well.
Kaitlyn Kuo, PsyD
“Good relationships keep us happier and healthier.” The conclusion of 75 year-long Harvard study has revealed the secret to living a happy life. I believe everyone, if given a warm, supportive, and secure space, can discover their inner-self and learn to appreciate who they genuinely are, which leads to improved relationships.
I am a licensed clinical psychologist in California and Taiwan with over 10 years of practice experience. I have helped diverse patient populations with a wide range of issues in a variety of settings, including a community mental health center, a college counseling center, a domestic violence women’s shelter, a re-entry program, an outpatient opiate treatment clinic, skilled nursing homes, a youth correctional counseling program, and an elementary school district. My training and experience have allowed me to help clients with depression, anxiety, trauma, and relationship issues, among many others.
While I have enjoying treating patients in all of these areas, my specialties are working with Asian-American children, as well as pre-teens and teenagers, women, and families. Emphasizing compassion, I assist my clients with their acculturation, ethnic identify, self-identify, family relationships, and issues facing immigrant families, including cross-cultural adjustment. My approach to psychotherapy is both integrative and collaborative. I can provide therapy in English, Mandarin, and Taiwanese.
My overarching mission with each client is help them to obtain a deeper insight into their interpersonal behaviors, to heal wounded relationships, and to bring positive changes into their lives.
Laura O’Connor, Psy.D.
Hello! I am a licensed clinical psychologist with more than 20 years of experience in the provision of assessment and psychotherapy services. I am passionate about melding neuroscience with interpersonal therapy to help individuals across the lifespan heal, grow, and enrich their lives. I decided to name my private practice The Brain-Heart Connection to reflect my guiding philosophy: As I like to think of it, the mind is where the brain and heart connect. The brain and body are our internal physiology, while the “heart” represents our relationships with others and the outside world. Where these two forces come together is the mind – that indefinable place that creates a sense of identity and meaning that is all our own. The mind is the core of our mental life, and in order to achieve true wellness or “mental health,” our brain and heart must be well-integrated, or working in good balance. To this end, I strive to work collaboratively with my clients to improve how they think, feel, learn, and interact with others. I also offer neuropsychological assessments as a medium to help my clients gain deeper personal insight into their strengths and challenges and to use this knowledge to optimize their daily functioning.
I began my career as a Marriage and Family Therapists working to bring stability and emotional wellness to at-risk youth and their families. I later became board certified as a Behavior Analyst, expanding my work to include helping individuals with intellectual disabilities, developmental delays, and autism spectrum disorders. I completed my postdoctoral training as an assessment fellow at the Reiss-Davis Child Study Center, where I conducted psychoeducational evaluations with children and adolescents, and as a psychological assistant as the Pasadena Rehabilitation Institute, where I provided neurocognitive testing to adults and seniors. Prior to this, I completed a one-year externship in neuropsychology with the Los Angeles Department of Mental Health and a one-year predoctoral internship in substance addiction at Tarzana Treatment Centers.
I previously served as an assessment psychologist for the Masonic Center for Youth and Families and as a clinical manager overseeing psychotherapeutic services at SSG/Occupational Therapy Training Program. I have also worked as a therapist and/or clinical supervisor at several local organizations, including Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Miracle Mile Community Practice, and the Southern California Counseling Center. I received my doctorate in Applied Clinical Psychology from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. I hold a B.A. in English from UCLA, an M.A. in Print Journalism from the University of Southern California, and an M.A. in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University. I happily serve clients seeking individual, family, or couples therapy. I also provide psychological, neurocognitive, academic, and vocational assessments, with a special emphasis on children, adolescents, and young adults.
Armine Ovasapyan, PsyD
The purpose of therapy isn’t to eliminate, but to transform.
Each part, impulse, behavior, symptoms within us have a story to tell and have the capacity to become something positive and helpful to a person’s life.
For me, an integral role of any therapist is to guide a person to begin an inner dialogue – a conversation with the parts of self that are uncomfortable and unpleasant in thought and feeling. These include fragments of depression and anxiety; fragments left in limbo from traumatic experience(s) or attachment injury(s). Parts of self that we may not like or understand; that we struggle to keep at bay in our relationships and daily interactions. To give each part a voice is to gain appreciation for it. Only through gaining clarity about who we are – the makings of us – can we arrive onto a path of compassion and calmness for all those fragments that essentially make us whole.
We are all capable of healing; I believe that. As such, we will embark on a journey of building trust – both within and with each other – to navigate through this path toward healing, together. In a safe, calm space of acceptance, you can begin to explore self; to gain insight. You are the only expert of your life and I am here as your therapist, merely to be your soundboard.
With the above-mentioned school of thought, I have worked with individuals and families alike from all walks of life, from every age beginning with the birth-5 population all the way to adulthood. Heretofore, the pinnacle of my career , undoubtedly, has been witnessing tremendous emotional and psychological maturity in individuals, dedicated to the transformation of self.
I completed my undergraduate studies at the University of California, Los Angeles. Thereafter, I went on to receive my Doctorate in Psychology from California School of Professional Psychology in 2009. Since becoming a Licensed Clinical Psychologist I have been trained in a myriad of therapeutic models. Depression, anxiety, trauma, substance abuse, attachment issues, physical, emotional and other abuse and life transitions are on the top of my professional experiences. I offer sessions both in English and Armenian.
Jennifer Stinson, Ph.D.
For me, therapy is a balance of art and science. The science includes understanding research about mental health, human development, and how the brain works. The art is finding creative ways to make use of the research in the context of each new and different therapy experience. For example, as a therapist, I might ask myself, “How can I use my understanding of treatments for anxiety disorders to help this particular person in my office in a way that makes sense in their life right now?” The answer to that question lies in the therapeutic relationship. I take great care to learn about each client’s unique experiences, feelings, beliefs, values and goals. My favorite thing about being a therapist is when the art and science come together in a way that is both illuminating and emotionally meaningful for the person I am working with. This is the process by which, I believe, positive change occurs.
After graduating from the University of Oregon, I earned my Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 2004 from the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant University. Since then, I have provided therapy to children, adolescents and adults who have sought help for various issues, including anxiety, depression, family conflict, anger problems and recovering from trauma. I have also provided supervision to many therapists as they worked toward obtaining their licenses. I am licensed with the California Board of Psychology (PSY 20997) and am an active member of the San Gabriel Valley Psychological Association. Additionally, I have a background in working with adults with developmental disabilities, such as mental retardation and autism. I have conducted research, given presentations and co-authored several articles related to issues for women with disabilities.
Dr. Carolyn Wingfield, PhD
As an experienced Clinical Psychologist, I have honed my skills working with culturally diverse populations during very challenging times in their lives. My work has included issues of domestic violence, infertility and motherhood, relationship and family difficulties, infant mental health, trauma, illness and death, as well as more general issues related to life transitions and just feeling stuck in old patterns. I am often described as a perpetual student since I am always looking to learn new ways of helping my clients reach their goals. I know that there is no “one size fits all” approach to therapy- we are all unique human beings after all, and we are definitely more than any diagnosis we may have been given.
I make strong connections with my clients through an authentic presence, well-developed active listening skills, and speaking in clear language, never getting bogged down in jargon. I take a relational approach to therapy- meaning I believe that we are in this together and there is always more for us to learn from each other. I am here as your guide and co-explorer; you will always be the expert of you! While I will draw on a number of theories to tailor your treatment specifically to you, my work is largely anchored in theories of attachment, trauma and somatic (body-based) theories. I believe that in order to better understand ourself, both the brain AND the body must be part of the conversation.
As a strong advocate for early intervention, I have a particular interest in working with pregnant and postpartum women, new parents and parents of babies with NICU experience. I am a fellowship trained parent/infant mental health specialist and can work with you AND your baby!
My personal motto is “never underestimate the power of a single moment to effect change.” I would be honored to be a part of your journey toward wellness.
Melissa Zavala, Psy.D
Therapy is a process. It fluctuates throughout one’s lifespan based on the needs of every unique individual. Although challenging, the ultimate goal is to gradually heal from the inside out.
Women and children often forgo many stressors not often voiced in culturally diverse communities. For many, the thought of seeking help is a burden coupled with feelings of shame or guilt. You are not alone.
Much of my passion in the field is in the treatment of perinatal women, postpartum symptoms, and women’s issues. Whether it be infertility, pregnancy loss, difficulty throughout pregnancy, or trauma before, during or after your story matters. Seeking therapy can help advocate your needs while you navigate life in this new role.
My passion in caring and advocating for women is equally complimented by my commitment to children 0- 5 years old as well as school-aged children. When treating birth to five years old I like to utilize the evidence based practice Child Parent Psychotherapy (CPP), and other interventions to help aid in attachment, biofeedback, and other stressors. Children are often resilient, however their emotional needs matter just as much as an adult. My role is to help put their behaviors, often triggered by trauma and life changes, into words by utilizing play interventions. In doing so, I help build a safe bridge between child and parent in addition to aiding in building a confident sense of self.
As a multicultural clinical psychologist, I emphasize taking a collaborative approach with each individual. In session, I construct a unique treatment plan by assessing your sense of self and impacts to your environment, familial relationships, cultural identity and community. In time, we learn to build a trusting relationship. In this psychodynamic approach I integrate various theoretical interventions that are best tailored to the individual. Although difficult, together, we filter through complicated feelings and behaviors that make it challenging to heal the different fragments of our lives. Perhaps these heightened emotions are due to past or current trauma, feelings of insecurities, attachment irregularities, emotional fragilities due to life stressors, and other life altering experiences. In this process, you are not alone, as I believe it is the job of the therapist to keep you grounded as you navigate through these experiences. In the therapeutic process I help you sift through transgenerational and cross-cultural considerations to help clarify your needs. Often, this may present itself with interventions that may make you feel uncomfortable. However, by sitting in the now, putting your behaviors and thoughts into words, developing your story, and drawing attention to how your past and present play a vital role in identifying change for the future. Together we integrate parts of the self into the therapeutic process, and we end by healing the whole person.
Regardless of the ‘season’, in adolescence or adulthood, therapy sessions are created in a safe space allowing you to explore what is needed to treat not just parts of you, but all of you. In my experience, whether it be life transitions, past or current trauma, acclimating to a new community such as, military life, or overall seeking treatment to strengthen who you are as an individual, it can be difficult to navigate. I am here as a beacon to help you inspire, reflect, develop, grow and transform to the person you want to become. It is through an array of evidence based practices, and the relationship built between client and therapist, that we begin our journey in session.
I completed my undergraduate at the University of California, Riverside, and further completed my Doctorate Degree in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in multicultural and community at the California School of Professional Psychology, Alliant International University – Los Angeles Campus in 2012. Over the years I have specialized in treating women and children in trauma and attachment issues, and have implemented various treatment models to help with PTSD, depression, anxiety, life stressors, military family life, adoption, and parenting lessons. As a licensed
psychologist I offer sessions in English and Spanish.
As a bilingual Spanish speaking clinician, I work with California Lawyers working through immigration trauma surrounding deportation, childhood trauma, and hardships. In doing so, I offer immigration evaluations for hardship, competency, U visas, T visas, and VAWA. More times than not, these evaluations are not covered under insurances, however my prices are geared toward understanding the financial difficulty during today’s time.