Hello and thank you so much for looking at my Website. I am a Licensed Mental Health Counselor with over 20 years of experience in the helping profession. Born and raised in Puerto Rico, I have been a Tampa resident since 1994.
Early on in my career I had the opportunity to work with children, adolescents, and adults living with developmental disabilities. I provided counseling and life skills training to individuals that wanted to live more independently, and along the way I became an advocate for children that were placed in the system and residing in group homes.
Years later, I had the opportunity to work with seniors in a geriatric counseling role in nursing homes. There I was part of a care-plan team identifying the needs of each person. I provided counseling and family support for persons suffering from mental health disorders such as dementia, depression, anxiety, and Alzheimer’s’ disease.
In 1998, I began my career with the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office. For nearly fifteen years I provided individual and group counseling for people involved in the criminal justice system with histories of addiction, trauma, abuse, and / or mental illness.
I was chosen to play a key role in the community’s adoption of “Seeking Safety – A Manual for PTSD and Addictions” authored by Lisa Najavits of Harvard University. After completing an extensive series of training with Lisa, I spent the next three years refining the treatment model and presenting our work at national conferences.
I am especially proud of being invited to join the President’s Commission “Transforming Care for Trauma Survivors in the Public Mental Health System: Action Agenda Planning”, in Washington, D.C. I have also presented to audiences at training conferences for the Florida Alcohol and Drug Addiction Association and the American Correctional Association. Other involvements along the way include several research projects funded through SAMHSA, the USF Florida Mental Health Institute, and the National Institute of Health.
Since beginning my private practice, I have been fortunate to leverage these experiences, and knowledge I have gained from others, in order to assist each new client struggling with life difficulties as a result of emotional, behavioral, or mental health conditions.