Specialist Spotlight

Hi Kevin,

Thanks for agreeing to be GCT's first Specialist Spotlight!

Q: Please tell us a little about yourself. Who are you and where are you? 

A: I live in a town outside of Seattle, WA with my wife Maura, and our daughter Sophie, and our cat Wilma. I’ve been in private practice since 2014.  Prior to that I worked in a large psychiatric hospital.  Prior to working at the hospital, I was in community behavioural health.  Before entering the field of behavioural, in 1999, I served 10 years in the US Air Force.  I have a doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology as well as graduate degrees in Clinical Psychology and in Anthropology. 

Q: What kind of work do you do? 

A: I work with adults and adolescents who are dealing with a variety of behavioural health issues.  I also consult with local agencies on crisis communication, behavioural health issues with clients, and addressing interpersonal issues that develop out of various behavioural health conditions.  I have been a trainer in Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training for the Criminal Justice Training Commission in Washington State since 2008.  I also co-teach the NAMA, Certified Anger Management Specialist course with Laura Moss. 

Q: What do you see to be one of the biggest challenges in your work today? 

A: Currently the biggest challenge I’m seeing is the increase in behavioural health issues related to the ongoing pandemic.  I’m seeing a marked increase in depression, anxiety, OCD, and trauma symptoms, in both my adult and adolescent clients.   The pandemic has thrown quite a spanner in the works, and it is understandably taking time to adjust to the new normal.  But I have full confidence in people’s resilience, and I believe we will come out of this stronger and wiser. 

Q: How are you attempting to meet those challenges? 

A: The widespread use of teletherapy has helped me to provide psychotherapy to people who otherwise might not have been able to get help.  I have been providing consultation to agencies to help the leadership guide their staff through the pandemic.  Remote technology has made it easier to provide trainings to agencies.  I still prefer to be in person but you make do with what you’ve got at hand.

Perhaps most importantly, I try to keep my sense of humour.  Jimmy Buffett once sang, “If we didn’t laugh, we would all go insane.”  Laughing in the face of adversity seems to be my strength.  I try to bring out this strength in my clients.  Laughter releases feel good chemicals into our brain.  We all need that now more than ever. 

Q: What captures your interest or inspires you these days? Personal and/ or professional. 

When I’m not at work I like to spend time with my wife and daughter.  We’re doing our best to carry on with life in the midst of the pandemic.  Although it hasn’t been without some hurdles, so far, we are doing well.  I’ve been riding bicycles since I was given my first bike when I was 4 years old. I love cycling and ride most days of the week.  Cycling provides me with a venue in which I can challenge myself, manage stress, and get out in the world. 

Personally, and professionally I’m inspired by Viktor E. Frankl.  He states that although we can’t always choose our circumstance, we can choose how we get through them.  As I tell my clients, we didn’t choose to be in a pandemic, but we each can choose how we navigate through it.   Knowing this helps us become empowered, which can reduce the fear that often comes with the unknown.  If you want to learn more about Frankl’s philosophy, I recommend reading “Man’s Search for Meaning.” 

 Now for the GCT Fun Five!

  • What are your favourite foods? Dark chocolate, Hawaiian pizza, ice cream
  • What countries have you visited? England, Wales, Norway, Sweden, South Korea, China, Vietnam, Canada, Saudi Arabia
  • How do you relax? Cycling, movies with my wife, working in the garden, traveling
  • What do you like about your job? I am honored to be able to help people through difficult times and lucky to be able to do something I love and earn a living at it.
  • Do you have a pet peeve? I have OCD and hate when things aren’t organized.

Kevin brings relaxed and fun insight to any conversation. It has been our pleasure here at GCT to get to know and work with him. 

Thanks again, Kevin!