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Nathaan Demers, Psy.D and Joe Conrad

YOU@CSU: Wellness & Suicide Prevention Case Study via Digital Technology

Suicide is the second leading cause of death in college populations. The YOU student wellness hub - sparked from the success of Man Therapy - is a bold digital platform that exponentially increases college students’ access of wellness resources and health services by connecting them to the right resources at the right time. This case study presentation overviews the research, pilot and implementation of YOU@CSU, which embraces the power of digital technology to promote wellness and prevent suicide.


About the Speakers: Nathaan Demers is a licensed clinical psychologist with experience in a variety of settings including community mental health, administrative psychology, integrated care, medical ICU’s, suicide prevention, and digital health. Nathaan earned his bachelor’s degree at Middlebury College in Vermont where he majored in psychology and his doctorate at the University of Denver Graduate School of Professional Psychology with focus areas in trauma and administration. Nathaan is also a board member for the Colorado Psychological Association and is currently the Director of Clinical Programs with Grit Digital Health.

Joe believes in the power of branding and digital to move the world forward. As Founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Grit Digital Health, Joe pushes everyday to develop innovative solutions that help people grow and prosper. With a belief that there is no problem that cannot be solved with innovation, creativity and hard work, Joe is in constant pursuit of what is possible. With an uncanny instinct for getting to the heart of the matter, he relishes every opportunity to create meaningful work that makes a huge impact. Joe and his team created the YOU Student Wellbeing portal to help students navigate college and life by making the most of their time on campus.

Zina A. Mercil 

But I Don’t Have Time for That! Burnout, Compassion Fatigue, and Bringing Self-Care into the Present Moment

Calling all clinicians who feel like they have too little time for self-care! With burnout and compassion fatigue as realistic consequences of trauma work, what do we do for prevention and coping? Attend this session to gain more understanding of burnout and compassion fatigue, and experience using your senses, body, mindfulness, and daily life for self-care in the present moment. 


About the Speaker: Zina is a body and movement-based therapist, presenter, speaker, and writer. She specializes in working with clients and clinicians around life-altering medical setbacks and potential post-traumatic growth, using an orientation based in experiential trauma-informed somatic counseling. She also focuses on working with professionals around burnout, secondary trauma, self-care, and the cultural addiction of being busy. Read more at her website/blog:


Mita M Johnson, Ed.D., LPC, LMFT, LAC, MAC
and Deborah Fenton-Nichols, Ed.D, LPC, LAC

You Are Using What? Unraveling the Current Substance Use Trends

Did you know that 1 in 5 people misuse substances for psychoactive effects?  What are bath salts, spice, apache, Goodfella, velvet, dexies, diet coke, etc.   Clinical assessment and treatment planning must include questions about current and/or past substance use, if we want to offer holistic and effective care.  This workshop will illuminate current substance use and paraphernalia trends.  Discussion will include emerging cross-use of sugar, fats and supplements. There will be interactive dialogue about the kinds of questions to ask and what to do with the information received.  The presenters will offer suggestions for community referral resources and online sources of information.


About the Speakers: Dr. Mita Johnson brings 26 years of experience in clinical mental health counseling, with a specialization in substance use disorders, clinical supervision, and ethical practice. She is a Core Faculty member of Walden University, and trains internationally and nationally on numerous clinical issues.  Mita maintains a private practice where she offers clinical supervision, consultation and counseling services.  Dr. Johnson is a Governor’s appointee to the Behavioral Health Transformation Council, services on several workforce development committees, and is the Treasurer and Ethics Chair of NAADAC. 
Dr. Deborah Fenton-Nichols has over fifteen years of clinical practice focusing on criminal conduct, mental health issues, and addictions.  Dr. Nichols’ dissertation research focused on the supervisory working alliance within community corrections treatment programs.  She maintains an active private practice providing direct clinical care and supervision.  Dr. Nichols strives to encourage, educate, and develop clinicians to be competent and ethical clinicians.  She has presented at national and state conferences.  Dr. Nichols is a recipient of the Colorado Counseling Association Outstanding Advocacy Award 2014-2015 in recognition of her leadership, advocacy, contributions to the profession, and sustained commitment to the community and CCA.

Brian Bagwell, PysD, LAC, MAC 

Panic Disorders, Phobias and Anxiety: A Look at Co-Existing Conditions and Treatment Strategies

This workshop will explore the etiological and maintain factors that accompany anxiety and panic disorders and the ways the disorders are alike and ways in which they differ.  The DSM-5 diagnostic criteria these disorders will be discussed as will psychotropic medications commonly used in their treatment.  Non-medication based forms of treatment will also be provided including Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), and systematic desensitization.  At the end of the workshop attendees will have a strong conceptualization of anxiety and panic disorders that can be used in treating their clients or simply expanding their knowledge base of these disorders.

About the Speaker: Dr. Bagwell is an associate professor in the Human Services Department at Metropolitan State University of Denver following a 20-year career as a firefighter/paramedic.  Dr. Bagwell spent five years in New York City and was part of a team that provided psychological services to members of the New York Police Department for over a year following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.  He has presented locally and nationally on topics that include workplace violence; Critical Incident Stress Management; trauma; treating clients with anxiety and panic including firefighters and pilots; and perception of threat and de-escalation of violence strategies for first responders, employers, and mental health clinicians.  Dr. Bagwell also coordinates MSU Denver’s Fire and Emergency Response Administration degree program and is a member of the University’s CARE (Consultation, Assessment, Referral and Education) Team.

TJ Price, PsyD and Justin Lincoln, PsyD

Journey Beyond Addiction: A Therapeutic Game to Help Children in Families Affected by Substance Misuse

Most therapeutic games on your shelf are limited to one sphere of functioning, the cognitive. Our game – which is more of a “journey” – strives to incorporate, challenge, and change the emotional, interpersonal, and experiential modes of being as well. We will demonstrate how this game can impact and transform lives for children and families. References to research on the effectiveness of experiential therapies will be discussed.  Beyond gaining cognitive understanding, participants will experience the deeper impact of addictions on family systems and how it can be revealed through a game-like process. Participants will be exposed to an alternative method of addressing “stuck points” in such systems.  Participants will experience the power of therapeutic game interventions.  Participants will gain an appreciation for the potential of using a multi-dimensional therapeutic game in their own practices.

About the Speakers: T J Price, PsyD, is a clinical psychologist with extensive background helping people with a wide variety of problems, many having addictions as a co-morbid condition. Using and developing experiential therapies, TJ strives to “language with” and facilitate change in people or systems in a way that is effective (not just an English language, scripted approach).  He completed his PsyD at the University of Denver, Graduate School of Professional Psychology in 1993, and has practiced in a variety of clinical settings, including community mental health center, crisis team, family practice medical clinic, private practice, and academic institution.
Justin Lincoln, PsyD, is a clinical psychologist with a passion for and experience with helping people struggling to overcome addictions as well as using experiential therapies, Justin strives to facilitate change processes in different-than-expected ways. He completed his PsyD at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology in 2004, and has practiced in a variety of clinical settings, including psychiatric hospitals, community mental health centers, mental health and substance abuse clinics, and academic institutions. He currently works with Triple Peaks Recovery Center in Colorado Springs.

Vasti Holstun

Spirituality in Counseling: The good, the bad, and the helpful

Integrating spirituality in counseling can support client's change, as well as developing of coping skills and resiliency. Learning fundamental information about beliefs that can support or hinder change will support counselors in addressing clients' needs holistically. Ethical aspects of bracketing personal beliefs and values are addressed.


About the Speaker: Vasti Holstun is a Certified School Counselor and a Licensed Professional Counselor. Since 2002, Vasti has provided counseling services and consultation to hundreds of children, adolescents, parents. She has a passion for mentoring, supporting, and supervising beginner counselors.  She also holds the credentials of NCC and NCSC and is a doctoral student in her third year at Adams State University. 

Jonathan De Carlo, Clinical Director, CAC III

Don't Pull Your Hair Out: Modern Practice Management Through EHR and Support Apps

In the contemporary therapy landscape, whether from the agency based provider or solo private practitioner view, the requirements of records management and regulatory compliance remain fluid in the face of shifting technology.  The increasing demand for accessible, reliable, user friendly practice management platforms and solutions are expanding while the compliance standards for these technologies continue to rise. There is an emergence of Electronic Health Record systems, Practice Management tools and applications, including recovery-focused apps, client tracking services and other programs that leverage technology toward the end of increasing efficiency while being directly related to improving client care. This presentation will focus on exploring and understanding the role of technology solutions specifically designed to enable effective practice management, reduce practice risk, and improve client care through an examination of several practice management tools, applications, and system platforms.

About the Speaker: Jonathan De Carlo is a Certified Addiction Counselor (Level III) and the Clinical Director of Recovery 360°. With over 20 years in clinical practice, Mr. De Carlo uses a wide array of modalities and approaches to work with individuals, couples, and families from early to advanced recovery from addiction. His background and training in psychology, philosophy, and theology provide unique perspectives in the therapeutic process. Mr. De Carlo has been both a clinical supervisor in continuums of care from detox through residential to outpatient services, and a private practice therapist, engaging an array of technology and practice management platforms from development through implementation and system integration in each level of care.

Barry K. Weinhold, PhD

Helping Clients Complete Their Individuation Process

Less than one percent of toddlers successfully complete the developmental milestone of individuation on schedule at age 2-3. Almost 100 percent of your adult clients are still struggling with this issue. Dr. Weinhold will share his experiences in over 40 years of private practice as a licensed psychologist helping adult clients successfully complete their “birth of the fully individuated Self.”


About the Speaker: Barry is Professor Emeritus at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, a licensed psychologist since 1976, and the author of 55 books in addictions, conflict resolution, developmental trauma, belief systems, family counseling, and men’s issues. He also co-directs the Colorado Institute for Conflict Resolution & Creative Leadership (CICRCL) and the Colorado Professional Development Center (CPDC) in Colorado Springs.

Lawrence S. Wall, Jr., MBA, CAC II

Against All Odds - A Peer Support Model for Gambling Disorders

Gambling and gambling disorders are not new to Colorado.  The DSM-5 included gambling disorder in its diagnostic menu.  This presentation will define gambling disorder, and the nature of the problem in Colorado.  Participants will get a sense for how diverse and complex the population of people struggling with gambling disorders is.  Mr. Wall will discuss assessment questions that will inform treatment planning for gambling disorder and what co-occurring disorders to be assessing for as well.  Mr. Wall will define the current landscape of peer and mentor support in Colorado.  He will identify the importance of peer recovery coaches in the recovery process for individuals and families, including a discussion about the education, training, and supervision of peer recovery coaches.  Mr. Wall will discuss how therapists can get specialized training to work with gambling disorders and how therapists can work with peer recovery coaches to provide additional support to their clients.


About the Speaker: Lawrence Wall, Jr. has been involved in the healthcare industry for over thirteen years, along with a productive career in the clinical setting since 2006. He is an ambitious entrepreneur and healthcare executive who started his own healthcare consulting firm in 2012.  His clinical experience is working with diverse populations and individuals (children, adolescents, adults, and geriatrics), families, and couples struggling with substance use disorders, gambling disorders and problem gambling, video game/internet addiction, sex addiction, food addiction, identity issues, men's issues, trauma, sexual and physical abuse, and difficulties with life transitions.  Mr. Wall has an MBA in Health Sector Management and Policy from the University of Miami and a BA in Chemistry from Miami University. He is an active Certified Addictions Professional in Florida, a Certified Addiction Counselor II in Colorado, and an Internationally Certified Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counselor.  

Sandra Kwesell, MSC, MFCT

Challenging and Defiant Behavior Reexamined: Acieving Remarkably Successful Outcomes

This training reexamines the dynamics of human interaction and creates the foundation for a menu of interventions that effectively redirects oppositional/defiant behavior in children and youth. Rooted in the tenets of Piaget, Maslow, Skinner, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Solution Focused Therapy this approach teaches empowerment and positive reinforcement techniques for both adults and the children in
their lives.


About the Speaker: Sandra Kwesell has degrees in elementary/special education and marriage/family/child therapy. She has developed, administered and worked in programs for children and youth ranging from typical to those carrying multiple diagnostic labels across settings. She has created a highly successful program for overcoming challenging and defiant behavior in children and youth ( and teaches to both parents and professionals.

Benjamin Aiken, MA, MBA, LPCC, NCC, CHT

Fundamentals of Counseling Gender Nonconforming Clients

The overall goal of this presentation is to provide clinical guidance for counseling professionals working with gender-nonconforming persons. The differences between gender nonconformity and Gender Dysphoria will be examined, and phenomenological and epidemiological considerations will be explored. Cultural considerations for assessment and counseling of transgender and gender nonconforming persons will also be examined.

About the Speaker: Benjamin Aiken is a Denver-based psychotherapist in private practice. His clinical work with individuals and couples, in part, focuses on matters pertaining to gender and sexuality within he greater LGBT community. He is an advocate for inclusive political climates and social tolerance. To learn more about Ben's culturally competent, trauma informed, and existentially oriented approach to counseling, please visit

Heather Davediuk Gingrich, Ph.D.

Supervising Complex Trauma Cases: A Multicultural Case Study

This presentation will explore the benefits of using a Trauma-Sensitive Supervision approach with complex trauma. Original research will be presented and examples of the TSS model will be provided using case studies from the presenters' own consultations. Case studies will offer a glimpse into the intricacies of supervision of complex trauma cases, highlighting multicultural issues in clinical and supervisory relationship.


About the Speaker: Heather Davediuk Gingrich, Ph.D., is Professor of Counseling at Denver Seminary. She is a clinician, professor, supervisor and researcher, and has specialized in complex trauma and dissociation for over 30 years. She is the author of Restoring the Shattered Self, coauthor of Skills for Effective Counseling, and is co-editor of a book on trauma that will be released in 2017.

Mark Swart

Developments in Contemporary Understandings of Working With Trauma and Trauma Informed Care

The presentation will summarize some of the primary current methods, models and case conceptualizations for treating psychological trauma, including an overview of some common factors in trauma work. Personal anecdotes and insights will invite an exploration how the emerging field of trauma and attachment work might reshape psychotherapy as we currently know it. 


About the Speaker: My passion is exploring how deeper levels of awareness change us. After 25 years of training in meditation and somatic work, I see that the keys to personal transformation are in our personal moment-to-moment awareness of ourselves, and in co-creating contexts that support deepening that exploration. Family of origin and attachment work allow access to these deeper parts of ourselves.

Lori Notestine, PhD, LPC, SEP 

In The Middle of Nowhere: Meeting the Needs of Rural IPV Survivor

Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a pervasive social issue affecting women across the U.S. Women in rural areas are often at particular disadvantage due to fewer community resources and supports. This program will describe the problem of IPV and provide useful resources for counselors working in rural areas.


About the Speaker: Lori Notestine, Ph.D., LPC, NCC is a full-time Instructor in the Department of Counseling & Human Services at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs.  Her research interests include intimate partner violence, women's and gender issues, and gatekeeping in counselor education.  Lori also maintains a small private practice where she works primarily with adolescent girls.

Kristy Eldredge, EdD, LPC, ACS, NCC

Supervising Complex Trauma Cases: A Multicultural Case Study 

This presentation will explore the benefits of using a Trauma-Sensitive Supervision approach with complex trauma. Original research will be presented and examples of the TSS model will be provided using case studies from the presenters' own consultations. Case studies will offer a glimpse into the intricacies of supervision of complex trauma cases, highlighting multicultural issues in clinical and supervisory relationships.


About the Speaker: Dr. Kristy Eldredge is a Licensed Professional Counselor in Colorado where she has a private practice specializing in trauma treatment and counselor education. Additionally, she is a core faculty in the online Master's of Clinical Mental Health Counseling program and is an Affiliate Faculty at Regis University. She has her doctorate in Counselor Education and Supervision from Argosy University and her Master's degree in Counseling Psychology from the University of Denver. 

Savannah Cormier, LPCC 

Counseling with the brain in mind: An introduction to therapy with a neuroscience lens

A growing wave of interest in the mental health field looks at the link between neuroscience and therapy. Research on the brain provides us with knowledge that psychotherapy builds new neuronal pathways in our clients’ brain, creating changes in the brain’s structure and function. We’ll provide an introduction into neuroscience for brain curious therapists. 


About the Speaker: Savannah Cormier is a LPCC in Colorado. She earned her Master of Science in Counselor Education, with a focus on Play Therapy, from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and is currently a doctoral student in Counselor Education and Supervision at the University of Northern Colorado. Her research interests include play therapy, counseling supervision, and creativity in counseling/counselor education.

Annamarie Fidel-Rice, PhD, LPC

The Alchemy of Grief

Psychology is stagnant in its approach to grief in today's world; a new interactive, transformative approach is desperately needed.  This seminar is intended for therapists who wish to experience a new depth psychological grief model that provides a movement and soul of its own as well as a model that is the language of symbols and images.


About the Speaker: Annamarie Fidel-Rice, PhD, author of The Alchemy of Grief:  Embracing Mourning through grace is a loss and grief educator with a private practice in Arvada, Colorado.  Annamarie is a Professor at Regis University in Denver Colorado in the Masters in Counseling Program where she teaches grief therapy from a depth perspective among many other courses.

Valerie J Shinbaum, MS, LPC, MAC, NCC 

Creativity and Couples - Using Movie Messages in Marital Treatment

In a society where marriage is still thought to be an ultimate goal, statistics indicate one in two marriages ends in divorce.  In this interactive experiential workshop, clinicians will learn how to utilize/integrate resources found in films to help couples rebuild communication skills and develop workable coping strategies leading to successful outcomes, whether continuing a marriage or terminating reasonably.


About the Speaker: Valerie J Shinbaum, MS, LPC, MAC, NCC, a practicing psychotherapist since 1992, has two private practice locations in the Denver Metro area.  A published author, national conference speaker, college professor and former radio talk show host, her first book, "Remaining Single:  Well Worth The Wait - A Three Faceted Journey Towards Lasting Love," is available for sale at her website

Celia Bockhoff, LCSW, SEP

Recovering Vocal Presence after Sexual Traum

Survivors of sexual trauma experience severe intrusion into the physical, and psychic self. The rupture between one’s experience of oneself and the ability to safely be present in the world often manifests in the loss of true “voice” and self expression. Recovery of vocal presence viscerally empowers what was lost, and reawaken natural expressions of aliveness and self-determination.


About the Speaker: Celia Bockhoff, LCSW, SEP has over 30 years experience as a somatic psychotherapist, intuitive hypnotherapist, workshop leader, and advocate for women. She is the creator of “Essential Voice Expression (EVE)”™, and “Seven Notes to Freedom” ™: offering step by step guidance to heal from the silence of trauma and inhabit a full expression of self. See for more.

Christina Jurekovic, MA, LPCC

Group Counseling for Adolescents from Diverse Backgrounds: A Systemic, Solution Focused Approach

Solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) and ecological systems theory (EST) can be combined to form a group counseling model for adolescents from diverse backgrounds. Group interventions support both individual and systemic change. Using SBFT can help adolescents create solutions to address problems of prejudice against minorities. Groups based on EST can increase inclusivity by inciting systemic change within schools and communities.


About the Speaker: Christina Jurekovic is a Licensed Professional Counselor Candidate, Licensed Professional School Counselor, and National Certified Counselor.  She received her M.A. in Counseling and Human Services with an emphasis in School Counseling from the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs. She is a doctoral student in Adams State University’s Counselor Education and Supervision PhD program and works as a school counselor.

Lori Kucharski, LMFT, LPC

Attachment Wounds and Avoidance of Pain: Drunk on Food

While childhood trauma has generally been accepted as a frequent contributor to obesity, many clinicians are trained only working with trauma. Fewer clinicians have been trained to work with obesity and other forms of disordered eating, yet this is a continuously­growing epidemic (CDC, n.d.). Clinicians will benefit from a thorough understanding of how attachment wounds and emotional eating cycle through the lifespan, and how trauma­focused therapy may assist in reducing disordered eating. 

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About the Speaker: Lori Kucharski is an LMFT, LPC, AAMFT-Approved Supervisor, and Certified EMDR Therapist and Approved Consultant. She runs a private practice in Colorado Springs and is an affiliate professor in the MFT and MAC programs at Regis University.

Duane K. L. France, MA, LPCC, NCC.

So You Want To Help Veterans: Looking Beyond PTSD and TBI

The mental health and wellness of those who have served in the military is of critical importance. This program will examine the mental health challenges that veterans face, beyond the relatively well-known conditions of PTSD and TBI. These include a lack of purpose and meaning in their post-military lives, identity conflict regarding needs fulfillment, and the concept of moral injury.


About the Speaker: Duane France is a National Certified Counselor currently serving as the Director of Veteran Services at the Family Care Center, and is the Executive Director of the Colorado Veterans Health and Wellness Agency. Mr. France has been a therapist for veterans since January, 2014. He is a retired Army NCO with five deployments, including multiple combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.

Jane Irvine, MA, LPC, NCC.

Caught in the Web: Risk Management for Therapists Working with High Conflict Divorce.

Mental health providers working in high conflict divorce are presented with unique and complex pitfalls.  Whether providing therapy to children of divorce, one of the parties, or working as a PRE or CFI, having the correct documentation, using conscious techniques to avoid the appearance of alignment helps. Issues will still arise around releases, mandatory reporting, subpoenas, and release of your file.  


About the Speaker: Jane Irvine is a psychotherapist with 34 years working with high conflict families as a lawyer, PC/DM Arbitrator, PRE and therapist. She is published in the Family Law Journal, 1997, the Colorado Domestic Violence Bench Book 2011, and her handbook Connecting With Your Kids is available on the State Court website. She currently has a psychotherapy practice in DTC.

Ryan Kennedy, LAC, LMFT, LPC

Love and Desire: Reconciling Security and Adventure in Intimate Relationships

Working with couples entails repairing connection after a rupture. This includes teaching skills to enhance safety and strengthen closeness. Because both love and desire are essential in relationships, this approach fortifies half of the formula, love. The other half, desire, thrives on pursuing novelty and exploring differences. Learn why tending to these two relationship dynamics is so important with couples. dynamics is so important in working with couples.

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About the Speaker: Ryan Kennedy, LAC, LPC, LMFT, is the executive director of Noeticus Counseling Center and Training Institute. He has been a counselor educator and clinical supervisor since 1996. His clinical training is in the areas of couples and families, human sexuality, somatic psychotherapy, expressive arts therapies, chronic and persistent mental illness, trauma and dissociative disorders, addictions and recovery, and domestic/family violence

Khara Croswaite Brindle, MA, LPC

At-Risk Youth and Families: Self-Harm, Suicide, and Safety Planning
The likelihood of professionals encountering self-harm and suicidal ideation in their practice is high for populations suffering from mental illness.  Assessment tools, clinical steps taken, and documentation of efforts as a helping professional are vital to the well-being of both client and clinician during times of high stress. This presentation will identify and discuss assessment tools for self-harm and suicidal ideation as well as safety planning templates and strategies in order to increase safety in response to emotional escalation, suicidal ideation, increased aggression, substance abuse, and conflict in the home.  This presentation will also identify clinical language requirements to support mental health professionals with documentation criteria that achieve compliance and could then be adapted to serve various client populations.


About the Speaker: Khara Croswaite Brindle, MA, LPC, is the owner of Catalyst Counseling, PLLC and is a Licensed Professional Counselor in private practice in the neighborhood of Lowry in Denver, Colorado.  She received her Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology from the University of Denver and has experience working with at-risk youth and families, including collaboration with detention, probation, and Department of Human Services.  Khara has supervised MA-level therapists for the past 3 years and holds credentialing as an Approved Clinical Supervisor (ACS).  Her passion for supporting new therapists led her to pursue teaching opportunities, including Red Rocks Community College and professional workshops with Regis students, WINGS Foundation, and Griffith Centers for Children.