Supervision Specialty in Professional Counseling, University of the Cumberlands (2017)
Master of Science in Professional Counseling, Georgia State University (2004)
Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders, Murray State University (2000)
Andrea is an experienced Professional Counselor specializing in behavior difficulties, parenting, and trauma related issues. Andrea has extensive knowledge relative to sexual abuse, sexual behavior problems, anxiety, self-esteem, social skills, dysregulation, and oppositional defiance. In addition, she has expertise in parent and professional training and is considered an expert witness in court regarding child development, child sexual abuse, and trauma.
Andrea has been employed as a teacher, group home facilitator, school counselor, and play therapist/ counselor in both agencies and private practice. She also has extensive volunteer experience at non-profit organizations providing guidance and acting as an outreach coordinator.
Specialties & Background
Andrea specializes in three main areas—behavior difficulties, parenting and trauma.
Andrea began to find her niche during her master’s internship. She completed her internship at Safe Path, a Child Advocacy Center, located in Marietta, GA, just outside of Atlanta. She provided play and individual therapy to children who had been sexually, physically, and/or emotionally abused and to their non-offending caregivers. After graduating, Andrea continued working with trauma and abuse in the Atlanta area. Andrea sought out much continued education in this area so she could assist with a broad array of trauma related issues. She is forensically knowledgeable, and often assesses to see whether or not a child has been sexually abused. Andrea works with many children who are exhibiting sexual behavior problems whether or not those behaviors are related to abuse. Andrea may work with children who would be classified in the profession as “sexually reactive,” “sexually preoccupied,” and/or “sexually aggressive.”
After several years of helping children affected by trauma, Andrea realized she was helping just as much with other behavior issues, whether related or unrelated to the abuse. Because Andrea’s counseling style is embedded in Adlerian Theory, she found it a natural transition to begin assisting children and families with most all behavior difficulties.
Andrea opened her own private practice in 2009 in Roswell, GA, just outside of Atlanta. She maintained extensive evening and weekend hours in order to accommodate the need for her specialized and sought-after services. Oftentimes Andrea’s caseload consisted of children, parents, and families that could not find help elsewhere because they were considered “too difficult.” There are many reasons and manifestations for behavior difficulties. Sometimes children are oppositional & it is purposeful. Sometimes they really want to do well, but their emotional state or lack of ability to regulate themselves result in unmanageable behaviors (internally &/or externally).
School counselors sought Andrea’s services for many reasons—academic anxiety &/or learning disabilities interfering with academic & social success, refusing to go to school, do classwork, speak, follow expected social rules, being disruptive, exhibiting attention issues, or hurting other children. Some kids were on the verge of or had already lost enrollment in their academic program. Andrea utilizes a systemic approach in order to help & teach the child’s support system & change agents—parents, teachers, school counselors, & administration. School observations & treatment team consultations are often completed, and behavior modification plans are often developed & necessary in order to create change.
Guardian Ad Litems & Attorneys often sought Andrea’s services because of her reputation for being fair & balanced, viewing things systemically, being the child’s advocate without taking sides in the midst of parental discord, and working with both parents in order to achieve a healthier family system.
Parents often sought Andrea’s services because of her hands-on approach in working with the family. She enlists parents to help ensure behavior changes are lasting. When working with families she will often utilize play based family therapy. The way in which she does this is to assist parents to understand why their children are behaving in the way they are, i.e., what motivates their child’s behaviors. She can then help parents to learn what things they need to continue to do more of and what things they can do differently to make their relationship with their children more useful and healthy. This is done as she believes she will only be a part of a child’s life for a short time, but a parent will hopefully be a part of their child’s life forever. That parent can then utilize the skills acquired throughout their relationship.
Andrea closed her practice in the Atlanta area and relocated to her hometown in TN in order to be close to her family. Andrea continues to provide the services she once did, but now in the greater Clarksville, TN area. She joined the group private practice, Clarksville Counseling Center, where therapy services are provided.
Certifications & Licensure
Presentations & Workshops
“The Value of Play Therapy: Learn how to use it!” October 9, 2010 at Georgia Association on Young Children (GAYC) Annual Conference; Duluth, GA.
“The Value of Play Therapy: How parents can use play therapy to enhance their relationship with their kids,” May 1, 2010 at the Junior League of Atlanta watch bus tour; Atlanta, GA.
“Ethics, Children, Play Therapy, and Adler,” April 24, 2009 at Georgia Society of Adlerian Psychology’s annual conference; Pine Mountain, GA.
“Making the Most of Toys,” March 29, 2007 at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s child life specialist retreat; Atlanta, GA.
“Understanding Your Child’s Sexual Behavior,” March 3, 2007 at The Giving Tree Adoption Agency’s annual conference; Decatur, GA.
“Ages and Stages of Grief: Helping Your Child Through the Grieving Process,” January 27, 2007 at CURE Childhood Cancer’s bereavement weekend; Norcross, GA.
“Nature or Nurture, Nature and Nurture—Natural and Logical Consequences,” August 14, 2006 at The Giving Tree Adoption and Resource Center; Decatur, GA.
“After the Storm—A Look at Trauma and Attachment,” June 26, 2006 at Mentor Network Adoption and Foster Agency; Decatur, GA.
“Hidden Secrets to Parenting That All Moms and Dads Want to Know,” April 10, 2006 at Families First Foster and Adoption Center; Atlanta, GA. September 18, 2006 at Community Connections Foster and Adoption Center, Stone Mountain, GA.
“Trying to Love 2 Families—The Tug of War,” March 4, 2006 at The Giving Tree Adoption and Resource Center, Annual Adoptive Parent Training Conference; Atlanta, GA.
“What You Need to Know But Haven’t Learned Yet—Effects of Sexual Abuse and Age Appropriate Sexual Behaviors,” February 20, 2006 at The Giving Tree an Adoption Resource Center; Decatur, GA. November, 16, 2006 at Cobb County Department of Family and Children Service; Marietta, GA.
“Blended Families and Holiday Traditions,” November 1, 2005 at Georgia Center for Resources and Support; Atlanta, GA
■ National Certified Counselor (NCC)
■ Licensed Professional Counselor/ Mental Health Service Provider (LPC/MHSP, Tennessee) #3979
■ (Formerly) Licensed Professional Counselor ( LPC, Georgia)
■ Meets qualifications & application to be submitted for Registered Play Therapist & Supervisor (RPT&S)
■ Meets qualifications & application to be submitted for State Approved Clinical Supervisor
■ National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC)
■ American Counseling Association (ACA)
■ Association for Play Therapy (APT).
■ Tennessee Association for Play Therapy (TAPT)
■ (Formerly) Georgia Association for Play Therapy (GAPT)
■ (Formerly) Georgia Society of Adlerian Psychology (GSAP), Vice President 2007--2009