Class of 2017 Alumni
Michael Bailey, BA Psychology (Norfolk State University), MSW (Rutgers University) is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker currently employed at the Essex County Juvenile Detention Center located in Newark, New Jersey; where he has worked for several years. Mr. Bailey facilitates a weekly anger management group and counsels residents individually utilizing a Multimodal therapeutic approach (Lazarus). This therapeutic approach examines individual behavior on several constructs, and focuses on which behaviors the client wishes to improve or extinguish. Michael began his career working with at-risk-youth in 2003 at the Norfolk Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court in Virginia, and worked with HIV positive individuals as a Behavioral Health Counselor. This was part of an initiative by the NJ Department of Health to help HIV positive individuals negotiate safer sex practices. Michael would like to use his experience from the DSW program to help bridge the gap between theory and practice by employing the scholarship skills that are developed.
Cristina Blasoni LCSW has a BA in Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University, Teaneck, NJ and a Master’s in Social Work from Hunter College School of Social Work, Manhattan, NY. Cristina has been in the mental health field for 27 years, having started with concrete housing services at Bergen Regional Counseling Center in Hackensack, NJ, where she placed and monitored mentally ill clients in new apartment communities, in addition to providing Suicide Crisis Interventions in her clients’ homes. While doing her Master’s program, Cristina worked at the International Ladies’ Garment Worker Union, Member’s Assistance Program, where she provided psychotherapeutic services, substance abuse and recovery treatment, individual and group therapy, crisis interventions at the workplace, executed various types of educational programs for Union members and their families in addition to teaching ESL to Latin American members. Cristina has also served as an American Red Cross, First Aid Instructor Aid and an American Red Cross, Latino HIV/Aids Instructor. After the ILGWU, she went to work with a psychiatrist in Union City, NJ where she provided individual psychotherapy to a myriad of patients of different backgrounds, using a holistic approach in psychotherapy. In addition, had Substance Abuse Recovery Psychotherapy groups and Spanish speaking Sex Offenders -Behavior Modification and CBT groups for sex offenders getting back into the community. In 1999, she started working at Bergen Regional Medical Center in Paramus NJ, as a Medical Social Worker in the Medical OPD, creating a holistic therapeutic treatment approach through Reiki, meditation, Mind/Body Integration, CBT, RET, forgiveness work and hypnotherapy. In the same year, Cristina started a private practice in which she practiced for 12 years, utilizing a holistic approach in psychotherapy. Presently, Cristina works at the MICA/PH program, providing psychotherapeutic and educational groups while coordinating patient services in the community. Cristina is also the author of the Empowerment Workbook (2nd edition), which contains various self-empowerment techniques, along with the Empower Hour concept, where the workbook is used with patients. Cristina is also a Reiki Master Practitioner and a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, utilizing these and other modalities to help individuals heal. Cristina’s interest in attaining the DSW degree from Rutgers is to expand on clinical skills and continue growing personally and professionally.
Michael J. Brayman is a licensed clinical social worker and credentialed alcohol and substance abuse counselor in the state of NY. He received his BA in psychology (Michigan State University) and MSW (New York University) and has engaged in several post-graduate programs to study interpersonal group treatment for addicted populations. Currently, Michael is providing clinical services in private practice in Manhattan. Michael’s primary focus is the long-term treatment of acute substance use disorders with comorbid mental health issues such as PTSD, anxiety, depression and other compulsive disorders.
Michael seeks to integrate recent research in attachment theory and interpersonal neurobiology to improve treatment for people in recovery from substance use and mental health disorders. Furthermore, he is working to create a coherent and synergistic treatment program utilizing numerous evidence-based clinical methods and recent theoretical advancements in neurobiology (Attachment Theory, Mindfulness-based CBT, DBT, Motivational Interviewing, Interpersonal Group Psychotherapy and 12-Step Facilitation). Michael’s clinical practice is driven by his desire to deeply understand and apply the latest research to a population that is often stigmatized and without hope.
Andrea J. Calabrese, BA in Theatre and Studio Art (Hope College) and a MSW (Hunter College School of Social Work) is a licensed clinical social worker and a credential alcoholism and substance abuse counselor. She is currently the Director of Scattered Site and Family Services at Bailey House Inc. located in East Harlem, New York. Andrea oversees several supportive housing programs for people living with HIV and AIDS. Within this role Andrea has brought clinical oversight and expertise when working with clients who may have co-occurring disorders and chronic medical conditions. She advocates for clients within the program and their communities in order to keep them connected to services and stably housed. Prior to arriving at Bailey House Inc Andrea had spent several years working in substance abuse treatment. She has assisted several clients with reaching their goals of employment, stable housing, sobriety and escape from violent and abusive relationships. She currently works as a fee for service therapists in an outpatient mental health clinic and a instructor at Fordham University in the CASAC certification program. Andrea has spent many years training and educating social service staff through New York state and city who work in various agencies helping populations that are struggling with homelessness, addiction, behavioral health concerns and violent relationship issues.
Jesselly De La Cruz
Jesselly De La Cruz, BA in Political Science (Rider University), MSW (Rutgers University), is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in NJ. She completed a Post-Graduate Certificate in Family Therapy at The Multicultural Family Institute, Inc. in Highland Park, NJ. Having originated from an underprivileged background and being a child of an immigrant family herself, Ms. De La Cruz’s education and work has been motivated by her desire to support traditionally underserved populations and the Latino community in particular. Towards that overarching goal, she has worked with Latino advocacy nonprofit agencies, in positions such as Project Manager and Program Coordinator. She has also worked providing emergency screening of persons in mental health crisis at an inner city hospital, outpatient and in-home child and family therapy, and clinical consultation for nursing homes with primarily Spanish-speaking residents. She currently works in the prevention of child sexual abuse by conducting forensic evaluations, individual, group and family therapy at an intensive outpatient program for court mandated youth who have sexually abused and/or have fire setting behaviors in Hudson County. In addition, she continues to service the immigrant community as a clinical consultant for a social service agency that provides legal services and advocacy for immigrant victims of domestic violence in Mercer County. Her research interests will focus on the empowerment of Latino immigrant families and the healing of intergenerational trauma in families through the use of mindfulness based psychotherapies, play therapy and multi-systemic family therapy.
Alejandro Flores received his MSW from New York University, and has an extensive experience providing mental health services to a culturally diverse population. Alejandro is currently employed as a Clinician, in an outpatient clinic of a teaching hospital located in an urban community that serves children and adolescents. In addition to providing individual and family therapy, he supervises masters-level clinicians seeking licensure and medical students. Alejandro also maintain a private practice in Highland Park, treating adults, couples, children and families. Being bilingual and an immigrant has given Alejandro the opportunity to serve monolingual Spanish speaking clients, most recent immigrants who are struggling with acculturation issues. Alejandro’s approach is primarily psychodynamics, but he also integrate relational and cognitive behavioral therapy techniques into treatment, because he believes that he needs to be flexible to fit the needs of the people he sees. Alejandro’s professional interests include trauma and healing from traumatic experiences, relationship conflicts and how poverty, violence in the community and how the absent father affects the attachment process.
Tawanda Hubbard, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, received her BS in Business Administration – Management (Bloomfield College), and MSW (Rutgers University). Tawanda is a certified Rational Emotive Behavior Therapist (Albert Ellis Institute), Certified Child Sexual Abuse Therapist (CSACCP), obtained Postmasters in Clinical Practice with Adolescents (NYU), and attended Postgraduate program in Bowen’s Natural Systems and Family Therapy (Princeton Family Center for Education). She also trained in Family Therapy at Ackerman Institute, and Multigenerational Therapy at the Multicultural Family Institute. Tawanda has over 10 years of experience in child welfare, behavioral health, adolescent and family therapy, case management, and clinical practice. She has served in a variety of positions since receiving her MSW; DYFS Family Service Specialist II, Clinical Youth Case Manager, and Lead Youth Therapist and Clinical Supervisor in two out-of-home Therapeutic Foster Care Programs. She has also served as Middlesex County Chair for two years at NASW-NJ, as well as participated on various NASW-NJ taskforce committees, roundtables, member of the Diversity and Cultural Competency committee, and presenter at NASW-NJ Conferences and Workshops. Tawanda also held the office of Treasurer of the Northern NJ Chapter of the National Association for Black Social Workers.
Tawanda currently provides family, couples, and individual therapy as a private practitioner, and intensive in-community family therapy and clinical supervision as an independent contractor with TFS. She provides a variety of different trainings to DCP&P Workers as part of the Rutgers Institute for families (NJCWTP), Adjunct Professor and Field Supervisor at Rutgers School of Social Work, and conducts workshops on Diversity, CBT, Clinical Interventions, and providing Clinical Services from a Social Justice Perspective. She was appointed the Vice President of NASW-NJ Chapter in July 2014; the current Personnel Committee Chair at NASW-NJ, recently served as a NJ Delegate at the 2014 NASW Delegate Assembly, and actively serves on the Rutgers School of Social Work Alumni Council.
Tawanda’s professional and clinical interests include self-empowerment, trauma, family relations, social and economic justice, human development, child welfare, advocacy, engagement, intersectionality, therapeutic relationship, self-care practices, and professional and leadership development.
Tawanda is looking to expand and deepen her knowledge, understanding, and skills on research, writing, clinical practice, and leadership through the DSW Program at Rutgers.
Marisol Lado, BA in Sociology (William Paterson University) and MSW (New York University), is a Licensed Social Worker in the state of New Jersey and a published writer on topics related to military deployments, life, and culture, as well as end-of-life care in the Journal of Palliative Medicine. In addition to her formal education, Marisol has completed Post-Master’s education in Trauma Focused Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (2006), Divorce Mediation (2011), and Clinical Approaches to Addictions (2014). She was also recognized by the State of New Jersey General Assembly for scholastic attainment and active involvement in the learning experience. Marisol has been working at the Secaucus Vet Center, Department of Veterans Affairs, as a Readjustment Counseling Therapist directly providing psychotherapy to combat veterans (from every combat era) and their families. Primarily working with individuals with combat trauma and PTSD, she also provides bereavement and complicated grief counselling for surviving family members of military services members, couples counseling, and conducts groups on an ongoing basis. In addition to working with the military population, being a spouse of a Marine Iraq War Veteran has given her insight to the population and the needs of the service members and their families. Marisol also partakes in clinical presentations regarding military culture to community organizations, including working with the NJ Child Welfare Training Partnership and Hudson County Community College.
Michelle Lipchock, LCSW earned her Master’s in Social Work and Bachelor’s in Social Work from Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in New Jersey and is a Licensed Social Worker in Pennsylvania. She began her social work career as a therapist working with children, youth and families involved with the child welfare system in Philadelphia. Additionally, she provided therapy in various environments to include outpatient, psychiatric partial care and within school systems. Michelle has a wide range of experience in the treatment of children, youth and families, which includes clinical practice, clinical supervision, and program administration. In 2005, she relocated to New Jersey where she currently serves as the Behavioral Health Clinical Coordinator for the Devereux Foundation in West Deptford, New Jersey. Michelle has been awarded the Clinician of the Year Award from the New Jersey Alliance for Children, Youth and Families. She holds a Clinical Supervisory Certificate as well as supervises social work interns. Michelle’s area of professional interest include advancing clinical practice, to include trauma focused concepts, with children and adolescents who are dually diagnosed with an intellectual/developmental disability and mental illness.
Gloria Lopez-Henriquez MA (Montclair State University) and MSW (Fordham University) received four years of post-graduate training in couples and family therapy at the Ackerman Institute for the Family. Currently, she is a consultant and co-researcher at the Goryeb Children’s Hospital, Pediatric Diabetes and endocrinology department, a faculty and supervisor at the Center for Families Communities and Social Justice, and a private practitioner in Princeton and Morristown. Guided by a systemic, relational and contextual perspective, she has over 20 years of clinical experience working with families and couples. One of her main areas of interest is the impact of migration in the family’s life cycle and across generations. She has presented nationally and internationally on these topics. She taught at Montclair State University, in the Department of Family and Child Studies, was the director of several school-based programs for children and families in NYC and worked many years as a direct provider of therapeutic services in non-profit agencies.in NJ. Ms. Lopez-Henriquez is a member of the American Family Therapy Academy and the Collaborative Family Healthcare Association.
Ruth Norman, MSW, LICSW, received her Bachelor’s in Sociology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and her Master’s of Social Work from Springfield College. She is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker in the state of Massachusetts. She currently works at MSPCC, The Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. She provides intensive individual and family therapy through therapeutic interventions to stabilize children within their homes. In addition, she also works as a trauma focused therapist through VOCA, Victims of Crime Act, providing cognitive behavior therapy to children who are victims of sexual abuse. She also facilitates support groups for non-offending children and parents affected by sexual abuse. Her past training experiences include crisis intervention services, district court probation, as well as facilitating psycho-educational support groups including DBT, suicide prevention, and sexually abused victims. Most recently, she completed the Massachusetts Child Trauma Project (MCTP), which consisted of yearlong participation in monthly case consultations using the TF-CBT model as well as ongoing basic and advanced trainings in Trauma Focused- Cognitive Behavior Therapy.
Laurie Patlin Suttenberg, BA in Psychology and Spanish (Washington University in St. Louis), MSW (Washington University in St. Louis), MSW (University of Pennsylvania) is a licensed clinical social worker and diplomate in clinical social work in full time private practice in New Jersey for 20 years. She completed a two year post graduate training program in structural family therapy and person of the therapist with Harry Aponte, ACSW, and has extensive training in cognitive behavioral therapy. She treats individuals, couples and families for mood, addiction and adjustment disorders, financial issues, loss, grief and bereavement as well as trauma and crisis intervention. Specializing in work with couples and families, cases include parenting concerns, child and adolescent development, divorce, and blended family challenges as well as abuse and domestic violence. Laurie is a New Jersey clinical social work supervisor and she has worked in a multitude of mental health settings, including family service agencies, inpatient psychiatric hospitals and a partial hospitalization program. Laurie has designed and presented workshops in corporate and community settings, with topics that have included coping with trauma, grief and loss, stress management, the healthy workplace, positive goal setting and building a stronger self relationship. She was interviewed as a subject matter expert by SJ Magazine for an article, “Raising Healthy Kids / Emotional Eating” and was a featured speaker at the 2008 Virtua Health Systems Women’s Health Symposium on the topic, “The Relationship with Me, Myself and I”.
Wendy Winograd, LCSW, NCPsyA earned her BA and MA in English and American Literature at Brown University and University of Pennsylvania, respectively, and her MSW at New York University. A certified psychoanalyst, she maintains a private practice in Chatham, NJ where she provides psychoanalytic psychotherapy to adults, adolescents, and couples as well as clinical supervision to social workers and psychoanalytic candidates. She serves as faculty member and supervisor at the New Jersey Institute and the Center for Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis of New Jersey. In the Counseling Department at Rutgers Preparatory School, she provides in-school therapy for children and adolescents and acts as a liaison between students, school administrators, teachers, parents, and community resources. Using an approach modified from social work supervision, she designed and implemented a faculty mentoring program in which veteran faculty meet weekly with new teachers. A certified SIFI field instructor, she supervises a Rutgers MSW intern each year and is currently employed as a Part Time Lecturer in the Rutgers Graduate School of Social Work. Volunteer activities include leading a consultation group for A Home Within, a national organization that matches children and adolescents who have been in foster care with therapists who offer treatment pro bono and serving as Recording Secretary and NJ Area Co-Chair on the Executive Board of the American Association for Psychoanalysis in Clinical Social Work.