As we embark on the promising journey of 2024, we at Willow Oak Therapy Center are filled with gratitude and excitement. Reflecting on the past year, we are energized by the numerous achievements and milestones we’ve attained. This year was truly a testament to the strength and resilience of our community.
2023: A Year of Impact and Growth
- Proudly provided over 7,000 enriching therapy sessions.
- Welcomed 11 passionate new therapists and two visionary board members to our Willow Oak family.
- Added a provider trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Re-Processing (EMDR), a highly effective therapy for trauma.
- We continue to do peer supervision and case reviews to create a collaborative work environment and help each other with clinically complex cases.
- Recruited more therapists who work with teens and children.
Your unwavering support has been pivotal in the success of our mission to offer accessible and affordable mental health services. Together, we’ve created a sanctuary of healing and growth for our community.
As we step into 2024, we remain committed to enhancing and expanding our impact. We invite you to join us in this journey of hope and healing and a new year filled with promise. Please feel free to share this newsletter and help us touch more lives.”
With heartfelt thanks,
President of the Board
Willow Oak Therapy Center
Growing Our Willow Oak Community
2023 marked a significant expansion for our team at Willow Oak Therapy Center. Eleven new therapists have joined the Willow Oak family, bringing with them a wealth of experience and a shared passion for mental wellness. In September, we celebrated our new therapists with a special welcome event. It was a fantastic opportunity for our team to connect and for our community to embrace these skilled professionals.
- Amy Hackman, LMSW
- Jory Harris-Blumenthal, LCSW-C
- Kristy Keteltas, LCSW-C
- Emma Ridgway, LCSW-C
- Katherine Routenberg, LCSW-C
- Suzan Sigmond, LCSW-C
- Sandy Shapiro, LMSW
- Sara Solomon, LCSW-C
- Hannah Thiessen, LMSW
- Tom Thomson, LCSW-C
- Daryl Wagner, LCSW-C
Meet Our New Board Members
With a deep and diverse healthcare communications background, including senior roles with Pfizer Vaccines, Novartis Pharma Development, and Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging, Lili has already made a notable impact on our engagement and communications efforts, particularly around our therapist recruitment efforts.
Now leading her own venture, Calyx Consulting, she draws from her global experience, including five years in Switzerland, and digital marketing credentials, to strengthen clients’ brand-building and reputation management efforts in support of business performance.
Away from work, Lili leads an active lifestyle that includes yoga, pilates, and hiking, often with her trusty rescue dog, Emi, by her side. She also takes part in volunteer work, contributing to youth development, food security and animal welfare initiatives. Lili is a proud graduate of the University of Maryland.
Addie brings more than a decade of communications experience from both the nonprofit and corporate fields. In her current role as a communications manager at Pepco, the local energy provider in the District and parts of Maryland, she oversees the company’s external communications efforts, including media relations, and provides strategic communications support for the company’s major infrastructure projects and broader community impact and workforce development initiatives. She received her bachelor’s degree from Salisbury University and has a master’s from Georgetown University.
In her free time, Addie is an avid traveler seeking out new places, cultures, and experiences, including climbing to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro. She also volunteers with a variety of environmental and animal welfare organizations in the region, and enjoys spending time at home in Washington, D.C. with her husband and two cats.
Meet Kate Clausen, Executive Director, Willow Oak Therapy Center
Welcome to our new feature, “Therapy Spotlight,” aimed at bringing you closer to the dedicated therapists behind our center’s important work. In this edition, we shine our first spotlight on Willow Oak Therapy Center’s Executive Director Kate Clausen. Her insights and responses to our questions provide a closer look at her role and the impactful work she does. We hope you enjoy this new addition to our newsletter.
Hello Kate! Can you start by telling us your favorite thing about your job? I love getting to see my clients develop more confidence and trust in themselves and develop more enriching relationships. It’s really rewarding watching people blossom.
How would you describe your therapy approach? My therapy approach is integrative, and uses elements of psychodynamic, humanistic, and cognitive-behavioral therapies. I like to get a sense of clients’ own narratives about themselves and their relationships, and how that narrative was written. Therapy can be a processing of “editing” that story so that the client sees themselves in a different and more positive way. I also like to focus on improving relational skills, because I think relationships are really at the heart of our lives.
If you could give one piece of advice to a person considering therapy, what would it be? Just do it! It’s okay to feel a bit scared about it.
What’s a common misconception about therapy you’d like to clear up? That therapy is about blaming other people for your problems. It’s important to acknowledge and grieve if you’ve been hurt by others, but ultimately, therapy is about finding ways to cope and take responsibility for your own well-being.
Can you share a book or resource you recommend to clients? For parents, I usually recommend the Kazdin Method for Parenting, by Alan Kazdin. I worked with Dr. Kazdin when I was at Yale Child Study Center, and he did a lot of research on his approach and its effectiveness.
What’s your favorite thing to do on a day off? I enjoy taking day trips with my family. My kids really enjoy seeing new places.
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why? I would love to see Japan. I love Japanese food. I’d like to learn more about the culture, which is so different from the U.S.
Tell us an interesting or unusual fact about yourself! I have an unusual genetic condition which caused me to lose almost all of my hearing in my right ear, but a surgical procedure was able to restore it to almost normal hearing! Science is amazing!
Thank You for Your Continued Support
As we step into 2024, we pause to reflect on the incredible journey of the past year and express our heartfelt appreciation to every donor, volunteer, and supporter of Willow Oak Therapy Center who continue to make our work possible. Your commitment and belief in our mission have been pivotal in empowering lives, driving change, and advocating for mental well-being.
Make a Difference Today
In this new year, your continued support remains as vital as ever as we work to meet the unprecedented demand for mental health care in our community. Please consider offering your support through a tax-deductible donation. Contributions can be made by clicking the button below, or by mailing a check to:
Willow Oak Therapy Center
15701 Crabbs Branch Way
Rockville, MD 20855
Please mark the envelope: “Attn: Susan Harrington”.
A Collective Impact
Through the dedication of our therapists, and the unwavering support of our community, we can nurture growth, foster resilience, and cultivate a brighter future for individuals in our community.
May 2024 be a year filled with peace, happiness, and continued partnership.