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The Redwood Empire Therapist

RECAMFT's Online Newsletter

May 2023


Telehealth: Law & Ethics, Technology, and Best Practices for Connecting with Your Clients

Presented by: 

 Lisa Wenninger, MBA, MA, APCC, NBCC, BC-TMH

Sat., May 13th, 9 am to 12:15 pm

Zoom, 3 CEs

Register here

Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy - Update on a Transformative Treatment Option

Friday, May 5, 2023
10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Zoom, 2.0 CEs

German Ascani, MD, Shanna Butler, PhD, Moksha Donohue, LMFT

Celeste Monnette, LCSW, Suegee Tamar-Mattis, DO

    Red show ticket: Admit One

    • Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy: Update on a Transformative Treatment Option 
    • German Ascani, MD, Psychiatrist and Evolve Sebastopol team

    • Friday, May 5th, 2023
    • 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
    • Zoom, 2 CEs
    • Register here

    RECAMFT logo


    Click any section to jump to the article.

    Featured member

    RECAMFT's Mission Statement

    The purpose of RECAMFT is to promote and maintain professional competence and integrity with knowledge, innovation, compassion, humor and respect for human dignity and diversity.

    We do this by providing opportunities for networking, education and community outreach.

    Collect your full cash rate & get more private pay clients. We handle insurance and get clients up to 80% back. 

    Try us free on with code: RECAMFT

    Got a sticky problem?

    Come discuss it confidentially with your colleagues at our next Ethics Roundtable

    Lightbulb with flowers inside.

    Not consultation, just a great way to get some ideas about how to handle your sticky case. Friendly and open group.  Learn more here.

    • Fri., June 23rd, 2023
    • 12 to 1:30 pm
    • Zoom
    • Register here.
    • Next event: Oct. 27th, 2023
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      Did you get your sticker in the mail (see below)? If not, please let us know: 

      RECAMFT LogoParticipate in the Justice Project :  Antiracism by 12/31/23 and receive a lovely Certificate of Achievement for your wall! Click here to find out more. 

      President's Message: Unsung Heroes

      By Gina Culver, LMFT

      Happy May everyone! I hope this newsletter finds each of you doing your best. The week of April 16th to April 22nd was volunteer appreciation week with volunteer recognition day on April 20th. I want to shout out to our members who volunteer within RECAMFT, both on our Board and in our committees, and those who volunteer within the community at large. This extra care to support causes important to your heart is so special and a vital need for humanity at large.

      As we recently passed the third anniversary of the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, a thought bubbled up: therapists have been on the frontlines and have been first responders for nearly the entirety of the pandemic, as well as before, and yet we are the unsung heroes walking in the shadows with our clients. We do not need t-shirts, banners, a parade, or a special day. However, a thank you, some sort of recognition for what we hold and what we do, could help us get up to battle another day alongside our clients. Maybe some of us are fighting our own personal battles to show up. Yet we continue to be there and be present.

      We hear the pain, the hurt, the trauma our clients experience and continue to hold this as it then becomes a part of our own story. We carry the anger, the sadness, the fear, and the worry with us. Sometimes we experience these, too. I know I have taken on too much from clients over the years, and talking through this with peers or my therapist has made a difference, and helped me to get out there, mostly fearless, to walk in those shadows again another day.

      Please remember we are on the frontlines, whether we are volunteering for a cause or working with clients. To honor all those who volunteer anywhere, I shout this from the rooftops: YOU are a rock star! Thank you all, again, for all you do to support clients and/or volunteering for the various causes which are important to you. Take care and today at least, we are singing your praises. You are not an unsung hero in this moment.

      On behalf of RECAMFT and in humble gratitude for all you do,

      Gina L. Culver, MS, LMFT


      Gina Culver, LMFT is a Program Director at LifeWorks and has a private practice in Santa Rosa. She is the 2023 President of RECAMFT.

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      Shawn Lare Brinkley, LMFTLive and in-person - come spend the day learning with your colleagues!

      • "What Therapists Need to Know about Black Folks and Other People of Color (BIPOC)", 6 CEs
      • Presenter: Shawn LaRé Brinkley, LMFT
      • Date: Fri., June 2nd
      • Time: 9 am to 4 pm (check in starts at 8:30 am)
      • Where: Furth Center, 8700 Old Redwood Hwy., Windsor

      Lunch included. Catering by Swedish Chef Helena with Baked on the River, Guerneville. Registration here

      Below: Picture from one of our last in-person events at Furth Center, Law & Ethics with Dave Jensen, 2019.

      DISCOUNT CODE for ALL chapter members to CAMFT's Annual Conference, May 5-6, 2023, Santa Clara, CA

      Use code CHAPTERAC upon registration for $20 off your registration fee. More here

      We Need You! Jobs for Awesome Volunteers

      We STILL need help with

      • Tech 2 - Social Media Manager
      • Newsletter Editor
      • Programs Committee

      Please send an email to if you can help.       Return to top

      Prelicensed Support - Walk & Talks in Ragle Ranch Park

      Prelicensed 3000 Hour Club Meeting is the first Friday monthly, 3-5 pm.  Walk and Talk events in April, May, June planned to first meet at Debbie Melmon's barn, and then walk to Ragle Park in Sebastopol. More here.

      Meet RECAMFT's Prelicensed Chair and Director at Large, Jessica Heaney, AMFT. She is a recent graduate of Touro University Worldwide, and is now working for Seneca's Wraparound Program. Jessica is hosting our newly named 3000 Hour Club for Prelicensed Members monthly events on the first Friday monthly. 3-5 PM. Learn more here. Contact Jessica at   

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      RECAMFT's Listserv For All! Check it out! 

      Our listserv has over 400 members on it, and is active daily with great conversations, resources, offerings, in search of, books, movies, office rentals, jobs, internships, etc. You can view the home page of our listserv at

      If you are not currently enrolled in the listserv, please email and ask to be added. You have the option of setting up your account to be 

          • Read individual emails
          • Read a digest of 12 emails
          • Or read online only

      After you have been added to the listserv, you can change the way you receive the emails to any of the above choices. In Gmail the emails will appear under your Forums tab. To send an email to the listserv, simply address your email to

      If you do not want to be on our listserv, you can delete your account or write to and ask to not be a part of the listserv. But we urge you to give it a try. You are missing out on a ton of meaningful collaboration with your colleagues. We hope you will enjoy being part of our online community! 

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      Call for Submissions for the June  2023 Issue of The RECAMFT Therapist! 

      June is Pride Month, Juneteenth (6/19), and Alzheimer's Awareness Month. We especially welcome submissions where these themes intersect with mental health. Please send your submission (500 word max) to by the 15th. Questions?

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      Thoughts from the Racial & Social Justice Committee (RSJC)

      Jewish Heritage Awareness Month:

      An Interview with Penny Rosenwasser


      Wolwvenn Seward-Katzmiller, LMFT

      In 2006 President George W. Bush designated May Jewish Heritage month to commemorate the 350 + year “history of Jewish contributions to American culture”. ( I interviewed Penny Rosenwasser, social justice activist, educator, and author of Hope Into Practice: Jewish Women Choosing Justice Despite Our Fears and creator of the “Dare to Be Powerful” workshops.

      WSK: What's your Jewish heritage?

      PR: I'm a white Ashkenazi Jew with ancestry from Russia and Poland.

      WSK: What has surprised you most about the range of Jewish heritage?

      PR: Growing up, I never knew there were Sephardic, Mizrahi, Cochin, Ethiopian, Igbo, or Abayudaya Jews!

      WSK: What inspired you to write your book and facilitate your workshops?

      PR: I grew up in white Christian middle-class suburbs of Northern Virginia in the 1950s/60s. When people said to me, “Gee, Penny, you don't look Jewish.” I’d smile and say “thank you”. That's what I thought I was supposed to say. But that’s an indication of the antisemitism I internalized in the air around me, and I grew up feeling very disconnected from my Jewishness, even though I went to Temple Beth El Sunday School.

      Decades later I decided to explore this for my doctoral dissertation, so I met with an phenomenal group of Jewish women for a year, which helped me reclaim a joyful connection to my Jewishness. As we shared stories -- exploring our internalized oppression and strategies for healing -- we realized that even though we had diverse backgrounds, practices, ethnicities and ages, we all felt we had some personal pathology: that something was “wrong” with us. But by making meaning together, we realized the problem wasn’t with us, but with the systems of oppression themselves.

      So I turned my dissertation into this book, which is an activist’s call to repair the world: Tikkun Olam. It's about uprooting internalized oppression and linking personal healing with social justice. I believe when we make our negative internalized voices conscious and face them, we can start to deflate them; then we feel better about ourselves, we treat others better, and our activism becomes more effective.

      My empowerment workshops are based on the book. Participants have written me afterwards, realizing, “Oh, there are other people feeling this. I’m not alone!”

      WSK: What aspect of your book would you want therapists to understand?

      PR: It’s very psychologically focused. Some of the chapters are “Wrestling With the Voices”, “The Trickster in Our Heads”, “Suckled on Worry, “Hello Assimilation-Goodbye Persecution”, “Push/Push/Push for Perfection”, and “Where do I Belong?” The chapters are full of stories – of insights, humor, compassion and healing -- of using our privilege to shift power: collective liberation.

      WSK: Yeah. It's so powerful. Not only are we dealing with contemporary antisemitism, but so many of us carry the epigenetics of trauma from our ancestors. There's so much healing work to be done. I hope therapists from many backgrounds will read your book in order to be in service to all their clients, including the Jewish ones.

      Penny’s book received the Jewish Caucus Award for Scholarship from the Association for Women in Psychology and is available through AK Press. For more info, including about Penny’s workshops and talks,

      Photo credit:

      Wowlvenn Seward-Katzmiller, LMFT is a member of our Racial and Social Justice Committee (RSJC). Wowlvenn authored RECAMFT's Climate Resolution. She has a bilingual (Spanish) private practice in Sebastopol. 

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      RECAMFT's Racial and Social Justice Pledge

      RECAMFT is committed to equity including addressing structural racism and systemic injustice. We endeavor to be inclusive and value individuals from all ethnicities, ages, races, sexual orientations, genders, languages, abilities, religions, citizenship statuses, and socioeconomic backgrounds into our chapter and into treatment.

      We strive to advocate, educate, collaborate, and strategize for positive racial and social justice change within our membership and our community.

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      Have you written a book? 

      Be sure to let us know so we can include it on our Library page. Email

      More RECAMFT Events! 

      Prelicensed, Crafts, Ethics, Board

      Check out all the following events!

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      Advertise Jobs here!

      Contact to advertise a job. 

      ADVERTISEMENT: From Gina Culver, LMFT and Cynthia Halliday, LMFT

      Dear RECAMFT Community:

      We are excitedly restructuring our private practice and looking for one full-time or 1-2 part-time partners to join us by subletting our 820 sq ft office with us. It's a great location near Kaiser. Some highlights:

      ¨ A large waiting room which can be used after hours for groups.

      ¨ An art therapy room appropriate for families or small groups.

      ¨ The most amazing play therapy and sandplay room you’ve ever seen!

      ¨ A bathroom and small kitchen.

      ¨ An inner office which can be used for therapy with 1-2 people. 

      ¨ Lots of free parking, and a bus stop across the street.

      Please click this PDF link for lots of pictures and details.  We're excited to meet you! 

      Can't wait? Email 

      Programs Committee positions are available. Is it you? 

      The Programs Committee needs some folks to help choose upcoming  speakers for the coming year. Is it you? 

      We also need a couple of people to help us review presentation applications. Can you help? Send your interest to

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      Send us a picture of your sticker!

      We want to see all the creative places our members placed the stickers we sent you. Please send pictures to 

      Wowlvenn Seward-Katzmiller's sticker is on her water bottle. 

      Check out what we've got in store for you! Upcoming fun events!!

      Warning signMembers! Your SHORT DESCRIPTION is the most important thing on your profile. Why? Because that shows in our online directory. It matters! Please log in and complete yours today! 

      RECAMFT's Scholarships, Honors and Awards! 

      A message from Pat Hromolik, LMFT, RECAMFT Director at Large and former CFO and Prelicensed Chair.

      I'd like you to do a visualization of remembering what it was like when you were in grad school, when you were interning and when you were first licensed - all the challenges you faced. Now imagine what an additional $1,000 would have meant to you. This is what our RECAMFT scholarship strives to provide - an opportunity to assist our future generation of therapists to further their training or their projects that support our mental health field. We are also joining in support of our social justice committee in giving priority to applications from underrepresented groups in our field.

      Two years ago we made a dream of trying to provide support to our future generation of therapists with financial need scholarship opportunities for both pre-licensed and newly licensed (within 3 years) a reality. The RECAMFT Board agreed to provide matching funds of $5,250 to fund 3 years of the scholarship program, with our members contributing an equal amount. Unfortunately, we are behind on our goal of members raising the additional $5,250 - we have raised less than 50% of that. And it would be so easy to achieve this important goal!

      We have over 450 active members and over 750 members and if everyone of them gave just $10 we would exceed this goal! And, if every active member gave the cost of what they charge for one therapy session we could fund this great cause for well over 10 years. Please support this worthy cause.  

      Please consider giving a tax-deductible donation to our Joe and Pamela Ward Scholarship Program to continue our program of financial support for our emerging clinicians who face high expenses and low pay.

      Joe and Pamela WardIn 2021 RECAMFT launched the Joe and Pamela Ward Scholarship Program, which awards three scholarships of $1000 each and a free year-long membership to Pre-Licensed and Newly-Licensed chapter members. Our first awards were granted in 2022 to Bree Watson, AMFT and Claudia Hernandez, AMFT. Congrats to both Bree and Claudia!! We are excited to give away our next awards soon! 

      The funds that make these awards possible have been generously donated by members of our chapter and are doubled by matching funds authorized by our Board of Directors. Your donations will go twice as far! We have raised $2770 towards our goal of $5250 which funds the scholarship program for 2022, 2023, and 2024. We are just $2480 away from our goal!

      Please visit to give a tax-free donation today! 

      Are you creative? Join us for our Crafting Group

      Bring any craft you like, get on Zoom with us and visit with your colleagues while

      we knit, sew, paint, draw, cook, create, etc. 

      Find out more about advertising with RECAMFT here

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      Announcing the all-new Spirit of RECAMFT Award!

      The all-new Spirit of RECAMFT Award is intended to highlight or showcase our members who are working in the community to support the mental health profession and the well-being of our community at large. It is for those members who may not necessarily be seen but have contributed to unmet needs and or advancements in the mental health profession.

      At the heart of this award is acknowledging someone who embodies all of the aspects of RECAMFT’s mission, values, vision, and commitment to the profession and mental well-being within the community.

      Find out more here.       Return to top

      What you missed: "Dr. Anish Shah, MD, Psychiatrist and a Fascinating 3 CEs on Treatment Resistant Depression"

      By Gina Culver, LMFT

      Dr. Anish Shah, MD

      Dr. Anish Shah, MD, a psychiatrist at Siyan Clinical Corporation, presented on treatment resistant depression and psychosis at our April monthly CE event. He spoke about alternative treatments (TMS – transcranial magnetic stimulation and esketamine) which can help improve the symptoms of clients struggling with treatment resistant depression or psychosis. I love talking about and learning about the brain! Learning new ways to support those who are struggling with their mental health is always helpful to me. It is also interesting to note that prior to Dr Shah’s presentation, I had spoken to a couple of my own clients about TMS and how it might assist their healing. Of course, I was looking forward to Dr Shah’s presentation and how to apply this new information to my practice as an additional referral resource.

      My first introduction to TMS was when I worked at a psychiatric hospital and it was discussed in team meetings with the psychiatrists as a form of treatment to help patients. Less side effects than ECT (electroconvulsive or “shock” therapy), TMS uses a magnetic field to decrease the symptoms of depression and psychosis. Dr Shah shared several studies of how TMS supports amelioration of symptoms and the long-lasting results which can occur.

      Dr. Shah then shared about esketamine, or S-Ketamine, which is a nasal spray and its effectiveness on treating depression. With the influx of information provided to us about psychedelic-assisted therapies, this was very helpful information. I appreciated how Dr. Shah walked through the steps a client could expect with esketamine treatments, both during and after. Again, clients can expect a fairly quick response to this medication. It was interesting how much more effective and accepted the nasal spray version is over an injection per the study results shared with us.

      RECAMFT was honored to host Dr Shah and his presentation on TMS and esketamine in April. We strive to offer monthly presentations which offer CEs, are current trends, resources, or therapies in the field of psychology and mental health, and provide new information to utilize in our practices as well as share with our clients. Be sure to watch the video in the Members Only section if you missed it:

      Gina Culver, LMFT is a Program Director at LifeWorks and has a private practice in Santa Rosa. She is the 2023 President of RECAMFT.

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      Board Highlights - April 2023 

      Minutes from the Board meetings are always available on the Members Only page.

      The RECAMFT Board voted to pay members who lead groups (Ethics Roundtable, Prelicensed, etc.) for us an honorarium of $80/hr. When two members lead the group, the stipend is split between the two equally. The Board voted to "strongly recommend" all board and committee members finish and attest to both Justice Projects. Dr. Shawan Worsley, PhD, LMFT has been approved to return in 2024 and offer two antiracism trainings. Pat Hromolik proposed a Compassion Fatigue Group which was approved. 

      An ad hoc committee of members Gail Van Buuren, Cynthia Halliday and Annette Seibel was formed to work on RECAMFT's Golden Jubilee in 2024 when we celebrate our 50th Anniversary. The Board adopted CAMFT's Code of Conduct for Board Members for RECAMFT Boards to follow. 

      On a very exciting note, Racial and Social Justice Committee (RSJC) Co-Chairs Linda Block and Katharina Kienböck were invited to do a 30 minute presentation to the CAMFT DEIA Committee. Apparently CAMFT is looking at making a deep dive into our Justice Project topics: Antiracism and LGBTQ+ Affirming Care, and wanted to hear how RECAMFT is making this happen. Congratulations to Linda and Katharina for representing us at state CAMFT! How thrilling and what a compliment to the hard work of the RSJC!!

      2024 is RECAMFT's Golden Jubilee 50th Anniversary Celebration Year! Whoo hoo!! What should we do to celebrate???

      Do you want to help us brainstorm? Got a great idea for us? Email and let us know.

      Members Messages 

      Members can submit an article of up to 500 words for publication. Please submit before the 15th monthly to  

      An Interview with RECAMFT Member Barbara Young, LMFT, our newly elected state CAMFT Secretary 

      By Tara D'Orazio, LMFT

      CFO & Membership Chair

      Intro Q: How many years have you been on the CAMFT board, what positions have you held, and what position will you be starting next?

      I have been on the CAMFT Board for two years as a Clinical Director at Large, and I will be transitioning to Secretary, which is also a two year term.

      Q1: What have you enjoyed most about serving on the CAMFT board? Anything uniquely enjoyable about the positions you've held?

      I enjoy the most being part of strategic thinking that supports our profession and being able to participate in representation of our membership, so that we feel supported as practitioners. It's often about having a seat at the table, and that is the privilege of the position.

      Q2: Is it all work and no play? How do you have fun on the board?

      I think processing, strategic planning, and understanding politics is very fun, so it's a great match for me. I am very much enjoying traveling throughout our beautiful state and meeting so many inspiring chapter leaders. Being on the Board offers this unique birds eye view of how much MFTs and CAMFT staff do, which is very different from the daily work of counseling. The juxtaposition is so enjoyable to experience and . And the Board is full of fellow MFTs, and I think therapists are quite fun, especially these Board members, they are really cool people whom I highly respect.

      Q3: How does being on the board align with your values?

      Before I went to school for counseling, I went to school for and worked in community organizing and public policy. It's so great to marry these skills and experiences with a field about which I am so passionate. The Board also stands for diversity and inclusion, and understanding the role of the MFT in a rapidly changing world. It helps me personally to be part of tackling these issues on a larger scale.

      Q4: What would you say to someone who is thinking about running in the next election?

      Check it out! We always need more leaders! And if you are thinking about it, then chances are, YOU are a leader. Think about your unique skill set and perspective and how you would like to affect change. Do a deep dive into the CAMFT website and see all the work that is happening with staff and committees. Also, make sure you can make the time commitment. There is a firm expectation that you will attend all Board functions, barring emergencies. I definitely adjust plans and shuffle life to show up, as do the rest of the Board members. This level of commitment makes for a strong and cohesive Board. Volunteering for our state organization is worth the time! I am constantly meeting new people and am floored about what a great group of MFTs are. Being on the Board is unique, interesting, humbling and fun. I highly recommend it!

      Hari Meyers, Master Story TellerPast President Honor Roll

      Meet RECAMFT's 1992 President - Hari Meyers, Master Story Teller

      Hari Meyers, Master Story Teller is part of RECAMFT's story as our President in 1992, the year Bill Clinton was elected US President, and Hurricane Andrew was the worst storm ever known at the time when it devasted Florida. We are grateful to Hari for leading us onto our next steps.   

      Want to see all our Past Presidents? Click here.   

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      Get the latest Therapy Groups Listings here!

      Download the latest RECAMFT Therapy Groups PDF document.

      RECAMFT Therapy Groups March-April-May 2023



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      Thank you for reading this month's newsletter! RECAMFT is great because of involved members like you!!

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