Melissa is a clinical counseling intern at Empowerment Treatment & Counseling and is currently completing her graduate studies in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Adams State University in Colorado.
Although Melissa was born in San Diego, CA, she is a second-generation Arizona native. After getting sober in residential treatment in the Fall of 1998, Melissa returned to college to complete her B.S. in Electronic Media at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona. After a two-decade long career working in community relations in health care, Melissa made the decision to return to school to realize her dream of helping others through their life issues as she, herself, has been helped throughout the years of her personal recovery.
Because she understands that trauma and attachment are at the root of many of the issues we face in order to grow, Melissa has pursued trainings that treat trauma through both the body and the mind by completing Trauma Sensitive Yoga Training with Bessel Van der Kolk and Peter Levine’s Somatic Experiencing. Melissa is currently completing training and supervision in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) in order to help clients resolve triggers and stuck points from a compassionate and evidence-based perspective. She is also in the process of receiving her Certified Sexual Addiction Therapist certification through IITAP and her Certified Partners Specialist credential through APSATS. Beyond her training, she has an eclectic approach consisting of MIT, CBT, DBT, inner child theory and mindfulness. As a counselor, Melissa strives to create a safe and supportive space for clients to be heard, seen and supported. She works with a wide range of clients who are coping with addictions, anxiety, depression and other mood disorders, and has specialized training and supervision in sex addiction, partner betrayal and trauma. Outside of work, Melissa enjoys spending time with her partner and family, her dog, her yoga mat, participating in her own recovery and hiking the beautiful landscape of central and northern Arizona.