About Me

I am passionate about helping adults and adolescents take back their lives from obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and related disorders (body dysmorphic disorder, trichotillomania, skin-picking disorder, and hoarding disorder), anxiety disorders (social anxiety, panic disorder, phobias, and generalized anxiety disorder), and depression.

I am a cognitive behavioral (CBT) therapist and have specialized training in exposure and response prevention (ERP) therapy, a type of CBT that’s the research-based treatment for OCD and a research-based treatment for anxiety.

BtD Logo for EmailAlong with working with people who have OCD, anxiety, and related disorders, I do advocacy work to help raise awareness of OCD and its appropriate treatment. I also co-founded Beyond the Doubt with Jeff Bell, and our interactive talks, workshops, and groups provide practical tools for individuals and organizations looking to thrive through uncertainty and the fear and doubt it creates.

I’m the Co-Founder and Past President of OCD Georgia, the official Georgia affiliate of the International OCD Foundation, and I served on the IOCDF National Conference Planning Committee from 2011 to 2014. Prior to my counseling career I spent more than 15 years in sales and marketing, and you can learn more about my past business career in my LinkedIn profile.

To talk with me or to set up an appointment you can fill out the Contact Shala form or call me at (404) 632-4804.

Education

  • MS in Mental Health Counseling from Mercer University, 2012
  • MBA from Emory University, 2001
  • BS in Business Administration from University of Illinois, 1993

License & Certification

  • Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC008785) in the state of Georgia

Honors & Awards

  • Selected as the keynote speaker for the 2013 International OCD Foundation national conference (the photos above are from the keynote)
  • Selected to become a member of The Adversity 2 Advocacy Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and fostering the power of turning personal challenges into service to others with similar challenges.
  • One of three people selected nationally for the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) 2013 Clinician Trainee Award for my work while I was an intern.

Presentations

  • Self-Compassion and Self-Depreciation in OCD: When Poor Self-Esteem Becomes a Ritual at the ADAA conference in 2016 with Jonathan Grayson, Ph.D., Amy Jenks, Psy.D., and Jonathan Hershfield, MFT
  • Presentations at the IOCDF 2013 through 2016: below
  • Beyond the Doubt workshops and talks (scroll to the bottom).

OCD-Related Work and Volunteer Experience

OCD and Related Disorders Mental Health Training & Continuing Education

  • IOCDF OCD Behavior Therapy Training Institute (BTTI)
  • IOCDF Conference in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016
  • The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) conference in 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016
  • The Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies Conference in 2013, 2015
  • Behavioral Tech, LLC Foundations of Exposure Therapies
  • Various other workshops and webinars on OCD, anxiety, and disorders related to OCD.

And, I read a ton of books on OCD, anxiety, and mindfulness each year!  For a small sampling, visit Aha! Moments.

Interviews, Mentions, and Blogs

Professional Activities and Memberships