Meet the Mental Wellness Counseling Team

Our Traverse City counseling office is excited to help you find the best counselor and natural wellness providers for your needs. Mental Wellness Counseling has counselors that can serve clients across the lifespan. Our counselors also serve clients across Michigan through virtual telehealth therapy options. We strive to offer the highest quality counseling in the Traverse City and across Michigan. We make every effort to help you reach your goals through your therapy.

 

If you have any questions, please call our Intake Coordinator at 231-714-0282 ext. 0

 

Emily Hale

Intake Coordinator
Emily is a mom to 3 amazing boys and the wife of an incredibly talented musician. She and her husband, Drew, are huge advocates for mental health and foster care awareness.

Emily is the voice on the other end of the phone when you call to schedule an appointment or inquire about counseling services. One of her favorite things to do is to help anxious people get their questions answered quickly, and provide a safe space for patients to voice their concerns and get the help they need.

She looks forward to talking to you, and to helping to match you and your family to the best therapist to meet your needs.

Emily is also certified life coach who specializes in parent coaching using the Love and Logic method. She also works with young adults who are struggling to find meaning and direction in their lives.

Emily is a great choice for those who’s concerns are not mental health related, but who are looking for help to improve their workplace performance, develop their potential, help finding solutions, and who would benefit from direction and assistance in goal setting.

Schedule your free phone consult today to determine if life coaching is a good f

You can reach Emily by calling 231-714-0282 ext. 0 or e-mailing intake@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 

Angela Merriman

Mental Health Therapist
Angela works with youth ages 13 and up, as well as adults. She approaches treatment with a focus on individuality and recognizing the client as the expert on their own life. She specializes in treating symptoms of depression, anxiety, self-harm behaviors, and body-focused repetitive behaviors. Treatment will center around developing healthy coping skills, regulating emotions, self-care practices, radical acceptance, and mindfulness techniques. She also works in substance use treatment, supporting individuals on their journey to recovery, advocating for community acceptance, and teaching shame resilience. In addition, she welcomes opportunities to assist in your career exploration, using your personal interests and skills to help you identify your path to the future.

Angela works in the following areas: Alcohol and Drug Abuse, Anxiety, Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors, Depression, Mood disorders, Self-Harm Behaviors, Anger Management, Career Development, Chronic Pain, Codependency, Coping Skills, Excoriation (skin-picking), Mindfulness, Radical Acceptance, Self-esteem, Shame Resilience, Suicidal ideation, Trauma and Trichotillomania (hair-pulling).

You can reach Angela by calling 231-714-0282 or e-mailing angela@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 

 

Bobbi Harding

Mental Health Therapist

Bobbi obtained a Clinical Master’s Social Work degree from Ferris State University and currently possesses a Clinical Master’s Social Work Limited License. She grew up in inner city Indianapolis and relocated to Traverse City in 2009 to be closer to family. She has experienced some great hardships in her adolescence. Bobbi believes that committing to path of overall wellness and self-growth is the start of a new life. She went back to school as an adult learner, after spending most of her youth working in veterinary medicine. The power of connectivity led her from the field of animal science to social work.

Bobbi practices a whole body, holistic, and eclectic approach to therapy. While customizing therapy, she perceives the body as an ecosystem, with all systems needing support to achieve overall wellness. Her experience has been in integrated therapy, working with holistic, functional, and traditional medical physicians, dentists, and other fields of treatment to collaboratively treat for whole body wellness. She also teaches mindfulness for clients to gain tools to access optimum success. She has additionally worked with at risk youth, (preteen-young adult), transitioning youth, pregnancy, parenting, anxiety, depression, medical maintenance, health related illness, end of life, childhood trauma, life transitions, and a variety of other mental health conditions. She has spent many years working with those experiencing homelessness, sexual assault and domestic violence as well.

She holds a great passion for advocacy for children and their families with extreme food allergies, human equality, and human rights. She enjoys meditation, yoga, hiking, nutrition, horticulture, and spending time in nature with her family.

You can reach Bobbi by calling 231-714-0282 or e-mailing bobbi@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 

Emmy Hendry

Mental Health Therapist

Emmy obtained her Bachelor’s of Social Work degree from Ferris State University, and her Master’s of Clinical Social Work degree. She has worked in the social services field for eight years serving various populations in Traverse City. Emmy has worked closely with domestic violence survivors, sexual assault survivors, individuals experiencing homelessness, child welfare, foster care and adoption, substance abuse, and college students. Emmy enjoys spending time outdoors, doing yoga, meditating, reading, hiking with her dog, and relaxing with her friends and family.

Emmy believes that your well-being relies on achieving balance in all aspects of your life. This requires a whole health approach that will serve the mind, body, and soul. Emmy specializes in trauma; specifically sexual, violence, and grief. She has extensive experience working with children, teens, families, LGBTQIA+ community; as well as working with individuals struggling with addiction and recovery. Emmy is passionate about helping individuals process and work through their traumas, anxiety, depression, and various mental health symptoms. Emmy believes that all individuals have the capacity to live the life that they want and deserve. She values creating an environment that allows her clients to feel inspired to grow, recover, and thrive in their resiliency.

Emmy works with clients experiencing anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, substance use disorders, relationships, family issues, grief and loss, self esteem, sexual abuse trauma, sex and intimacy, as well that those in the LGBTQIA+ community.

You can reach Emmy by calling 231-714-0282 or e-mailing emmy@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 

 Jeanice Knight-Bogatz 

Mental Health Therapist

Jeanice is a Northern Michigan native and completed her undergraduate degree at Northern Michigan University with a focus on Criminal Justice and Sociology.  Her ongoing interest in the field of Psychology led her to the Midwest where she studied and trained to become a counselor and was a member of the National Health Service Corps for 6 years, providing services to underserved rural areas of Iowa. Over the past 15 years she has had the opportunity to interact and treat individuals of all age ranges in the social services and mental health fields. Jeanice has worked in a variance of capacities including family support advocate, home-based work with families as a community treatment aide, and residential care in a youth substance treatment facility prior to the completion of her graduate degree.

Jeanice has been trained in the Boys Town treatment model during her time at Behaven, an outpatient treatment center that addresses severe behaviors for children and adolescence. This approach focuses on implementation of structure in the home to improve healthy communication in the family system, reduce conflict, and increase family cohesion through effectively teaching social and communication skills to children and the family.  Jeanice has extensive experience providing clinical services to children, adolescents, individual adults, and families. She uses Family Systems, CBT, and Person-Centered approaches to assist individuals and families in reaching their treatment goals on a holistic level to achieve long term positive change. In 2011 Jeanice completed training in Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT). This therapeutic parenting model is used to enrich parenting skills and to treat children ages 2-7 years old to increase healthy attachment in the family system. It is a modality employed to facilitate healthy change and assist families in the reduction of symptoms and behaviors that contribute to conflict. PCIT can be integrated with other treatment models including EMDR, to increase child role acceptance, reduce underlying traumatic symptoms that contribute to conflict, and improve the parent-child relationship dynamic to effectively treat children.

In 2013 Jeanice completed Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) training. EMDR is endorsed by the World Health Organization as an effective empirically validated treatment for trauma. EMDR is utilized to treat and reduce distress associated with adverse childhood experiences, severe trauma, decrease symptoms of anxiety, and improve adaptability to life stressors.  In May of 2019 she completed the requirements necessary to become an EMDR Certified Therapist. Since 2012 she has trained under the supervision of The Attachment and Trauma Institute of Nebraska and is currently an EMDR Consultant In Training.  Jeanice also offers Brain Spotting Therapy.

Jeanice enjoys working with all ages and diagnosis with specialization in trauma and healthy attachment. In her spare time, she enjoys art, local music, and all wilderness pursuits. Her hope is for clients to achieve wellness through healthy integration of life elements, become empowered to overcome life stressors, and increase mindfulness for lasting positive change.

You can reach Jeanice by calling 231-714-0282  or e-mailing jeanice@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 

Nicole Ball

Mental Health Therapist and Owner
traverse-city-counselor-nicole-ball
Nicole is the owner of Mental Wellness Counseling. Nicole works with clients that are dealing with anxiety and want quick results to get back to life. As well, clients that value a holistic approach to therapy tend to be drawn to Nicole, especially if they are working through a transition such as divorce, career change, pregnancy, or other life/relationship changes. Nicole takes a compassionate and holistic approach to teaching parenting, working through past trauma, setting life goals and building coping skills to find more peace in life. Nicole conducts therapy with individuals, couples, families and groups.

Nicole Ball is a Licensed Master Social Worker

      • Bachelors of Social Work from Ferris State University
      • Masters of Social Work from Grand Valley State University
      • Clinical Master’s Social Worker License State of Michigan
      • Member of the National Association of Social Workers

Nicole is a native of Northern Michigan and has over fifteen years’ experience working with individuals, children and families at local agencies such as The Women’s Recourse Center, Child and Family Services of Northwestern Michigan and Third Level Crisis Center. She is currently a Professor of Social Work at Ferris State University, teaching at both the Traverse City and Big Rapids campuses.

Nicole has a passion for nature and believes in utilizing ones unique strengths and creativity as a source of healing. Nicole specializes in anxiety, particularly pregnancy and health related anxiety, healing from trauma associated with surviving domestic violence or sexual assault, post separation adjustment issues, depression, assisting clients with personal and career goal setting and life transitions.  

Nicole’s practice with clients includes a holistic approach that focuses on all aspects of a person’s life including physical, mental and spiritual. Nicole holds the belief that with the use of a holistic approach the underlying cause of the psychological distress can be found and addressed to gain optimum mental functioning and happiness. She utilizes a cognitive-behavioral therapy approaches to assist clients in recognizing how their feelings, thoughts and behaviors connect. Nicole also uses mindfulness techniques to help individuals gain new strategies for personal growth. Nicole conducts therapy with individuals, couples, families and groups.

You can reach Nicole by calling 231-714-0282 ext. 1 or e-mailing nicole@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 Steve Greenman

Mental Health Therapist

traverse-city-addictions-counselor-steve-greenmanSteve specializes in counseling complex family situations, substance abuse, and parenting.

Steve Greenman, MA, LPC, NCC is a licensed professional counselor (LPC) and joined Mental Wellness Counseling in 2012.

  • Bachelors of Arts: Michigan State University (Psychology & American/Russian History)
  • State of Michigan teacher certification
  • Masters in Arts from Western Michigan University with a focus on Community Counseling
  • Certification in substance abuse counseling
  • Works with complex family situations
  • Couples counseling
  • Adults dealing with transition, anxiety, depression, and relationship issues

Steve is a life long resident of Northern Michigan who has a passion for reading, writing, music and helping others.  Steve is a Traverse City counselor. Steve’s counseling philosophy is holistic, approaching each issue on its own merit and evaluating influences to help overcome life’s dilemmas.

Steve is the father of two wonderful boys. He graduated from Michigan State University (Psychology & American/Russian History), has his State of Michigan teacher certification, and Masters in Arts from Western Michigan University with a focus on Community Counseling. Lastly, he also has a certification in substance abuse counseling. Steve has 30 years of business experience in Northern Michigan. Lastly, Steve has experience working at The Traverse Health Clinic, Goodwill Inn, Addiction Treatment Services and Safe Harbor.

You can reach Steve by calling 231-714-0282  or e-mailing steve@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 Christina Walsh

Mental Health Therapist

Christina takes a whole health approach to help those with anxiety looking to find calmness balance within their lives. Christina specializes in working with LGBTQ adults and teens addressing many areas of their lives including sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity, gender nonconformity as well as mental health, addiction, intimacy, self-esteem, and self-acceptance. She also provides relationship counseling for LGBTQ couples and parents or families of an LGBTQ identifying individual. Christina also specializes in providing services to those experiencing addiction, substance use disorder, and recovery in finding and maintaining a life of sobriety that works for the individual and promotes overall wellbeing.

Christina is a clinical master’s social worker who has lived in Traverse City for over 10 years working in human services. Her experience includes The Goodwill Inn, Munson’s HIV/AIDS department Thomas Judd Care Center, United Way, and Addiction Treatment Services. Christina is a board member of Polestar LGBT+ Community Center where she works as youth director, community educator, and advocate. Christina enjoys traveling with her partner, learning about new cultures, and sitting around a campfire with friends. She celebrates diversity and practices with an approach that each person has a special journey and offers support for clients to create and function within a life that is as different as they are.

Christina is person centered with a focus on treating you as a unique individual to find your distinct path to strength and address many different areas of your life to live in balanced wellness.

You can reach Christina by calling 231-714-0282 Ext 3 or e-mailing christina@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 Brendan O’Donnel

Mental Health Therapist

Brendan currently possess a Clinical Master’s Social Work, Limited License from the State of Michigan. He is a member of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT).

If you are experiencing anxiety or depression, coping with complex medical concerns, confronting mortality, or distress related to some aspect of your sexuality, he is available to foster a safe and supportive environment where together we can explore pathways to balance and wellbeing.

Brendan draws on his experience working as a medical social worker to hold space for the interwoven emotions and unexpected changes frequently experienced when our physical and psychological health let us down.

Brendan believes that a person’s sexual identity and expression are significant components to a happy and healthy life. Yet, often, we struggle to communicate truths about our sexual needs and desires to those in need of that information.

Brendan provides an affirming therapeutic environment to individuals and groups, in a variety of relationship geometries (single, monogamous, open, poly, kink, etc.), who are experiencing difficulty with global well-being, oppressive systems, depression, sexual function, gender identity, communication, and relationship dynamics.

Additionally, Brendan provides support to male identified folks who want to heal from toxic masculinity. Toxic masculinity penalizes male-presenting children and adults for experiencing vulnerability and incentivizes a disconnection/dissociation from the whole self. Brendan has personally committed to exploring the multitude of masculinities and engage in his own practices of healing. Brendan builds upon these experiences to create a safe environment where male identified folks can reconnect to their whole selves and heal from shame and trauma.

Some of the fixed landmarks that guide Brendan’s practice include:

  • A safe therapeutic relationship is a container for personal discovery and healing
  • We must understand and address systemic inequalities, especially as they relate to power differentials across race and gender within therapy and the wider culture
  • We simultaneously exist as individuals and as constituents within various systems and can access and build upon the power we have within ourselves to promote positive change in ourselves, our families, our organizations, and our country
  • Organizational change and public legislation (county, city, state, national) are underutilized tools to protect human rights and redress historic wrongs

Brendan’s pronouns are he/him/his. He presents as a cis-gender male. Additional identities he contains include able-bodied, white, and university educated. He grew up middle-class, and has spent much of his adult life working class. Brendan relaxes by reading novels on the beaches of Northern Michigan, sailing, or driving his motorcycle.

You can reach Brendan by calling 231-714-0282 Ext. 4 or e-mailing brendan@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

Samantha Garcia

Mental Health Therapist

Samantha is a native of Northern Michigan with over 20 years of experience working with adults, children, and families navigating needs-based service systems, as well as those experiencing conflict with co-parenting, disability rights, advocacy, and education.

She is passionate about client-empowerment. Samantha works with those experiencing anxiety, depression and family conflicts. She works with families trying to navigate systems such as Probate and Friend of the Court, child protective services, special education, and community mental health. She also works with those who are dealing with the complexities of caring and advocating for loved ones with disabilities. Samantha is passionate about assisting clients who find themselves in conflict and desire to identify a productive path forward. Samantha takes a compassionate, yet constructive approach to developing the skills necessary to promote mental health for people adjusting to, and living in extraordinary circumstances.

Samantha specializes in assisting individuals navigate trauma associated with acute and chronic illness or family separation by increasing a capacity for resilience through skill building, action planning, and conflict resolution.

Professional Credentials and Education:

  • Bachelors in Family Life Education, Spring Arbor University
  • Master of Social Work, Arizona State University
  • Certified Mediator: Domestic Relations, Restorative Justice, and Special Education
  • CPI Non-violent Crisis Intervention Instructor
  • Clinical Master’s Social Worker Limited License State of Michigan
  • Member of the National Association of Social Workers

You can reach Samantha by calling 231-714-0282  or e-mailing samantha@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

Jen Kraus

Mental Health Therapist

traverse-city-early-childhood-counselor-jen-krausJen has a Masters Degree in Social Work from the University of Michigan. She specializes in work with new parents and early parenting struggles with parenting, attachment, Post-Partum Depression  and Perinatal Mood Disorders. Jen also specializes in work with children 0-10 years old. She takes a collaborative approach to help children and address their needs.

Jen works to help children heal trauma, as well as work to help manage anxiety, depression and address behavioral issues. She is trained in Child Parent Psychotherapy and Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

 

You can reach Jen by calling 231-714-0282  or e-mailing j.kraus@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 

Theresa Carey

Mental Health Therapist

Theresa Carey is a Licensed Professional Counselor. She received her Master’s degree in counseling from Western Michigan University and has been a behavioral health holistic counselor since 2002. She is trained in Energy Psychology. Energy Psychology is a field of psychotherapy which uses techniques, tools and strategies for clearing emotional blocks, physical pain, reduction of anxiety and resolution of phobias to name just a few.  In addition to her private practice, Theresa currently facilitates groups addressing behaviors that often lead to power and control and inequality in relationships.

Theresa is experienced in offering individual, couple or family support and guidance using a therapeutic approach grounded in mind/body theory. She has assisted those in crisis, feeling fragile, facing a difficult decision, addressing habits that no longer serve, struggling with anxiety, abandonment, depression, anger, domestic violence, loss and grief, life transitions and recovery from trauma.

 

You can reach Theresa by calling 231-714-0282  or e-mailing theresa@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

 

Lauren Franklin

Mental Health Intern

Lauren holds her undergraduate degree in Community Health Education from Northern Michigan University and is currently attending Ferris State University, in her final year of her MSW (Masters of Social Work) degree. Lauren joins Mental Wellness Counseling as an intern, with hopes to specialize in adolescent therapy upon graduation from her social work program.  Prior to this internship, Lauren has experience working as a behavioral health technician in an inpatient mental health unit, as well as holding the position of outdoor recreational therapist for a youth residential substance abuse program. In these previous roles, Lauren frequently provided individuals with direct support, as well as facilitated group sessions.

Lauren practices a holistic approach that keeps the client at the center of her work while placing a strong emphasis on cognitive behavioral therapy to help clients deeper understand how their emotions, feelings and behavior come-together. If you have not had a chance to meet Lauren, it doesn’t take long for you to recognize and appreciate her passion for nature and its healing properties, especially when working with conditions such as anxiety and depression.  In her spare time, Lauren loves to spend time in the outdoors—hiking, camping, and kayaking—and is often not spotted without her dog, Bandit.

You can reach Lauren by calling 231-714-0282 or e-mailing lauren@mentalwellnesscounseling.com

 

We’d love to hear from you. Please contact uswith any questions, comments, or thoughts that you have from your experience with our Traverse City counselors. Also, if Mental Wellness Counseling has helped you, we’d love to hear your story. Thanks for considering Mental Wellness Counseling | A Traverse City Counseling Practice.

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