Psychology Faculty

Reimagining Professional Practice

ALAN BRISKIN received his Bachelor’s from Goddard College and his Master’s and Doctorate from the Wright Institute. He is co-founder of the Collective Wisdom Initiative is a leading voice in the field of organizational learning and development. Alan’s work as an organizational consultant and researcher came to further fruition in his co-authored book, The Power of Collective Wisdom, which won the 2010 Nautilus Award in the category of Business and Leadership. Another co-authored publication, Daily Miracles: Stories and Practices of Humanity and Excellence in Health Care, was chosen as the 2007 Book of the Year by the American Journal of Nursing.

ALEXANDER SCHIEFFER received his Doctorate from the University of St. Gallen. He founded CELL: Center of Excellence for Leadership and Learning, a consultancy specializing in innovative design, leadership and transformation. He co-founded TRANS4M, a new Center for Integral Development with a focus on transformational education and innovative research. He is widely published in both academic and literary works. He has co-authored the books, Transformation Management: Towards the Integral Enterprise, Integral Research and Innovation, Integral Economics, and Integral Dynamics.

ALLISON BROENNIMANN received her Bachelor’s from the University of California at Santa Cruz and her Master’s and Doctorate from Palo Alto University. A neuropsychologist in private practice specializing in brain injury, disease, and trauma, Allison also consults to medical settings where she provides program development and supervision for behavioral health services. Her research interests include the effects of trauma on intimacy and attachment, as well as the relationship between shamanism and psychology.

ANDREA KIRK received her Bachelor’s from the University of Michigan and her Doctorate from Sophia University. A licensed psychologist in private practice, Andrea’s research interests have focused on the efficacy of dance/movement therapy for women with postpartum depression.

ANGELA SELLS received her Bachelor’s from University of California Santa Barbara and her Master’s and Doctorate from Pacifica Graduate Institute. She has developed and taught multiple courses ranging from Grief in Mythic Literature and Introduction to Women and Mythology: Series.

BETH CURTIN received her Bachelor’s from Sonoma State University and her Master’s and Doctorate from Meridian University. Beth is a licensed psychologist and specializes in working with children with autism spectrum disorders, learning differences, and other neuro-developmental impairments. Beth coordinates all of the psychological services for the Anova Center for Education which includes the training and supervision of AMFTs and registered psychological assistants.

CHRIS SIMMONS received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Sonoma State University, and his Doctorate from Meridian University. Chris has spent over 20 years in the public sector and is currently an executive with a local law enforcement agency. His research has focused on criminal psychopathy and sociopathy, forensic psychology and investigation, and the psychology of the shadow. As his background is also rooted in organizational leadership and development, Chris has significant experience facilitating and teaching governmental administrators on collective shadow and groupthink processes that can affect management decision-making. He has extensive experience interviewing hundreds of violent offenders and those who have been caught in the throes of their own disidentified shadow.

CLARE WILLIS received her Bachelor’s from the University of California at Santa Cruz, her Masters (2) from San Francisco State and Harvard University, and her Doctorate from Meridian University. Prior to her clinical training, Clare engaged in academic research via an east coast multi-university research consortium which focused on improving public education. A published fiction writer and former professional editor, Clare’s clinical interests focus on public systems of care, including services for homeless HIV services and substance abuse treatment.

DAVID SIBBET received his bachelors from Occidental College and his masters from Northwestern university. He Is a distinguished process consultant recognized by the Organizational Development Network Award and is the Chairman of Grove Consultants International. David pioneered visual facilitation and is the author and co author of a series of books on visual facilitation and consultation.

DIANNA GRAYER received her Bachelor’s from San Francisco State University and her Doctorate from Meridian University. In private practice as a psychotherapist, Dianna specializes in issues of childhood maternal wounding, parenting, and foster care and adoption. She has published six children’s books and a self-esteem workbook.

DUANE ELGIN received his MBA from the Wharton Business School, has an MA in economic history from the University of Pennsylvania and is an honorary PhD for work in “ecological and spiritual transformation” from the California Institute of Integral Studies. Duane is an internationally recognized speaker, author, and social visionary. In 2006, he received the International Peace Award of Japan (the Goi award) in recognition of his contribution to a global “vision, consciousness, and lifestyle” that fosters a “more sustainable and spiritual culture.” His books include: The Living Universe: Where Are We? Who Are We? Where Are We Going?; Promise Ahead: A Vision of Hope and Action for Humanity’s Future, Voluntary Simplicity: Toward a Way of Life that is Outwardly Simple, Inwardly Rich, and Awakening Earth: Exploring the Evolution of Human Culture and Consciousness. With Joseph Campbell and other scholars he co-authored the book Changing Images of Man.

ED BIERY received his Bachelor’s and his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the University of California, Davis. He also received his Master’s and Doctorate from Meridian University. Ed’s interests relate to the practical interface of neurobiology with clinical practice in imaginal psychology, to help clients better understand what is going on in their bodies as well as their psyches, primarily through the exploration of image and the expression of affect.

ELEANOR CRISWELL received her Bachelor’s and Master’s from the University of Kentucky and her Doctorate from the University of Florida. She has been a professor of psychology at Sonoma State University since 1969 and has formerly been its Chairperson. She is the editor of the journal, Somatics, and the Director of the Novato Institute for Somatic Research and Training. As a counseling psychologist, she maintains a private practice in psychotherapy and somatics and is the author of Somatic Yoga and Somatics and Biofeedback.

ELIZABETH DEBOLD received her Bachelor’s from Mt. Holyoke College and her Master’s and Doctorate from Harvard University Graduate School of Education. She is a founding member of the Harvard Project on Women’s Psychology and Girls’ Development. She has served as the Academic Director of The Graduate Institute and Senior Editor of EnlightenNext. She is a leading authority on gender development and author of the bestselling, Mother Daughter Revolution: From Good Girls to Great Women.

GEORGE POR received his Bachelor’s from Eötvös Loránd Tudományegyetem, and his Master’s from Université Paris Vincennes (Paris VIII). George is a researcher in collective intelligence, the founder of Community Intelligence, and the online community, Enlivening Edge: News from Next-Stage Organizations. George offers strategic learning to visionary leaders in business, government, and civil society, and facilitates vertical development in people and organizations. His past academic posts include the London School of Economics, UC Berkeley, and the Université de Paris, and his consulting clients have included Climate and Development Knowledge Network, European Commission, European Investment Bank, Ford Motor Co., Global Leadership Academy, Greenpeace, Intel, International center for Organizational Design, Shell, Siemens, Unilever, UN Development Programme, World Business Academy, and the World Wildlife Foundation.

GISELA WENDLING received her Bachelor’s and Master’s from Sonoma State University and her Doctorate from Fielding Graduate University. She was the Coordinator of Sonoma State’s Organizational Development Master’s program and was an Assistant Professor at Sonoma State University in the Psychology department. Her interests include organizational development, ritual, and Indigenous cultures.

GOOLRUKH VAKIL received her Bachelor’s from the University of Bombay, her Master’s from New College in San Francisco, and her Doctorate from Sophia University. Born and raised in India and fluent in both Hindi and Gujarati, Goolrukh’s first career was as an immunologist, working in medical research at Stanford University. In private practice as a licensed psychotherapist, her research interests include the relationship between positive psychology, mindfulness, and psychotherapy.

JEAN HOUSTON (Chancellor) is a visionary researcher who has authored nearly 30 books and worked intensively in over 40 cultures, lectured in over 100 countries, and worked with major organizations such as UNICEF and NASA. Dr. Houston has served on the faculties of Columbia University, Hunter College, Marymount College, The New School for Social Research, and the University of California. She holds doctoral degrees in both psychology and religion. Since 2002, Dr. Houston has been working with the United Nations Development program, training leaders in developing cultures throughout the world.

JONATHAN REAMS received his Doctorate in Leadership Studies from Gonzaga University. He teaches and does research on leadership development, coaching and counseling. He serves as Editor-in Chief of Integral Review: A Transdisciplinary and Transcultural Journal for New Thought, Praxis and Research. He is also a co-founder of the Center for Transformative Leadership. His publications include: What’s Integral about Leadership?, Integral Leadership: Generating Space for Emergence through Quality of Presence, Leading the Future, Making Leadership Development Developmental and Integral Leadership: Opening Space by Leading through the Heart. He is also co-editor of Integral Education: New Directions for Higher Learning.

JOSEPH PUENTES received his Bachelor’s from Point Loma Nazarene University and his Master’s and Doctorate from University of La Verne. Formerly a staff psychologist at Sonoma State University, Joe is in private practice in Santa Rosa, California. His research interests include the psychology of peak performance, as well as best practices in the training of psychotherapists and psychologists.

JUSTIN FORMAN received his Bachelor’s from University of Toledo, his Doctorate from Meridian University, and is a Social Cognition Specialist. A licensed psychologist in private practice, Justin’s interests range from MAPS research, to EMDR, DBT, and rites of passage and initiation.

KATHIA CASTRO-LASZLO received her Bachelor’s and Master’s from the Tecnologico de Monterrey, and her Doctorate from Saybrook University. Kathia is the Chief Creative Officer of Magenta Wisdom and the Founding Partner of the Journey Network. As a consultant, she is the facilitator and designer of innovative learning systems within corporations, educational institutions, and international communities. She is widely published on the topics of cultural healing, integral sustainability, evolutionary learning communities and leadership.

Kathleen Tillman received her Bachelor’s at Mary Baldwin University, her Master’s at Eastern Mennonite University, and her Doctorate at the University of North Dakota. She is a clinical psychologist specializing in psychotherapy with children and adolescents and is also a registered play therapist. Kathleen’s research and clinical expertise include grief and loss, non-suicidal self-injury in children and adolescents, complex childhood trauma, program development and evaluation, treatment outcome research, and group counseling. Prior to teaching at Meridian, Kathleen held assistant professor positions at SUNY New Paltz and the University of North Dakota. She has has published several research studies and books, including curriculum for the Red Cross, the United Nations, and the American School Counselor Association.

Kayla A. Musielak-Hanold received her Bachelor’s, Master’s and her Doctorate from Michigan State University. A neuropsychologist by training, Kayla is a licensed psychologist, credentialed health service psychologist, and certified school psychologist. In private practice as both a clinical and neuropsychologist her professional interests relate to the complex set of environmental, biodlogica, and social factors affecting learning and neuropsychological development as well as non-pathologizing approaches to mental health.

Laurence Hillman received his Bachelor’s from Washington University, his Master’s also from Washington University, and his Doctorate from Meridian University. His work spans executive coaching, consulting, and teaching in the areas of leadership development, archetypal psychology, and archetypal astrology. He is co-creator of Archetypes at Work, a method of leadership development used to assess and develop individuals and organizations. His publications include Planets in Play: How to Reimagine Your Life Through the Language of Astrology (Jeremy Tarcher/Penguin) and Archetypes at Work: Evolving Your Story, One Character at a Time (Matador, 2019).

LILI GOODMAN FREITAS received her Bachelor’s from Wesleyan College, her Masters from Case Western Reserve University, and her Doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania. Formerly Department Chair of the Department of Liberal Arts at JFK University, and having served for many years as core faculty in the Consciousness, Health, and Healing program at Santa Monica University, Lili’s research interests include soul-centered leadership and the uses of creative ritual to celebrate rites-of-passage through the life cycle.

LISA HERMAN received her Bachelor’s from the University of California, Berkeley, her Master’s from California State University, Hayward, and her Doctorate from the California Institute of Integral Studies. Lisa maintains a private practice as a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist; her publications focus on trauma, play therapy, qualitative research, and transformative learning. In addition to the United States, Lisa has worked as a psychotherapist and teacher in Canada and Israel.

MEGGAN HARTMAN received her Bachelor’s from Warren Wilson College, her Master’s from Sophia University, and her Doctorate from Meridian University. In her work as a Pediatric Behavioral Sleep Specialist she specializes in helping mothers with postpartum adjustment issues navigate the complexities of motherhood. As a certified Purpose Guide, Meggan coaches individuals to realize and bring to fruition the depth of their life purpose. Her research interests include understanding cultures’ impact on the mothering identity.

MELISSA SCHWARTZ received her Master’s from Beacon College and her Doctorate from Rosebridge Graduate School (now Argosy University). Dually licensed as both a clinical psychologist and Marriage and Family Therapist, Melissa maintains a private practice as a consulting psychologist. She serves as a peer reviewer for the California Psychological Association’s Office of Professional Development Provider Approval Committee and for the APA journal, Psychology of Women Quarterly. She also serves as a Subject Matter Expert for the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. Her interests include the psychology of women, adult development, and qualitative research.

MONICA SHARMA trained as a physician and epidemiologist, worked for the United Nations for more than thirty years. Currently, she engages worldwide as an international expert and practitioner on leadership development for sustainable and equitable change.

NICO ROENPAGEL received his Doctorate in Arts Education from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia where he was also a member of its faculty for five years. In his work with the Forum for Meditation & Neuroscience, he established experimental connections between mindfulness and classical music, culminating in collaborations with two orchestras. His research interests include the integration of contemplative methods in higher education, mindfulness and embodiment-based approaches to emerging visions of new leadership, and the interplay of visual art and meditation. This last is addressed in his co-authored book, The Mindful Eye: Contemplative Pedagogies in the Visual Arts.

RAMA MANI received her Bachelor’s from Bryn Mawr College, her Master’s from Johns Hopkins University, and her Doctorate from the University of Cambridge. She is the Convenor of the Enacting Global Transformation Collaborative Initiative at the University of Oxford, the co-founder of Rising Women Rising World, a Fellow of the World Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award in Visionary Leadership by the Visioneers International Network. She has headed local and international organizations addressing conflict and injustice, and has acted as strategic advisor to foundations dealing with peace building, democracy and governance. She is the author of the book, Beyond Retribution: Seeking Justice in the Shadows of War and co-editor of the book, The Responsibility to Protect: Cultural Perspectives in the Global South.

ROSARIO SAMMARTINO received her Bachelor’s from Universidad Católica Argentina, and her Master’s from Pacifica Graduate Institute where is currently a doctoral candidate. Co-Director of Tamalpa Institute, Rosario is the cofounder of Tamalpa Latinoamerica and founder of Anthropos Institute, an art and self development center in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Her work with diverse populations has included incarcerated women, the homeless, at-risk youth, and hospitalized psychiatric patients. Rosario has conducted numerous lectures, seminars, and professional presentations on the body and expressive arts therapy in the U.S. and internationally, including Argentina, Peru, Mexico, and Portugal.

Stacy Benton received her Bachelor’s from Xavier University of Louisiana, her Master’s from the University of Illinois, and her Doctorate from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology. A licensed psychologist and Certified Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Counselor (CADC), she has had extensive clinical experience in a variety of settings including substance abuse facilities, community mental health centers, hospital psychiatric units, and in school systems. Stacy has also taught in topics related to public health; her research interests include healthcare disparities and the treatment of issues of addiction.

SOPHIA REINDERS received her Master’s and Doctorate from Saybrook Institute. She is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and has been practicing in San Francisco for over 20 years. Her interests include expressive arts and Somatic Psychology.

STUART SIGMAR received his Bachelor’s from Hunter College, and his Master’s and Doctorate from the Annenberg School of Communications at the University of Pennsylvania. Stuart’s background in higher education leadership includes his serving as founding dean of the School of Communication at Emerson College, dean of System-Wide Programs in Business and Management at Argosy University, and provost at Sofia University where he was also a member of the faculty. Other of his faculty experience includes his teaching at American Jewish University, Naropa University, Union Institute and University, and the State University of NY (SUNY Albany and Buffalo). Stuart is widely published on topics in communication studies including ethnographic methods, social communication approaches, and diversity in communication.

TERRI O’FALLON received her Bachelor’s and Master’s from Eastern Montana College, and her Doctorate from the California Institute of Integral Studies. Terri has over four decades of experience in the field of education as a teacher, administrator, and researcher. She has published and presented widely in the arenas of human development, organizational change, and transformative learning.

THOMAS MOORE received his Doctorate from Syracuse University. He is the author of the classic bestseller Care of the Soul and twenty other books, several of them bestsellers. He has been a monk, a musician, a university professor, and, for over thirty years, a psychotherapist practicing archetypal therapy with a spiritual dimension. For fifteen years he has taught psychiatrists and has worked closely with medical schools, hospices, and hospitals.

THOMAS STEININGER received his Doctorate at the University of Vienna with a special emphasis on consciousness and social evolution utilizing the work of Martin Heidegger and Ken Wilber. The founder of the German magazine, Evolve, Thomas also hosts the weekly web-broadcast, Radio Evolve, and pioneered the development of the Emerge Dialogue process, a collective process for creative engagement.

TIM WILLISON received his Bachelor’s from U.C. Santa Cruz, his Master’s from C.S.U. Northridge, and his Doctorate from Meridian University. Tim maintains a private practice in California as a licensed MFT, and facilitates group counseling with the State Bar of California.

Vanessa Fernandez-Gonzalez received her Bachelor’s from Nova Southeastern University, and her Master’s and Doctorate from Carlos Albizu University. A specialist in psychological assessment, her clinical work includes cognitive assessment of study participants for clinical trials as well as frequent presentations for clinicians in neuropsychology. Her research interests include aspects of traumatic brain injury, concussion, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, assessments, and cognitive rehabilitation.

VIRGINIA CROSSLEYSMITH received her Bachelor’s from Sonoma State, her Master’s from CSU San Francisco and her Doctorate from Meridian University. Formerly on the clinical staff of Kaiser Permanente’s Department of Psychiatry in both the Intensive Outpatient Therapy team and the Autism Spectrum Disorders team, where she provided education and advocacy for individuals and families, Virginia is a licensed psychologist and has maintained a private practice in California for over a decade.