Biography

The theme that runs through all the professional work that I have done over the past 35 years is the significance of GROWTH: personal growth and interpersonal growth.

A problematic situation for my profession is this party line: “Symptoms are the most important thing.” I think that is an extremely limited, and frankly, destructive view of people.  In the same way that being physically fit is more than being free of cold symptoms, being psychologically fit is more than being “free of psychiatric symptoms.”

So, I have focused my efforts on helping people move beyond symptom reduction and move towards growth.  In my experience, when psychological growth is re-established and the journey toward psychological fitness (and/or interpersonal fitness) is begun in earnest, most people solve their own problems without the specialized, intrusive, and expensive help of a clinical psychologist.

Education and Advanced Training

  • Loras College, Dubuque, Iowa, 1978, BA Psychology
  • Loras College, Dubuque, Iowa, 1981, MA Applied Psychology
  • University of Virginia Medical School, Charlottesville, Virginia, 1988 Clinical Psychology Residency
  • University of Virginia Medical School, Charlottesville, Virginia, 1987-1990 Advanced Interpersonal Training
  • Georgia State University, Atlanta, Georgia, 1991, PhD Clinical Psychology

Work

Since 1980, I’ve worked professionally in psychology-based positions in community, state, and federal hospitals; in community agencies; in for-profit companies; on local and national grants through non-profits; in Iowa, Georgia, Virginia, and now, finally, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, a place I have been delighted to call home since 1993.

Teaching

I’ve started doing university teaching in 1984. I regularly taught graduate and undergraduate courses and graduate courses, in these topic areas: statistics, research methods, counseling, psychotherapy, psychology, and leadership. Some of the local universities that I have taught at are: Marquette University, UW-Milwaukee, Cardinal Stritch University, Mt. Mary University, and Wisconsin School of Professional Psychology.

Consulting/Supervision

  • On occasion I still do executive coaching, but only when there is very high motivation present.
  • On occasion I still do supervision of other professionals who are beginning their work in the psychotherapy profession, but only if the individual has had previous training with me in interpersonal growth groups.

Other Cool Stuff that I am really PROUD of

In 2008 I created a way to bring scientific psychology to the typical person via a free, open-to-the-public, Q&A event that is held once a month. It’s called “Shrink ‘n’ Drink” (because “shrink” and “pizza” do not rhyme). Click here to read what the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel had to say about Shrink ‘n’ Drink after it had been going for about a year.

As a result of that effort I was selected by Milwaukee’s premier publication, Milwaukee Magazine, as 1 of 20 of Milwaukee’s Most Creative People, in November of 2013.  It was a honor to be chosen one of 20 top creatives in a metropolitan area of 2.1 million people!  But, the really cool part was being included on the same list as the other 19.  Read the article.  I think you’ll agree the creatives they selected are truly an amazing group of people doing mind-blowing stuff. Of all of the awards that I have received this one is, by far, the one I feel most proud of.

Building on the success of Shrink n Drink, in late 2009, I co-founded a company called Iron Psych, LLC.  It is a small company committed to creating content and experiences that help people grow psychologically. Since January 2010, we have delivered strength-based, scientifically-derived, video-based online courses.  The specific content varies but they are all focused on 2 things:

  • Psychological fitness
  • Interpersonal fitness (all committed relationships included here)

On a personal level, I love bicycling, theater, film, playing cards and other games with my family and friends, reading, and travel. Besides my own family, I thoroughly enjoy the company of my a whole pack of nieces, nephews, siblings, in-laws and cousins.