Lisa grew up in downstate NY and came to Ithaca in 1987 to attend Cornell University. She completed her BS in Human Development and Family Studies in 1993 while working as an infant/toddler teacher at Ithaca Community Childcare Center. She stayed on at IC3 after graduating, where her interest in working with children and families led to a career in social work. Lisa received her MSW from Marywood University in Scranton, PA in 2003 and worked briefly after graduation as a clinician at Family and Children’s Service of Ithaca. Soon after this, Lisa began working for Franziska Racker Centers as a Day Treatment Counselor, working with children and teens with emotional and behavioral disabilities and their families.
As a Day Treatment Counselor, Lisa has worked with children and adolescents who struggle with anxiety, and who experience mood and behavioral difficulties. She is experienced in using Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy with children and adolescents, and has experience in teaching Dialectical Behavioral Therapy skills to teenagers. Her approach to working with children and adolescents is to help them discover their own strengths, and to develop life-long skills to manage their emotions so they can engage effectively with others in their world. Lisa works to build partnerships with parents and caregivers as she believes families are the best advocates and supports for their children.
Lisa has also been a Parenting Educator through Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County since 1999. In that position, she has taught classes including Parents Apart, the Parenting Skills Workshop Series, Parenting Styles, and Thriving with Your Spirited Child. She has also done in-home parenting education through their Facilitated Visitation program. Lisa takes a strengths-based, developmental approach to helping families through life-stage transitions. Her focus is on building on a family’s strengths and helping add new tools to their parenting skills, with the goal of improving communication and building positive relationships.