Suzanne Peterson, MA, LMFT, CADC I

“Plant the seeds”- This is the mantra my mentor and former clinical supervisor instilled in me as a budding mental health professional. The notion that we, as mental health service providers, are but a blip on your lifelong radar as we walk alongside you while you grow and evolve into a more dynamic version of yourself.

I came to Kolpia because it was my aspiration to join this talented team due to this agency’s reputation which precedes itself within the Rogue Valley: Kolpia offers a caring environment with a cohesive team along with a unique healing experience which utilizes a model of integrative treatment for substance use and mental health struggles.

Kolpia’s philosophy fits well with my interests and competencies due to the fact that I wrote my master’s project on the topic of integrative recovery for females with trauma histories. Furthermore, I have been community-based in the mental health field for over 20 years allowing me to witness a unique perspective from clients that are going through the healing process. I have worked with clients from diverse backgrounds and various life experiences ranging from the heart of Oakland, CA to the Sacramento Valley to the suburbs of the San Francisco Bay Area.  My professional experience includes work with Autistic children performing ADA and RDI therapies; a preschool teacher with children that have been diagnosed with severe emotional disturbances; behavior modification with youth also that also have severe emotional disturbances; WRAParound care coordination with foster youth, pre- and post-adoption, youth in the juvenile justice system, and CSEC victims. Finally, I have worked on a crisis hotline while concurrently practicing grief counseling primarily with adults.

This work is extremely meaningful to me due to familial experience with extreme substance use and mental health struggles which ignited my passion for psychology at the age of 12 as related to a Stanford University doctor that made a huge impact upon me. This doctor went the extra mile by connecting my family member with treatment all the while offering significant hope and healing which ultimately saved my family member’s life. As such, it is my hope to embody this doctor’s generous spirit and deep compassion by supporting my clients in the same way.