Personal Balance Counseling Staff Page
MICHELLE CONRAD, LCPC, DBTC
Michelle is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor who obtained her Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from Northwestern University. Michelle provides individual, family and couples counseling to adolescents, teens, and adults. Michelle has extensive experience in providing therapy to those with self-injuring behaviors, difficulties managing stress, suicidal thoughts, depression, anxiety, trauma, mood disorders, and personality disorders. Michelle is certified in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, but is trained in several empirically based therapies, including Cognitive Behavioral, Dialectical Behavioral, and Solution Focused therapy. She understands the importance of meeting you where you're at and will modify her practice to suit your needs.
Michelle has a background in both community outpatient work as well as inpatient psychiatric hospital work. Michelle is well versed on assessing client needs and developing appropriate treatment plans to help the client ascertain their new goals. While Michelle went to school in the Northern suburbs, she is from the local South suburbs and is familiar with a variety of resources around the area.
Michelle will work with you to create a comfortable, enjoyable, therapeutic space. She will focus on your strengths to facilitate progress towards therapeutic goals and overall improved quality of life.
Michelle can help you through major stressors or minor bumps in the road while working at your pace. She is open to many different working styles and can't wait to hear from you!
KARISSA HABEL, LPC
Karissa is a Licensed Professional Counselor who obtained her Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, with a Child and Adolescent emphasis from Lewis University. Karissa provides individual counseling to children, adolescents, and young adults. She has experience in providing therapy to those with eating disorders, trauma related to domestic violence, self-injuring behaviors, difficulties managing stress, suicidal thoughts, depression, and anxiety. Karissa is trained in several empirically based therapies, including, Dialectical Behavioral, Cognitive Behavioral and Interpersonal Theory, but she understands the importance of meeting you where you're at.
Karissa has a background in both community outpatient work as well as inpatient psychiatric hospital work. She is well versed on assessing client needs and developing appropriate treatment plan to help the client reach their new goals. She has worked in the western suburbs and is local to the south suburbs and is familiar with a number of resources within the area.
Karissa will work with you to create a comfortable, enjoyable, and safe therapeutic space. As a therapist she strives to educate, empower and encourage her clients to achieve their goals and improve quality of life.
MARY WALKER, LPC
Mary is a Licensed Professional Counselor with experience treating anxiety, depression and stress-related symptoms as well as post-traumatic stress, grief and loss, relationship issues, major life transition, addictive behavior, emerging adulthood and developmental concerns. Mary’s clinical interests include complex trauma, addiction recovery, and effects of addiction and recovery on the family system. Mary helps people begin the work of healing by offering a safe space for exploration and personal growth.
Mary received her M.A. in Counseling from Northwestern University. Her three-year clinical training sequence included internships at Turning Point Behavioral Health Care, the Family Institute at Northwestern University, and the Women’s Center at Northwestern University, where she specialized in individual counseling for survivors of childhood sexual abuse, sexual assault, or relationship violence, as well as those affected by sexual harassment, discrimination or related issues. Mary was also an instructor of individual and group psychodynamics for Northwestern University’s online counseling program.
Mary’s counseling style is empathic, collaborative and strengths-based. She views therapy as a creative process involving an integration of emotion, thought and body awareness, and a sense of wholeness—a discovery of one’s true self. She has an integrative approach that includes trauma-informed, DBT- informed, psychodynamic, emotion-focused, and relational frames, among others. Mary combines complementary perspectives and techniques to offer a highly personalized approach for each client. With compassion and care, she works with clients to help build on their strengths and realize their goals.
ALEXANDRA HOLDEFER, LCSW, CADC
Alexandra is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, and a Certified Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Counselor. She has extensive experience with helping individuals struggling with substance use disorders, eating disorders, mood disorders, and personality disorders. While embracing a passion for working with vulnerable populations, Alexandra seeks to support diversity, and social and economic justice.
Alexandra received her Master’s degree from Loyola University Chicago with a specialization in mental health and addiction studies. She provides individual, family, and couples counseling to those seeking to make a change, or improve the quality of their everyday life. She works with children, adolescents, and adults struggling with issues related to anxiety, depression, grief and loss, trauma, and suicidal thoughts. Alexandra has professional experience working in community health, child welfare, residential treatment settings, and inpatient hospitals.
Alexandra treats each client in a caring and respectful fashion, while also being mindful of individual differences and cultural and ethnic diversity. She provides an emphasis on developing a helping relationship that fosters empowerment, and focuses on the client’s strengths and the right to self-determination. While she maintains an empathetic approach, she will continue to challenge and assist you in accomplishing your individualized goals. Alexandra is dedicated to helping you help yourself!
KELLY JOHNSON, LCSW
Kelly is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and is certified in domestic violence and sexual assault. She has extensive experience with helping individuals struggling with substance use disorders, including dually diagnosed individuals; mood disorders; anxiety disorders; and domestic violence. While embracing a passion for working with vulnerable populations, Kelly seeks to support individuals on their therapeutic journey using different methods of therapy such as cognitive behavioral therapy and psychotherapy.
Kelly received her Master’s degree from University of St. Francis. She provides individual, group, family, and couples counseling to those seeking to make a change, or improve the quality of their everyday life. She works with adolescents and adults struggling with issues related to anxiety, depression, grief and loss, trauma, and suicidal thoughts. Kelly has professional experience working in community health and outpatient treatment centers.
Kelly treats each client in a caring and humble fashion, while also being mindful of individual differences and cultural and ethnic diversity. She provides an emphasis on developing a helping relationship that fosters empowerment, and focuses on the client’s strengths and the right to self-determination. While she maintains an empathetic approach, she will continue to challenge, assist and ask you for feedback in order to accomplish your individualized goals.
OLIVIA RODGERS-HANNAN, LCSW
Olivia is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She is experienced in treating individuals with trauma, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, gender-based issues, and difficulties with life transitions. She is certified in Cognitive Processing Therapy, an evidenced-based treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. She has extensive experience working with veterans across all generations. Her main methods of treatment are Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Mindfulness, but she tailors her approach to fit each individual’s needs.
Olivia received her Master’s degree from Loyola University Chicago, specializing in mental health, and has professional experience working in an outpatient facility. She works with adults, adolescents, couples, and groups. She works with those seeking to make positive changes and improve overall well-being and everyday functioning.
Olivia treats each client in a respectful and caring manner. She believes that the therapeutic relationship is collaborative, and she values a client’s right to self-determination. She develops treatment goals with each individual using a strengths-based approach. She is mindful of each individual’s differences and cultural/religious/ethnic/racial diversity.
SARAH HART, LCPC
Sarah is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor who obtained her Master’s degree in Clinical Counseling from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. Sarah provides individual, family and couples counseling to all age ranges. Sarah has had all-encompassing experience across therapeutic settings. As a result, Sarah specializes in treating individuals who suffer from suicidal ideations, self-injuring behaviors, depression, anxiety/panic, personality disorders, trauma, loss, transitional phases, eating disorders and substance abuse/dependence. Moreover, Sarah is a recent mother and can also provide pre and post-partum therapeutic support, as she can empathize with this major life transition. Sarah utilizes a range of therapeutic modalities, including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Solution-Focused and Person Centered Therapy. Additionally, Sarah has extensive experience treating codependency and incorporating the 12 steps when appropriate. Most importantly, Sarah is dedicated to treating each client as an individual, rather than a diagnosis, and adjusting treatment modalities based on the client’s needs.
Sarah has a background in providing therapy in residential treatment settings, partial hospitalization programming, child welfare and on an outpatient basis. Additionally, she is currently employed at Timberline Knolls Continuing Care in Orland Park and provides individual, family and group therapy to young women with co-occurring disorders.
Due to Sarah’s range of experience across different settings, she understands the importance of building a strong rapport with each client in order to facilitate a safe and trusting environment. Sarah is a warm and empathic individual that also believes in challenging and pushing her client’s to achieve their goals. Sarah believes in holding hope for those who cannot hold their own and providing a non-judgmental space to process all emotions. Sarah believes in incorporating strengths to empower each client to live out their meaningful life. She is ready and excited to work you!
BRIEA FRESTEL, LSW
Briea is a Licensed Social Worker, a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor, and Registered Yoga Teacher. She received her Master’s degree in Social Work from Aurora University. Briea provides individual, family, and couples counseling to all ages. She has a background in providing services at non-profit organizations to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, along with working at intensive outpatient, partial hospitalization, and residential levels of care.
She has experience in providing therapy to those with depression, anxiety, self-injury, and trauma along with substance use, personality disorders, and eating disorders. Her therapeutic approach consists of Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Solution-Focused, Motivational Interviewing, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, and Person Centered Therapy. Additionally, Briea has a passion for working with people who seek personal growth, mind and body connection, and a desire to live a meaningful life.
She approaches her therapeutic relationships with empathy and understanding, knowing that every story is not the same. Together, Briea and each person she works with will formulate goals that emphasize the individual’s strengths. She believes in empowering and challenging to assist in the creation of the very best version of you!
TARAH HOFFMANN, RDN
Tarah Hoffmann is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who obtained her Bachelors Degree in Human Nutrition and Dietetics from Southern Illinois University- Carbondale and Masters Degree in Healthcare Administration from Dominican University. Her background is a Clinical Dietitian working in a hospital setting. She is certified in Integrative and Functional Nutrition who has experience with Weight Management, Heart Health, Diabetes, Kidney Disease, Gut Health including IBS/Crohns/Ulcerative Colitis, Food intolerance's, Autoimmune Diseases, Cancer, and Pre/Post-natal nutrition.
Tarah has a passion for healing through food for one to feel their best. It is her goal to teach clients that balanced nutrition will maximize mind/body healthy and well-being. She believes each person is unique and creates individualized nutrition plans to help one get on the right path to obtain optimum vitality. Together we will take small steps to make lasting and positive changes in your health and lifestyle.
"Health is the greatest of human blessings" -Hippocrates