Leadership

 

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Section Chair
Stephanie Graham / 2016 – 2020

Stephanie (she/her/hers) is a Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Counseling Psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In her role, she teaches in both the doctoral and master’s programs and is the Director of the Counseling Psychology Training Clinic. She received her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Auburn University and completed her pre-doctoral internship at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Counseling & Consultation Services.

Prior to her position at UW-Madison, she worked in college counseling and maintained a private psychotherapy practice. Her research, teaching, clinical interests focus on vocational development and counseling, supervision and training, and working with LGBTQi individuals and couples in counseling. When not working, Stephanie enjoys going to the dog park, spending time with her partner and their twin girls, cooking, and hanging with friends!


Chair-Elect
Todd Raymond Avellar / 2018 – 2019

Todd Raymond Avellar, Ph.D. (he/him/his) is an assistant professor of psychology at Point Park University in downtown Pittsburgh, PA. At Point Park, Todd serves as the Director of Clinical Training in the humanistically-oriented Clinical-Community Psy.D. program. He enjoys working with students on preparing and applying for external placements and internships. Todd specializes in contemplative and mindfulness-based approaches as it pertains to psychotherapy, training, and research. He is also passionate about issues that relate to sexual and gender minority communities, as well supervision and consultation. Prior to joining Point Park, Todd received his Ph.D. in the Counseling, Clinical, and School Psychology combined program at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He completed his doctoral internship at the University of Delaware’s Center for Counseling and Student Development and his postdoctoral residency at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s University Health Services. When not working, Todd likes spontaneous adventures, crossfitting, yoga, running, and practicing the violin and piano.


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Past Chair
Dustin Shepler / 2014 – 2018

Dr. Shepler is a faculty member at the Michigan School of Professional Psychology (MiSPP). In addition to running research teams, he teaches and supervises doctoral students in clinical psychology. He received his PhD in counseling psychology from Ball State University in 2012 and completed his predoctoral internship at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte. He has incorporated his interest in LGBT issues in all aspects of his professional work.

In addition to his role at MiSPP, Dr. Shepler works with clients in private practice. He enjoys visiting family and spending time outdoors. He hopes to see SLGBTI grow in membership and continue contributing to the advancement of LGBT issues in society and within the profession.


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Past Chair
Bobby Reis / 2012 – 2016


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Secretary
Bonnie Benson-Palmgren / 2018 – 2020

Dr. Benson-Palmgren (she/her/hers) is Diversity Coordinator and Staff Psychologist at the University of Tennessee Knoxville Student Counseling Center. She is engaged in all aspects of university counseling center work and coordinates the intern multicultural seminar and the center’s diversity committee. She is a member of the Student Life Diversity Committee at UT and the Chancellor’s Commission for LGBT People and co-chairs its Trans and Non-Binary Issues subcommittee.

 Prior to her position at UT Knoxville, she worked at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Counseling & Consultation Service 2012-2015 as Psychologist and Trans Specialist. She helped develop a multi-disciplinary social transition model at UW-Madison to support trans and non-binary students in all aspects of transitioning while in college, including training/supervising practitioners in writing letters of support for hormones. She received the Honorary Rainbow Degree in 2015 from the LGBT Campus Center at UW.

 Dr. Benson-Palmgren received the Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Western Michigan University, M.Ed. in Counseling Psychology from University of Missouri-Columbia, and B.A. in Human Development and Social Relations from Earlham College (Richmond, IN). She completed both her doctoral internship and her 2-year post-internship fellowship (specializing in Gender and Sexual Minorities) at The Ohio State University Counseling & Consultation Services.


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Treasurer
Kodee Walls / 2018 – 2020

Kodee L. Walls (she/her/hers) is an ECP currently working as the Practicum Coordinator and a Staff Psychologist at Kansas State University.  In addition to providing support to predoctoral interns, she also runs the Stress Management program in the counseling center. She received her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Ball State University in 2016 and completed her predoctoral internship training at University of Tennessee—Knoxville.  Her areas of interest including the intersectionality of race and sexual orientation, experiences of sexual and gender minorities in rural America, and diversity/multicultural education.  She and her partner currently have one fur-baby and they enjoy spending time at home with one another.  Occasionally, the outdoors do beckon and they enjoy brisk walks when possible.  She hopes to continue increasing awareness and understanding of the LGBTQ population in more conservative/less inclusive environments.


Membership Chair
Ryan Ebersole / 2017 – 2019

 Ryan Ebersole, M.S. (he/him/his) is a PhD candidate in the counseling psychology program at the University at Albany, State University of New York. He received his M.S. in counseling psychology from the University of Southern Mississippi. During his time at the University at Albany, he was the research coordinator for a NIMHD-funded grant examining HIV-testing behaviors among Latino men who have sex with men. His current research focus is on lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB)-affirmative psychotherapy. Specifically, he is interested in exploring the factors that improve clinicians’ competence in practicing affirmatively as well as the experience of LGB clients in psychotherapy.  In his free time, Ryan enjoys reading, horror movies, playing with his two dogs, and good beer.


Program Committee Chair
Mirella Flores / 2018 – 2020

Mirella J. Flores (she/her/hers) is a fifth-year doctoral student in the University of Missouri-Kansas City counseling psychology program. Mirella is originally from Peru but grew up in West Palm Beach, Florida, and earned her B.S. in Psychology from the University of Florida. Her research interests focus on the influence of interpersonal violence and discrimination on the mental health of individuals with multiple intersecting marginalized identities, with a particular emphasis on the experiences of transgender people of color and sexual minority people of color.  Mirella is a proud mother of two cats, and she also loves animals. Some non-academic interests of Mirella include attending concerts and art events, drawing and painting, enjoying red wine and good beer, spending time with loved ones (including her fur-babies), practicing karate and CrossFit.


Members-at-Large

Adrian Rodriguez / 2016 – 2018

I received my Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville in summer 2016.  I am very interested in mental health as it relates to student development in higher education, in particular for students of color and those within the LGBT community.  For example, with my dissertation, I explored qualitatively the risks and protective factors perceived by Native American-identified students in their transition to a Predominately White Institution.  Outside of teaching, I love music and film, and am building a nice collection of vinyl records!  I’m also an avid dog lover, and have been blessed to be best friends with my cockapoo (George) for the past 9.5 years.

Tyler Lefevor / 2018 – 2020

Tyler (he/him/his) is a counselor-presenter-researcher and assistant professor in the psychology department of Rhodes College. He studies the impact of faith, gender, and sexuality on mental health, with the aim to translate research to benefit lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer, transgender, and religious communities. In particular, he is interested in the experiences of LGBTQ and religious individuals in therapy, how LGBTQ people of faith make decisions regarding their faith, sexuality, and gender, and risk/resilience factors among LGBTQ people of faith. He is a licensed psychologist in Tennessee and maintains a small private practice focused on helping individuals resolve conflicts and mental health challenges related to sexuality, gender, and faith. He also provide a range of trainings and workshops surrounding sexual and gender identities, diversity, and inclusion to interested businesses and community groups.


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Communications Chair
Douglas Knutson / 2016 – 2018

Douglas Knutson, Ph.D. (he/him/his) is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Douglas also earned a Masters of Theology (M.T.S.) from Boston University School of Theology and a Masters of Education (M.Ed.) in Applied Behavioral Studies with Professional Counseling from Oklahoma City University. Douglas conducts research in multicultural competence and diversity (broadly defined). His current projects are: an exploration of health care access among transgender individuals in rural areas, an investigation of depression among drag performers, and a study of self-harm and related factors among LGBTI transitional-aged youth in the State of Oklahoma.


 

SLGBTI Historian
David Whitcomb


Student Representatives

Jaidelynn Rogers / 2018 – 2020

Jaidelynn K. Rogers (she/her/hers) is a first-year student in the counseling psychology doctoral program at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Jaidelynn earned her B.A. in Psychology from Lindenwood University located in St. Charles, Missouri.  Her research interests include LGB romantic and sexual relationships, with focus on infidelity patterns, relationship satisfaction, and minority stress. Jaidelynn is also interested in LGB couples therapy and therapist competency in working with sexual minority clients. During her free time, Jaidelynn enjoys traveling, spending time with her golden retriever, Charlie, reading, listening to music, writing slam poetry, attending live theater, and hanging out with friends and family.

Roberto Renteria / 2018 – 2020

Roberto Rentería (he/his/him) is a third year doctoral student in the Counseling Psychology program at Arizona State University. Roberto obtained his BS in Psychology at Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri. His research and clinical interests focus mainly on Latinx LGBTQ+ health, examining the relations between identity, minority stress, and physical/mental health. Roberto is also interested in working with LGBTQ+ immigrant communities through advocacy and activism. During his free time, Roberto enjoys spending time with friends, watching movies, and traveling to new places.

Hunter Sully / 2017 – 2019

 Hunter Sully, M.A., (he/him/his) is a third-year student in the counseling psychology doctoral program at Ball State University. Hunter earned his B.A. in Psychology and Criminology from Capital University, and his M.A. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Ball State University. His areas of interest include neuroscience, intersectionality of race and sexual identity, and resiliency. Hunter’s career goals include becoming the training director of a university counseling center, seeing clients at a private practice, and adjunct teaching. During his free time, Hunter enjoys singing and listening to music, playing video games, and spending quality time with his husband, friends, and family.


Officer Nominations for SLGBTI

Congratulations to all those who won their nominations to positions within our executive Board. For a list of our Board members, please go to our leadership page. If you remain interested in an open position, please contact the Section Chair, Stephanie Graham.

ALL POSITIONS FILLED