Mark Becker, LCSW-C
Mark Becker offers individual and family psychotherapy to adolescents, young and adults, as well as providing guidance and consultation services to parents. He also conducts adolescent and multifamily DBT skills groups. Mark specializes in treating clients with emotional and behavioral regulation difficulties and utilizes a variety of empirically-based, client-centered clinical approaches, including Dialectical Behavioral Therapy and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy.
Mark has over fourteen years of experience working in the mental health field. He began his career working at Chestnut Lodge Hospital in Rockville, Maryland. In 2006, Mark graduated with a masters degree in Social Work from the University of Maryland School of Social Work with a specialization in mental health. His clinical experience includes working at an adolescent group home, a psychiatric hospital, a community mental health clinic, a University mental health clinic, and a University health center. Before joining Dr. Judi Sprei & Associates on a basis, Mark served as a Senior Social Worker at The Treatment and Learning Center in Rockville, MD and coordinated and supervised the provision of counseling and behavioral management services at the Katherine Thomas High School, implementing educational programs for parents and providing individual and group therapy for adolescents with learning disabilities and Autism Spectrum Disorders. Mark was trained in DBT while at Adventist Behavioral Health and has participated in two DBT Consultation teams. Mark strives to provide a safe, validating, and non-judgmental therapeutic environment for his clients.
Alisa Breetz, M.A., PhD
Alisa received her bachelor’s degree from Brown University and her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at American University. Alisa completed her clinical psychology internship at Duke University Medical Center where she trained under nationally recognized experts in Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. While in graduate school at American, she completed an externship with Dr. Christine Courtois, a world renowned trauma specialists and a long term colleague of Dr. Sprei’s. As a Clinical Associate with Dr. Courtois, Alisa specialized in the treatment of complex and cumulative trauma following a relationship-based therapy approach. Alisa has also been a Psychology Associate at Stixrud & Associates conducting psycho-educational and neuropsychological testing and has been an adjunct faculty instructor at American University and a Clinical affiliate at George Washington University Counseling Center.
Ms. Breetz welcomes clients with a wide range of concerns, including mood, anxiety, and personality disorder issues. Alisa has particular research and clinical interest in the treatment of self-destructive behaviors and symptoms related to emotional dysregulation. She enjoys helping clients to identify their personal goals and values and to develop specific skills to create a more rewarding and value-driven life. She is committed to providing compassionate treatment that balances for change with acceptance of current realities. Her approach to psychotherapy is collaborative, empathic, result-oriented, and flexible, and emphasizes the importance of creating a genuine, supportive and honest therapeutic relationship.
In addition to clinical practice, Ms. Breetz has published and presented research topics related to mindful attention and awareness, fear of emotion, and rejection sensitivity. She continues to be actively engaged in research and believes in the importance of evidence-based clinical practice.
Amanda Jacob Pezzanite, LCSW-C
Amanda Jacob Pezzanite offers individual and skills group DBT for adolescents on Saturdays, evenings and some daytime hours. She enjoys including families in skills groups and family therapy when appropriate.
Amanda graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Social Work from Hood College. She went on to get her Master's in clinical social work with concentrations in mental health and substance abuse. While in graduate school she provided individual and group therapy at an outpatient substance abuse treatment center in Frederick, MD. Just after graduating she moved to Honduras to be a volunteer resource teacher for eight months.
Amanda also currently works at the John L. Gildner Regional Institute Children and Adolescents (JGL-RICA) in Rockville, MD. Amanda received training in DBT while at RICA. She provides group, family and individual therapy for children with emotional disabilities including, but not limited to autism spectrum disorders, major depressive disorders, generalized anxiety disorders, conduct disorders and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Amanda also leads DBT multi-family skills groups and DBT graduate groups. She has been working at JLG-RICA and providing DBT services for three years.
Hope Qi, LGSW
Hope Qi offers individual DBT for adolescents and adults on Sundays and evenings and periodically offers a Sunday DBT skills group for adolescents.
Hope graduated from Columbia School of Social Work with a Master of Science in Social Work and successfully completed the Dialectical Behavior Therapy Training Program. Hope has additional training in cognitive behavioral therapies for advanced suicide risk assessments and exposure therapy. As a DBT intern in the Adult Outpatient Psychiatry Department at -Long Island Jewish Medical Center, Hope conducted DBT individual therapy and DBT skills training to treat patients who suffer from borderline personality disorder and other co-occurring mental health disorders. She also had experience working with middle and high school students effectively utilizing evidence-based clinical practice to address school and family related stress. In addition to her work at Dr. Judi Sprei & Associates, Hope works in an intensive outpatient substance abuse treatment program for adolescents and young adults in Cabin John, Maryland where she provides DBT individual treatment and DBT skills training to help clients achieve their goals.
Aditi Vijay, Ed.M., Ph.D.
Dr. Vijay provides individual, couples and family psychotherapy for people struggling with emotion regulation issues and works with both adolescents and adults. She utilizes evidence-based treatments to develop a treatment plan working collaboratively with clients to create and live a valued life. She specializes in the treatment of PTSD, Anxiety, Depression, and Borderline Personality Disorder. Dr. Vijay has received extensive training in Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and cognitive-behavioral treatment approaches. Dr. Vijay trained under Dr, Alan Fruzzetti, one of the world leaders in the field of DBT and the major developer of family and couple programs utilizing DBT. Dr. Vijay is a licensed clinical psychologist in the State of Maryland.
Dr. Vijay completed her undergraduate education at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, a Master’s in Education at Harvard University, and her doctorate in clinical psychology at the University of Nevada, Reno. She completed her internship at the Baltimore VA she worked in the DBT program and on the PTSD unit. Until recently, Aditi was an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland. She is now at Georgetown University. She has an active research program, which examines patterns of emotion regulation and how it relates to the development and maintenance of psychological disorders. In addition to research, teaching, and clinical work, she also provides and consultation on DBT to therapists around the country.
Deborah Zlotnik, Ph.D.
Dr. Deborah Zlotnik, a Maryland Licensed Psychologist, conducts our parents' groups. Dr. Zlotnik graduated with a Bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Rochester and went on to get her in Clinical Psychology from St. John's University in New York. Her internship was at La Rabida Children's Hospital in Chicago where she specialized in complex trauma. For her postdoctoral fellowship, Dr. Zlotnik continued pursuing her interest in trauma at the Audrey Hepburn Children's House in Hackensack, New Jersey. Currently, she is a psychologist at the John L. Gildner Regional institute and Adolescents (JGL-RICA) in Rockville, MD where she received training in DBT. At RICA, she provides individual, family, and group therapy for adolescents with emotional disabilities including, but not limited to, major depressive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder, and hyperactivity disorder. Dr. Zlotnik also leads DBT multi-family adolescent skills and graduate groups. In addition to working at RICA and conducting DBT groups, Dr. Zlotnik specializes in comprehensive assessments for learning disorders, ADHD, and other psychological disorders.