Northern California Art Therapy Association
PO Box 642593
San Francisco, CA
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D i r e c t o r o f M e m b e r s h i p Devora Weinapple
D i r e c t o r o f L e g i s l a t i v e A f f a i r s Robin Valicenti
D i r e c t o r o f P r o g r a m s Laura Purpura
C h a p t e r P r e s i d e n t Kelsey Acevedo
D i r e c t o r o f P u b l i c R e l a t i o n s Rita Canny
S e c r e t a r y Jeanne Bissmyer
T r e a s u r e r Laura Rutledge
Robin Valicenti is a board certified art therapist, licensed professional counselor and practicing artist. She received her graduate education and training at Hahnemann University in Philadelphia, PA and has recently relocated to Northern California from the Philadelphia area. Robin has over 26 years of clinical experience helping people develop understanding, inspiration, confidence, security and comfort through the use of the creative arts. She specializes in the treatment of children who suffer from severe physical, spiritual and emotional neglect, abuse and violent victimization. Robin has been a clinical art therapy supervisor and educator of art therapy since 1993. She has taught and lectured for academic institutions such as the University of Pennsylvania, Drexel University, Bryn Mawr Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research, University of Evansville and Mount Mary College. She is a long term member and former chairperson of the American Art Therapy Association’s Art Committee. In addition to her role as clinician, healer and artist, Robin is a committed violence prevention activist and child advocate.
Laura received her BA in psychology from UC San Diego and her MA in Marital and Family Therapy from Notre Dame de Namur University. Prior to receiving her MFT, Laura was an elementary school educator and mentor teacher in Palo Alto. Laura grew up with art in her every day life as her mother is an artist, but it was in the elementary school classroom that Laura discovered a passion for art therapy, and after leaving the classroom decided to pursue her degree. She returned to the public school system to work with children struggling with social emotional disorders. She found her young clients were able to freely express themselves through art when other methods had proved unsuccessful. Laura’s other hobbies include reading, being outdoors, photography, and raising her 4 young children.
Rita Canny, ATR-BC, LMHC is a registered, board certified art therapist and licensed mental health counselor. She received her training at Pratt Institue, New York. She is a seasoned clincian with an extensive background in community mental health including inpatient psychiatry, chemical dependency, domestic violence and family counseling. Rita believes passionately in mentorship and has been providing clinical supervision for the past six years.
She is an active alumna of Mills College where she studied art history. Rita is a portrait painter and maker of many things involving tape and found objects.
Copyright 2009 NorCATA: Northern California Art Therapy Association. All Rights Reserved.
R e g i o n a l R e p r e s e n t a t i v e s
A San Francisco native, Devora is an art specialist and instructor at the Sand Hill School, associated with the Children's Health Council in Palo Alto. She works with children who show signs of learning differences. Devora is also a substitute instructor in the graduate art therapy psychology program at NDNU (Notre Dame de Namur University) where she received her MA in Marital and Family Therapy and Art Therapy Psychology in 2010. She is a registered art therapist and recently completed a 4-yr internship at CHAC (Community Health Awareness Council) in Mountain View. Through CHAC, Devora counseled at levels K-12. Her clinical emphasis includes art therapy, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), DBT, EFT, and family systems approaches in addressing issues of depression, anxiety, stress, grief, anger, and relationship and parenting challenges. Devora is trained in the Hazelden Matrix method on substance abuse and other addictions, and has led psychoed and support groups with teens, families, and parents. Other passions include yoga, long-distance cycling, Latin dancing, exhibiting as a co-op artist, playing piano for local community theatre productions, and doing animal-assisted therapy with her shelties Oscar and Milo.
Devora is also a web design consultant for therapists, artists, authors, and others.
Kelsey Acevedo studied at Loyal Marymount University in Los Angeles and received her degree in Marriage and Family Therapy with a specialization in Clinical Art Therapy. While in Los Angeles she worked at a therapeutic school and explored the methodology of Narrative therapy with individuals whose culture had a history of oral story telling. For the past several years in San Francisco, she has worked with such populations as adults with chronic mental illness in a residential setting and a day program for adults who have survived traumatic brain injury. Her current role is as a school-based mental health therapist in Oakland, working for Fred Finch Youth Center. Kelsey is able to offer expressive art therapy as a tool to support adolescents and their families and focusing on social and emotional health. Kelsey enjoys softball, gardening and her favorite medium is charcoal. She is serving on the board with a goal of community connectedness, support and to promote the use of expressive arts for the well being of mind and body.
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Jeanne received her MA in art therapy from The George Washington University in Washington, DC. She knew at the age of 13 that she wanted to be an art therapist after working as a volunteer with children in Mexico. She was intrigued at how easily she communicated with the children through drawing in the dirt of their village. From that moment she began her own personal, and later professional, pursuit of art's unique ability to connect us to ourselves, each other and our communities. Jeanne has experience working with children with terminal illnesses and adults with mental illness in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Additionally, Jeanne is a certified yoga teacher bringing mindfulness, presence, and breath to the people she is blessed to serve.
"Creativity is maximized while living in the present moment."