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Empowerment and Recovery Through Creativity!

PSA Art Awakenings is a psycho social rehabilitation program for adults and art therapy program for youth who are challenged by serious behavioral health issues and mental illnesses. Studios throughout Arizona offer therapeutic programs and expressive arts therapy in a supportive setting to promote mental health, personal growth, vocational training, and physical wellness through the performing and visual arts. Old Bisbee, Downtown Phoenix, Casa Grande and Tucson Galleries, art exhibits, First Friday and First Saturday Art Walks and other venues offer artists opportunities to sell their paintings, sculptures, mosaics, jewelry, fine art, music, poetry, and writings to benefit from art sales. Staff include art therapists, behavioral health professionals, peers, family members and volunteers.
Art Saves Lives!

Staff

The PSA Art Awakenings team believes in the healing power of creativity and all agree that: Art Saves Lives! A team of dedicated behavioral health professionals, the majority are also artists whose notoriety ranges from cities scattered throughout the United States to across the continents. Visit our parent site at

 

Sara Marriott, MS, LPC President & Chief Executive Officer, Founder of PSA Art Awakenings Program

Sara has over 40 years experience working in the mental health field. For over 20 years, she has worked for PSA and for over 16 years she has been the CEO. Sara has a broad background of experience that ranges from working with children and adolescents to the SMI population. She has sat on the Best Practices Committee of the State and has been involved in bringing new and innovative programming to PSA. Sara, along with her staff, helped create Art Awakenings, a new and creative way in working with those with psychiatric disabilities. The motto that she works with is “People, Service, Action” which has helped to expand PSA throughout the State of Arizona.

Administrative Team

  • Karen D. Puthoff President, PSA Art Awakenings

    Karen has dedicated her career to eradicating stigma and promoting recovery related to behavioral illness. Most recently the Deputy CEO of PSA Behavioral Health Agency, she offers over 25 combined years in executive level management and public relations, marketing, and fund raising. A graduate of Purdue University and St. Mary-of-the-Woods College, Karen has worked with the full spectrum of behavioral health services, from inpatient to outpatient behavioral health programs in Arizona and Indiana. She also served as chief operating officer of a foundation which restricted funds to support behavioral health programs, services, and scholarships. She is particularly honored to promote PSA Art Awakenings artists and galleries while developing services, in addition to other programs offered by PSA Behavioral Health Agency. Karen is proud to be part of the PSA Art Awakenings team and feels blessed to work with and serve such wonderfully talented individuals.Healing Through Art! http://issuu.com/richmanmediagroup/docs/ut-0114/17/

  • Michele Kaplan, Director of Clinical Training & Oversight

    With nearly 30 years experience in the behavioral health field, Michele has worked as a private practitioner and in community based agencies, both as a direct service provider and administrator. She is committed to clinically excellent and culturally appropriate service delivery and as a former, full-time artist Michele understands and appreciates the importance of art, individual creativity, and its impact on daily well-being.

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    Mark Montgomery, Regional Clinical Director

    Mark has 20 years of diverse behavioral health experience in the state of Arizona having previously worked in a variety of settings including private, community, and federal programs. He has extensive experience in the provision of direct clinical care with GMH and SMI clients with children, adolescents, and adults including supervision of clinical programs in direct care clinics. Mark is licensed by the State of Arizona as a Professional Counselor..

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    Joseph DeMaegd, Communications Associate

    New to the behavioral health field, Joseph joins Art Awakenings after working for the Governor’s Office of Youth, Faith and Family. A self-taught artist, Joseph has a true passion for the creative process.”I am extremely excited to be in this position to promote the life changing work that goes on every day at Art Awakenings.”

  • David (DW) May, Art Coordinator

    David (DW) has degrees in History and Psychology and did Master’s work in Counseling. For 30 years he worked with the world’s most natural canvas, a woman and her wardrobe. He then owned an art and framing company in Scottsdale, AZ. The experience he gained through the years helps him curate the individual art produced in the Art Awakenings studios. He is an accomplished ceramicist who specializes in unique shapes and combining glass with interesting mixtures of glazes.

Bisbee & Douglas Studios plus Sierra Vista Mobile Services

Coriana Eastman, Site Administrator

Coriana has held several roles in the past for PSA Art Awakenings ranging from site administrator and service provider to gallery manager and guest artist. In addition to her work in the behavioral health field, her art background is as a multimedia artist with a focus on surreal oil painting. She owned and operated a gallery for several years in Tucson, Arizona and is a former military member serving in the Air Force /Navy with as an aircraft mechanic inspector. Coriana has a Bachelor’s Degree in Professional Aeronautics but really enjoys working with Art Awakenings artists to bring out their creative nature to express themselves. “When an artist dips a brush into paint, it is like dipping into the soul…painting is like a visual diary of our hearts.”

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    Luis Ledgard, Artist Behavioral Health Specialist- Respite

    Luis comes to PSA with over five years of experience as a Medical Assistant, prior to moving to the United States. After moving to the US in 1976 and then to Arizona in 2010, he has been working in behavioral health for an additional five years. Luis originally worked at Art Awakenings’ Douglas site and now primarily works with artists of the Bisbee location.

  • Pat Panther, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Pat moved to Bisbee, where most of her family lives, from York, PA. In York she worked as a caregiver, case manager and then program coordinator at a Human Service Agency for 23 years. She has begun singing since she was four years old, playing guitar since she was 14, and performing solo and in various groups since she was 15. Pat believes that music and the arts nourish the heart and soul and allow us to see beyond our day-to-day lives. She is excited to be working in such an innovative and empowering program.

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    Sean Ortega, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, Douglas

    Sean joined PSA Art Awakenings in April, 2017. A Douglas native, he is a Behavioral Health Technician with five years of experience working in behavioral health arena. Sean learned digital design and embroidery from his father’s family business. In his spare time he is also a multimedia artist. Sean is very engaged with artists in the Douglas studio and enjoys assisting them in exploring their creativity while working on their recovery.

  • Irene Vega, Administrative Assistant, BHPP

    Irene is excited to transfer her skills and caring spirit to the PSA Art Awakenings’ Bisbee and Douglas studios. A Certified Nursing Assistant and Behavioral Health Para-Professional, she possesses a deep level of understanding and compassion for helping others. Irene particularly emjoys working with older adults and appreciates the opportunity to apply her talents to the behavioral health field.

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    Irma Villalobos, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, Douglas

    Irma joined the Art Awakenings team in March, 2016. As a Behavioral Health Para Professional, Irma facilitates group living skills services in the art studio setting. A caring and compassionate individual, she has three years experience as an instructional paraprofessional working in the Douglas Unified School District which included special needs children and preschoolers. Irma takes pride in her abilities to provide support in creating a safe and nurturing learning environment. She sees art as the “ability to express a person’s inner self which allows one to let go and grow”.

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    Ryan Lee Hunter, Gallery Curator, Old Bisbee Gallery & Ceramics Studio

    An independent mixed media artist, Ryan serves at Art Awakenings Gallery Curator for the non-profit organization’s only free standing gallery in the state. A former curator in a major New York City art scene, Ryan promotes the program through the sales of its artists’ paintings, jewelry, and ceramics while helping to break the stigma of mental health through creative means. Ryan believes that through self-awareness, inspiration and creativity, the mind can heal itself. Also a Certified Peer Support Specialist, Ryan uses his artistic skills and life achievements to bring awareness to those that need a helping hand to find the healing nature of the creative mind.

Douglas Youth Studio

  • Richard Paun, Youth Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Richard is a native of Arizona, and holds a Bachelors Degree in Art Education as well as a Masters of Arts Degree from Northern Arizona University. He has over 20 years teaching experience and is currently teaching Fine Arts at Douglas High School. His students focus on Drawing, Painting, and Ceramics. “I find it very rewarding working with young artists, and feel that the creation of art helps bring balance into our lives.”

  • David Diaz, Driver, BHT

    Holding a Bachelor’s Degree in Education from the University of Arizona and Industrial Education from the University of Phoenix, David has over 18 years of teaching experience in elementary and secondary education. Currently, he teaches Drafting and Design, Architecture, and Engineering in the Career Technical Education Department at Douglas High School. David’s goal is to motivate students to explore and learn the skills needed to lead them to enjoyable and thriving careers. “There is a productive role for every student in our society. It is our job to guide them to it.”

Casa Grande Studio

  • Aimii Martinez, Site Adminstrator

    Aimii has 11 years of behavioral health experience with eight years in an administrative role within the Cenpatico region. Aimii is actively volunteering with community partners in efforts to educate and assist artists and families with available resources in rural communities. She truly believes, “It takes a village”. “I feel fortunate to work in an environment that empowers individuals towards their own recovery.” Aimii expresses her own creativity through drawing, painting and ceramics.


  • Teresa Diaz, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Teresa Diaz has worked in behavior health as a customer service advocate for the last 4 years. She highly believes it is every person’s job to give quality care to the people they serve. She is very active in volunteering with several community partners to educate and assist families with available resources in rural communities. Teresa enjoys crafts and painting, and spends her time off encouraging her grandkids with writing and illustrating their own experiences in their lives as they grow. “I enjoy working for an agency that puts people first.”

          • Sasha Anspaugh-Kemp, Peer Support Specialist, ABHS

            Sasha is a Certified Peer Support and Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist with an immense passion for recovery and wellness. She firmly believes that support is a key to recovery for all and everyone can be successful in recovery. Sasha, specialized in the behavioral health field for five years, brings new aspects to recovery and support from her own lived experiences, providing education and support to adults and their families on mental health. “l feel fortunate that I can empower others and their progress in recovery.” Sasha expresses her creativity through many aspects of art, including music, theater and painting.

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    Sable Barney, MS, LAC, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Sable graduated from Grand Canyon University with her Master’s degree in professional counseling and is licensed by the state of Arizona. She moved from Idaho where she worked as a psvcho-social rehabilitation specialist. Sable loves working with the youth at Art Awakening’s studio in Casa Grande, and is dedicated to the positive growth and recovery of all her artists. Sable looks forward to continuing her professional development with Art Awakenings while making a difference in the lives of those around her.

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    Yvonne De’louth, BHT, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Yvonne De’Louth, originally from Southern California, loves art and cheerleading. She has worked in the behavioral health field for over 20 years, including with developmentally disabled adults and children. She studied at CSUN after attending LAPC for Sociology to become a police officer and later changed to continue working in the mental health field. Moving to Casa Grande, in 2006, she now shares her love for the arts, bringing new and great ideas to the studio.

  • Jessica Pratt

    Jessica Pratt, BS, BHT, Administrative Assistant

    Jessica, an Arizona native, attended college in Flagstaff where she received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology with an emphasis in Biology. She’s always excited to dive into the world of art as a form of therapy and enjoys interacting with artists and the behavioral health community.

  • John Freshley

    John Freshley, Youth Driver

    John joined PSA after many years of self-employment. He enjoys transporting youngsters and being an integral part of the Art Awakenings team.

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    Violet Lopez,Behavioral Health Peer Support Specialist, Driver

    Violet offers Art Awakenings and its artists support, understanding, and positivity. Her interests in art, history, music and poetry reflect in her work. Violet has experience in peer support and provides support to all artists. Violet works with both the adults and children providing support and understanding. “l enjoy making people happy and seeing people succeed. I think it is amazing that art can be used as a skill to help one manage emotions. l’ve worked in the behavioral health field over five years and this program is by far the best.”

  • Neal Riersen

    Neal Riersen, MA, LAC, ABHS

    Neal, a Licensed Associate Counselor, has worked in the behavioral health field for the past five years. This work has given him the experience to assist a wide range of individuals, and the opportunity to better understand the complexities of mental illness. Neal is trained with a focus on the treatment of individuals who have experienced trauma and abuse. He is also trained in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and has two years experience at Art Awakenings.

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      Shari McCay, Behavioral Health Specialist – Youth

      Shari received her Bachelor’s degree in Human Services/ Management from the University of Phoenix and is currently working on her Master’s Degree in Psychology. Shari has worked with children, adults, and families in foster care, behavioral health, and special education systems for the last 8+ years. Shari loves her work at Art Awakenings and finds working with youth and adults to be a joy. Also, Shari combines her love of art with her passion for helping others see and understand the world in new ways.

Kingman & Bullhead City Studios

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        Rebecca Southall, Site Administrator

        A transplant from Massachusetts, Rebecca offers a broad history of experience in behavioral health. She brings many years of experience from her work with the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Disabilities as well as several non-profit organizations offering services to adults with Psychiatric or dual disorders. She has worked as a Program director, Residential Supervisor, Case Manager and other supervisory and non-supervisory positions. Rebecca also has a history of volunteerism and community activism, receiving several awards for her work in human services including the RRI Lifesaving Award and the DMR Community Inclusion Award. With an interest in the visual arts, she was the producer/director of a short documentary focused on the former Belchertown State School entitled, “Reflections of Belchertown” which narrates the stories of several individuals who were institutionalized at young ages due to psychiatric/developmental diagnosis. Rebecca enjoys painting and singing as her personal therapy. You can often catch her with her group of artists breaking into song, meditation, or even dance as a therapeutic tool.

        David Clay, BHT, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

        David is a talented artist whose preferred medium is oil painting. David has a degree in Fine Arts, a Fine Art Teaching Credential, and has been working with art since 1989. He worked for 2 years with AmeriCorps in community service and several years as a Park Ranger. In addition, David has many years’ experience working in the behavioral health field. His life and work experiences has prepared him to make a difference in peoples’ lives working for Art Awakenings. He is an artist that believes “art is a way of life and all should experience it”.

      • lori Vawter

        Lori Vawter, BHT, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

        Lori joins PSA with 17 years’ experience in the behavioral health field including residential and inpatient. She enjoys painting in oil and acrylic and since joining the Art Awakenings Team, has developed a love for clay sculpting. Lori’s passion for art and love for helping others makes Art Awakenings a perfect fit. “I have seen and experienced the many benefits of art and I am honored to be a part of the PSA team!”

      • Paul-Verburg

        Paul Verberg, Artist In Residence

        Paul VerBurg is the Artist in Residence for the Kingman and Bullhead Studios. Drawing and painting for over 45 years, he earned his BFA from the School of The Art Institute Of Chicago. Over the years Paul has shown his work from coast to coast, won many awards, and been published in several national magazines. “I have come to believe an artist’s vision is at its most pure when the veil between the conscious and subconscious states is thin and the artist is able to translate that vision of the beyond/within for others to experience. I also believe this imagery is for the most part autobiographical in the sense that at that moment the artist is honestly relaying his life experience.”

        Catherine Beaulieu, BHT

        Catherine comes to PSA Art Awakenings with experience in disability services, behavioral health, and a life time of creating art. A B.S. in Psychology from NAU and an M.S. in Professional Counseling from Grand Canyon University makes her the perfect addition to the Bullhead City PSA Art Awakenings Studio. “I am proud to have witnessed many people blossom into wonderful confident, creative artists by attending Art Awakenings group sessions with their self-confidence, self-empowerment, and zest for life increased. I look forward to supporting many more on their paths to becoming the people they want to be.”

Maricopa County Phoenix, Tempe & NW Phoenix Studios

Phoenix Studio

 

  • Cristina Pasos, Site Administrator, Phoenix & Warehouse 1005 Studios

    Cristina has a deep appreciation for the creative process which has prepared her for the work she does today. With over 10 years of experience working in social work, her role at PSA Art Awakenings has changed throughout the years and is now Site Administrator for Phoenix and Warehouse studios. Cristina graduated from Northern Arizona University with a degree in Humanities and plans to further education with a Master’s degree in Counseling. Since 2007 she has seen the wonderful benefits this program can give to those who use artistic expression as their pathway to recovery. “I love to see creative people at work.”

  • Jeremy DeJong, Art Manager

    Jeremy graduated from Arizona State University with a bachelor’s degree in social work and has enjoyed working in the field for over 13 years. He also has a minor in photography and art from Mesa Community College. “Working at Art Awakenings has allowed me to merge my two passions [art and social work], which I am very excited about!”

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    Aubrey Wilson, Program Assistant

    Aubrey has had a passion for helping people since she was a young child. She began serving in a professional capacity as a CNA and visited elderly patients in their homes. This work led her to earn a degree in psychology and focus her career on the behavioral health field. Aubrey worked as a Mental Health Specialist at in-patient units within the hospital system in Nebraska and Wisconsin. She saw the capacity that art had in helping patients recover when she worked with the occupational therapy programs on her unit. Her own love of art thrives at Art Awakenings where she has the privilege of working with artists and assisting in their recovery.

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    Heather Copland, Intake Specialist

    Heather offers PSA Art Awakenings and its artists a broad range of experiences. In the past, she has been a teacher, a caretaker and a counselor working with both children and adults. For the last 11 years, Heather has been working with mentally ill and developmentally disabled adults in 3 different states and within various programs. In addition to having a Sociology / Psychology Degree, she also has a Studio Art Degree. Her artistic hobbies include painting, canvas mosaics and creating various art projects using different mediums. “I absolutely love my position with PSA. I get to be the first point of contact for new artists and make that initial connection with them. To be able to see where they were when they came to us, and to watch them progress and grow is a beautiful sight to behold.”

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    Joe Van Tassel, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Joe came to Art Awakenings with many years of experience working with youth as a Mentor, Therapist and School Counselor. Graduating from Art and Design school with a Bachelor’s in Product Design, Joe had intentions of pursuing a career as a furniture designer. However, after spending a summer in the native villages of Alaska as a youth counselor, he decided to pursue a career helping others. This led Joe to Graduate school where he received a Master’s in School Counseling. “My experiences working with and supporting the artists in this program has contributed so much to my life and inspires me to continue growing, learning and dreaming.”

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    Alexander Bunch, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Alexander comes to PSA Art Awakenings as an Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist. With a Master’s Degree in Psychology and a passion for music, He has been playing music for 14 years on a variety of instruments such as the guitar, bass, piano, drums, mandolin and others. Alexander has worked for many years as a Therapist and before entering the field of Behavioral Health, had a great career as a musician. Alexander is ecstatic to have the opportunity to share his love and passion for music with PSA Art Awakenings and its artists.

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    Hannah Bergman, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Hannah offers PSA Art Awakenings a friendly smile, goofy sense of humor, diverse artistic interests, and a consistently helping hand. Striving to have a “let’s-figure-this-out-together” attitude, Hannah has experience with scrapbooking, acrylic painting, drawing, and other varied crafts. Hannah’s interest in art started from an early age as a Girl Scout and camp counselor. Hannah earned her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Arizona State and has since worked with the behavioral health and disabled adult population. Hannah enjoys being able to witness other artist’s development of artistic skill, while simultaneously improving their ability to heal from past traumas. “Art Awakenings is a wonderful and unique space for artists to learn coping skills through self-expression, friendship, and community and I feel incredibly fortunate to be a part of it”.

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    Marie Olson, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Marie’s artistic drive and love for visual art has been reinforced through a passion for creativity and encouragement from parents and teachers. Marie is experienced in drawing, painting, ceramics, and design. She studied at Arizona State University receiving a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Marie is furthering her education to support growing responsibilities by pursuing a Master’s degree in Clinical Counseling with a specialization in Expressive Arts Therapy. “I realize that many people have had negative experiences with art making. These negative experiences, and others, impact core beliefs about how valuable we believe ourselves to be. I believe the process of accessing our creative selves through visual art, storytelling, music, or movement is inherently therapeutic. I am committed to helping artists create positive artistic experiences that empower their authentic selves.”

  • Linda Simpson, Recovery Support Specialist

    Linda is a trained RSS and Certified WRAP facilitator who has worked in the public health field. She is actively expanding how she expresses creativity – through art and service. “In my mid-30’s I experienced psychiatric symptoms and knew that someday I’d work to improve the mental health system. … people benefit from the assistance of those who have ‘lived experience’ – the concept of the ‘wounded healer’.” Linda expresses her creativity through crochet, creating miniatures (doll house furnishings), and has begun to experiment with various types of art work.

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    Sherri Cutliffe, Peer Support Specialist/Ambassador

    Sherri has worked in banking, early childhood development, and the performing arts. Her love for arts and crafts is only matched by her willingness to share her passion with others. After graduating from Art Awakenings, Sherri went on to become ACPSS and also BHPP. Sherri volunteers in the community and has experience working in group homes. Sherri has worked multiple positions for PSA including art guide, studio assistant, ambassador, and also ran the Crow’s Nest Galley. Sherri works closely with artists in all mediums and co-facilitates pre-job and peer support groups. She also specializes in art made with bread dough. Her love for art shows in her works of wonder [bread].

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    Crystal Johnson, Peer Support Specialist, Studio Assistant

    Crystal’s interest in artistic expression started as a child through the art of the written word as well as playing the violin and clarinet. A Multiple recipient of the Christopher Demske Writing Award for poetry and prose alike, she then chose to try her hand at a variety of other arts, including crafts, sewing, textiles, ceramics, drawing, quilling, painting, geometric art, and steampunk, among others. Crystal has been working as a peer support specialist for the better part of the last decade and being able to combine peer support while teaching art techniques is the part of the job that she loves the most. “Being able to help someone in the ways that I have been helped by others, in the past, is what makes this a truly fulfilling job for me. Being able to show someone that they are worthy of believing in themselves and that they can be a good person no matter what their past may hold is a joy for me. This is what fuels me to keep doing what I do.”

  • Kendall Tewers, Art Instructor

    Kendall first came to PSA Art Awakenings as a participant where he rediscovered art as a therapeutic escape from various mental and behavioral health symptoms. After volunteering as a studio assistant, Kendall became a Peer Support Specialist and now serves as an art instructor throughout the state where he teaches painting, glasswork, jewelry making, and pottery. “I love two things: art, and encouraging others by giving them hope. So this seems to be my calling in life?”


  • Marcia Droz, Studio Assistant, Certified Peer Support Specialist

    Marcia has a lot to offer us at PSA Art Awakenings, having more than 12 years art teaching experience with a variety of populations. Droz completed two bachelors; the first was a self designed degree in art, psychology, and anthropology called, “Creative Processes and the Individual,” at Western Washington University, Bellingham, Washington. Her second degree was a Bachelor of Fine Art, 2D Drawing and Painting at the University of Arizona, Tucson. She has experienced the inherent therapeutic gains from being an artist, taught expressive art, and shares from her rich experiences to give back what she feels she has gained in the arts community.

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    Krystle Miller, Administrative Assistant

    Krystle is a Northern California Native & Professional Photographer turned Office Administrator. Krystle came to Art Awakenings with a background in Photography. She has photographed everything from weddings, portraits, live bands, everyday life and has worked directly with an Oscar Award winning musician for their album artwork. Krystle hopes to eventually work more directly with artists and explore more in the creative world.

Northwest Studio

  • Amanda Foley, Site Administrator

    Amanda has always had a passion for art. Exploring various mediums, she found art as a way to express herself. Amanda focuses on creating and sharing techniques in spray paint, acrylic, watercolor, and ceramic. A Certified Peer Support Specialist, she finds great purpose in using her experience to help others. She enjoys giving back to others through shared experience. “Art is a powerful tool that gives people an outlet for self-expression, to feel confidence, and feel productive in their recovery journey.”

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    Marilyn Baxter, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Marilyn came to PSA 12 years ago after 25 years in the Cosmetic Industry. Marilyn went back to college, and earned her Master’s Degree in Professional Counseling and a certificate in Advanced Graduate Studies in Agency Counseling from Ottawa University Phoenix. Marilyn shared that God blessed her with an artistic soul, but led her first to working with people in recovery, substance abuse issues, and co-occurring disorders, along with general mental health issues. Marilyn says that her passion is working with people and witnessing that “Aha” moment within those that she serves. My joy comes from supporting and encouraging others. I am thrilled to be a part of this organization where “Art Saves Lives”.

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    Breanna Wandrych, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Born and raised in sunny Arizona, Breanna developed an early passion for all things creative. In 2014, she graduated from Arizona State University with a BFA in Intermedia Art, specializing in drawing and digital media. After graduating, Breanna began her career in the behavioral health field working with vocational services, teaching digital media job skills. Currently, as an Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist as the Northwest Studio, Breanna feels honored to be able to connect and empower other through art. “I believe in the power of art; It can transmit joy, transform sorrow, create community, and says what words sometimes can’t.”

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    Irena Horodynska, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Born and raised in Poland, Irena graduated from Elmhurst College with a BA in music and spanish. She then went on to recieve her master’s degree in Criminal Justice from Lewis University which led her to a position in the Juvenile Justice and Child Protective Services serving youth, women, children, and people from various economic backgrounds. Irena later moved to Arizona where she worked at Hovland Conservatory of Music where she taught piano to children with behavioral health challenges. Irena currently serves as an Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist where she can continue to serve and develop.

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    Gabriel Rojas, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Born in Sinaloa Mexico, Gabriel eventually moved to Arizona where she obtained a bachelors degree in psychology from the University of Phoenix. Gabriel has experience working as a medical assistant, case manager, and rehabilitation specialist. With a passion for the arts and behavioral health Gabriel believes, “art sets our soul free and allows the imagination to create our own world on canvas”.

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    Rebecca Lopatin, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    With a Bachelors of Fine Art’s in painting, and a Masters of Social Work, Rebecca is a graduate of Arizona State University. Rebecca’s experience in the field of social work has included working as a crisis responder for the Glendale Fire Department, supporting children and families while working at UMOM New Day Center, a homeless shelter in Phoenix, and working at the Boys and Girls Club. Rebecca has also worked as an independent artist showing and selling her art in the greater Phoenix area, and focuses her attention to painting, primarily with oil and watercolor, as well as drawing.

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    Nanette Tanner, Teaching Artist, BHT

    Nanette offers PSA Art Awakenings and its artists a broad experience in all mediums of Art. She is presently attending ASU and will be graduating in the fall of 2016, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in both Sculpture and Painting. She has been involved with Art Awakenings for the past 13 years. “I deeply believe in healing through arts, and carrying out the purpose here at Art Awakenings. I am very thankful for the opportunity to work with a strong and dedicated staff here at North West.”

Tempe Studio

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    Renee Caccamese, Site Administrator

    Renee has 30 years of experience in the human service field. She has a wide array of experience working with clinically and culturally diverse populations, ranging from youth and adolescents to adults and families. She has been a proud member of the Art Awakenings team for 10 years. She currently serves as the Site Administrator for the Tempe Studio. An artist herself, Renee uses all mediums, but finds that she gravitates most towards clay and wood. With a background in psychology and theater arts, she is a certified Life Coach and is currently pursuing her certification in meditation and alternative healing methods.

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    Crystal Littles, BHPP, Administrative Assistant

    Crystal is the current Administrative Assistant for PSA Art Awakenings, Tempe location. She is a Behavioral Health Para Professional, with over five years of experience in medical front office, and background in medical billing and coding. She is a dedicated mental health advocate, as well as a former artist.

  • Leslie Fort, Receptionist for Tempe Youth Studio & Warehouse 1005

    Mildred Leslie Fort is originally from Florida and has since become a “native” of Arizona. Her long-time interests have been art, music, writing, and public speaking. In recent years Leslie has taken up singing and playing the piano again. Leslie has helped PSA Art Awakenings in various jobs, her latest endeavor is helping with the Tempe Youth Studio and continues to help Warehouse 1005 for First and Third Fridays.

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    Lindsey Becvar, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Lindsey holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Arizona State University (go Devils!) in Family and Human Development. She has worked with children, adults, and families for over a decade in the foster care, children’s behavioral health, and special education systems. Lindsey remembers spending her summers as a child creating her own comic strips and writing poetry with a slew of green calligraphy pens. As an adult, she has studied ceramics, mosaic, acrylic painting, mural art, and chalk art. In the past several years, she has participated in numerous street painting festivals throughout the Valley and fondly recalls her appearance on a crafters’ show on the Home & Garden Television network. Lindsey loves her work at Art Awakenings, combining her love of art with her passion for helping people to see and understand the world in new ways. Outside of the studio, she is the proud parent of two terrific teenagers.

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    Christie Urioste

    Christie has been involved with community behavioral health services since 2009, when she joined the Casa Grande Art Awakenings Team. Since, she has continued to followed her desire in helping individuals by providing direct behavioral health support and services working with local schools and AZ Department of Corrections. Wanting to be more involved with the community, she worked through Cenpatico as part of a Crisis Mobile Team assisting adults and children at risk of suicide. In 2017 Christie was very excited to re-join the Art Awakenings Tempe Studio, to once again reconnect with her love of the Arts and Artist’s Journey through recovery.

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    Jahaziel Linare, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Jahaziel (Haziel) holds a bachelor’s degree in Justice Studies, and master’s degree in Social Work from Arizona State University. In his spare time, he likes painting, learning foreign languages, and traveling with his wife. Also, in the evenings Haziel enjoys teaching cultural diversity and foundation social work courses for ASU. Haziel is very grateful for the opportunity to serve the adults in the studio, and to be part of the P1-Kids collaboration to carry out the mission of PSA Art Awakenings.

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    Jennifer Data

    Jennifer has spent the last 15 years in the counseling field, starting with the Boys and Girls Club of New Jersey teaching art to children and teenagers ranging in age from kindergarten through 12th grade. After receiving her Bachelors of Art degree with a concentration in Art Therapy, Jennifer interned at the Broadway House in Newark, NJ to facilitate art to adults living with HIV/AIDS. Jennifer continued her education, earning her Master’s degree in Clinical Counseling at NJCU. Here, she interned at Community Services to counsel parolees while implementing classes offering career guidance. A lifelong artist, Jennifer knows firsthand the guarantees of being creative and using art to push past self-defeating limitations. Now living in Arizona and working for Art Awakenings, Jennifer is more convinced that participating in creative expression is essential for personal growth and self-acceptance.

Maricopa County Youth Phoenix & Tempe Studios

  • Nicole Gordon, Director of Youth Services

    Nicole comes to Art Awakenings with 20 years of experience and a foundation rooted in art and social change. As a graduate of Western Kentucky University and Temple University School of Social Administration, Nicole has worked in a variety of behavioral and public health settings, including as a consultant facilitating cultural diversity workshops and planning community building initiatives. Nicole connects art with not only healing, growth and development but also as a tool of social transformation and consciousness raising. Helping individuals seek their path of recovery. Nicole is honored to be a part of the Art Awakenings movement of hope and change.

  • Karen Ihrig, Youth Intake & Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, Maricopa Youth Studio

    Karen, a Phoenix native, received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Psychology from Arizona State University. After earning her Bachelor’s degree, Karen worked as a Behavioral Health Specialist at a residential treatment center for youth. Karen then returned to Arizona State and completed her Masters of Social Work degree. She has since gained experience providing as a community and family counselor. Personally, Karen has a history of using art as a means of coping with life stressors. Professionally, she has integrated artistic expression into therapeutic interventions. She comes to PSA Art Awakenings with a passion for art, and a strong belief in the healing power of expression. She is very excited to be part of the PSA Art Awakenings team.

    • Eden Wenda, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, Youth Studio

      Eden, a Houston native, comes to PSA Art Awakenings with six years of experience working with youth as a volunteer with a community arts program in Arizona. After receiving her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Arizona State, Eden completed her Master’s degree in Counseling & Psychology at Prescott College with a concentration in Expressive Arts therapy. Eden believes in the healing power of emotional expression through art and is passionate about sharing expressive art experiences with people of all ages.

    Tucson Studio

  • Janet Fuhriman,MS,LPC, Clinical Director of Youth & Adult Services – Pima County

    Janet Fuhriman has been with Art Awakenings for the past 5 years. She braids her passion as a Certified Trauma Informed Care trainer with the healing power of art. As a Licensed Professional Counselor, she is approved to provide Clinical Supervision by the Board of Behavioral Health Examiners. By providing a ‘Culture of Compassion’ she truly believes “Art Saves Lives!!”

  • George Perez, Recovery Support Specialist/BHT

    George is an Arizona State Certified Recovery Support Specialist who has provided behavioral health services, in Arizona, since 1991. He is an award-winning artist whose artwork, in various media, has been exhibited throughout the Southwest. George combines his experience and expertise, in assisting PSA Warehouse 442 participants to develop advanced behavioral health recovery skills and successfully integrate into the local artist community.

  • alicia gershweir

    Alicia Gershweir, MS, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, BHT

    A Tucson native, Alicia Gershweir recently received a Master of Science degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with an emphasis in Somatic Psychology from Prescott College. Alicia’s interest in art and healing started at a young age and she completed a bachelor’s program in Integrative Studies through the University of Redlands Johnston Center where she had the opportunity to create her own educational curriculum integrating spirituality, cultural studies, literature, and studio art to better understand the experiences of herself and others. Alicia began her career as a helper at Arts for All, Inc. through AmeriCorps service teaching arts and crafts to children and adults with developmental disabilities. Through this work, Alicia began to understand the value of creative process as a means of healing trauma and enforcing self-expression. This then lead Alicia to begin her own process of healing through intense engagement in yoga, mindfulness meditation, tai chi, and qi gong. “I strive to integrate many years of thoughtful practice and research into compassionate service of others to assist them in regaining self-empowerment and understanding.”

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    Cateland Clarke, BS, ABHS-BHT

    A southern California transplant, Cateland earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology with a minor in English at the University of Arizona. Having lived in a variety of states with many different cultures over the years, Cateland enjoys working with individuals from a variety of different backgrounds and has a passion for helping others. Formerly a Parent Aide, she has experience working with children and adults alike in various capacities. Cateland has always had a fondness for art and has used it in her own personal life as a coping tool. She is especially fond of drawing and painting whimsical subject matter as she feels that it “expands her creativity and makes her happy”. Her other interests include running, hiking, and road trips. Cateland believes that art plays a huge role in recovery as it has helped her in her own life.

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    Megan Cavato, MS, LAC, Youth Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Megan is a therapist in the Youth program at PSA Art Awakenings. She earned her Bachelor’s in Psychology and a Master’s in Counseling, specializing in art therapy. Megan has experience with a variety of populations, but has spent much of her career in substance abuse counseling. She believes in helping others find their identities as artists and using the creative process to facilitate empowerment, hope, and healing.

  • Irlanda Cuevas, Intake Specialist

    Irlanda is originally from Nogales, Arizona, a border town south of Tucson. She graduated from the University of Arizona in 2010 with a Bachelors degree in Psychology and minors in Spanish and Sociology. Irlanda is a certified BHT with previous experience working with children and youth at Casa de los Ninos behavioral health. She appreciates the importance of art, culture, and creativity and is thrilled to be part of PSA Art Awakenings and the “Art” community.

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    Leticia Galaz, Administrative Assistant

    Leticia is a Tucson native who earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication with a minor in Spanish from the University of Arizona. She is experienced in the customer service field, most recently at Pima Community College with student life and cultural activities and as a former Pima County Superior Court intern. Leticia is, “Excited to work in the behavioral health field and PSA Art Awakenings!”

  • Margo-Glen

    Margo Glen, CRSS/BHT

    Coming from a construction background, Margo earned an Associate Degree in construction carpentry and shortly found herself working as the first women apprentice carpenter at United Steel Mining Corporation on the “Iron Range” in Northern Minnesota. After earning another Associate Degree in Architectural Drafting, Margo moved to Tucson, AZ. For over 25 years, she worked as a Structural Steel Estimator and was involved in many large projects; including the metal sculpture in front of Tucson’s Main Library, The Snake Bridge, Renovations to the Fox Theater and the Structural Steel for the Ronstadt Transited Center and various railing art along city overpasses. Margo has been committed to a Recovery program for over 37 years, and became a Certified Peer Support in 2015. Margo, has been happily employed for Tucson’s Art Awakenings, as an Administrative Assistant, Receptionist and BHT, CPSS.

  • suzy deigan

    Suzy Deigan, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Suzy, a New York native, is a Board Certified Art Therapist who earned her Master of Science degree in Art Therapy Counseling from the College of New Rochelle in New York. She has experience working with adults, adolescents, geriatric, substance abuse, and various individuals with disabilities in inpatient and outpatient settings. Suzy enjoys creating all types of art, especially drawing, painting, and ceramics and is the lead for the youth Autism Spectrum Disorders program. “I truly believe in art’s powerful healing abilities for individuals and love being a part of such a wonderful team of artists and staff at Art Awakenings.”

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    Corbin Frame, MFA, Certified Peer Support Specialist, ABHS, BHT

    Corbin is a mixed multi-media visual artist who recently relocated to Tucson from New York City. With an MFA from NYU in Interactive Art and a BFA in sculpture/critical theory from CalArts, Corbin’s work ranges from sculpture installation and environmental art to immersive interactive environments (physical computing, virtual reality). He served as a Rural Community Development/Appropriate Technology Volunteer in Mali with the U.S. Peace Corps, and with Operation Crossroads Africa on an archaeology excavation in the Ivory Coast. Corbin has studied music in India and yoga in NY and he brings a passion for the healing power of creativity, especially in community settings, to his role as a recently certified Peer Support Specialist and an alumni of the Tucson studio.


  • Ecaterina “Cat” Islas, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, Young Adult and NT19 Coordinator

    Cat, a Tucson native earned her Bachelors of Arts degree in Sociology with a minor in criminal justice and chemistry from the University of Arizona. She previously worked with adolescents in a residential substance abuse program, where she facilitated creative and expressive art therapy groups. Cat is excited to join the PSA Art Awakenings team and truly believes in the healing potential of art. “I have a passion for the arts as well as helping people, through creating art and reflecting on the process, people can increase awareness of self and others, which is an amazing journey to be a part of.”

  • Jessica (JJ) Sturdevant, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Before graduating high school, “J.J.” began her artistic training with the Art Institute of Chicago Oxbow program and an intensive at Carnegie Mellon University. While attending Audubon Expedition Institute, Leslie University, she developed an affinity for the concept of experiential teaching in natural settings. At Goddard College her interests in the fine, healing and teaching arts merged, leading to her emergence as an Expressive Arts Therapist, arts educator, visual artist, and dancer. After moving to Bisbee, she expanded her training to apprentice with a local herbalist, a Mexican Indian curandero, and Reiki master. J.J. is also a graduate of Tamalpa Institute in Movement-based Expressive Arts Therapy, specializing in Ideokienisis body work and personal mythology. She has used her training to develop art and art expression classes by working with individuals and groups of all ages, with a specialization in adolescence and substance abuse.

  • Marisa-Poverman

    Marisa Poverman Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

  • Megan

    Megan LaDuke, Youth Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Megan’s passion for art and helping others led to her earning of a Bachelor’s in Psychology and a Master’s in Counseling, specializing in Art Therapy. She has experience with a variety of populations, but has spent much of her career in substance abuse counseling. Megan believes in helping others find their identities as artists and using the creative process to facilitate empowerment, hope, and healing.

  • Heather-Rascon

    Heather Rascon Youth Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

  • Gina Valencia, CRSS, BHT

    Gina is a mother of five children and completed Apollo College for Medical Administrative Assistant in 2000 and began a journey from pediatrics to optometry. Gina loved the administration aspect of all, but just felt something was missing. She became a homemaker for several years, reentered the workforce again in housekeeping, retail, and then landed in behavioral health. She has grown to love this work and feel it is her calling to reach out to others and relate to them due to her own past experiences. Now life has led her to work with both adults and children who receive respite which leads me to believe I’m exactly where I need to be not only to assist others, but to learn and grow with them.

  • Eric-McKinely

    Eric McKinely, MA, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, BHT

    Skilled in using expressive arts in conjunction with behavioral health services, Eric Mckinley helps participants use art as a healing medium. Eric has a Bachelor’s degree in fine arts and a Master’s degree in Expressive Art Therapy and Clinical Mental Health. “I enjoy teaching participants new mediums that they can incorporate into their personalized recovery.”

  • Michelle-Kaplan

    Kirsten Olivarez, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, BHT

    Kirsten is currently completing her masters in Social Work at Arizona State University with a focus in policy, administration, and community outreach after having completed her Bachelor’s in Psychology. Kirsten has a passion for helping others and has worked with diverse populations that need support. She spent her undergraduate career helpings youth whose parents have cancer with Camp Kesem and during her graduate career she worked in various hospital psychiatric units and assisted Chief Ford of the Tempe Police Department to improve relationships with police and their community and provide therapy for those in prison. Kirsten loves working at AA and building long term relationships with artists, seeing them improve their lives and artistic skills. Kirsten has always used creative writing as a form of self-expression and has begun dabbling with jewelry and acrylic.

  • Karen Wunder,MC Therapist, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Karen came to PSA Art Awakenings with a Bachelor’s in Psychology and Master’s in Counseling Psychology. Her background and experience include working with youth, adults, and families in a variety of settings, and include her interest in working with substance abuse issues and co-occuring disorders, along with general mental health issues. She believes that art plays an important role in the therapeutic process, allowing for a unique opportunity for change, growth, and healing.

  • Jessica Kranz

    Jessica earned her Bachelors of Arts degree in Art and Visual Culture Education from the University of Arizona. Though her passion is painting, she enjoys creating all types of art and has found it to be significant in her own growth and healing. She is enthusiastic about making, viewing, and sharing art and strongly believes that everyone is an artist.

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    Denise Ramirez, CRSS-BHT, Lead Peer Support Partner

    Denise Ramirez, currently working as a Lead Peer Support Partner in the Tucson INC and Youth Respite Programs, has been with Art Awakenings for five years. After graduating from the Recovery Support Specialist Institute in 2012, Denise began her career at PSA. Her passions are in recovery and wellness; practicing yoga and meditation on a regular basis, all of which have the benefits of utilizing alternative healing methods to improve overall well-being. “While working here at PSA I have witnessed tremendous growth in the agency and in our members. I am very passionate about my work of teaching our members the skills that have worked for myself in my own recovery journey.”

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    Jacqueline Rivero, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, BHT

    Jacqueline, a Tucson, Arizona native brings PSA Art Awakenings over 15 years of behavioral health experience and knowledge. Her passion, to empower others through creative art and acts of kindness shows in her work. Jacqueline’s interest in art began as a child, winning various awards throughout her early educational years. Her inspiration comes from the brightness of color, creativity, and self-love that art brings to communities.

  • Julian

    Julian Islas, Youth Respite

    Julian is a Marine Corps Veteran of six years completing two deployments, with one in Afghanistan. After receiving his Associate’s degree from Pima Community College, he is studying Psychology and Government and Public Policy at The University of Arizona. Believing in art’s foundation and capability to heal the mind and soul, Julian continues to thoroughly enjoy his work through the past two years at PSA. He loves working with the youth and with the adults in the studio as well. And in his spare time he enjoys sketching with lead and ink due to its permanence once a stroke has been placed.

  • Lindsey Klingenberg

    Lindsey Klingenberg, LAC, ATR, Art Therapist

    Originally from the Midwest, Lindsey moved to Tucson to expand her career in art therapy. She completed a Master of Arts degree in Counseling with a specialization in art therapy, working with various populations. Currently, she is interested in learning about eco-art therapy to incorporate into her practice. Lindsey enjoys working with all types of media including jewelry, ceramics, painting, drawing, and mixed media. As an artist and therapist, she believes in the potential art and creativity hold for increasing well-being, working on recovery, and building community.

  • Lindsey Klingenberg

    Yoseline “Josie” Martinez, BHT, Intake Specialist

    Josie, completed her first year with PSA after being hired on as an administrative assistant and now growing with the company as an intake specialist. She provides services in both English and Spanish and has a background of working with families involved with the Department of Child Services. Her passion to provide support and assist others in need has encouraged her to work towards receiving a degree is social services.

  • John-McElroy

    John McElroy RSS INC / Youth Respite

    John comes to PSA with a background in Behavioral Health, as a Recovery Support Specialist for over 10 years, John brings a passion for recovery that offers a unique perspective to participants. John started his career in recovery through life experiences, he was offered a position in a supported employment program but made it all the way to a Lead RSS position. Since then he has volunteered in many programs such as UoA RISE Program, SMART Recovery, 12-Step recovery, and NAMI of Southern Arizona. He says, “I am blessed to be part of a team here at PSA where I am able to utilize my unique strengths and abilities to affect lives of both adults and children through the Adult INC program and the Youth Respite program.”

  • John Rodriguez Studio Assistant

  • Elizabeth-Parker

    Elizabeth Parker, Studio Assistant

    Inspired by the work of Martina Shaprio and Joan Miro, Beth’s abstract, simple life forms include a personal palette of brightly colored acrylic paints. Along with creating art, Beth also enjoys working with other Artists in the Art Awakening’s studio, as they work toward recovery through art.

  • Ellen-Senoff

    Ellen (Ellie) Senoff, Studio Assistant

    Ellie earned a degree in Fine Arts Education and is working as an Art Therapist and Instructor. Graduating from PSA Art Awakenings she went on to become a Certified Recovery Specialist, Studio Assistant, and Acrylics painting Instructor at the Tucson location. She brings a sense of enthusiasm for growth and recovery through the creative process, finding she learns as much as she teaches. “I am very grateful to work with such a talented and diverse group of people both staff and artists.”

  • Cheryl Emtman Studio Assistant

  • Brenda Gilkey Studio Assistant

    Quirky, elegant or just plain pretty jewelry, Brenda adores it all! She has been creating art from found objects since she was a child. Even now she see the potential to create art, like chandeliers, chimes, whirly-gigs, and refurbished furniture. Through her creativity Brenda is able to work with fellow artists in the Art Awakenings Studio. And as a previous Art Awakenings graduate she is loving every opportunity to inspire and be inspired.

  • Leon Tremmel

    Leon Tremmel, Handyman

    After a thirty year career with Sodexo Health Care Services as an Administrative Director of Facilities in Health Care, Leon joined PSA in 2014. Working as an electrician and mechanic for several years, Leon transitioned from Pima Community College, where he studied liberal arts and photography. As the Maintenance and Safety Coordinator with PSA Tucson he enjoys providing a safe, clean, and attractive environment for Artists to work. He loves to support the artists when they need mechanical or logistical support for their projects. Leon is also an ordained Chaplain at the Adult Detention Facility with the Pima County Sheriff’s Correction Department working with the Adult SMI inmate population in Tucson.

Yuma & Parker Studios

  • Patricia Quiroz, Site Administrator

    Patricia Quiroz has a passion for helping other and is currently working on her Bachelor of Science in Sociology at Arizona State University. She has worked in Behavioral health for 14+ years and has been with PSA Behavioral Health for 7 years. She started with Art Awakenings as an administrative assistant, and later became the Site administrator for Yuma/La Paz regions. “I have seen the power of art and the transformation in an artist right before my eyes, (it happens every day at our studios) and aside from spirituality I don’t think there is a greater healing power such as art. I strongly believe that ART and its power of healing are ready to be activated in all of us at any time.”

  • Kevin Arrant, Recovery Support Specialist

    Kevin is a peer support specialist who has served as the Recovery Support Specialist for Yuma and Parker studios for the past 6 years. Along with running support groups for Art Awakenings, he uses the recovery experience in the INC program, providing members with experience, strength, and hope for their future. Kevin enjoys working with glass, and ceramics during his promotion of the processes of art as a parallel to the processes of recovery, one step at a time. “I enjoy being able to share my love for life and to share H.O.W. it works, “Honesty, Openness, and Willingness”, in all aspects of the recovery journey”.

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    Daniela Sepulveda, Family Support Specialist

    Daniela offers PSA Art Awakenings and INC artists a unique and catered service of family support with children on the spectrum. Her interest in art was sparked upon her son being diagnosed with ASD and daughter with dyslexia and short term memory loss. She became intrigued with the idea of knowing art could possibly open a different realm of healing. “I am excited to be part of a company that promotes and educates the community on a different side of art, the power of healing through each individual’s uniqueness.”

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    Becky Ann Stubblefield, CPSS

    Growing up with a father who is an artist, Becky learned basic art concepts at an early age. As a psychology major, Becky always had hopes of joining art and psychology in her professional future. After years of battling behavioral health and personal life challenges, she found herself enrolled as the first artist in the Art Awakenings programs in Parker and Quartzsite. After graduating from the program, Becky was hired as a Studio Assistant and later became Certified Peer Support Specialist. Today, after more than three years as a CPSS and Behavioral Health Paraprofessional, Becky continues to balance her work and family while using art to manage any behavioral health challenges. “I am thrilled and grateful seeing both sides of the coin with the PSA Art Awakenings program. WOW, life, what a thrilling ride.”

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    Valerie Guerrero, Youth-Driver/Studio Assistant

    Valerie offers Art Awakenings and its youth artists with transportation. As someone with a strong sense of compassion, Valerie earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Services. Valarie comes to PSA with a wide array of work experience ranging from retail, to merchandising, then to customer service, all the while maintaining her focus on helping people. “I have an interest for art, and I dabble from time to time, but I’m certainly not top-notch. Everyone here is extremely talented, and it really draws my attention; they really know art, and that’s what I love about PSA Art Awakenings”.

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    Kurt Fredricksen, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Kurt was born and raised in Southeast Alaska and moved to Arizona with his family five years ago. He offers approximately 14 years of experience in the behavioral health field, primarily providing direct case management to serious mentally ill adults in Alaska. “I was exposed to art at an early age, as my mother is an artist and practices the Norweigan art of Rosemaling and Tole Painting.” “I love all forms of art and believe strongly in the effectiveness of art as a therapeutic tool.”

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    Denisse Molina Fisher, Adult ABHS

    Denisse, a Yuma native, received her Bachelor of Science in Counseling with an Emphasis in Addiction, Chemical Dependency, and Substance Abuse from Grand Canyon University. Denisse is a PSI CHI member of The International Honor Society in Psychology and Alpha Chi National College Honor Society. She is also a Certified Peer Support Specialist and believes in the power of healing through creativity, positive thinking skills, empowerment, resiliency and developing an internal strength based perspective. In addition to ceramics, Denisse has experience working with acrylic paints, watercolors, and clay. “The arts allow you to express your feelings, hopes, dreams and to be able to heal, repair, mend and renew.”

  • anyssa Ortiz

    Anyssa Ortiz, Adult/Youth ABHS,Yuma

    Anyssa Ortiz earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology which helped to develop her love to help others. Anyssa offers Art Awakenings and its artist a broad experience of art skills. Her interest in art has always been a part of her life from “do it yourself” projects with her older siblings, to learning how to crochet with her mother. In addition to targeting her own art , Anyssa has experience as a case manager. “I am thankful to be in this position to promote therapeutic expressive art because I believe that art opens doors that help artist heal and improve their lives”.

  • Fernanda-Rodriguez

    Fernanda Rodriguez, Youth Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Fernanda offers PSA Art Awakenings and its artists a broad experience in all aspects of counseling services. Her interest in art began at a young age under the tutelage of her uncle and continued into high school where she learned basic art and ceramics that she still utilizes. Fernanda earned her Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, and has been working with children 0-17 years old for over 10 years. She also serves as the lead counselor for Yuma’s Autism spectrum disorder program, which serves youth ages 6-17.

  • Angela Figueroa Administrative Assistant / Medical Records

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    Ralph Gray, Driver

    Ralph has lived in Yuma since 1989 and retired in 2008 as a golf course mechanic. He have been a musician all of his life and is currently President of Yuma Community Theater. As a producer, director, singer, actor, set builder, he has seen all forms of art that has to do with live stage productions through community theater. “I truly cherish the time I have spent with these new friends who stay real, on a daily basis. As a maintenance man I may not be painting gorgeous pictures or forming awesome creations but I will strive to meet the needs of our facilities with the best care and service I can provide.

Warehouse 1005 Studio

  • Stephanie Brinkop, Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist, Art Therapist

    Stephanie offers PSA, Warehouse 1005, and its artists a broad experience in therapeutic art directives, advanced fine art skills, art marketing knowledge as well as an ongoing and consistent level of support and enthusiasm focused on the artists’ personal growth. Her love for art, since an early age, led her to earn a Bachelor of Science in advertising/graphic design and then a decade later a Master’s of Science in Art Therapy Degree. In addition to painting in both large and small formats, Stephanie has experience in graphic design and group art therapy. “I feel extremely fortunate to have found a career at PSA that joins my passion for the visual arts and the opportunity to teach and support other artists on their road to recovery and success.”

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    Natascha VonSonnwalden Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    Natascha has been in the Mental Health Field since early 2000s. With Bachelor’s in English Literature and Secondary Education and Minors in German and Music, Natascha has been writing since early childhood, began teaching after college and upon entering this field, earned her Certified Psychiatric Rehabilitation Practitioner Certification. Natascha truly enjoys fusing the world of Arts with psychiatry to encourage others to attain a much sought after increased quality of life. Natascha has a passion for animals, Naturopathic medicine, travel, and interior design.

  • David Seleme Artistic Behavioral Health Specialist

    David Seleme offers Warehouse 1005 skills gleaned from extensive life experiences and academic training. He has a Bachelor of Fine arts degree in theater arts, with a minor in creative writing, and has done graduate work in anthropology at ASU. In addition, he is active in the local music scene with his band. David has experience in video production, language instruction, and likes to draw and paint as a hobby. “The Warehouse allows me share some of my skills with the artists, and together we form a community based upon an ideal of mutual support, respect and appreciation.”