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LCPC (Kansas), LPC (Missouri), NCC, CCMHC

Partner/Owner, Supervisor

A Little Bit:

A Texas native, Vanessa has lived in the urban Kansas City area since 2003 with her husband, four children, Labradoodle Nalu, Aussiedoodle Rontu, and Great Dane Sven (also a flock of chickens, two barn cats, a bearded dragon, and a fish named Poe). She spends free time with her family: rehabbing an 1880s Victorian home, urban farming, and creating lovely things (music and art mostly), attending theater shows, and traveling together! Outside of clinical work, she is the founder and volunteer Executive Director of a 501(c)(3) educational nonprofit. Working with Vanessa is an experience of "warmth" - cozy, casual, a bit spicy at times, and mostly, Vanessa's effort is to give relentless empathy.

Vanessa is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC), certified by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NCC). Vanessa is licensed in both Kansas and Missouri, as well as provides coaching nationally to residents anywhere. She is a nationally Certified Clinical Mental Health Counselor (CCMHC). She is also a board-approved clinical supervisor in Kansas. Additional certifications and post-Masters trainings are listed below.

Who sees Vanessa?

Vanessa helps individual clients with complex trauma, relational trauma, and losses. Couples of all types, as well as parents and their children, work with her to form secure attachments with each other. She helps clients experiencing relationship difficulties and treats clients who are experiencing pain due to a life circumstances. She works primarily with married and unmarried couples of all kinds, adult individuals, and whole family systems. Vanessa has a special interest in betrayal trauma, religious trauma and loss-related concerns - those associated with histories of emotional or physical harm, death and dying, divorce and coparenting, adoption, addiction, infidelity/betrayal trauma, abuse, and relationship losses from birth to death.


Children 10 and up may be seen individually, and children <10 are treated mostly through parent consultation and family sessions to promote the attachment bond between parent and child, using sand tray therapy and play techniques. Vanessa strives for clients to feel informal and casual, like seeing a friend who has special training in neurological, emotional and psychological issues.


Vanessa also provides animal-assisted therapy with Rontu, a Psychiatric Service Dog who is present part-time in the Downtown Office. He also has a space in the office kitchen to take naps and bake cookies when clients prefer speak away from doggie ears, but we promise: Rontu is a great listener and a pretty affectionate cuddler. He's a sucker for kids and teens.


  • In her work as a couples' counselor, Vanessa is a Certified EFT Couples Therapist (International Centre for Excellence in Emotion-Focused TherapyICEEFT). Emotion-Focused Therapy is a highly-researched form of counseling for romantic/companion partners,

  • Vanessa is a Certified Fair Play Method Facilitator, giving intensives, workshops, and interventions in all 50 states and internationally as a Fair Play Coach. The Fair Play Method is based on the best-selling books on domestic equity and creativity by Eve Rodsky, Fair Play: A Game-Changing Solution for When You Have Too Much to Do (and More Life to Live) and Find Your Unicorn Space: Reclaim Your Creative Life in a Too-Busy World

  • She holds a Certificate in Interpersonal Neurobiology from Portland State University,which combines love and the neurobiology of human relationships known as "interpersonal neuroscience."

  • She is a trained EMDR (Eye Movement Reprocessing and Desensitization, provider for both children and adults, and

  • is also a Level I AEDP clinician (Accelerated Experiential Dyadic Psychotherapy,

  • For six years before obtaining her Master’s degree, Vanessa worked full-time with families in a spiritual setting and will use any spirituality in counseling only when it is important to clients. Religious trauma is a special interest, and Vanessa is equipped to help with recovery from spiritual abuse.

  • She is a TBRI Educator/Trainer and a TBRI Clinician trained by Texas Christian University's Karyn Purvis Institute for Child Development (2012), a program for behaviorally at-risk, domestic and internationally adopted, and foster-care children and teens. Vanessa has worked with families who have adopted in local KC and from over 25 different countries.

  • One of Vanessa's favorite types of attachment work is with the dying and their families. Vanessa is a certified End-of-Life Professional Doula (University of Vermont) and facilitates Dignity Therapy for terminally ill, dying clients. She completed her masters-level training at Solace House, a grief and loss supportive counseling center of Kansas City Hospice and Palliative Care. 

  • Vanessa and Rontu, the Downtown office's part-time Psychiatric Service Dog, use animal-assisted therapy to enhance the other interventions offered.

  • Co-owner of Secure Counseling Clinic, Vanessa has a Master of Arts in Counseling from MidAmerica Nazarene University

Vanessa belongs to the American Counseling AssociationInternational Association of Marriage and Family Counseling, the National Board of Certified CounselorsChi Sigma Iota professional honor society, Kansas Counseling Association, Kansas Association of Marriage and Family Counselors, and the International Centre for Excellence in Emotion-Focused Therapy, EMDRIA, and the AEDP Institute. To contact Vanessa, call 816-608-8444 or email, or view her clinical availability online.

Get in Touch
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