Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research

All Faculty and Staff

Walter H. Kaye, M.D.

Director
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
Professor, UCSD Department of Psychiatry

"Anorexia nervosa has the highest rate of death of any psychiatric illness. We are now beginning to understand why people develop these disorders, and we are using this information to develop more effective treatment."

Dr. Walter Kaye was recruited to the UC San Diego faculty from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, where he was research director of the eating disorder program, and where he received a NIMH senior scientist award. Dr. Kaye’s current research is focused on exploring the relationship between brain and behavior using brain imaging and genetics, and developing and applying new treatments for anorexia and bulimia nervosa.

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Terry Schwartz, M.D.

Clinical Director
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
Assistant Clinical Professor, UCSD Department of Psychiatry


Terry Schwartz is the Clinical Director of the UCSD Eating Disorders Programs. She has over 15 years of extensive experience in working with eating disorders, as well as providing Eating Disorders treatment trainings at multiple university and county facilities. She is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the UCSD Medical School. From 1997 through 2005, she served as Associate Medical Director at UCSD Outpatient Psychiatric Services, and Medical Director for the UCSD Co-Occurring Disorders Program. She continues to be actively involved in the training of psychiatry residents, psychology interns, and other trainees. From 1999-2004, she served as chairman of the San Diego County Mental Health “Psychopharmacology of Co-Occurring Disorders” Committee. She received her MD from the University of California, San Diego, in 1993, and completed her residency in psychiatry at UCSD.

She has been named by San Diego Magazine (voted by peers) as one of the Top Doctors in San Diego.

Russell Marx, M.D.

Director, Adolescent Program
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry


Russell Marx, M.D. is the Director of the Adolescent Program at the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research. Previously, he worked as the Medical Director of the Eating Disorders Program at the University Medical Center at Princeton. Dr. Marx also serves as the Chief Science Officer of the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) and is on their board of directors. Dr. Marx completed his Psychiatry Residency and Child Psychiatry Fellowship at Stanford University and has served on the faculties of Cornell University and UCSD. Dr. Marx is the author of "It's Not Your Fault: Overcoming Anorexia and Bulimia" published by Random House. He is the Associate Editor of Eating Disorder Review and serves on the editorial board of Eating Disorders: The Journal of Treatment and Prevention. Dr. Marx has been a Principal Investigator for research on new medications for the treatment of anorexia and bulimia.

Mary Ellen Trunko, M.D.

Medical Director, Adult Programs

Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Program
Assistant Clinical Professor, UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Mary Ellen Trunko has worked with the UCSD eating disorders program since its inception, and has been involved in planning and development of services, delivery of patient care, and supervision and teaching of junior staff members. As assistant clinical professor and medical director, Dr. Trunko performs comprehensive psychiatric evaluations, handles medication management, coordinates primary care and other medical services, and educates patients and their families on physiological, medical and psychological aspects of eating disorders. She also runs an outpatient practice that includes individuals with eating disorders as well as those with general psychiatric needs.

Dr. Trunko is board certified in both psychiatry and internal medicine, an unusual combination that is highly relevant to the understanding and treatment of eating disorders. She has used this specialty knowledge to advise primary care providers on the care of eating-disordered patients through presentations and consultation. She has written review papers and clinical case reports on pharmacological interventions for eating disorders. Dr. Trunko earned her MD degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine, and completed separate residencies in internal medicine and psychiatry at UCSD.

Danielle Haber, M.D.

Assistant Clinical Professor
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program

UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Danielle Haber has worked in the UCSD Department of Psychiatry since 2002 and as Associate Director of the UCSD OCD Program since 2008. She joined the UCSD Adolescent Eating Disorders Program in early 2012. Dr. Haber has more than 20 years of experience as a child and adolescent psychiatrist and has had a special interest in eating disorders throughout her clinical career. Dr. Haber is an Associate Clinical Professor at UCSD and participates in the teaching and supervision of psychiatry residents. She is board certified in both Adult Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Dr. Haber performs psychiatric evaluations, medication management, and provides the psychiatric input to the team of clinicians working with the Adolescent ED patients. She continues to maintain a focus on psychodynamics, biological psychiatry and on evidence based treatments. She recently completed a three year training program in Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy. In addition to her work with the adolescents in the UCSD ED Program, she has a private practice of psychiatry in San Diego. She received her MD from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, NY and completed both her Psychiatry Residency and her Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship at UCLA.

Christina Wierenga, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Wierenga is an assistant professor and licensed clinical neuropsychologist at the UCSD Eating Disorders Program. She received her doctorate in clinical psychology with a specialization in neuropsychology, neurorehabilitation, and clinical neuroscience from the University of Florida and completed an NIH postdoctoral fellowship at UCSD in biological psychiatry and neuroscience. Dr. Wierenga’s clinical practice has focused on children, adolescents, and adults with a wide range of psychological and neurological disorders. She sees patients in the eating disorders program for family based, individual, and group treatment of anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder and EDNOS. Her research focuses on treatment development and brain functioning in ill and recovered adolescents and adults with eating disorders. She uses innovative functional neuroimaging and neuropsychological methods to examine the neurobiology of eating disorders. Dr. Wierenga is also actively involved in training graduate students, interns and postdoctoral fellows.

Joyce A. Adams, M.D.

Professor of Clinical Pediatrics
UCSD Department of Pediatrics,
Division of General Academic Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine

Joyce A. Adams, MD is a Professor of Clinical Pediatrics with the UCSD Department of Pediatrics, Division of General Academic Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine. She has been a full time faculty member in Adolescent Medicine at UCSD since November, 1994, and has developed a special interest and expertise in treating children, teens, and young adults with eating disorders. She has been named in “Best Doctors in America” 4 times since 2005 and was named “San Diego’s Best Doctors” in 2011. Dr. Adams regularly attends workshops on eating disorder medical management at the annual meeting of the Society for Adolescent Medicine (SAM) and teaches at local conferences adolescent eating disorders. She is a member of SAM’s Special Interest Group on Eating Disorders, and participates in listserv discussions on issues in medical management.

Dr. Adams has been involved in evaluating and treating patients with eating disorders for the past ten years. Prior to the opening of the Medical West Medical/Behavioral Unit, she admitted 4 to 5 patients every year to Rady Children’s Hospital, San Diego, if they meet the criteria for medical hospitalization. Medical care includes monitored re-feeding, and cardiac monitoring. She developed a protocol for assessing and monitoring patients who are dehydrated, seriously malnourished, have very low resting heart rates or orthostatic changes in pulse or blood pressure. Dr. Adams also provides medical assessments and follow-up for patients who need those services prior to beginning the Intensive Family Therapy program at the UCSD Eating Disorders Program and those patients in an outpatient program who become medically unstable.

Kerri Boutelle, Ph.D.

Psychological Services and Training Director
Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Psychiatry

Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
Director of Behavioral Services, Weight and Wellness Clinic

Dr. Kerri Boutelle joined the UC San Diego Faculty from the University of Minnesota, where she was the Director of a child and adolescent eating disorder and obesity program and created and researched treatments for children who are overweight. Dr. Boutelle has been working with youth and young adults who have weight or eating related issues for over 12 years. Dr. Boutelle is the Behavioral Director of the Weight and Wellness Clinic, a clinic for youth (and their families) who struggle with their weight, and leads parenting groups and provides individual and family therapy. Dr. Boutelle also sees patients in the eating disorder program for family based and individual treatment of anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder and EDNOS. Dr. Boutelle's current research is focused on parenting children to reduce weight, parent and child skills for reducing binge eating, and epidemiological studies regarding adolescents who have been successful in weight loss.

Leslie Karwoski Anderson, Ph.D.

Clinical Assistant Professor
Training Director
Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Leslie Karwoski Anderson is a clinical assistant professor and training director at UCSD EDC. She got her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Kansas, and completed her clinical internship at Duke University Medical Center. Before coming to UCSD, she held a clinical faculty appointment at the University of Washington and was a staff psychologist at the DBT Center of Seattle. She runs DBT groups for both adolescents and adults with eating disorders, and sees patients in the program for family-based and individual treatment of anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder and EDNOS. Her research interests are in treatment development, evaluation, and outcomes, especially with regards to adaptations of DBT and FBT. She frequently gives talks and workshops on DBT, eating disorders, suicidality, and related topics in the community.

Rebecca Bernard, Ph.D.

Assistant Clinical Professor
Program Director of the Medical Behavioral Unit at Rady Children's Hospital
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Rebecca Bernard is an Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at UCSD and the Program Director for the Medical Behavioral Unit, the inpatient medical/psychiatric unit at Rady Children's Hospital. Dr. Bernard received her doctorate in clinical psychology from West Virginia University, completed her internship at Sharp Health Care, and completed her post-doctoral training at Stanford University. Before joining the team at UCSD/Rady Children's Hospital, she was on the clinical faculty at Stanford University and then worked as the Program Director for the children's residential program at the San Diego Center for Children. Dr. Bernard provides individual, family, and group therapy for children, adolescents, and adults on the Medical Behavioral Unit who have comorbid medical and psychiatric conditions. These include patients with anorexia, bulimia, and EDNOS as well as patients with a variety of medical conditions who also have psychological symptoms or diagnoses that are impacting their well-being. Dr. Bernard's research interests include treatment development and outcome research.

Julie Trim, Ph.D.

Administrative Director of Adult Day Treatment Program
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Julie Trim is a clinical psychologist at the UCSD Eating Disorder Treatment and Research Program. She received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Arizona State University and completed her internship from UCSD’s Counseling & Psychological Services. Dr. Trim has treated eating disorders in inpatient, outpatient, and partial hospitalization (PHP) settings and plans to continue to specialize in eating disorders.

Anne Clarkin

Anne Clarkin, L.C.S.W.

Therapy Director of Adult Day Treatment
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program

UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Anne has been working with eating disorders for over 25 years. She has designed and directed both inpatient and outpatient eating disorder programs in San Diego hospitals and has specialized in treating adults, teens and families dealing with eating disorders in private practice. Anne has written a chapter on the treatment of eating disorders for Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing, a nursing textbook. Anne is working in the Day Treatment program at UCSD.

Liana Abascal, Ph.D., MPH

Administrative Director of the Intensive Outpatient Program
Acting Director of Therapy, Adolescent Services
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Liana Abascal is a clinical psychologist and the program manager of the Adult Intensive Outpatient Program at the UCSD Eating Disorders Research and Treatment Program. She is a graduate of the SDSU/UCSD Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology and completed her clinical internship at the UCLA Semel Institute. Since 2000, she has been involved in both research and clinical work related to chronic disease prevention and management especially related to diabetes, obesity, and eating disorders.

Roxanne Rockwell, Ph.D.

Associate Manager of Adolescent Services
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program

Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Roxanne Rockwell is Program Manager of the UCSD Adolescent Eating Disorders Service. She has experience in the research, evaluation and treatment of eating disorders and pediatric obesity since 1999. She was one of the founding members of the UCSD Eating Disorders Program in 2005, and has been integrally involved in its development and expansion. Dr. Rockwell played a primary role in devising and building the innovative individual and multi-family Intensive Family Therapy (IFT) programs and the adolescent day treatment and intensive outpatient programs. As a certified Family Based (i.e., “Maudsley”) Therapist, she served as the primary IFT program therapist for several years, and currently both conducts FBT with families and provides training and supervision in this modality for staff in the adolescent eating disorders program. She began a Parent Advisory Committee (PAC) for the adolescent programs in 2012 and continues to develop this important service. Dr. Rockwell graduated from the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University, and completed pre-doctoral internship at Rady Children’s Outpatient Psychiatry which involved working with children and families dealing with various psychiatric illnesses. Her clinical and research work focuses primarily on eating disorders (anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder) and weight management issues.

Scott Matthews, M.D.

Assistant Adjunct Professor
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

After receiving his M.D. from UMDNJ-New Jersey Medical School, Dr. Matthews completed internship and residency in psychiatry at the University of California San Diego (UCSD), and was Chief Resident at UCSD Outpatient Psychiatric Services in his final year of residency. He then completed formal research training in functional brain imaging in UCSD’s NIH-funded Fellowship in Biological Psychiatry and Neuroscience. Dr. Matthews is currently Lead Psychiatrist on the Polytrauma Support Clinic Team at Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System (VASDHS), and former Chief of the Consultation-Liaison Division of the Psychiatry Service at VASDHS. He is also Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at UCSD, Diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, an active member of the American Psychosomatic Society (APS), and a former Co-Chair of the APS Program Committee. Dr. Matthews’ research program focuses on using neuroimaging methods to increase understanding of the structural and functional neural correlates of normal and abnormal cognitive and emotional processing. His most recent research focus is using structural and functional neuroimaging in veterans exposed to combat in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom to identify how blasts disrupt brain structure and function and increase risk of MDD. Dr. Matthews is also an active collaborator on funded projects investigating the neural correlates of pain processing and anticipation in individuals with MDD as well as the brain basis of cognitive and emotional symptoms in individuals with eating disorders. In addition to his research and administrative duties, Dr. Matthews is actively involved in teaching residents and medical students and providing clinical care to individuals with mental disorders.

Ursula Bailer, M.D.

Associate Professor
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Bailer joined the UC San Diego faculty as a Visiting Associate Professor in 2009 and is an Assistant Professor since 2011; she is also an Associate Professor of Psychiatry (tenured) at the Medical University of Vienna, Austria, since 2005; Dr. Bailer is board certified in psychiatry and psychotherapeutic medicine and has over 16 years of extensive experience in diagnosis, treatment and research of eating disorders in adolescents and adults; Director of the Outpatient clinic for Eating Disorders and Eating Disorder Research Program at the Medical University of Vienna, Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Division of Biological Psychiatry since 2006.

Research activity: neurobiology of eating disorders; brain imaging in eating disorders, including multi-modal imaging approaches using positron emission tomography (PET) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI); psychotherapy and guided self help in eating disorders; psychiatric genetics; author on more than 50 scientific peer reviewed publications and 10 books /book chapters. Other areas of activity: regular lectures and seminars on eating disorders at the Medical University of Vienna as well as Postgraduate training on eating disorders; more than 80 oral presentations and lectures at national and international scientific conferences; Vice Secretary of the Austrian Society on Eating Disorders (ASED), Fellow of the Academy for Eating Disorders (AED), Co-Chair of the AED Sisterhood, Chapter and Affiliate Committee, member of the Eating Disorders Research Society (EDRS).

Sarah Archer, M.A., MFT

Adolescent Program Manager
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Sarah Archer is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who has been working with adolescents, teens and their families for over 8 years. Sarah began as a Therapeutic Behavioral Coach providing in home behavioral modification services for at risk youth. Upon graduating from University of San Diego Sarah transitioned to Children’s Hospital providing treatment for children ages 3-18 and their families. There she worked with a variety of diagnosis such as Depression, Anxiety ADHD, ASD as well as co-occurring disorders such as Substance Abuse and Eating Disorders. Sarah recently joined our team in May 2011 and will be providing clinical treatment at the adolescent/teen Day Treatment Program.

Breanne Berkley, B.A.

USD Practicum Student
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Breanne Berkley is currently pursuing her Master's degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of San Diego and is a first year practicum student. She received her Bachelors of Arts in Psychology from San Diego State University and it is there where she first realized her passion for the field of mental health. She came to the UCSD Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Program program in 2013 with over 7 years of experience working in the field of mental health, providing support through individual, group, and family therapy to those suffering from severe mental illness. Breanne currently works in the Adolescent day program and provides individual, group and family therapy.

Gina M. Bongiorno, MA, MFT

Therapist
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Gina M. Bongiorno is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with the Adult Eating Disorder Treatment program. She obtained her Master of Arts in Marital and Family Therapy at the University of San Diego, where she was the recipient of the Award of Distinction and the Dean's Merit Scholarship, and her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from McGill University in Montreal, Canada. She also serves as adjunct faculty at the University of San Diego and a consultant for trauma-informed care. Gina’s clinical expertise is in the treatment of trauma and eating disorders, as well as severe mental illness, substance use and grief. Gina has specialized training in EMDR, dialectical behavior therapy, couple and family therapy, and motivational interviewing.

Amanda Bischoff-Grethe, Ph.D.

Assistant Adjunct Professor
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Bischoff-Grethe is an assistant professor in the department of Psychiatry. She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science with a focus upon Computational Neurobiology from the University of Southern California. She is particularly interested in the brain's response to reward and punishment and how it relates to cognitive processing. Her research focuses upon brain function in adolescents and adults with eating disorders using functional MRI, DTI, and other morphometric methods.

Anne Clarkin

Anne Cusack, Psy.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Anne Cusack is a postdoctoral fellow at the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research. As a graduate from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, she completed her pre-doctoral internship at Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital working with various psychiatric populations. Clinically, she has worked as a therapist on a research trial of Dialectical Behavior Therapy for eating disorders, as well as provided treatment of eating disorders, mood disorders and personality disorders in inpatient, partial hospitalization, and outpatient settings. Her research interests include treatment development, acceptance, mindfulness, emotion regulation, and self-injurious behaviors. Anne currently provides individual, group and family therapy for the Adolescent Day Treatment and Intensive Outpatient Programs.

Emiley Dailey, L.C.S.W.

Therapist

Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Emily Dailey is a licensed clinical social worker who has specialized in DBT for over 6 years. She has worked with individuals, groups and families. Emily graduated from University of Southern California and did her clinical internship at Harbor UCLA’s DBT outpatient program. She has treated eating disorders in residential, intensive out-patient, and partial hospitalization.

Alice Ely, M.S.

Therapist

Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Ali is a psychology intern completing her final year of training to earn her PhD in clinical psychology from Drexel University in Philadelphia. She completed her undergraduate work at the University of Pennslyvania, and earned her Masters of Science from Drexel during the course of her doctoral work there. Ali has pursued both clinical and research interests both in eating disorders and obesity, focusing on hedonic hunger, loss of control over eating, biobehavioral and neuroimaging correlates of restraint and dieting, and risk factors for eating disturbance. Ali is working as a therapist with the UCSD treatment team in the Adult Day Treatment and Intensive Outpatient Program.

Michelle Dempsey, M.A., LMFT

Therapist
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Michelle is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who has been working with the Adolescent Day Treatment Program since December 2010. With over 8 years of clinical eating disorder and co-occurring treatment experience, Michelle has worked with both adolescents and adults at the residential and outpatient levels. Past experience also includes working as a Counseling Coordinator and Facility Manager at an residential facility in Los Angeles County. Michelle obtained her Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy in 2008 from Antioch University (Los Angeles), and Bachelor of Arts in 2005 from UC Santa Barbara. Michelle currently provides individual, group, and family therapy for the Adolescent Day Treatment and Intensive Outpatient Program.

Sarah Gillis, Ph.D.

Post-doctoral Fellow
Rady Children's Hospital Medical Behavioral Unit
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Sarah Gillis recently joined the UCSD Eating Disorder’s program as a post-doctoral fellow at the Med West unit of Rady Children’s Hospital. She conducts individual, family, and group therapy for both eating disorder and pediatric patients. Dr. Gillis is a graduate of the University of WI-Milwaukee’s Doctoral Program in Counseling Psychology. She recently completed her pre-doctoral internship and post-doctoral fellowship in Pediatric Psychology at the Children’s Hospital of Orange County. Dr. Gillis’s clinical interests include the psychosocial effects of children and adolescents coping with chronic medical conditions, medical stabilization of eating disorders, and family based interventions.

Lauren Gomez, M.S., MFTi

Therapist
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department on Psychiatry

Lauren recently joined the UCSD treatment team as a Milieu Therapist/ Psychiatric Technician. She graduated from San Francisco State University with a Master of Science in Clinical Psychology and received her B.A. in Psychology from San Diego State University. Lauren has worked with individuals with eating disorders in various settings over the past three years. Previously, Lauren interned at Starlight Community Services while providing individual and group therapy to at risk youth, as well as individual and couple therapy at San Francisco State Psychology clinic. Lauren’s interest in working with eating disorders began during undergraduate while volunteering at an eating disorder treatment facility. Lauren currently provides group therapy to adults with eating disorders in the Adult Day/Intensive Outpatient Treatment Program.

Heather Halford

Heather Halford, B.A.

Administrative Assistant
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
Department of Psychiatry

Heather graduated from the University of California, San Diego in 2012 with a B.A. in psychology. She currently provides administrative support to all clinical and research staff, as well as clients and their families, at the UCSD Eating Disorders Treatment & Research Center. Her interest in eating disorders treatment developed through her studies at UCSD, and she intends to pursue further education in the field.

Anna Harper, B.S.

Anna Harper, B.S.

Kitchen Manager
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

As the kitchen manager, Anna oversees the preparation of all meals and snacks for the adult and adolescent patients. She creates menus for the program and analyzes the nutrition information for each menu item. As part of the dietary staff, Anna works closely with the registered dietitian to ensure that each patient meets his or her individual dietary needs and provides specialized meal support throughout the day. Anna received her Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition and Food Sciences from San Diego State University where she was an active member of the Student Nutrition Organization and an officer of the Culinary and Food Science Club. Her interest in working with eating disorders developed through various classes, volunteering, and work experiences.

Zoё Irvine, M.A.

Staff Research Associate

Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Zoё Irvine has been associated with the UCSD Eating Disorder Treatment and Research Program since 2009, and she is currently working as an Imaging Study Coordinator. She is responsible for the recruitment, screening, and assessment of individuals who participate in the program’s neuroimaging studies. Zoё received her Master’s degree in Psychology from San Diego State University. Her graduate research focused on neurocognitive functioning in women recovered from eating disorders.

Breana Janke

Breana Janke, B.A., R.D.

Registered Dietitian
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Breana Janke is a Registered Dietitian who has been working for the Adolescent Day Treatment Program since Fall 2012. Breana earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Foods and Nutrition from San Diego State University. Shortly after completing her undergraduate work, Breana was accepted into a dietetic internship program where she completed one year of supervised practice experience required to take the Registration Examination for Dietitians. Breana’s interest in eating disorders developed during her dietetic internship where she received experience treating patients with eating disorders in both inpatient and outpatient settings. After earning her RD, Breana worked as a clinical dietitian providing medical nutrition therapy to many different patient populations including oncology, diabetes, renal and liver disease. She is a member of the American Dietetic Association and San Diego Dietitians in Eating Disorders Group. Breana is thrilled be a part of UCSD’s Adolescent Treatment team where she is able to pursue her passion of working in the field of eating disorders.

Angela Klein, Ph.D.

Psychologist
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Klein is a licensed clinical psychologist and researcher for the UCSD Eating Disorder Program. Dr. Klein earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Missouri. She completed her predoctoral internship at the University of South Carolina Counseling and Human Development Center and her postdoctoral residency at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. Dr. Klein’s research focuses on treatment outcome. She has implemented and directed adaptations of dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) for eating disorders, evaluating the effectiveness of the adapted DBT through a series of studies. She has also been active in eating disorder prevention projects and grant-funded randomized trials, with primary therapist roles for investigations of motivational interviewing combined with cognitive behavioral interventions and elements of DBT combined with acceptance and commitment therapy for self-harm. She is especially interested in acceptance-based treatment with diagnostic variants of eating disorders in “real-world” settings. In addition to her research involvement at UCSD, Dr. Klein practices at the DBT Center of San Diego.

Stephanie Knatz, Ph.D.

Post Doctoral Fellow
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Stephanie Knatz is a postdoctoral fellow at the UCSD Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Center. She currently conducts the clinic’s week-long Intensive Multi-Family Therapy Program and works within the adolescent day treatment program, providing individual, family, and group psychotherapies. She specializes in family based treatments and behavioral parent management training. In addition to her clinical work, she is also involved with conducting research in eating and weight issues and is involved with our clinic’s efforts to develop and improve current treatments for eating disorders based on neurobiological findings. Other research interests include pediatric obesity and emotion regulation in bulimia nervosa.

June Liang, Ph.D.

Post Doctoral Fellow
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. June Liang is a post-doctoral fellow at the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program.  She completed her clinical internship at the UCSD/VA Psychology Internship Program and received her Ph.D. from the SDSU/UCSD Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology.  Her research and clinical experience includes parental involvement and culturally competent assessment and treatment in mental health services for youth with various psychopathology.  Dr. Liang is currently involved in providing individual and group therapy to patients with eating disorders.

Julie Melekian, B.A.

Therapist
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Julie Melekian is pursuing her Master of Arts in Marital and Family Therapy at the University of San Diego. She joins the UCSD Eating Disorders Treatment and Research program as a practicum student with a strong interest in behavioral training, recovery-oriented collaborative care and Dialectical Behavior Therapy. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of San Diego, and has a diverse background working with adolescents and their families, particularly in the areas of grief management and risk assessment. Julie currently works with individuals, groups, and families in the Adolescent Day Program.

Tiffany Nakamura, MA, PCCI

Therapist
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Tiffany recently joined the UCSD adolescent treatment team as a therapist and case manager. She graduated with her MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with an emphasis in Asian American Mental Health from University of San Diego summer of 2012. She received her BA in Psychology also from the University of San Diego and previously interned at Urban Corps of San Diego providing individual and group counseling for at risk young adults. Since her undergraduate career, Tiffany’s interest in eating disorders has grown and continued through her graduate program and beyond. With previous experience in providing individual, family, and group therapies to adults in UCSD’s Adult Day/Intensive Outpatient Treatment Program, she is also a certified yoga instructor and has specialized clinical training in DBT and ACT.

Ky Ngo Dennis, M.S., IMF

Intake Coordinator

Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Ky is an intake coordinator for the adolescent program and helps families with navigating the process of seeking treatment for their child. Ky received her undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley and recently graduated from SDSU's Masters of Counseling program. She has had several years of experience conducting therapy in school settings, hospice, and a community counseling clinic. Passionate about eating disorder recovery, she is available to help you with any questions about our adolescent program and treatment options.

Susan Norman

Suzanne Norman

Cook
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Suzanne helps prepare nutritious and balanced meals for patients. She has 12 years experience cooking in an institutional setting. She is currently pursuing her associates degree in culinary arts at Grossmont Community College. She enjoys the "made from scratch" and "fresh" approach to food that the clinic strives for.

Tamara Maginot, M.A.

Rady Children’s Hospital Medical Behavioral Unit
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Tamara Maginot “Tammy” joined the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in clinical psychology with an emphasis in health at the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University. Tammy completed her clinical internship at Sharp Healthcare in San Diego and is currently completing her doctoral dissertation examining the effect of weight on elementary school aged children’s social competence. Tammy’s clinical and research interests include working with children and adolescents managing chronic medical conditions, trauma-informed care, family-based treatment of obesity, and medical stabilization of eating disorders.

Jessie Menzel, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow 

Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Jessie Menzel is a postdoctoral fellow at the UCSD Eating Disorder Center for Treatment and Research. She earned her PhD in clinical psychology from the University of South Florida and completed her internship at UCSD and the San Diego VA Healthcare System. Dr. Menzel has extensive treatment experience working with adults and adolescents with eating disorders at all levels of care. She has specialized training experiences in family-based therapy, cognitive behavior therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, motivational interviewing, and exposure and response prevention for OCD and other anxiety disorders. Dr. Menzel’s research experience includes the study of body image disturbance, body awareness (interoception), and the development of disordered eating interventions. Dr. Menzel currently provides individual, group and family therapy for the Adult Day Treatment and Intensive Outpatient Program.

Alyson Merchant, M.S., IMF

Intake Coordinator

Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

As Intake Coordinator, Alyson works with to facilitate families coming into the adolescent and inpatient programs. She is skilled at understanding the particular needs of families and will help answer any questions or address any concerns for clients coming into our program. Alyson feels it is her primary concern to help identify individual needs and coordinate care to meet those particular need. Alyson received her Master’s in Counseling Psychology at Mount St. Mary’s College. Over the last five years, Alyson has been passionately working in the behavioral health field focused on developing community relations and admissions.

Christi Middlesworth, B.A.

Intake Coordinator
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Christi Middlesworth brings knowledge and understanding of the complex experience eating disorder patients and their families live with, to her role as intake coordinator. With a B.A. from the University of Oregon and a background in communication, she offers a compassionate welcome to UCSD Eating Disorder Treatment Center's programs. Christi draws upon her experience as a social worker and mental health professional, and has worked in field of eating disorders recovery for over five years.  She believes it is every individual's right to be treated with kindness and respect. When Christi is not at work, she is enjoying the wealth of outdoor recreation activities found in beautiful southern California.

Miki Ogasawara

Research Coordinator

Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Miki Ogasawara received her Bachelors of Science degree in Psychology from the University of California, San Diego. Combining her interests in mental health with her experience in computer science, she is currently working as a research associate for the neuroimaging studies conducted at the UCSD Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Center. As a member of the research team, she assists in fMRI data analysis that examines the neurobiology of eating disorders.

Danielle Parker, M.A.

Therapist
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Danielle Parker is a third-year practicum student at the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program where she provides individual and group therapy in the Adolescent Day Treatment Program.  She is currently pursuing a Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology at Alliant International University with an emphasis in Child and Family Studies.  Danielle completed her undergraduate studies at UC Santa Barbara, culminating with a B.A. in Psychology and minor in Counseling and Education.  She has clinical experience providing therapy and diagnostic assessments for children and adolescents with diagnoses such as ASD, depression, anxiety, ADHD, ODD, and Conduct Disorder.  Danielle’s research interests include the prevention and treatment of self-harming behaviors as well as mental health programs designed for at-risk youth in the foster care system.

Carmen Pat, B.A.

Office Manager

Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

As the office manager, Carmen Fang provides a full range of administrative support for the UCSD Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Program. She works closely with the program staff and is the point person for all scheduling, records management, and information about our various programs.

Erin Parks, Ph.D.

Post Doctoral Fellow
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Erin Parks is a postdoctoral fellow at the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program. A graduate of UCSD/SDSU's Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology, Dr. Parks specialized in neuropsychology and conducted neuroimaging research of child development. She currently conducts the clinic’s week-long Intensive Multi-Family Therapy Program and works within the adolescent day treatment program, providing individual, family, and group psychotherapies. Dr. Parks clinical and research interests include cognitive sequelae of eating disorders, cognitive rehabilitation, family based interventions and treatment development.

Ana Ramirez, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Ana Ramirez is a postdoctoral fellow at the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program. She received her Ph.D. from Texas A&M University in Clinical Psychology and completed her internship at University Medical Center of Princeton. Her research experience includes the development of an eating disorders prevention program that was piloted with college students. Dr. Ramirez has worked with various psychiatric populations in her training. Her clinical experience includes treatment of eating disorders in inpatient, residential, partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient and outpatient settings. Dr. Ramirez currently provides individual, group and family therapy for the Adult Day Treatment and Intensive Outpatient Programs.

Grace Rasmusson, B.A.

Day Treatment Mental Health Representative
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Grace recently graduated with honors from University of California, San Diego with a double degree in Psychology and Human Development. She previously held a position as a research intern assisting with data collection and participant recruitment for a series of brain imaging studies conducted at the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program. Her research interests include exploring the neural activation associated with anxiety disorders and how these findings can be applied to the treatment of eating disorders. Grace currently works on a variety of clinical, research, and administrative projects at the Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Center. She hopes to eventually pursue a Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology.

Heather Rodriguez, B.A.

Therapist
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Heather Rodriguez is pursuing her Ph.D in Clinical Psychology at Alliant International University. She is a third year practicum student at the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program and provides individual and group therapy to adolescents in the Adolescent Day Treatment Program. She came to the program with 3 years of experience working with at risk adolescents, as well as, eating disorder prevention programs. Her clinical interests include treatment and prevention programs for eating disorders, substance abuse, and trauma.

Erica Sales, LPN

Licensed Practical Nurse

Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Erica Sales, Licensed Practical Nurse joined the UCSD Eating Disorder Treatment and Research Program in June 2010. Her career as a nurse includes experience with adult and adolescent eating disorder patients in residential, hospital inpatient, and partial hospitalization settings. She comes to the program with a great understanding for patients struggling with various medical complications that follow this disorder. At UCSD, she works with both the Day Treatment and Research program to assist with the medical needs of the patients along with assisting the physicians to coordinate care throughout the patients treatment process.

Lilya Sitnikov

Therapist
Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Lilya is a doctoral psychology intern completing her final year of training towards earning her PhD in clinical psychology from the University of Vermont. Lilya has a Bachelors of Arts degree in Psychology from Brandeis University in Waltham, MA. Lilya currently provides individual and group therapy for the Adolescent Day Treatment and Intensive Outpatient Program. She has been working with eating disorders in research and clinical settings for over 6 years. Lilya has specialized training and experiences in cognitive behavior therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, and motivational interviewing. Her clinical interests include emotion dysregulation and motivation enhancement in eating disorders as well as the application of evidence-based interventions for eating disorders. Her research interests include studying the mechanistic roles of emotion regulation and cognitive processes in eating disorders in order to inform development, implementation, and evaluation of treatment programs for eating disorders and body image disturbances.

Danica Torres, RN, B.S.N

Registered Nurse
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Danica Torres, Registered Nurse joined the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program in December 2010. Her career as a nurse includes acute care experience and experience with adults and adolescent eating disorder patients in residential, inpatient and partial hospitalization settings. At UCSD, she attends to the medical needs of the patients along with assisting the physicians to coordinate care throughout the patient’s treatment process.

Emily Whipple, B.A.

Psychiatric Technician
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Emily received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Texas at Austin. She came to the program with experience treating eating disorder patients in residential, partial hospitalization, and intensive outpatient settings. As a Psych Tech at UCSD, she works with the Adolescent Day Treatment program to assist with needs of the patients and their families, along with assisting the clinical staff to coordinate care throughout the patients' treatment.

Kristin Whelan, M.A.

Therapist
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Kristin Whelan is pursuing her Psy.D in Clinical Psychology at Alliant International University. She is a third year practicum student at the UCSD Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program. Kristin has four years of clinical experience providing individual and group therapy, case management and crisis intervention to a variety of children, adolescent and adult psychiatric populations. Kristin has further clinical experience in psychological testing, performing intake assessment evaluations, and creating comprehensive diagnostic impressions, as well as developing and managing behavioral treatment plans for adults with mood and psychotic disorders. Kristin is currently conducting research on the effects of emotion regulation on cognitive processes and its impact on food related distress and behavior in adults. She is interested in the neurobiology of eating disorders and research on the development of effective prevention and intervention programs for individuals struggling with eating disorders. She provides individual, group and family therapy to adults in the Adult Day Treatment and Intensive Outpatient Programs.

Cathy Whitney

Administrative Assistant
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

Cathy has been part of UCSD Psychiatry Department since 2001. She began last year with our UCSD, Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program as an Administrative Assistant. Recently she has started working mainly for the Adolescent Program helping with any administrative duties the therapist and staff need.

Christina Vizcarra

Insurance Coordinator
Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research Program
UCSD Department of Psychiatry

As the insurance coordinator for the Eating Disorders Treatment and Research Program, Christina helps patients and their families verify insurance coverage for the IOP, IFT and Day Treatment programs. At our clinic she serves as the point of contact for all insurance related questions, such as patient financial responsibility and coverage information.

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