Whittier, CA

Whittier Residential Mental Health Program

Discovery Mood & Anxiety
11911 Washington Boulevard
Whittier, CA 90606

PROGRAM FEATURES
Residential
Partial Hospitalization
All Genders 11-17

GET IN TOUCH CALL 714.828.0808

GET HELP

Our Whittier location is a 25-bed facility that focuses on stabilization and recovery in both step-down and step-up treatment situations. 12 bedrooms accommodate 24 clients with one individual room for clients who need more support. Our team here helps clients integrate back into home life with healthier, more balanced skills. We treat those struggling with mood and anxiety disorders, as well as high-functioning autistic and complex trauma clients. Goals include setting healthy boundaries, modeling effective and healthy communication, and restarting healthy habits, all of which promote long-term success.

Therapies include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Traumatic Grief, Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR), motivational interviewing, experiential therapy. Extensive family involvement is also a large component of our program. Clients participate in therapeutic beach walks and equine therapy off-site. We also utilize music therapy, sound bath and body movement therapy, art therapy, expressive writing, fitness therapy along with many other group therapy activities. The program includes weekly medication evaluation by our in-house psychiatrist and weekly meetings, if needed, with our dietitian who addresses healthy relationships between mood and food.

Insurances we accept include but are not limited to Anthem Blue Cross, Cigna, Beacon, Unicare, Fresno County, and Kaiser. For more information on what other insurances we accept, please visit our insurance page.

LEARN ABOUT OUR COVID CLEAN COMMITMENT

MEET THE TEAM

Monica Powers-MA, PsyD, PSY 29991

Monica Powers-MA, PsyD, PSY 29991

PROGRAM DIRECTOR

Dr. Powers enjoys helping people discover themselves, their personal resilience and rewrite their stories to ones of survival and strength. In addition to her role at Discovery Mood and Anxiety Program, she is currently in private practice at Carlson & Associates and adjunct faculty at Antioch University. She began working with patients of all ages and backgrounds in 2007 and found that the life stories and experiences of people were unique and personal, deserving of individual attention and support. She has worked in the community-based setting with adolescents and adults ranging from ages 18 to 80 who live with psychological issues, relationship difficulties, substance abuse, grief and loss, and traumatic experiences. Her interests lie in working with individuals who have experienced a traumatic event, either personally or on a global perspective. This interest was carried in her dissertation work with survivors of Hurricane Katrina, focusing on individual strengths and resilience.

Dr. Powers completed her bachelor’s degree studies in criminal justice and psychology at California State University, Bakersfield, and she holds a Master in Marriage and Family Therapy degree from the University of Phoenix. In 2013, she received her Doctorate in Applied Clinical Psychology degree from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology and became a licensed psychologist in early 2018. She completed practicums and internships at Tarzana Treatment Center and Antelope Valley Department of Mental Health, respectively. Upon completion of the internship, she immediately began her post-doctoral fellowship at a growing dual diagnosis treatment center where she remained in a number of roles for over three years. She enjoys working with diverse populations, traveling and concert going.

Kelly Gonderman- PsyD, PSY 31284

Kelly Gonderman- PsyD, PSY 31284

ASSOCIATE PROGRAM DIRECTOR

Dr. Gonderman is a licensed psychologist with a focus on clinical psychology. Kelly earned her master’s and doctoral degrees from Rosemead School of Psychology at Biola University and received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from California State University, Long Beach. She has experience in both adolescent and adult residential mental health treatment and has had the unique opportunity to work and train in a variety of additional mental health and substance abuse settings. She has significant experience and interest in crisis management, substance use and psychotic disorders, depression, identity and family-of-origin issues, as well as working with survivors of sexual assault. Kelly approaches therapy from a psychodynamic frame by utilizing a combination of emotion-focused therapy, family systems and behavioral techniques. She strives to create a safe space in therapy for patients to understand themselves more deeply and how their early life experiences have impacted their current way of interacting with the world. Kelly has a true passion for helping adolescents and transitional age youth along with their families to navigate challenges to live their best lives now and in the future. 

Sam Edman

Sam Edman

FACILITY MANAGER

Sam started at Discovery Mood and Anxiety Program in June 2019. He has worked in a residential setting by supporting and helping at-risk youth for almost five years. Sam started as a floor staff member and worked his way to a program supervisor with South Coast Children’s Society. Sam went to school to be a paramedic but found a passion in helping others in the field of mental health after working with adolescents in a residential setting. Sam graduated from University of California, Santa Barbara, in 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in fire science and technologies, with a minor in emergency medicine. He plans to go back to school to obtain a master’s degree in social work and further grow his knowledge and impact with at-risk youth in the mental health setting.

Robert Sperring-MA, LMFT 53926

Robert Sperring-MA, LMFT 53926

CLINICAL SUPERVISOR

Robert has worked for Discovery Mood & Anxiety Program for 11 years, both as a therapist and counselor. Robert is a 2008 graduate of Hope International University where he received his Master in Marriage Family Therapy degree. He also holds bachelor’s degrees from Goddard College in Vermont in the subjects of psychology and organizational development. Robert has a private practice in Huntington Beach, California, where he works with couples, families, children and individuals to reach their goals, restore the self and deal with the world as it is, rather than acting out in a self-destructive manner to escape from it. Robert specializes in trauma, family, couples and attachment issues.

Edward Shin- MA, LMFT 40646

Edward Shin- MA, LMFT 40646

PRIMARY THERAPIST

Edward recently joined Discovery Mood & Anxiety Program and is excited to help adolescents recover from their emotional and mental health issues. He also believes that everyone deserves to live a happy life and to move on with hope. Edward incorporates cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and solution-focused skills into his individual treatment to better help patients learn how to manage emotions and distress. Edward received his Master of Art degree in Marriage Family Therapy from Hope International University in Fullerton, California, in 1999. He also received a Master of Divinity in Practical Theology degree from Biola University in La Mirada, California, in 1989. Edward holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Nebraska at Omaha in accounting. Edward became a licensed marriage and family therapist in June 2004. Edward’s goal is to help the patient he’s serving to live a purposeful life and to reestablish a healthy family system.

Michael Lemley-MA, LCSW 85831

Michael Lemley-MA, LCSW 85831

PRIMARY THERAPIST

Michael hails from New Jersey and headed to Florida to complete his undergraduate work in the field of psychology. He then relocated west to attend California State University, Long Beach, to obtain a Master of Social Work degree. He has been with Discovery Mood & Anxiety Program for the last 10 years, working his way from a floor counselor, then music therapist, to his current role as a primary therapist, and supervisor for practicum for social work students. He became licensed in 2018 and began working in a small private practice in his spare time. Michael likes to incorporate music into groups and individual sessions. Michael enjoys working at the Whittier facility because he has wonderful coworkers who promote a positive environment to help young adults improve their lives.

Colleen Cunniff- MS, AAMFT 94409

Colleen Cunniff- MS, AAMFT 94409

PRIMARY THERAPIST

Colleen graduated with her Master of Science in Marital and Family Therapy degree in 2016. Since then, she has been passionate about helping youths and adolescents with their emotional and mental health issues. Colleen focuses on being patient-centered and emotionally present to help patients meet their goals and grow. Colleen incorporates dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) skills into her individual treatment to better help patients learn how to manage distress. Colleen also incorporates family systems theory to help the patient and their family work through their issues and strengthen their bonds.

Heather Tetiva- MA, ASW 90174

Heather Tetiva- MA, ASW 90174

PRIMARY THERAPIST

Heather has been with the organization since 2016. She came to Discovery Mood & Anxiety Program from Olive Crest, where she worked in group homes with foster youth, specifically those convicted and on probation for sexual offenses. She started at Whittier as the facility manager and is now a primary therapist. While working as the facility manager, she completed her Master in Social Work degree from the University of Southern California. Her therapeutic interventions are focused primarily on cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) with an emphasis on behavior modification. Heather is an avid movie buff, and in her free time enjoys trying new foods and traveling.

Joi Johnson- MA, PSB 94023434

Joi Johnson- MA, PSB 94023434

PRIMARY THERAPIST/PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSISTANT

Joi is a doctoral candidate from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, working toward licensure as a clinical psychologist and holds both a Bachelor of Arts in Social Ecology degree from the University of California, Irvine, as well as a Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology degree from Antioch University. As psychological assistant and primary therapist, she works to provide therapeutic support to patients and their families in a uniquely challenging manner. Utilizing both cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and family systems approaches to therapy, Joi aids patients in working through their present struggles to think and act in ways that foster personal empowerment, which includes the practice of appropriate support seeking. Joi hopes that all patients and their support systems can come together in a joint effort to reach the goal of a stable and successful future.

Deepinder Singh- MA, APCC 5853

Deepinder Singh- MA, APCC 5853

PRIMARY THERAPIST

Deepinder’s approach to helping people is by making them available to the spiritual experience of awareness and wisdom. These experiences include living life to the fullest, smiling, laughing, crying, getting sad, making mistakes, facing challenges and many more. Deep has been with the organization since 2017. He holds a Master of Arts in Psychology degree. In addition, he has a doctorate degree in homeopathic medicine from India. His educational background in diverse fields brings an exclusive perspective to the patients and the families he works with by supporting and guiding them to identify issues and providing a solution piece as well.

Alysha Brown- MS, AMFT 103533/ APCC4653

Alysha Brown- MS, AMFT 103533/ APCC4653

PRIMARY THERAPIST

Alysha holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology degree from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and a Master of Arts in Psychology degree from Brandman University. Alysha’s professional journey has involved working in community mental health clinics, providing school-based counseling services and assisting adults in crisis to reach stabilization. As an associate marriage and family therapist and associate professional clinical counselor, Alysha utilizes cognitive emotional behavioral therapy to assist patients in understanding the how and why of emotional and behavioral responses. Alysha’s educational background brings a unique perspective to family systems work by providing patients and their families with support and guidance to identify the possibilities when approaching the seemingly “impossible.”

Vickie McCracken- RN, BSN

Vickie McCracken- RN, BSN

NURSING SUPERVISOR

Vickie has been a registered nurse for over 35 years. She graduated from Arizona State University with a BSN and a minor in French.  She initially gained unparalleled experience working for Samaritan Behavioral Health on a long-term adolescent unit. She has also worked in pediatric practices and spent over 10 years working with clients on the spectrum of autism. In her spare time, Vickie enjoys talking about and visiting with her four grown children and attending sporting events, such as Angel baseball games, college football games and volleyball games. She also enjoys going to concerts of all types of music. She is very crafty and has many projects going on at the same time. 

Kia Octaviano

Kia Octaviano

Dietitian

Kia has been with Discovery Mood & Anxiety Program for three years. She began as the diet technician for the Atlantic House and transitioned to work as a counselor. Kia continued to intern for Discovery, and continues to work at the Atlantic House, Pacific Place and Whittier locations as a dietitian. Kia completed her Bachelor of Science degree at California State University, Long Beach, and moved on to complete her didactic internship at Oakwood University in Alabama. She loves to work on the floor with the patients because she believes building rapport with the patients help her do her job better. Kia believes that recovery from any mental health illness, whether that includes disordered eating patterns or not, can always include building towards a healthy lifestyle with knowledge of how to feed the body well.

Nancy Tello

Nancy Tello

EDUCATIONAL LIAISON

Nancy has been an education liaison at Discovery Mood and Anxiety at the Whittier location for a year now, but also supports the house as a strong counselor. She attended California State University, Long Beach, and received her bachelor’s degree in psychology. She truly enjoys supporting patients with completing their school work and ensuring they receive the best support in achieving their educational goals. Fun facts about Nancy: She loves to sing, enjoys K-pop and Korean dramas, loves to travel and was Miss Bell Gardens 2013.

Amanda Ordaz

Amanda Ordaz

EDUCATIONAL LIAISON

Amanda has been with Discovery Mood & Anxiety Program since December 2018, and was recently elevated to the position of educational liaison, as well as taking on the duties of a counselor. In the EL role, Amanda works directly with parents and schools on roadmaps towards academic objectives for the patients while they are in treatment. Amanda holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Loyola Marymount University. While at LMU, she worked in Student Psychological Services, educating her campus community about mental health and wellness. Amanda was born and raised in Orange County, California. She enjoys the outdoors, yoga and family time.

TAKE A VIRTUAL TOUR

FREE SUPPORT GROUPS

Discovery Mood & Anxiety provides free support groups for individuals, loved ones, and professionals. Find out more about how to join our free support groups.

WHITTIER RESIDENTIAL MENTAL HEALTH PROGRAM

Our Whittier location is a 25-bed facility that focuses on stabilization and recovery in both step-down and step-up treatment situations. 12 bedrooms accommodate 24 clients with one individual room for clients who need more support. Our team here helps clients integrate back into home life with healthier, more balanced skills. We treat those struggling with mood and anxiety disorders, as well as high-functioning autistic and complex trauma clients. Goals include setting healthy boundaries, modeling effective and healthy communication, and restarting healthy habits, all of which promote long-term success.

Therapies include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Traumatic Grief, Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR), motivational interviewing, experiential therapy. Extensive family involvement is also a large component of our program. Clients participate in therapeutic beach walks and equine therapy off-site. We also utilize music therapy, sound bath and body movement therapy, art therapy, expressive writing, fitness therapy along with many other group therapy activities. The program includes weekly medication evaluation by our in-house psychiatrist and weekly meetings, if needed, with our dietitian who addresses healthy relationships between mood and food.

Insurances we accept include but are not limited to Anthem Blue Cross, Cigna, Beacon, Unicare, Fresno County, and Kaiser. For more information on what other insurances we accept, please visit our insurance page.

LEARN ABOUT OUR COVID CLEAN COMMITMENT

OUR TEAM

TAKE A VIRTUAL TOUR

FREE SUPPORT GROUPS

Discovery Mood & Anxiety provides free support groups for individuals, loved ones, and professionals. Find out more about how to join our free support groups.

GET IN TOUCH / CALL 714.828.0808

Discovery Mood & Anxiety
11911 Washington Boulevard
Whittier, CA 90606

PROGRAM FEATURES
Residential
Partial Hospitalization
All Genders 11-17

TAKE THE FIRST STEP



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Preferred In-Network Provider for All Major Health Insurance

Preferred In-Network Provider for All Major Health Insurance

Patient, Family & Staff Safety is our Priority: COVID-19Update