Without a crystallized vision, no organization can persist for long. That’s where strong leadership comes in. Collectively and as individuals, our leadership team has seen and treated almost every psychological condition across all ages and stages of life. This team has given The Center a clear mission built on a solid foundation of years of counseling experience and sound fundamentals.
Alex Klein, MS, LCSW, Executive Director
For nearly 20 years, Alex has been working with children, adolescents, young adults, and families. Starting in entry-level, direct-care positions, Alex has steadily expanded his education, increased his training and certification, and broadened his experience and skills in this field. While rising within the ranks of previous organizations, Alex developed a vision for combining dynamic counseling and community partnerships to meet client needs in the least restrictive environment. Alex’s creation of SPBH is a manifestation of his prior experience and his mission moving forward: to direct a therapeutic program in which clients and families receive treatment on the path to living healthy and productive lives within their communities… read more»
Dennis Rinaldi, MPA, Director of Operations
Dennis Rinaldi joins the The Center team from Harrison, New York. During his college years, he was a stand-out basketball player and led his team as Captain, MVP, and the school’s first All-Conference first-team award winner. Dennis applies his positive on-the-court attitude to his work with children and families. He has always found joy working with kids and has led volunteer trips, nonprofit fundraisers and community events to support youth development.
After graduation, Dennis worked at a therapeutic boarding school for adolescents who, because of social or emotional difficulties, have been unable to make satisfactory adjustments in their home or school environments. He began as a teacher/counselor and was quickly promoted to an advisor/ residential administrator role. He spent 3 years working directly with families and young adults. He was a mentor, coach and role model for residential students and the staff he worked with.
For the past 4 years, Dennis has been working as the Program Director at a non-profit organization for children with severe and life-threatening illnesses. He manages a team of thirty-five counselors, overseas safety for all program activities and focuses on providing a different kind of counseling and healing for children and their families.
Dennis has called New England home for the past 10 years and presently lives on the Connecticut Shoreline.
Jake Zoubek, LMFT, Associate Director
Jake comes to The Center with experience working directly with individuals with behavioral health needs, ranging from autism spectrum disorder to anxiety and substance use disorders. Jake completed his bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in addictions. During his time at college, he worked counseling adolescents with autism, providing one on one care to improve maladaptive behaviors. Jake also spent 6 months in Spain, studying psychology, which afforded him an opportunity to grow as a culturally competent therapist.
During his time in graduate school, Jake worked as a milieu therapist at a residential substance program, providing support to adolescents struggling with substance abuse in an inpatient setting. He provided individual, group, and family therapy to adolescents and young adults struggling with substance use and co-occurring mental disorders. During this time, Jake also created and facilitated a parent support group for loved ones of clients. Jake worked as an in-home counselor for a community mental health agency, helping adolescents with conduct/substance disorders navigate struggles within school, community, family and judicial settings. Jake brings a solution-focused approach to therapy, providing clients with support while helping them take steps to achieve their goals.
At The Center, Jake works with adolescents and their families, he is active as a clinician and as a connections coach. Additionally, Jake provides supervision and consultation for all of our Connection coaches.
In his free time, you can find Jake snowboarding, rock climbing, and doing anything else that gets his heart racing!
Brittany Parker, LMFT, Clinical Director
Brittany graduated with her Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy and completed her clinical internship hours at a residential boarding school, providing student counseling sessions, family sessions and group therapy. During her year and half of clinical supervision, she worked with individuals and couples under the guidance of a trained Marriage and Family therapist. This experience has guided the development of her theoretical orientation as well as enabled her to gain knowledge and receive feedback in her work.
As a former college field hockey player, Brittany offers a deep understanding of the athlete’s role as well as the inner workings of the larger sports community. The application of this experience helps guide her work with high school and college athletes struggling with mental health conditions who may experience the stigma of seeking professional support. Brittany believes in a holistic approach that integrates systems theory and emotionally focused therapy, while emphasizing the importance of staying active to help clients achieve their ultimate potential.
Emily Fulcher, LPCA, Creative Director, Associate Clinician
Emily first decided to enter the therapeutic field after dealing with a serious medical condition as a child. Through her time in the hospital undergoing treatment, Emily learned about the meaningful connections made with compassionate adults in her environment. Emily became inspired by the visual arts and the ability to cope with the world around her through creativity.
Emily comes to us from her previous work at a nonprofit serving children and families with life-threatening and serious illnesses. Emily spent several years working on family and child-exclusive programming, volunteer coordination, and creative program design with the organization.
Emily grew up in New Jersey and received her undergraduate degree in Art Therapy and her master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with a specialization in Art Therapy. Emily’s fieldwork consisted of working with children in a partial hospital setting at BayState Health, and adults in a vocational art studio program through VINFEN.
Emily can best be described as creative and goal-oriented, which are characteristics important to her therapeutic work. Emily utilizes the visual arts and creative expression in her work with clients of all ages, especially children. Emily enjoys creating art, reading, cooking, and traveling with family and friends.
Emily believes that there are several ways to cope through challenges and obstacles, and her responsibility is to work with clients to explore and utilize them. She believes that medical and psychiatric challenges affect the individual facing them as well as the entire family and support system. Emily hopes to continue to embody this approach in her creative and therapeutic work at Shoreline.
Brianna Walker, MS, Connections Coach
Brianna comes to The Center after working at a non-profit organization serving youth with serious illnesses and their families for seven years. Bri worked in the family outreach department facilitating youth development programs on the road in the communities and homes of participants.
She graduated with dual Bachelor of Arts degrees in Music and Psychosocial Health Studies and a Master of Science in Youth Development Leadership.
Brianna is a passionate professional who strives to have a positive, lasting impact on all those she meets. She believes that life is about creating and sharing meaningful experiences. Bri utilizes a strength-based approach and focuses on the positive assets people already have when working towards their greater development. As a life-long learner, Bri values a growth mindset over a fixed mindset and works to challenge people, in a positive way, to be the best that they can be. Using a holistic approach – including physical, emotional, and social arenas of life – Bri is thoughtful about having a set direction and being intentional about the decisions that bring her and those she interacts with along a chosen path. She cares greatly about research and evaluation and recognizing the meaning behind her efforts. In her free time, you will likely find Bri out in nature at any time of year. She loves exploring the woods and mountains and water and winter sports. She also loves being active for her health finding time to run or do yoga throughout her week. Finally, Bri loves to read, journal and play music!
Brianna is continuously excited to share her interests with The Center community and learn about the lives of the therapist, staff, clients, and families in this ever-growing community. Bri believes in kindness and compassion. She loves meeting people where they are at and matching their energy. Bri hopes to provide a warm, welcoming environment where people can feel included and where they can be their most authentic selves.
Janice Lynch, Business Assistant
Jan is The Center practice manager. She ensures that our office runs smoothly and is often one of the first people our clients interact with during the intake process. In short, without Jan, The Center would simply not function!
Jan is a native of Connecticut and has been living on the Shoreline for over 35 years. She enjoys going to the beach, boating, and spending time with family and friends.
In addition to her office manager role at The Center, Jan has been working with the Westbrook school district for over 30 years as a Food Service Manager and enjoys being a care taker to her two grandsons.
Janel Lynch Bacon, LMFT, Consultant
Janel possesses a natural gift for connecting with clients and helping them better connect with themselves. Her work as a clinician, as well as a leader in program development and staff supervision, are deeply rooted in her caring for others and aiming to better their lives. Over the last 20 years, Janel has melded her personal and professional experiences with formal education and certified credentials to become an effective leader and contributor in the field of mental health counseling services.
Janel’s expertise lies in complex trauma and EMDR treatment modalities, child and adolescent development, couples therapy, and family systems. Her attention to detail in working with clients is her greatest strength, as she possesses an innate ability to identify and understand presenting issues and to guide and educate on the path to self-discovery and healing. Janel is clinically-oriented in her focus; her relational approach allows her to join with her clients and build rapport, connection and trust during their therapeutic journey. She has provided therapy for clients across the diagnostic spectrum, from children to adolescents to adults and for individuals, couples, and families.
In addition to her clinical work, Janel is a gifted teacher with extensive experience in the training and development of other clinicians, counselors, and crisis intervention coordinators. Throughout her career in previous facilities, Janel has been consistently promoted to higher levels of responsibility and management. Janel’s leadership at The Center will ensure that all staff and families are understood and provided with nuanced quality care tailored to their individual needs.
Janel holds a Bachelors Degree in Psychology and a Masters Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. She has worked in residential treatment centers, outpatient hospital programs, community clinics and has nearly a decade of experience in managing her private practice in Madison CT, where she works as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist for individuals, couples and families. A Connecticut Shoreline native, Janel has lived and worked in the area for many years and maintains a strong network of family, friends and connections to colleagues and other agencies in the community.
Liz Peri, LCSW, Senior Clinician
Liz was fortunate to know early in her life that her passion would be working as a therapist. She was curious about others’ emotions from a young age and often wondered how others were feeling. As a teen, Liz was often found on the phone listening to her friends and was already developing her counseling skills. It was clear she would need to study social work. Her time at college was a beautiful adventure full of academic rigor and social excitement. Liz studied social work as her major and Spanish as her minor. She had opportunities to learn more by interning in a Domestic Violence Shelter for women and children and interned at a residential facility for teens. Her path towards social work continued, as she pursued and received her Master’s degree. Further internships included work within local in-patient psychiatric units.
Liz began her official career at a facility located in Guilford, CT. At this LMHA, she focused on Dialectical Behavior Therapy and TARGET trauma skills therapy for PTSD. She enjoyed individual therapy with adults, as well as group therapy and Intensive Outpatient Program. She continued on to another CT-based Institute where she focused on substance abuse treatment. Liz has a great depth of knowledge when it comes to recovery issues and addiction for the individual and their family members.
She has seen the power of recovery for many clients on the other side of their pain & addiction. She has worked with many adults dealing with a variety of mental health issues including anxiety, PTSD, OCD, depression, psychosis, bipolar, borderline personality disorder and dual diagnosis. It was very clear to Liz that therapy had the potential to decrease suffering for so many at any stage of life.
Liz loves the magic that happens in therapy. She loves to see an end to personal suffering and watching her clients build a life worth living. She is non-judgmental and willing to welcome any person desiring help or changes in their life.
Liz is married and has two step children and one puppy. She is an avid runner and co-founder of Outrun38.
Liz is available for virtual therapy clients only.
- Alex Klein, MS, LCSW Executive Director
- Dennis Rinaldi, MPA Director of Operations
- Jake Zoubek, LMFT Associate Director
- Brittany Parker, LMFT Clinical Director
- Emily Fulcher, LPCA Creative Director
- Brianna Walker, MS Research & Program Development Coordinator
- Jan Lynch Business Assistant
- Janel Lynch-Bacon, LMFT Clinical Consultant
- Liz Peri, LMFT Clinical Consultant
- Alex Klein, MS, LCSW Therapist
- Jake Zoubek, LMFT Therapist
- Brittany Parker, LMFT Therapist
- Jessica Bessette, LCSW Therapist
- Emily Fulcher, LPCA Therapist
- Tatiana Bicknell, LMSW Therapist
- Sarah Garcia, LMFTA Therapist
- Kimberly Joyner, LMFT Therapist
- Emily Kipness, LMFTA Therapist
- Liz Peri, LCSW Therapist
- Gretchen Holthausen, LPC Therapist
- Marissa McCarthy, LPC Therapist
- James Stone, MSW Clinical Intern
- Dennis Rinaldi, MPA Connections Coach
- Sam Stearns Connections Coach
- AJ Turnier, MS Connections Coach
- Brianna Walker, MS Connections Coach
- Andres Yanez, BA Connections Coach
- Nitya, BA Connections Coach
- Nitya Bhattarai, BA Connections Coach