SGVGRTC was created to meet the diverse grieving needs of our community. Our goal is to provide affordable grief resources including individual and family grief therapy, support groups, community education, and outreach about grief and loss. Our organization is the only training site in California for unlicensed associates and trainees to receive specialized training, accumulate hours and experience necessary for licensure, and more importantly to work with grieving individuals. In addition, we provide continuing education for mental health professionals currently providing mental health care.
The organization is under the leadership of Executive Director, Jennifer R. Levin, LMFT, PhD. Dr. Levin is a Fellow in Thanatology (the Study of Death, Dying, and Bereavement) and has over 25 years of experience working with individuals at the end of their life as well as individuals and families who are grieving. Dr. Levin is an experienced non-profit director including Hospice of Pasadena. In her private practice, she specializes in Traumatic Loss where she also supervises and trains associates in the skills needed to work with individuals living with traumatic grief.
Dr. Levin has also developed an online self-help program for individuals living with traumatic grief. At this time SGVGRTC is in the process of building their clinical team and accepting applications for associates interested in training and providing services. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
Christina Dixon, LCSW – Clinical Director
Christina Dixon is a licensed clinical social worker who has been practicing for over fifteen years. She works with adults and specializes in grief, trauma and chronic illness. She is trained in EMDR, iRest yoga nidra and Trauma Conscious Yoga Method. Christina believes clients are the experts in their lives and sees herself as a guide to help navigate life’s challenges. She is honored to provide supervision to trainees and associates in California and is the Clinical Director at San Gabriel Valley Grief Resource and Training Center. She is a member of the Hospice Foundation of America, Group Psychotherapy Association of Los Angeles and the American Group Psychotherapy Association.
Magdalena Werne – MFT Trainee
Magdalena has an undergraduate degree in speech-language pathology and audiology. She is currently pursuing her master’s degree in clinical psychology, emphasizing marriage and family therapy, from Pepperdine University. Her background includes helping others through work in speech therapy, patient care, and ESL volunteering.
Magdalena believes in a collaborative approach when supporting and advocating for clients while maintaining a stance of curiosity and open-mindedness during their therapy journey. She holds that every person is an individual with varying experiences, including that of grief and loss. Her hope as a student therapist encompasses being present while holding warmth and a safe space for grief to take place. She attends to presenting issues with counseling theories, consisting of psychodynamic, family systems, structural family therapy, and cognitive-behavioral perspectives.
Besides learning about psychotherapy, Magdalena loves spending time with her spouse, walking with her big-hearted spunky dog, participating in aerobics, playing board games, maintaining self-care, being with nature, writing, and practicing meditations.”People will tell you where they have gone, they’ll tell you where to go, but until you get there for yourself, you never really know.” -Joni Mitchell
Thomas Rodie – MFT Trainee
Thomas is currently enrolled as a master’s student at Pacific Oaks College studying Marriage and Family Therapy with an emphasis in trauma studies. This program looks at human development and family systems to provide a holistic understanding of the individual and relationship dynamics.
Thomas previously received a Master of Divinity from Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo, going on to serve as a priest for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Through this journey, Thomas has encountered people of all walks of life in various locales throughout California. His studies in theology were driven by a pursuit to understand the human condition and reconcile suffering.
He hopes to integrate his knowledge and experiences to better accompany others through difficult times with sensitivity, compassion, and expertise.
Brian Stefan – ASW
Brian Stefan (ASW #93507) is a psychotherapist and proud social worker specializing in grief, suicide prevention and bereavement, anxiety, and crisis response. He works with several organizations including Didi Hirsch Suicide Prevention Center, Dr. David Plotkin & Associates, and the Los Angeles Mayor’s Office Crisis Response Team/Suicide Response Team.
He is an adjunct faculty member at California State University Los Angeles, School of Social Work. Brian is trained in Cognitive Behavior Therapy-Suicide Prevention (CBT-SP) and is a facilitator for Didi Hirsch’s 8-week Survivor of Suicide Attempt support group (SOSA).
Brian is the founder and facilitator of InsightLA’s weekly virtual mindfulness group: Deep Suffering H.O.P.E. Affinity & Practice Group (Healing Ourselves through the Present Experience).
He received his Master of Social Welfare (MSW) from UCLA in 2019, as well as graduate degrees from the London School of Economics and Political Science and the National Intelligence University.
Brian loves his role as a therapist and is honored to help people walk through their grief experiences with compassion, tenderness, curiosity, and hope.