Our Speakers

Our professional young adult speakers provide educational programs built around lived experiences. These dynamic young adults who have struggled with mental health issues share their personal stories and recovery. 

Young Adult Speakers

Andrew

Andrew’s goal is to help reduce the stigma surrounding mental health issue, and help others who may be suffering to know that they are not alone and that it gets better.

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Brooke

Brooke hopes to impart knowledge around letting go of self-doubt and negative coping mechanisms by replacing them with positive skills and attitudes.

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Courtney

For years, Courtney wore a mask and portrayed a “perfect” version of herself and over time she was unable to maintain it. She realized she had to change her focus in order to survive. Her journey with mental challenges has taught her gratitude for her resiliency, growth, and life.

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Elizabeth

Elizabeth shares her experience to help others recognize that they are not alone, that hope and healing are worth more than perfection, and that they, too, have an important purpose in this world.

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Evan

By sharing his story, Evan hopes to spark the “ah-hah” moment for others who are suffering, inspiring them to speak up and ask for help.

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Jenna

Jenna is a mental health advocate, enlightening others and ending the stigma about mental health issues.

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Jordan

Jordan has been speaking on his story and mental health all over the country for the last 8 years. His presentation is meant to inspire, educate and allow others to know they’re not alone.

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Kelly A.

Kelly hopes to help other young people cope positively with their internal thoughts, making sure they reflect the unconditional love that is in the world.

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Kelly B.

Kelly’s story is a vulnerable snapshot of her journey through the negative effects of perfectionism and living with bipolar disorder. She hopes it can inspire youth across her community to seek help for their mental health by finding their voices, establishing boundaries, and fostering positive self-worth.

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Kristen

Kristen proves it’s never too late or too early to get the help you need. She helps educate others in an effective manner to break the stigma around mental health and substance use disorder.

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Mallory

A lifelong competitor in athletics, Mallory eventually met an opponent where winning wasn’t the objective. By facing her mental health challenges, Mallory has learned how to be vulnerable and engage in healing. Today, Mallory uses her story to tell others their voice is powerful, they are allowed to be human, and healing does indeed exist.

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Morgan

Morgan wishes to pass along her story to give hope to others who may experience mental health challenges. She wants them to know that they are not alone, and recovery is possible.

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Muzna

From a young age Muzna has struggled with her intersectionality of identities. That lack of harmony led to anxiety, depression, and eventually a suicide attempt. Through therapy and positive coping skills, Muzna has found her healthy balance and shares her story to help people realize the beauty in one’s own life.

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Rylee

Rylee spent most of her life pretending to be fine and pushing through to appear strong. When it all became too much, she sought help. She shares her story in hopes that those listening know that they are not alone and understand that asking for help is not weak. Rylee knows it was the strongest thing she ever did.

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Sarika

Sarika hopes to inspire others to accept themselves for who they are and to appreciate each and every quality they possess, regardless of social norms.

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Scott

Scott works to inspire others to climb out of the darkness and find the light in their lives.

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Wes

Wes always wanted to be perfect and accepted by others, even if it meant hiding his true emotions under the surface. Now living his authentic life, Wes hopes to inspire others to feel less ashamed of their own mental health challenges and find a way to validate themselves.

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Clinicians

Samantha Ariza, LPC

Samantha is a licensed professional counselor and an EMDR trained therapist. She started her professional career as a teacher in different urban school districts, which ignited a passion for help others.

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Maryellen Dance, LMHC

Maryellen has worked in OASAS substance abuse counseling facilities, domestic violence facilities, hospitals, and mental health clinics. Maryellen has worked with both children and adults, and has been a psychology professor at Nazareth College since 2018 and has had a private therapy practice since 2017.

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Jenna DiLossi, Psy.D., LPC

Dr. DiLossi is a specialist in Cognitive-Behavior Therapy (CBT) and currently serves as the co-founder and clinical director of the Center for Hope & Health, LLC., an outpatient treatment center that delivers specialized evidence-based treatment and training for eating disorders, body image, OCD, PTSD, phobias, and other anxiety-related concerns

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Patricia Ehret, M.Ed.

Patty Ehret has a Master’s in Education with a certification in Positive Education.  She began her 30-year Health and Physical Education career in the elementary level, then moved to middle school and spent the last 25 years at the high school level.  Her passion for the mental health of her students developed as many of her students began to open up about their depression and anxiety. 

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Sara Eldridge, LCSW

Sara Eldridge, LCSW, is a trauma therapist. Sara received a master’s degree in Social Work from Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College in 2015. In 2021, she completed a two-year integrated trauma studies program at the Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy. For the last several years, Sara has served as a domestic violence counselor and assistant director at Barrier Free Living.

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Sheila Gillin, LCSW

Sheila is a licensed social worker and a certified child and adolescent psychotherapist with over fifteen years of experience in the mental health field.

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Morgan Hannaleck, ASW

Morgan received her master’s degree from Simmons University in Social Work. She has worked with youth and adolescents in both inpatient and outpatient settings, which has given her a perspective on various levels of care.

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Melissa Harrison, MA, LPC

Melissa is a licensed clinician with extensive experience with anxiety and eating disorders. In addition to speaking with Minding Your Mind since 2015, she co-founded the Center for Hope and Health in 2014 where she is a specialist in evidence-based treatment, primarily Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy.

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Dana Kaspereen, Ph.D., LPC, LCADC, NCC, ACS

Dr. Dana Kaspereen is a psychologist, Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Alcohol & Drug Counselor, National Certified Counselor, and Approved Clinical Supervisor. She is licensed in the state of New Jersey and Pennsylvania to provide psychotherapy/counseling to children, adolescents, and adults.

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Alona Leviner-Sommer, MA, MS, LMFT

Alona is a Florida Licensed Marriage and Family psychotherapist. Alona’s passion in all her undertakings is the focus on children’s and teens’ well-being. Her clinical and psychoeducational approach is based on effective, non-judgmental, positive reinforcement and strength-based modalities.

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Suzelle Marques, MA, LPC

Suzelle is a licensed professional counselor and a certified Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral therapist. She formerly worked at various outpatient mental health centers, and in a variety of school settings, providing individual counseling and additional support services to various age groups.

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Marissa Harris, MS, LPC

Marissa received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from University of Delaware where she developed a passion for helping youth cope with life’s challenges. She attended Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine where she earned a Master’s in Counseling and Clinical Health Psychology.

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Jon Mattleman, MS

Across all of his work, Jon brings warmth, understanding, and patience…plus a healthy dose of humor! In his over 35 years of experience as a therapist and presenter, clients have felt comforted by his ability to acknowledge that the challenges they face are complex – and often downright exhausting!

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Catelin McCarrison, LCSW

Catelin McCarriston is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She holds a B.S. in Psychology, B.A. in Philosophy, and a Masters in Social Work from Simmons University. Catelin comes to Minding Your Mind with an extensive background working with children and adolescents across various school settings.

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Linda Price, M.Ed., CAGS, LEP, E-RYT, YACEP

Linda has has combined 25 years of experience working with schools with her mindfulness training to create opportunities for teaching schools, organizations, and parent groups how to create a personal Mindfulness practice for self-care, as well as how to bring Social Emotional Learning and Mindfulness into schools and individual classrooms.

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Mollye Readinger-Scott, MA

Mollye has been facilitating retreats and workshops for over 20 years. She holds a B.A in Communications from Temple University and an M.S. in Pastoral Counseling from Neumann University. Mollye is also a certified co-active coach and a Facilitator of the Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator.

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Jonie M. Steward, Ph.D., NCC

Dr. Steward is a National Certified Counselor and holds a Master’s in School Counseling from the University of Holy Cross. She was a school counselor for five years before transitioning to the post-secondary level as an Assistant Professor.

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Cheryl Walker, LMHC

Cheryl is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor who received her B.S. in Psychology, with a minor in Child Psychology, and M.S. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from the University of North Florida.

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Mindfulness Instructors

Stacey Mandel

Stacey serves as the Pennsylvania facilitator for Coalition of Schools Educating Mindfully (COSEM). She is particularly passionate about sharing mindfulness concepts with those who feel the most challenged. “If I had been exposed to these concepts starting around age eight, I know I would have suffered a lot less, and shined a whole lot more,” shares Stacey.

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Kristin Page, M.S. Ed., E-RYT

Kristin Page was introduced to meditation and the cultivation of stillness when she was a child. After a lifetime of employing these skills through her everyday life, she formalized her practice of Mindfulness Meditation.

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Let's take action together. Help us grow our impact and continue changing lives.

Like all the young people who’ve found support through Minding Your Mind, we too can’t do this without help. With a tax-deductible gift, you can help us share the message of mental wellness with more students and communities.

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