Alex Iantaffi, PhD, MS, SEP, CST, LMFT

Alex Iantaffi, PhD, MS, SEP, CST, LMFT (they/them) is a family therapist, WPATH certified gender specialist, AASECT certified sex therapist, Somatic ExperiencingⓇ practitioner, clinical supervisor, and author. Alex is currently the Chair of the Trans and Queer interest network of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) and President Elect of the Minnesota Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (MAMFT). They were the recipient of the 2019 MAMFT Distinguished Service Award. Alex has researched, presented and published extensively on gender, disability, sexuality, relationships, and HIV. They are a trans masculine, nonbinary, bi queer, disabled, Italian immigrant who has been living on Dakota and Anishinaabe territories, currently known as Minneapolis, MN (US) since 2008. Alex is the author of “Gender Trauma: healing cultural, social, and historical gendered trauma” and co-author of the books “How to UnderstandYour Gender: a practical guide for exploring who you are”, “Life Isn’t Binary”, and “Hell Yeah Self-Care: a Trauma-Informed Workbook” with Meg-John Barker (Jessica Kingsley Publishers). They also host the podcast Gender Stories. You can find out more about them at or contact them at


Arlene (Ari) Istar Lev LCSW-R, CASAC, CSTL

Arlene is a social worker, family therapist, educator, and activist who has been serving the LGBTQ community for over 30 years. She is the Founder and Clinical Director of Choices Counseling and Consulting ( and TIGRIS: The Training Institute for Gender, Relationships, Identity, and Sexuality ( in Albany, New York. She is a Credentialed Alcoholism Counselor and a Certified Sex Therapist (ASSECT).

Arlene is a lecturer at the University at Albany, School of Social Welfare and the Founder and Board President for Rainbow Access Initiative, Inc., which provides low-cost therapy to LGBTQ individuals. She has authored numerous journal articles and three books: The Complete Lesbian and Gay Parenting Guide, Transgender Emergence: Therapeutic Guidelines for Working with Gender-Variant People and their Families, and the forthcoming Families in Transition: Parent Perspectives on Raising Gender Diverse Children, Adolescents, and Young Adults (with Andrew Gottlieb, Ed).


Acey Mercer, LMSW

Acey identifies as a trans man and uses he/him/his gender pronouns. He is a graduate of the University at Albany School of Social Welfare, where he obtained his Master’s in Social Work. Prior to graduate school Acey studied at Radboud Universiteit in the Netherlands where his academic focus was in Gender and Sexuality Studies. Acey is currently Practice Manager and a therapist at Choices Counseling & Consulting in Albany, NY. He primarily works with adults, youth, and their families as they navigate questions and challenges related to the emotional, social, legal and medical aspects of gender transition. Acey’s clinical lens gives a strong compliment to the professional education services he delivers as Senior Consultant of the Training Institute for Gender, Relationships, Identity, and Sexuality (TIGRIS). Acey specializes in providing clinical training, curriculum, and policy development as it relates to best serving transgender and nonbinary populations in medical, mental health and educational institutions. Acey is also a lecturer at the University at Albany, Department of Educational and Counseling Psychology. Lastly, he is on the Board of Directors for Rainbow Access Initiative, Inc., which provides low-cost therapy and case management services to LGBTQ+ individuals. Acey can be reached at


J. (Jessie) Rose Cohen, LCSW

Jessie (they/them/theirs), is a Trans-Nonbinary identified clinician who has worked with children, youth, families and adults for over two decades. Trained at the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration, J. serves as Director of Community-based Clinical Services and Training for the UCSF Child and Adolescent Gender Center (CAGC), Program Consultant/Clinical Supervisor for the SFLGBT Center, Group Consultant/Guest Lecturer for the Palo Alto University, LGBTQI+ Academy, and as a Psychotherapist and Gender Consultant in Private Practice in the San Francisco Bay Area. J. co-authored “Affirming and Inclusive mental health care for transgender and nonbinary young people (Kattari, et. Al, 2020) and “Working with TGNC Primary Caregivers and Family Concerns Across the Lifespan” (Singh and Dickey, 2017). J. provides consultation and training nationally on gender competence including child welfare, schools, institutions and agencies. J. is a founding member of the UCSF, CAGC Mind The Gap group. J. has served on surgery review boards, designed multispecialty clinics and worked with hundreds of children/youth and families in gender affirming care. J. works from a trauma healing, anti-bias, family systems and gender affirming framework and is dedicated to interrupting practices that do not serve all people. Contact:


Asaf Orr

Asaf Developing a passion for social justice at a young age, Asaf joined NCLR in 2012 after years of representing students with disabilities and people living with HIV/AIDS. As a Senior Staff Attorney and Director of NCLR’s Transgender Youth Project, Asaf works to safeguard the rights of transgender and gender-expansive youth to be affirmed and supported for who they are. By changing the life trajectories of transgender and gender-expansive youth through litigation, public policy, and advocacy, Asaf hopes to create a future where all children can thrive.

For nearly a decade, Asaf worked to advance the rights of the little “t” in LGBT. During that time, he represented transgender youth and their families in a wide range of legal matters including discrimination in schools, child custody disputes, child abuse and neglect, and access to affirming medical and mental health care. He was the lead attorney in Student v. Arcadia Unified School District, which resulted in a historic resolution acknowledging that Title IX protects transgender kids from discrimination in schools and led to transgender student guidance released by the Obama Administration in May 2016. He also worked behind the scenes to increase inclusion of transgender athletes in all levels and types of sport; expanded access to transition-related care for Medicaid recipients, including puberty-delaying medications and facial feminization surgery; and supported attorneys representing affirming parents in custody disputes around the country.

Asaf has authored a number of resources on issues affecting transgender youth. Most recently, he was a lead author of Schools in Transition: A Guide to Supporting Transgender Students in K-12 Schools, a publication that assists parents, school administrators, and other stakeholders to collaborate and create a school environment that affirms and supports transgender students. The publication was co-authored by a number of groups, including the National Education Association, Gender Spectrum, ACLU, and HRC. After graduating magna cum laude from Rutgers School of Law in Newark in 2008, Asaf clerked for The Honorable Virginia A. Long on the Supreme Court of New Jersey.


Shawn V. Giammattei, PhD

Shawn is a white, gay, married, visually disabled, man who was assigned female at birth and uses male (he/him) pronouns. He is clinical psychologist & WPATH GEI SOC7 Certified Member & Mentor in private practice in Northern CA specializing in family therapy with couples, families, and individuals across the lifespan, with a particular focus on transgender/gender expansive youth and their families. He is also a researcher, educator, and a professor for the Rockway Institute at Alliant International University where he teaches graduate courses in LGBTQ psychology and family systems. He is the founder & director of the Gender Health Training Institute and the TransFamily Alliance and serves on the board of local and national family therapy organizations, is active member of several transgender affirmative therapy organizations, and the author of several articles and book chapters on gender, sexuality, and family work. Email:


Deb Coolhart, PhD, LMFT

Deb is a private practice clinician and an assistant professor in the Marriage and Family Therapy Department at Syracuse University. She has been doing therapy with LGBTQ youth and their families for nearly 20 years. She created the Transgender Treatment Team in Syracuse University’s Couple and Family Therapy Center, where she trains and supervises masters students to work with transgender people and their families.

Dr. Coolhart has several publications on clinical work with LGBTQ youth. Her recent work has focused on transgender youth and their families. She has developed a tool for assessing youths’ and families’ readiness for gender transition treatments, published in the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. She has also published multiple manuscripts on supporting transgender youth and families in therapy and advocating for trans-affirmative school environments. Recently, she co-authored a book, The Gender Quest Workbook: A Guide for Teens and Young Adults Exploring Gender Identity. Additionally, Dr. Coolhart has conducted research on transgender people and their family relationships and the experiences of LGBTQ homeless youth.


Dara Hoffman-Fox

Hi, I’m Dara Hoffman-Fox. My pronouns are Dara/they/them.

I’m a queer-identified mental health counselor whose passion for working with gender-questioning, transgender, and nonbinary clients goes far beyond the four walls of my private practice.

My goal is to get as much education, resources, and support out there as possible to the trans and gender-questioning persons of the world. Through the magic of the internet I am able to do this through my Conversations with a Gender Therapist YouTube channel and Facebook page, media and podcast interviews, and the content you’ll find on this website.


Dr. Wong

Wong Graduated with a PsyD from California School of Professional Psychology in San Diego, California, Dr. Wong specialises in child and youth mental health and sexual health issues.

He is listed in the US National Register of Health Service Psychologists and he first licensed in California. He is currently licensed and works in BC.

Dr. Wong has made international professional presentations on cross-cultural, child and youth mental health, and transgender issues.


Dr. Ruben Hopwood, MDiv, PhD, HSP

Ruben (he/him) is a licensed health services psychologist with over 15 years’ experience working with and for the trans and gender diverse communities in clinical work and through professional education and training of medical and mental health professionals. He is the Founder and Director of the Cambridge, Massachusetts firm, Hopwood Counseling & Consulting, LLC, a Nationally Certified LGBT Business Enterprise (LGBTBE), as well as a Visiting Researcher at The Danielsen Institute at Boston University. He is the former manager of the Fenway Health Trans Health Program (2007-2019) in Boston, MA. Dr. Hopwood is a nationally known speaker, consultant, and a published author of many peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters on mental health and medical care of gender diverse people, aging and gender diversity, and on spirituality integrative psychotherapy (ORCID iD: He has identified as part of the LGBTQ+ communities for more than 40 years. He holds a doctorate in counseling psychology, a Master of Divinity in Christian theology, and a certificate in spiritual direction and companioning. Dr. Hopwood has been a WPATH member since 2006, a Global Education Initiative Mentor and a Certified Member. He can be reached at


Dr. Margaret (Margie) Nichols

Margie is a queer-identified psychotherapist, writer, activist, and educator with forty years of experience working in the LGBT+ community. She is a licensed psychologist, AASECT certified sex therapy supervisor, and WPATH GEI (Global Education Initiative) Mentor. In 1983 Dr. Nichols founded the Institute for Personal Growth, a multi-site psychotherapy center in New Jersey that centers the LGBTQ+ community both as clients and therapists, and directed IPG until 2018. In 1985 she was a primary founder and the first Director of the Hyacinth AIDS Foundation, which continues to be New Jersey’s primary provider of social services and advocacy to people affected by HIV.

Dr. Nichols has authored more than two dozen papers or book chapters that are focused on LGBTQ+ issues. In 2020 her book, “The Modern Clinician’s Guide to Working with LGBTQ+ Clients” was published by Routledge Press.

Dr. Nichols also conducts trainings, workshops, and seminars virtually and in person. She supervises both therapists wishing to become AASECT-certified and those seeking WPATH certification, in addition to doing consults with therapists on specific cases.

She currently maintains a small private practice of therapy and consulting in Jersey City, New Jersey. She can be reached at


Suzanne Iasenza, PhD (she, her)

Suzanne (she, her) is on the faculties of the Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy (ICP), the Ackerman Institute for the Family, and the Adelphi University Derner Institute’s Postgraduate Program in Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy. She also teaches at the Westchester Center for the Study of Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy and the Family Institute of Westchester. She maintains a private practice in psychotherapy and sex therapy in New York. Her latest book, Transforming Sexual Narratives: A Relational Approach to Sex Therapy was published by Routledge. You can reach her


Colt St. Amand, PhD, MD

  • Colt St. Amand is a Texas Licensed Psychologist with expertise in gender and sexuality as well as a Family Medicine resident.
  • Openly transgenderqueer Two Spirit man who works with gender and sexual minorities ages 4+, loved ones, and those seeking to learn more about gender and sexuality.
  • Provides consultation and WPATH GEI certification mentoring for clinicians working with transgender and gender expansive clients
  • Co-founded Gender Infinity
  • Featured by Texas Monthly

Dr. Katherine Rachlin (Kit)

Katherine is a clinical psychologist in New York City, an AASECT-certified Diplomate of sex therapy, and a WPATH GEI-certified gender specialist in private practice in New York City. She has served as a member of the Board of Directors of WPATH, Cochaired the Steering committee for USPATH, and is one of the authors of the WPATH Standards of Care for the Health of Transgender, Transsexual, and Gender Nonconforming People V. 7 (2011). Her published papers address topics such as: Flexible Use of the Standards of Care; Access to Health Care for Trans masculine Individuals; Transgender Individuals’ Experiences of Psychotherapy; Factors which Influence Trans masculine Individuals’ Surgical Decisions, and many more book chapters and articles concerning gender, sexuality, behavioral health, and family relationships in gender diverse populations. Website Email:, Pronouns she/her/hers


Dr. Constantinides

Constantinides (he/him) has a private therapy practice in Philadelphia, PA on colonized land of the Lenape people. He is a white, queer, able-bodied, trans man from a mixed working-class and middle-class background. In his private practice Dr. Constantinides provides individual and relationship therapy, supervision and consultation. He works from a trans-centered, anti-racist, and relational lens and is always excited to support trans and nonbinary identified clinicians and sex therapists. He is co-author of Sex Therapy with Erotically Marginalized Clients: Nine Principles of Clinical Support, a text that applies a social justice approach to sex therapy. Dr. Constantinides can be contacted through his website, or at


Finn Gratton

Finn is a somatic psychotherapist working with youth and adults in Santa Cruz and Mountain View. Their book, Supporting Transgender Autistic Youth and Adults: A Guide for Professionals and Families will be available October 21, 2019. They identify as non-binary transgender and as autistic.


Kristina Padilla

Kristina works for the California Consortium of Addiction Programs and Professionals (CCAPP) (formally known as the California Association of Alcoholism & Drug Abuse Counselors (CAADAC) and the California Association of Addiction Recovery Recourses (CAARR)) as the Vice President of Education that oversees the CCAPP Education Department. Mx. Padilla is also the Director of events for the CCAPP Annual Conferences. She works to recruit speakers and exhibitors in the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Profession for CCAPP’s Annual Conference. Mx. Padilla worked for (CAADAC) as the Education Director and Marketing Director before the consolidation of the two organizations. Mx.Padilla also worked for (CAADAC) as the Past Offender Mentor Certification Program Director for 3 years in 12 of the in-prison programs. She worked closely with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) in the California Prisons. Ms. Padilla has a Bachelor’s of Science in Criminal Justice Administration and a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology. Mx.Padilla a Licensed Advanced Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor (LAADC), and an International Certified Advanced Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor (ICAADC). In addition, she is also Certified Gang Specialist of the National Gang Crime Research Center (NGCRC) and C-SAT candidate- Kristina Padilla M.A. can be reached by email at or by mail at CCAPP P.O. Box 214127 Sacramento, CA 95821


Scott F. Leibowitz, MD

Scott has been working in the field of gender dysphoria and diversity in youth since 2008 during his fellowship training at Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. He is the co-chairman of the Sexual Orientation Gender Identity Issues Committee for the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and is on the faculty for the World Professional Association of Transgender Health’s Global Education Initiative. Clinically he works with gender diverse youth of all ages, and his academic area of interest is related to improving gender and sexuality competence for providers across disciplines. He is currently the Medical Director of Behavioral Health for Nationwide Children’s THRIVE gender development program, serving gender diverse youth of all ages within a multidisciplinary settings, but is also a named Expert Educator, involved in curricular development at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. Dr. Leibowitz has been involved in advocacy efforts nationally as an expert witness on conversion therapy and transgender youth’s rights within public settings. He is a leading national and international authority on the mental health and wellbeing of LGBTQ youth.


Lucie Fielding, MA

I am a queer, non-binary femme (pronouns: she/they) and a resident in counseling at Creating Change, PLLC. I completed my MA in Counseling Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute in 2018. During my course of study at Pacifica, I was privileged to receive supervised training in counseling within the Student Counseling Center at Washington and Lee University (Lexington, VA) as well as at The Women’s Initiative (Charlottesville, VA).

I also have a PhD in French from Northwestern University (2008), where I specialized in erotic literature and histories of sexuality. My background in literature and history attunes me to the powerful ways that myth, image, metaphor, and cultural scripts shape and inform the narratives we carry with us as we move through the world as well as how these narratives can write themselves on our bodies.

In addition to my work as a therapist and as a sexuality educator, I am also the author of the book Trans Sex: Clinical Approaches to Trans Sexualities and Erotic Embodiments (Routledge, forthcoming May 2021).