Meet Our Team
Dr. Leah Blain serves as the Clinic Director for the Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Penn, where she oversees all clinical, administrative, and outreach operations. Dr. Blain earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology, from the University of Missouri – St. Louis, where she conducted research in the effectiveness of Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). She completed internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the VA Maryland Healthcare System, where she trained in Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PE), Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) for depression, anxiety and panic disorder, and chronic pain, and mindfulness-based interventions. She previously served as Director of Behavioral Health at Chase Brexton Health Care’s Columbia Center where she continued to serve veterans and military family members. Her clinical work focuses on trauma-recovery, working with survivors of assault, abuse, and combat, on issues including depression, guilt and shame, anger, dissociation, and PTSD.
Dr. Ashleigh Adams is a psychologist and serves as an individual and couples therapist at the Cohen Clinic. She received her M.A. and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Temple University in Philadelphia and has worked with veterans in multiple capacities for over 10 years, including as research coordinator at the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System and an internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the Corporal Michael J. Crescenz VA Medical Center in Philadelphia. She completed specialized training in the assessment and treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), substance use disorders, chronic pain, and aging issues. She can provide Prolonged Exposure (PE) and Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) for PTSD and has a special interest in concerns related to moral injury, combat exposure and sexual assault, including Military Sexual Trauma. Dr. Adams also has extensive experience in couples therapy, including IBCT and CBCT for couples where one partner has PTSD. She is also experienced and interested in treating mood, anger, and aggression-related concerns.
Adamo is a pre-doctoral clinical psychology intern. His clinical interests include a passion for couple-based interventions and innovative treatments involving digital mental health technology. Adamo has experience providing evidence-based individual, couple, and group therapy. He hopes to build a career supporting others in being better partners in the relationships most important to them and expanding access to mental health resources using the technologies that shape our daily lives. Adamo serves as a couples therapist at the Cohen Military Family Clinic.
Ms. Frehiwet Alfa supports the Cohen Clinic at Penn as Intake Coordinator. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology with a minor in Africana Studies from the University of Pennsylvania. Frehiwet has pursued opportunities to work in spaces focusing on accessible care and resources for communities in need, including Bread & Roses Community Fund and Women’s Opportunities Resource Center.
Dr. Elaine Augustine earned her M.A. at LaSalle University and M.S. and Psy.D. at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM). She completed her internship at Friends Hospital where she gained experience working with acute psychiatric presentations. Prior to pursing her Psy.D., Dr. Augustine served as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the greater Philadelphia area. She has 15 years of experience working in the field of psychology having worked with individuals from diverse cultural backgrounds, with varied clinical presentations in inpatient, outpatient, and school-based settings. She possesses a strong foundation in assessment, evidence-based interventions, including certification in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) from the Beck Institute and Trauma-Focused CBT. Dr. Augustine is dedicated to serving those who may not have access to effective, evidence-based care. At the Cohen Military Family Clinic she will continue in her commitment to providing trauma-informed and recovery-oriented care as a postdoctoral fellow.
Mr. Kirk Erwin supports many facets of the Cohen Clinic's operations. From overseeing financial and administrative functions, to managing clinical data, IT, HR, and everything in between, he serves in numerous capacities to ensure our clinical team can be entirely focused on client-centered care. He studied at LaSalle University and the American Institute of Banking in Philadelphia, PA, and has a long professional history in Healthcare, Finance, Academia and Government, including the Corporal Michael Crescenz VA Medical Center.
Ms. Joanna Goldstein is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 20 years of experience providing a broad range of clinical services to adults, children and families, who has worked in a variety of settings including community mental health, outpatient psychiatry, and schools providing biopsychosocial assessments, individual, group and family therapy, and case management. She received her Master's degree in Social Work from Simmons College and completed post graduate training in Cognitive Therapy and Diagnostic Interviewing at the University of Pennsylvania as well as training in Couples and Family Therapy at the Cambridge Health Alliance, a Harvard Medical School teaching hospital. Ms. Goldstein provides assessment and evidence-based psychotherapy, including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I) to children, adolescents, adults, and families. She is bilingual in Spanish.
Nicole is a fifth year doctoral candidate in Clinical Psychology at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM). She earned her M.S. in Counseling and Clinical Health Psychology and M.S in Clinical Psychology from PCOM. Nicole is also a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Certified Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CAADC) in Pennsylvania. She recently completed her fourth year practicum experience at the Corporal Michael J. Crescenz Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Philadelphia. While serving veterans at the opioid treatment program and addiction recovery unit, Nicole was trained in Prolonged Exposure (PE) and Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT). She is eager to further refine her skills in these evidenced based treatments during her internship year at Penn Psychiatry and 12 month rotation at the Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic.
Ms. Osheen Jacob is a Licensed Professional Counselor who earned her M.S.Ed and M.Phil.Ed from the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. She has extensive experience working with the Philadelphia community in outpatient and inpatient settings as well as schools. Her primary focus and specialization for a number of years was trauma, sexual abuse, and problematic sexual behavior in children and youth. She also has a great deal of experience working with adults with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, dual diagnoses, and mood disorders. Osheen has been trained in Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), Prolonged Exposure (PE) with adults. She has also been trained in Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) with adults and adolescents as well as Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) with children, adolescents, and families. She currently works at the Cohen Military Family Clinic as an individual and family therapist.
As marketing and communications strategist, Chelsea manages the clinic's strategic communications. She also helps shape fundraising and development campaigns and works closely with the outreach and care coordination teams. Her career has focused on serving mission-driven organizations, and her work includes conceptualizing #DebtFreeJustice, a national campaign to end fines and fees in the juvenile justice system; steering a major re-brand for a national public interest law firm; and supporting youth- and community-led advocacy. Chelsea grew up in a military family: her father is a veteran of the U.S. Army, and her brothers are both active duty service members.
Ms. Khamera Manders supports the Cohen Clinic’s outreach initiatives, follows up with clients to ensure our clients are still doing well, and connects clients with any additional resources. Ms. Manders earned her Bachelors of Science in Public Health from Temple in May and pursued opportunities to work in the field supporting health initiatives during her academic study, including doing outreach and follow up, with Lankenau Medical Center, Bryn Mawr Hospital, and the Philadelphia Women's Center.
Dr. Tim Overton is an individual and couples therapist for the Cohen Military Family Clinic. He earned his M.A. and Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology from Widener University. He completed his internship at the Widener University Biofeedback Center, where he conducted biofeedback assisted psychotherapy for anxiety, while working part-time as a diagnostician for the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Psychotherapy Research. He completed his postdoctoral residency at the Southeast Louisiana Veterans Affairs Medical Center in New Orleans, where he specialized in the treatment of rural and underserved veteran populations. He offered individual, couples, and home-based therapies for veterans with an emphasis on Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), for posttraumatic stress disorder, and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) for depression and anxiety. Dr. Overton has a special clinical interest in forensic psychology and the psychology of masculinity and its relationship to trauma. He is also board certified in biofeedback and holds a M.A. in Criminal Justice, also from Widener University.
Mr. Jason Pirrung is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Certified Psychiatric Rehabilitation Practitioner in Pennsylvania. He received his Masters in Social Work from West Chester University and has spent ten years working in community mental health. Mr. Pirrung is the case manager for the Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic, assisting clients in accessing community resources to broaden support networks. He previously partnered with the Boston VA Healthcare System to facilitate SSVF, GPD, HUD-VASH, and other veteran homeless support services in Southeastern Massachusetts. Mr. Pirrung is also an alumni of AmeriCorps NCCC and AmeriCorps VISTA.
Dr. Richard Ross is a Psychiatrist at the Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic and a Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Ross joined the Cohen Clinic team with extensive experience serving veterans at the Corporal Michael J. Crescenz VA Medical Center, where his clinical practice and research focused on posttraumatic-stress disorder (PTSD) and sleep disorders. He completed his undergraduate degree at Columbia University, before going on to complete his M.D. and Ph.D. in Physiology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He completed his residency in Psychiatry at the Yale University School of Medicine.
Dr. Steven Sayers is a Psychologist and an Associate Professor of Psychology in the Department of Psychiatry Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Sayers received his clinical and research training at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, NC. He has trained couple and family therapists for almost 30 years and has worked with Veterans and their partners for the last 18 years. He is also the Director of Advanced Fellowship Program in Mental Health Research and Treatment at the Corporal Michael Crescenz VA Medical Center and directs the national VA call center for family members concerned about the Veteran in their lives called Coaching Into Care.
Mr. Steven Syvick is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and National Board-Certified Counselor (NBCC) who earned his M.S. in Community and Trauma Counseling from Thomas Jefferson University. He has broad clinical experience working within academic, hospital-based, and outpatient mental health settings with children, adolescents, adults, couples, and families. His primary foci and specializations include trauma, problematic sexual behavior in adults, and LGBTQIA+ affirmative treatment. He has extensive training in Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) with adults, and evaluations experience; and has pursued additional training focused on serving diverse communities. In addition to his clinical experience, Steven is a combat veteran who has served in two Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) campaigns. He also holds a position as Adjunct Faculty at Thomas Jefferson University in the Community and Trauma Counseling graduate program. He currently works at the Cohen Military Family Clinic as an individual and family therapist.
Dr. Michael Thase is a Professor of Psychiatry in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania with a dual appointment at the Corporal Michael Crescenz VA Medical Center. A 1979 graduate of the Ohio State University College of Medicine, Dr. Thase is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, a Founding Fellow of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy, President-elect of the American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology, and a member of the American College of Psychiatrists and the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology. Dr. Thase's research focuses on the assessment and treatment of mood disorders, including studies of the differential therapeutics of both depression and bipolar affective disorder. Dr. Thase is Medical Director and treating psychiatrist at the Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic.
Ms. Genya Toney serves as the Front Desk Coordinator for the Cohen Military Family Clinic. Genya holds an Associates Degree in Liberal Arts from the Community College of Philadelphia and completed additional education and training at Temple University in Communications and Journalism. She most recently served as the Office Manager for Green Valley Cleaning Services, and held prior roles as a Data Entry Specialist and Office Manager in local non-profit organizations. Genya is also a proud Army Veteran and military family member, whose family's service dates back to WWII.
Betsy is a fifth-year PhD student in the clinical psychology program at the University of Pennsylvania. She received her B.A. in Psychology and Religion from Barnard College and her M.A. in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania. At the Cohen Clinic, Betsy provides evidence-based treatments including Prolonged Exposure (PE) and Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) for PTSD. She also has experience using exposure-based cognitive behavioral therapies to treat conditions like depression, generalized anxiety, OCD, social anxiety, and insomnia. Betsy conducts research focused on finding new ways of measuring and understanding repetitive negative thinking, like worry and rumination.
Mr. Pete Whitney serves as the Outreach Manager for the Cohen Clinic at Penn. Pete holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science, with a Minor in History, from Temple University. He recently retired from the military with 30 years of service. Pete’s military experience provides him with insight to several communities served by the clinic, including 17 years enlisted, 13 as an officer, seven years in the Army Reserves, and 23 years active duty. As a Civil Affairs Officer, Pete was able to build partnerships between civilian and military communities at home and abroad. His life-long devotion to his comrades and success in building partnerships make the Outreach Manager a perfect fit to continue his service.
David Oslin, MD
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