Faculty & Consultants

Sandra Backovich, LMFT, has been leading long-term psychodynamic therapy groups for over 30 years. Finding transformation opportunities in group treatment for eating disorders has been a special focus. She provides treatment and consultation with an interest in healing attachment trauma.

Duncan Bennett, LMFT, PhD, CGP, has 25 years of experience as a group therapist in a variety of agency, academic, and private practice settings. He is a member of the American Group Psychotherapy Association and is on the National Registry of Certified Group Psychotherapists (CGP). Duncan has taught Group Dynamics at JFK University in Pleasanton and at CIIS in San Francisco for over a decade. He has been offering groups for the past fifteen years at his full-time private practice in Oakland.

Jim Fishman, LCSW, CGP, has a therapy and consultative practice in San Francisco, where he works with individuals, couples, and groups. Former Director of Men's Clinical Services at Operation Concern/New Leaf, he is a frequent presenter at the American Group Psychotherapy Association and the Northern California Group Psychotherapy Association. He has published in various publications on countertransference, the co-leadership relationship via dream work, HIV, and gay male sexuality. He is also a self-trained watercolorist and has conducted workshops on "Painting One's Mandala as a Path towards Wholeness." He also has been the process group/seminar leader for a local psychiatry residency program.

Berne Fitzpatrick, Ph.D. is a licensed clinical psychologist PSY32551 and Certified Group Therapist CGP#60467 in private practice. He is both a GTTP steering committee member and individual consultant. He has led men’s therapy groups for the past 20 years, currently leading four men’s groups in Berkeley and San Francisco (Glen Park) and is forming an IFS mixed gender group starting winter of 2023. He trained for 2 years at the SF Jung Institute, completed a 2-year certificate training in Analytic Somatic Therapy, and 2 years of training in infant observation groups, and is currently training and assisting in Internal Family Systems seminars (IFS). Berne self-identifies as a cisgender, he/him, “middle” class, heterosexual, able-bodied, white man.

Lois Friedlander, LMFT, CGP, is an Associate Professor, Clinical Faculty at UCSF/School of Medicine. She facilitated groups in the Department of Psychiatry/UCSF/Group Psychotherapy Program for 15 years.  She has been facilitating groups for 35 years.  Dr. Irvin Yalom served as her supervisor/consultant.  She sees individuals, couples, and groups in her private practice, in San Francisco and Marin, as well as teaching, offering workshops, supervising, and consulting.  She has taught group dynamics at CIIS integrating verbal group process principles with the creative arts. She is a faculty member of the Northern California Group Psychotherapy Society (NCGPS) and provides Core Course Training for Certification as a Group Psychotherapist with AGPA.

Mary Ann Kassier, LCSW, CGP, has been running groups for 40 years. She has 10 years of leadership and clinical experience in in-patient settings and 30 years in private practice. She runs four Women’s groups and two mixed-gender young adult groups for adults in their 20s. Her groups are supportive, interpersonal and utilize the group process to deepen understanding of oneself in relationship to others. She is co-chair of the GTTP committee and co-leader of the monthly Group Development Course.

Thomas Kim, LMFT, is a current Group Therapy Training Program (GTTP) committee member and will co-facilitate the program's Process Learning Group (PLG) for the upcoming 2023 cohort. He has been participating in and facilitating process groups since 2014. He received training in group facilitation as a student at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) and as a trainee at one of their counseling centers (Pierce Street ICC), as a teacher's assistant/co-facilitator for CIIS's Group Dynamics courses, and most recently, as a participant of the GTTP in '21-'22. He has also taught Group Dynamics at CIIS. Tom has a private practice based in the SF North Bay Area. He currently runs one weekly process group and is forming a support group. Tom believes that one of the most powerful potential outcomes to process group work is to be able to develop the capacity to stand firm in one's own personal position while simultaneously holding care and compassion for the other's very different perspective.

Teresa Lee, MD, CGP, is a board certified psychiatrist who practices medication management, individual and group psychotherapy. She has served on the boards of American Group Psychotherapy Association and Eastern Group Psychotherapy Society and remains active. She frequently presents locally and nationally at conferences on her group work in experiential formats. She also supervises psychiatry residents in their psychotherapy coursework. Her approach to working with others includes reflecting on how heritage, personality, interpersonal style, and life experiences weave into one’s identity. She runs adult mixed-gender groups and specialty groups for Asian American therapists in her full-time private practice.

Jamie Moran, LCSW, CGP, is a clinical social worker, psychotherapist, and consultant working in mental health and healthcare since 1984. Jamie specializes in long-term psychodynamic group work, offering six weekly groups in San Francisco for gay men, as well as providing individual consultation for therapists regarding group. He has provided numerous trainings on a variety of group topics and has been an AGPA Committee Volunteer since 2015 and an AGPA Institute Leader since 2019. Jamie led GTTP's Process Learning Group (PLG) from 2019 through 2022 and now, in Fall of 2022, has returned to the individual Consultant role. He recently completed 26 weekends of professional group education and training with the Center for Group Studies in New York City. Additionally, Jamie works with individuals and couples across various populations focusing on stress management/burnout, grief, death and dying, and gay men's issues.

Rose Phelps, LMFT, CGP, is a founding member of the Group Therapy Training Program and currently is one of the consultant faculty to the GTTP cohort. Rose is a Certified Group Psychotherapist and group consultant, currently leading four therapy groups in Oakland: a mixed adult general process group; a general women’s group; and two sexual abuse survivor groups. She is a past president of the Northern California Group Psychotherapy Society (NCGPS) and has led workshops and institutes for therapists through the NCGPS.

Ann Steiner, PhD, LMFT, CGP, FAGPA*, has been a consultant and former committee member of the Group Therapy Training Program committee since its inception. She is a Fellow and former Board Member of the American Group Psychotherapy Association*, a Certified Group Psychotherapist, and a group consultant, currently leading three therapy groups online: Mixed Adult Process Group for the Over 60; Chronic Medical Illness/Pain Group; Therapy Group for Psychotherapists. She has published two books about group therapy with Routledge Press, is a past president of the Northern California Group Psychotherapy Society (NCGPS), leads workshops and trainings for mental health organizations about group therapy, and the Therapist’s Professional Will nationally and locally.

Julia St. George, LCSW is an individual and group psychotherapist at the San Francisco VA Medical Center, working with veterans dealing with substance use, trauma, and co-occurring mental health issues. In this role, she supervises UCSF Medical School psychiatry residents, psychology externs, and MSW graduate students receiving training in group psychotherapy. Before joining the VA in 2019, she worked with adults in outpatient intensive services at UCSF Langley Porter. She completed advanced training in group psychotherapy at TPI in 2018 and currently co-leads the monthly Group Development Course.

Betty Tharpe LMFT, has a psychotherapy practice in Berkeley where she works with adults, teens, and children. She offers supervision and consultation to training and licensed therapists as well as consultation to agencies. She has many years of experience leading therapy groups with adolescents and training therapists in group therapy with traumatized children and adolescents. She is a consultant and former committee chair in the Group Therapy Training Program. She is a candidate at SF Jungian Institute’s Analytic Training Program.