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Do you need to find a psychologist, psychiatrist, or counselor? Browse our information below, and also look for us on LinkedIn under the group Sankofa Psychological Services, LLC.
Meet the clinical psychologists, licensed psychiatrist, and licensed professional counselors of Sankofa, a mental health treatment center located in the heart of Chicago on Michigan Avenue. Please feel free to contact any member of our team directly by email. If you are not sure whom to contact, please call for assistance.
Jason LaHood, Psy.D., Director of Clinical Services
Dr. LaHood, a Licensed Clinical Psychologist, received his Doctorate of Clinical Psychology from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. He obtained his Masters in Psychology from Pepperdine University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Philosophy from the University of Dayton. Additionally, he is an active member of the American Psychological Association. In clinical practice, Dr. LaHood works with clients of all ages in individual, couples/family, and group formats. Dr. LaHood specializes in working with clients facing trauma, depression, anxiety, and relationship discord. His therapeutic approach combines existential and psychodynamic psychotherapy, with integration of cognitive-behavioral techniques as needed…learn more
Molly Pachan, Ph.D., Executive Director
Dr. Pachan is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist practicing in the areas of assessment and treatment. She received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology – Child and Family Track at Loyola University Chicago, and completed her psychology internship training at the Cambridge Health Alliance – Harvard Medical School. In addition to her doctoral training, Dr. Pachan completed a graduate fellowship with the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis. Trained as a child clinical psychologist, Dr. Pachan sees clients of all ages, and specializes in play therapy for children and adolescents, behavioral problems in childhood, parenting practices, academic and career motivation, trauma, and international issues in psychology. She has experience in college counseling, child abuse treatment, treatment of veterans, and community mental health, as well as psychological assessment…learn more
Dr. Ndidi Onyejiaka, M.D., Staff Psychiatrist, Director of Psychiatry
Dr. Onyejiaka, a Licensed Physician and Psychiatrist, received her Doctorate of Medicine from the University of Missouri at Kansas City after completing a combined B.A/M.D. program. She completed her residency training at the Tulane University Triple Board Program, specializing in pediatric medicine, general psychiatry, and child psychiatry, then attended in the New Orleans-Birmingham Psychoanalytic Center Honorary Fellowship Program before relocating to Chicago. She treats people all ages in a variety of formats and is extremely experienced in working with children, adolescents, and young adults affected by trauma, depression, and anxiety, and provides psychiatric support to those suffering from of medical conditions. She also specializes in supporting athletes and performers seeking a refined competitive edge. Additionally, she is an active member of the International Society for Sports Psychiatry, the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, and the American Academy of Pediatrics…learn more
Julia Burrell-Smith, Psy.D., Director of Training
Dr. Julia Burrell-Smith is the Director of Training at Sankofa Psychological Services. She received her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, and completed her psychology internship training at Sankofa Psychological Services. In clinical practice, Dr. Burrell-Smith specializes in working with adults and adolescents who are struggling with depression, anxiety, relationship issues, and trauma. Dr. Burrell-Smith utilizes a psychodynamic and insight oriented approach to treatment that is collaborative, individualized, and strength based. In addition to private practice, she has experience working in hospital, school, and community mental health settings. She has extensive experience working with issues related to suicide and self-injury, and is interested in cultural and psychological issues specific to women and girls. Dr. Burrell-Smith’s research focuses on psychological distress in counselors and clinicians, and is therefore particularly interested in working with mental health professionals…learn more
Diana Goldman de Zocchi, M.A., Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor
For over 25 years Diana has specialized in the clinical treatment of adolescent and adults with depression, anxiety, phobias, bereavement and grief, acculturation issues, post traumatic stress and interpersonal relationship discord. Her approach to treatment includes psychodynamic therapy with integration of cognitive-behavioral or other techniques. She believes that in the therapeutic process it is essential to help the client identify misunderstandings in relation to oneself, others, or in relation to their interpretation of life events. Her main goal is to promote the development of the client’s individual abilities to find new ways to deal with their emotional suffering.
From her own experiences working in three different countries, she has developed a multicultural perspective which enables her to understand how culture, identity, and self-esteem are closely interconnected.
Por más de 25 años, me he especializado en el tratamiento clínico de adolescentes y adultos.
Mi experiencia de haber trabajado en tres países diferentes, Argentina, España y U.S me ha permitido desarrollar una perspectiva multicultural que me permite entender la íntima relación entre cultura, identidad y autoestima. Hablo español y portugués…learn more
Emanuel H. Contreras, M.A., Licensed Professional Counselor
Emanuel H. Contreras is a Chicago counselor working with at-risk teen males, as well as children of a preschool age. He facilitates counseling interventions tailored to treating grief, loss, change-of-familial structure, depression, and risks associated with at-risk teen males (e.g. poverty, gang affiliation, drug use). His approach utilizes existentialism, Gestalt, and person-centered therapy structures – therapies beneficial for promoting autonomy and positive behavioral change..learn more
Denise Schaffer, M.S.W., L.C.S.W., Staff Therapist
Denise Schaffer is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and received her Master in Social Work from Norfolk State University. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Tuskegee University. Ms. Schaffer has 13 years of experiences working with adolescents, young adults, families, and couples. Prior to Sankofa, her previous clinical experiences includes working with children in residential settings, assisting them with emotional and behavioral difficulties, trauma/abuse, improving communication skills, conflict resolution and multicultural issues. She also works with families in crisis (biological, foster families and pre & post adopt families) and couples. Ms. Schaffer works from a cognitive behavioral theoretical approach; viewing issues from a family system, social, economic and cultural perspective…learn more
Courtney Wilkinson, M.B.A. Business Operations Manager
Courtney received her Masters of Business Administration with a concentration in Healthcare Management from Kaplan University and a Bachelor’s of Science in Child Development from Northern Illinois University. As the Business Operations Manager she is responsible for managing day to day processing of accounts receivable and payable. She is also responsible for the development and implementation of organizational strategies, policies and practices…learn more
Magan Marshall, Office Coordinator
Magan is an Organizational Communication specialist with six years of professional experience in an administrative capacity in three major industries in Chicago. Magan is experienced with human resource policies, procedures, and the protocol necessary to enforce them ethically and without liability. Magan is excited about her position at Sankofa and views this job as an opportunity for advancement and discovery…learn more
Additional Associates & Trainees
Collin Shotts, M.A.
Matthew Jones, M.A.
Megan Oliverio, M.A.
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