Our experienced and compassionate therapists are dedicated to serving a diverse clientele. We aim to create a welcoming space that feels safe for all. As a team of white, cisgender individuals, this includes being mindful of our privilege, our biases, and how our clients might perceive us.
Chad Corbley, PhD
Psychologist and Owner
Pronouns: He, Him His, They, Them, Their
Originally from Illinois, I moved to Columbus, Ohio to attend The Ohio State university, where I completed my M.A. and Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, graduating in 2008 (including a pre-doctoral internship In the Counseling Center at UNC-Charlotte). After my Post-Doctoral Fellowship in the Ohio University Counseling center, I returned to Columbus and began working in private practice, obtaining Ohio licensure as a psychologist in 2010. I work with individuals, groups, and couples, specializing in trauma and LGBTQ concerns. In addition to therapeutic practice, I have taught courses in psychology at OSU and Columbus State Community College, and I deliver quarterly trainings on working with male survivors of sexual abuse and assault to new SARNCO volunteers. Since 2014, I have volunteered as a facilitator for Men Healing and Taking Back Ourselves, organizations dedicated to working with survivors of sexual victimization through healing weekends and other events.
My work is grounded in humanistic and interpersonal theories, which emphasize non-judgmental exploration of the client’s experiences, reactions, emotions, and relationships in a historical context. In my view, it is essential to take a holistic approach to therapy, focusing on the interconnectedness of one’s mind, body, behavior, environment, and spirit. I am thus an eclectic clinician, weaving together cognitive, behavioral, and existential approaches with my humanistic/interpersonal base. Somatic work is central to my practice, starting with basic grounding and body-awareness and moving into mindfulness-based practices to help clients bravely identify, encounter, and process difficult, overwhelming emotions. I have also found “parts”-oriented conceptualizations extremely helpful in understanding the deep and often confusing complexities, ambiguities, and ambivalences inherent in human behavior.
As the owner of City Counseling, my goal is to foster a space that feels safe enough for people to take risks and grow. To me, this is what it means to have “brave space,” and it’s why “A Home for Growth” is in our name. This includes me and the other therapists; all of us must also do our work to grow if we hope to continue being of service to clients of all backgrounds.
Brian Ward, PsyD
Pronouns: He, Him, His
Prior to earning his Doctorate of Psychology (Psy.D.) at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology, Dr. Ward grew up amongst the dense cornfields of Northwest Ohio, learning to befriend the soul-stirring companionship of engaging & making music, later attending Capital University to further this companionship.
Brian was trained in an approach to therapy that clears space for each individual’s unique experience of being alive, unveiling what truly matters to a person and how it matters, whatever it may be. That is, the aim is to deeply witness how one wishes to make meaning of their life, without rules or requirements, but rather with a companion of understanding & connection. Brian’s approach to therapy believes that our suffering reveals how we feel about where we are in life, and where we want to go. He believes that listening to – or “standing still” with – our pain acts as a confessional to what matters most to us, sometimes in possibilities and hope & sometimes in loss and limitations. Brian affirms that we “hurt because we care,” and emotional pain stems from a deep passion and yearn toward crafting a purposeful life. To him, therapy begins and grows with a deeply attuned presence with whomever he is seated, a relationship founded in safety, genuineness (from both parties), and validation-without-judgment. Within this, the aim is allow one to “reclaim authorship” of one’s life.
While trained as a generalist, Brian’s experiences and interests reside in death & loss, pet grief & mourning, life transitions and major decisions, terminal illnesses & aging, midlife crises, trauma, crisis of identity, HIV/AIDS, relationships & divorce, religious/spiritual crises, depression & anxiety, self-esteem & worth, working with LGB and trans folk, significant milestones such as retirement or empty-nesting, amongst others. He has worked as a psychotherapist in a private practice in Chicago’s “Boystown,” as well as the student counseling centers of the University of Maine & Ohio Wesleyan University.
While the practice of therapy inhabits its own piece of Brian’s heart, so too do a number of other passions. Treasuring connection with animals, as a parent to several furry-children, Brian volunteers with dog care, rehabilitation, and animal rescues at the Licking County Humane Society. Brian delves the depths of Ohio’s nature, hiking with his dogs on the weekends. He also continues to create music. Overall, Brian finds himself captivated by the invisible & mysterious: experience, meaning, connection, music, existence, uncertainty, and things that go bump in the night.
Abbe Straw, LISW-S, LICDC
Licensed Independent Social Worker
Pronouns: She, Her, Hers
Abbe completed her Masters Degree in Social Work at The Ohio State University in 2007. Abbe is a licensed independent social worker who has experience working in various social service settings and agencies, specifically in the area of mental health, and working with diverse client populations. Abbe worked in various clinical roles at The Buckeye Ranch for 10 years, beginning in 2007, including intensive family therapy clinician, outpatient and day treatment, and clinical supervisor. Abbe has extensive experience with child, adolescent and family therapy, and has provided therapeutic services to children and families for many years. Abbe also has experience facilitating Girls Empowerment therapy groups for adolescent females who have a history of trauma, specifically sexual abuse, and their parents/guardians, as well as a Social Skills group with children ages 8-12 years old. Abbe was an active member of The Buckeye Ranch’s Trauma Informed Care Committee and served as the lead on the Staff Support Subcommittee, which strived to bring awareness and attention to the secondary traumatic stress that employees experienced and to understand the needs across the agency to find ways to increase support. Abbe also provided a trauma informed training to foster parents to increase their knowledge of the impact trauma has on a child’s development.
Abbe began working in private practice part-time in 2011, shifted to full-time in 2017, and has been a part of City Counseling since 2018. Abbe works with individuals – children, adolescents, adults, and couples. Abbe specializes in trauma and LGBTQ concerns. She has a trauma-informed approach and applies a strengths-based perspective in therapeutic work with clients. Abbe has experience working with clients struggling with a variety of issues including anxiety, depression, trauma, self-esteem issues, relationship issues, and behavioral concerns. Abbe strives to offer and provide clients with a safe and supportive environment that stresses the importance of relationship in the process of healing, empowerment, and reaching client-centered goals and needs. Abbe uses various approaches in therapy, including humanistic theories to hold space, offer guidance, and support clients in exploring and connecting with their true self and finding a felt sense of wholeness within themselves. Abbe incorporates cognitive and behavioral approaches, Solution-Focused Therapy, and Mindfulness-Based Interventions as well. Abbe values “parts-work” informed by Internal Family Systems theory in her approach to help offer space for clients to relate and connect with the inner parts of themselves. Abbe truly believes that somatic work and body centered practices are an important aspect of the therapeutic process. Abbe strives to use grounding techniques, breathing practices, and body awareness in her approach with clients in therapy. Abbe is Certified in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) Therapy and is Level 2 trained in iRest Yoga Nidra meditation, which is a form of meditation practice that supports psychological, physical and spiritual healing. Abbe is also a Certified Yoga Teacher, RYT-200.
Since 2019, Abbe has volunteered as a clinical facilitator for Taking Back Ourselves, an organization dedicated to working with survivors of sexual victimization through healing weekends and other events.
Abbe truly values the necessary importance of creating and holding a safe and supportive space to allow the opportunity to explore and find what is needed in healing, empowerment and connecting within oneself. Abbe strives to meet every person where they are, from a place of openness, and a with non-judgmental and compassionate presence.
Dorian Kondas, MA, PhD, EMDRIA-Certified
Pronouns: He, Him, His
Dorian obtained his master’s degree in spiritual (“transpersonal”) psychological counseling from a Buddhist-inspired university (Naropa), has trained in pastoral ministry, holds his Bachelor’s in religious studies, and has bridged spiritually-informed clinical work with issues of queer (LGBTQIA) individuals and those living with PTSD or other trauma-based injuries.
Dorian takes a warm, gentle approach with everyone he works with trusting that a safety-first, culturally sensitive, and relationship-focused approach to therapy can heal the wounds of the past. Dorian is certified with EMDRIA to provide Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) for trauma-based distress as well as in Gestalt psychotherapy.
Over the past 15 years, in PhD training at Penn State, at the Veterans Administration, and in university counseling, Dorian has worked with several hundred people on many of the following concerns:
- Depression and anxiety
- Grief/loss and transitions
- Relationship and family issues
- PTSD / trauma, intimate partner violence
- Multicultural, racial / ethnic concerns
- Gay, lesbian, and bisexual issues
- Transgender and other gender identities
- Loneliness, social anxiety, alienation
- Career counseling, job stress
- Academic concerns, international students
- Religious and cult abuse
- Religious minorities (Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, neo-pagan, etc.)
- Spiritual crisis/adverse meditation and prayer experiences
- HIV/AIDS, chronic illness, chronic pain, disability, aging, and dying
In 2015 Dorian was selected by the Yale School of Medicine to train in the clinical concerns of LGBT military Veterans. He has published both in issues of counseling gay male survivors of domestic violence and of aging transgender individuals. Dorian has devoted 7 months to silent spiritual retreats in both Western and non-Western religious traditions. He has participated in non-mainstream religious communities including assisting in two Sun Dances of the Lakota Nation in South Dakota. Dorian happily invites you in sharing whatever work of whole-i-ness you may be embarking on at this time in your life whether you identify with any form of spirituality or not.
Methods of therapy Dorian often uses include relational-cultural, Gestalt / existential, internal family systems, trauma-informed, Jungian, mindfulness-based, feminist, and cognitive-behavioral.
Ryan Rose, PsyD
Pronouns: He, Him, His, They, Them, Their
Therapy Provided: Individual Therapy, Couples Therapy, Group Therapy
Therapy Populations Seen: Individual Adults (18+), Couples & Groups
Population Specialties: LGBTQIAAPP2+ Individuals, Trans* & Non-Binary Individuals, Differently-Abled Individuals (individuals with acquired or congenital disabilities), Individuals diagnosed being on the Autism Spectrum (ASD)/Asperger’s, Individuals with Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Consensual Non-Monogamy (CNM)/Polyamorous Identity & CNM/Poly Relationships/Couples/Networks
Areas of Specialty: LGBTQIAAPP2+ Affirming Therapy (individual, couples, group), Trans* Affirming Therapy (evaluations/letter writing for trans* affirming surgery; individuals, couples, group), Differently-Abled (Disability) Affirming Therapy (individual, couples group), Consensual Non-Monogamous(CNM) /Polyamorous Affirming Therapy (individual, couples, group), Kink/BDSM/Fetish Affirming Therapy/Exploration, LGBTQIAAPP2+ Spiritual/Religious Trauma/Healing/Exploration
My journey in psychology started in 2009 with my Bachelor of Arts Undergraduate Education in Psychology from The Ohio State University where I found myself and my passion for psychology and therapy. After completion of my undergraduate work in 2013, I then pursued my Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) at Wright State University, School of Professional Psychology where I specifically sought out diverse experiences/training within the program focused on expanding my understanding of diversity, multiculturalism, and equity/power. In particular, I made it a focus of my career to work specifically with individuals from diverse backgrounds with minority and underserved/less privileged identities; specifically focusing on work with the LGBTQIAAPP2+ and differently-abled (disabled) communities. After completing my internship required for my doctorate at the University of Wisconsin – Madison in 2018, I then completed my postdoctoral education at The Ohio State University in 2018-19. During my internship and postdoctoral experiences, I was able to further expand my experiences and knowledge around working with individuals from diverse backgrounds with multiple salient minority identities and focusing work with clients on the intersectionality of these identities. During my postdoctoral education, I found City Counseling and loved their mission and dedication to diverse and minority populations, in particular the LGBTQIAAPP2+ community. I have been at City Counseling since Spring 2019 where I engage in individual, couples and group work and identify as a generalist/integrative therapist in the practice.
More about Myself/Therapeutic Style:
Hi! I’m Dr. Rose, but please call me Ryan.
I currently identify as a gay, temporarily able-bodied, cisgender male. As a generalist/integrative practitioner, I utilize my experience and training in multiple areas of psychological theory to tailor approaches and interventions that will ‘best fit’ your therapeutic needs. I find that facilitating a collaborative and integrative therapeutic approach allows the flexibility for therapy to reach and meet you ‘where you are’ in your own healing and therapeutic journey. Specifically, I will focus on collaborating with you to find your own specific ‘therapeutic voice’ to foster interpersonal independence, build self-esteem and create an environment to allow for your own self-concept to grow and develop. As a clinician, I integrate Rogerian, Interpersonal, Family Systems, Psychodynamic, Existential/Humanistic and Multicultural approaches in my therapy. If you have further questions about my career, experiences, therapeutic style or other questions, please do not hesitate to reach out!
AJ Johnson, MSW, LISW
Licensed Independent Social Worker
Pronouns: They, them, their
I’m AJ; my pronouns are they/them/theirs. I am both trans and queer identifying. I lead with this because at one point in time it was not safe to put on a resume, and there is a need for representation in therapy and treatment for us by us that is more accessible to as many people as possible from all walks. I have been working In the LGBT mental health community for the last three years as a therapist providing therapy to individuals and groups. I have a humanistic, anti- oppression lens with a master’s degree in Social Work from The Ohio state University. I have a bachelor’s of arts in psychology from Earlham College. I work hard to be culturally humble, trauma humble (trauma informed care), and am going to work hard on your team. I believe that therapy is a team effort. I believe that we often have many inherent strengths to build from and believe in meeting you where you are.
Therapy is dynamic and moving just like my practice is. I continually go to trainings, and some of my favorite have been in DBT skills, ACT, Cognitive processing therapy (manualized treatment for trauma), and trauma informed care. I am also very interested in schema therapy and solution focused therapy. I have worked in a wide range of settings including long term mental health care, intensive outpatient, partial hospitalization, and outpatient. I look forward to being on your team!