Our Staff

Your mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being is important to us. Please let your clinician know how we can collaboratively help you achieve the results you are seeking.

Brian L. Whitney, MA, LMFT, LMHC, S-PSB

Clinical Director

Brian has been a therapist and business consultant since 1971. He is a Washington State Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, and a Specialist with Problematic Sexual Behaviors. He uses a biopsychosocial-spiritual approach in treatment. Brian understands the impact of significant relationships in life, and their effect upon one’s health. In Brian’s counseling practice, he works with adults and families, specializing in marital relationships, depression, trauma and sexual addiction and infidelity.

Brian helped create and implement the King County Firestoppers Program, providing mental health intervention services for children engaged in dangerous fire-setting behaviors throughout King County. While in the Army, Brian provided treatment and support for Vietnam returnees and their families, focused upon adjustment and reintegration after overseas deployment. As a management consultant and an Employee Assistance Provider, Brian conducts Critical Incident Stress Debriefings and Conflict Management Services, as well as leadership and staff development training. He enjoys spending time with his family, reading, travel, and playing tennis.

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Brian L. Whitney

CoHear Packet 2016

Bill Lennon, EdD, LMFT, LMHC, SOTP, CSAT-S

Evaluation Consultant

Dr. Bill Lennon is a Washington State Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Licensed Mental Health Counselor, and Washington Stated Certified Sex Offender Treatment Provider.  He is also trained in Lifespan Integration.  Dr. Lennon has 29 years experience working in the field of compulsive sexual behavior, specializing in the treatment of individuals, couples, and families whose lives have been impacted by the disease of sexual addiction.  As a nationally Certified Sex Addiction Therapist and Supervisor, Bill has been trained by Dr. Patrick Carnes, Ph.D., through the International Institute for Trauma and Addiction Professional (IITAP).

Through the years, Dr. Lennon has founded programs for drug addicted and troubled youth and established a 72-hour foster home program.  He has three adopted children and has provided care for many foster children over the years.  Bill has taught graduate level classes in counselor education and directed Chapman University’s Community Clinical Psychology program for 15 years.  He presents workshops on various topics including team building and the prevention of sexual misconduct.  He has been a guest on local and national television and radio programs and has received numerous professional honors throughout the years, including Who’s Who in America for his leadership achievements in the area of community service.  At Pacific Lutheran University’s Centennial Celebration he was designated as one of the top 100 graduates from the University.  Bill was also elected to the Ocosta High School Hall of Fame for his football coaching success during his earlier career as a teacher and coach.

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Bill Lennon

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Debbie Runke, MS, LMFTA

Through spending many years working as an information technology director, Debbie discovered a passion for working with adults who are confronted with life’s difficulties. She especially values the privilege of walking beside people who may be struggling with issues of addictive behaviors, anxiety, career concerns, chronic stress, depression, family of origin issues, grief and loss, legal challenges, life transitions, obsessive-compulsive behavior, self-esteem issues, and trauma.

In addition to joining one-on-one with individuals, she also facilitates groups and works with organizations that are dealing with the aftermath of traumatic events affecting several of their members.

Debbie believes in bringing openness, respect, and curiosity into every conversation and relationship. She helps each person explore the influences of both the inner and outer world on the challenges they face. Working together, they identify and build on each individual’s unique strengths. Her work draws on principles of acceptance and commitment therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, family systems, Lifespan Integration, narrative therapy, positive psychology, solution-focused brief therapy, and strength-based approaches. She received her Master of Science degree from Seattle Pacific University.

An east coast transplant, Debbie enjoys spending time with family and friends, exploring the Pacific Northwest (especially with a camera), reading, using genealogy tools to tell the stories of people who lived before, and a good cup of coffee.

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Debbie Runke

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Greg Bates, ARNP, PMHNP

As a Board Certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP), Greg offers psychotherapy and medication management, often in conjunction with each other.  Greg offers both short and long term psychotherapy. Greg began working in the mental health field in 1972, and became licensed and accredited as a Nurse Practitioner in the early 90s.  He has worked in mental health clinics, inpatient psychiatric hospitals, acute care general hospitals on consultation teams, crisis centers and private practice for approximately 15 years.  Greg works with a variety of conditions, which include anxiety and stress, mood disorders (such as depression and bipolar disorder), life transitions, loss and grief, individual relationship issues, trauma, PTSD, family of origin issues (including childhood abuse), and geriatric mental health conditions.  He serves clients ages 18 and older.

Greg’s philosophy is “we’re all on this journey called life”.  He believes his role is to listen to and understand your life’s narrative.  As a guest, he will try to understand your hopes, wishes and goals in order to identify the obstacles in your way.  Greg will strive to guide, assist and walk beside you on your journey.  The goal of your interactions will be to enable you to live the fullest life possible and minimize and/or eliminate the obstacles in your way.  He applauds your willingness to come here and invest in your life, and considers it an honor to work with you.

Greg and his wife of 41 years moved to Washington in 1979.  They have three children, two of whom have special needs.  He considers his marriage and children to be his greatest teachers in his life.

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Greg Bates

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Jim Amandus, DMin, ThM, CSAT

Dr. Amandus has over 25 years of experience in pastoral counseling of individuals, couples and families as well as experience in the field of trauma as a police chaplain. Jim believes the central aspect of therapy is the client-therapist connection “to do together” the hard and courageous work involved in hope and healing. Jim draws principles from cognitive-behavioral, object relations, and solution focused therapeutic approaches within a trusting safe environment that engages the body, soul, and spirit to step into personal and relational growth. His multi-cultural position is derived from experiencing and respecting racial, gender, and sexual differences.

Jim is a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist (CSAT).  Jim has served for thirty years as the Senior Pastor of Highlands Community Church, Renton, WA. He has four children, one of whom is adopted from Russia. Jim has taught at the graduate level on the subjects of leadership & conflict resolution and meditations in the Psalms and served as past-president of The Renton Rotary Club. Jim has come to CoHear/BCS from his pastoral counseling and training as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC-A) because of his commitment to the power of community in group to bring hope and healing to marriages and individuals experiencing hurts, habits, and addictive behaviors.

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Jim Amandus

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Lauren Dudugjian, MS-Candidate

Lauren is an intern who is completing studies in Marriage and Family Therapy at Seattle Pacific University. She is also completing studies for a Master of Divinity degree at Seattle Pacific University. She believes that at different points in life all of us encounter difficulties, and despite our best efforts at handling them, we sometimes find ourselves feeling stuck in patterns that do not help us live the lives that we desire. Therapy is a unique setting where we can explore these difficulties and patterns, consider different ways of approaching them, and find new ways to live lives of health and hope. Lauren believes that a trusting relationship between therapist and client is essential for this exploration. She takes a biopsychosocial-spiritual approach to treatment and thinks systemically about client difficulties as well as client strengths and resources. Lauren believes that spirituality is an essential aspect of who we are and seeks to integrate spirituality and religion into treatment for clients who so desire.

Outside of counseling, Lauren loves spending time with her husband, working with teenagers, doing yoga, reading novels, and drinking big cups of coffee.


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Lauren Dudugjian

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Leslie Savage, MS, LMFT

Do you want more from life, a sense of belonging and purpose or perhaps deeper and more meaningful relationships?

Do you feel fatigued, physically and mentally depleted and perhaps alone in your circumstance caused by an illness or injury?

Are you facing emotional turmoil caused by unresolvable chronic pain?

Are you facing other significant challenges or transitions in your life (like divorce, betrayal or death of a loved one)?

I am a Focusing-Oriented psychotherapist in certification with a Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy and a specialization in Medical Family Therapy. I integrate mindfulness and narrative therapies to establish a trusting therapeutic alliance so you may take my hand into your inner world and turn toward what is painful in a safe and supportive way. I will help you learn to step back from what is uncomfortable while staying in relationship to it. That is the only way you can learn from your experience and move forward.

I believe you are doing your best to meet the demands and challenges in life. It is natural to push away, bury or distract oneself from nagging feelings of discontentment, unhappiness and even hopelessness. Through my years of working with this approach with my clients, collectively we have found that embracing painful emotions, insecurities and vulnerability has paradoxically been a healing experience. There is a noticeable shift that some have described as relief, clarity, liberation, acceptance of who they are, and more openness and honesty with themselves and others. If you seek a way to meet the enormous challenges in life and keep thriving and growing, then it is my heart’s joy and honor to help you befriend what is emotionally painful and discover reconciliation and healing.

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Leslie Savage

CoHear Packet 2016

Lynn Tienken, MS, LMHC

Lynn as a family therapist for 34 years brings her experience as a counselor, parenting facilitator, and faculty trainer in schools to inform her work with couples and parents.  They seek her counsel in managing their children’s behavioral challenges. With the collaboration of the Lake Washington School District, community service groups and a local church she developed a mentoring program for single parent children.  As a single parent mother herself she knew that “resilience and growth” for these children is enhanced through the support of a“village.”

Lynn’s love of learning with couples—those struggling to keep their relationship or just keep their relationship healthy–gives direction and purpose to her counseling sessions.  Her clarity with couples comes from her early years of work with families going through high conflict divorce.  Her insight and tools for growing intimacy and healthy communication are often a turning point for couples who have lost hope.

Often individuals who are working with Lynn on trauma, anxiety or depression discover relief and change through her insights about their existing relationship challenges.  Her present moment focus redirects their attention to tools that relieve stress and worry.  They learn to be more in the moment with themselves and their intimate relationships.

Away from work, “I love hiking in the mountains with friends and family, exploring cultures in countries throughout the world and just hanging out with my grandkids.’  Sketching and water color painting is a passion that teaches me to better see  life from creative dimensions.

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Lynn Tienken

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Michael has over 12 years of experience successfully helping children, adolescents, adults, parents, couples and families identify, manage and overcome many of life’s challenges since 2006. During that time, he has worked with a broad range of clients ranging from at-risk youths, foster and adoptive families, sexual abuse survivors, chronically mentally ill adults to premarital and marital couples.

Clinically, Michael is trained as a Marital and Family Therapist with an emphasis on Family Systems and Emotion Focused Therapy with couples. He believes that family participation in treatment is essential for successful outcomes with children and may take many forms. Over the years he has also used various evidence-based practices like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Prolonged Exposure Therapy. Regardless of which orientation he uses, each client is unique and requires a tailored approach that meets the client’s needs.

Michael’s therapeutic philosophy is based on an understanding that we are connecting beings living within context of relationships with ourselves and others. Because of that his approach to therapy is collaborative, building on existing strengths to develop new skills, making changes in behavior, discovering new ways to interact and moving towards emotional and relational healing.

Michael is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and an Approved Clinical Supervisor in Washington State. He is also a Child Mental Health Specialist and an Ethnic Minority Mental Health Specialist. Prior to becoming a therapist, Michael spent 15 years in banking and private wealth management with Citigroup. He loves spending time with his wife, three girls and two rescue dogs playing and having fun outdoors.

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Michael Yu

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Nolan Giesbers, MS, LMFT, S-PSB, CSAT

Nolan is a trained Washington State Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, who has a deep passion for working with families, couples, and individuals in need of additional support and guidance in times of trouble. His primary objective within the therapeutic relationship is to provide clients with a safe environment to explore further the issues they find problematic in their lives.  Providing treatment to clients since 2010, Nolan really emphasizes a client driven approach where people come into session prepared to work on things they choose to work on.  It is in this approach where he believes change can be sustaining and purposeful.

His primary specialty is working with those who struggle with sexual compulsivity and the implications this has on their relationship. To help further educate Nolan in this field, he obtained his certification as a sex addiction therapist (CSAT).  Part of his time at CoHear is spent helping individuals and couples heal through the pain the addiction has caused and providing a process for them to grow in the midst of their pain.  He also facilitates sex addiction groups aimed at providing additional support for those who are struggling through their addictive process. Nolan also has experience working with teenagers struggling with self-worth issues, peer relationships, and educational issues.

Outside of counseling, Nolan is married and has three young children.  He enjoys staying physically active with family and friends while being an avid Huskies and Seahawks fan.

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Nolan Giesbers

CoHear Packet 2016

Shawn B. Whitney, MS, LMFT, S-PSB

Shawn Whitney, MS, LMFT, S-PSB has personal and professional experience working with individuals, couples, families, and groups around psychosocial and medical health issues. He is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Colorado and Washington states. He also holds Specializations in Medical Family Therapy and Problematic Sexual Behaviors. He is also an American Association of Sexuality Educators Counselors and Therapists Certified Sex Therapist Candidate. Shawn is also a Clinical Fellow and Approved Supervisor in the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy.

In addition to offering online therapy services through CoHear, Shawn works as a Clinical Supervisor and Instructor in the Marriage and Family Therapy Program and as a Therapist in Counseling Services at Colorado State University. He is passionate about strengthening people and relationships through the exploration of family and interpersonal dynamics. He employs a wide range of clinical assessment tools to determine client issues and needs. The psychosocial conditions Shawn provides ongoing treatment for include addictions, anxiety and depression, abuse and trauma, marriage and relationship issues, health and wellness, spirituality/faith issues, identity development issues, and sexuality. He believes a biopsychosocial-spiritual approach to health is the most comprehensive method of treatment. Shawn enjoys spending time with his family, getting outdoors, and cheering on his favorite sports teams.

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Shawn B. Whitney

CoHear Packet 2016

Sue Neufeld-Ellis, LMHC, CSAT, NCACII, RN

Sue Neufeld-Ellis is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC); Certified Sex Addiction Therapist (CSAT); Chemical Dependency Counselor both locally and nationally (CCDCII & NCAC II); and an RN. She has worked in the fields of counseling, nursing, addictions, and psychotherapy since 1981. She has been a meditation teacher for 20 years facilitating people in groups; individually; and couples. She has been professionally mentored by Dr. Patrick Carnes, PhD since 2006. She currently trains therapists in a mindfulness-based program for IITAP (International Institute for Trauma and Addiction Professionals). She taught meditation classes with Dr. Carnes for professionals on Cybersex and meditation, and was closing keynote speaker with Dr. Carnes at IITAP in 2016. GentlePath Press and Dr. Carnes produced Sue’s CD “Serenity Through Meditation” with musician Steven Halpern in 2007.

Sue is currently providing Mindfulness training and practices in an individual and group setting. Working with people in areas of anxiety, depression, trauma and addiction.

Sue is also a co-author in the book “Clergy Sexual Misconduct” published by GentlePath Press. She is a trained meditation teacher through University of California San Diego and studied meditation at the University of Washington. She was part-time faculty for six years at Bellevue Community College in WA where she taught classes on Sex Addiction, partners and Stress Management. She has been a featured guest on several talk shows and was a columnist for a local newspaper on sex and relationship issues. She has worked with Sex/relationship Addiction; Partners and Couples since 1987.

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Sue Neufeld-Ellis

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Tori Dabasinskas, MA, LMFT, LPCC, S-PSB, AF-EMDR

Clinically trained as a licensed marriage family therapist and licensed in Washington and California, Tori is a communication strategist deeply devoted to supporting people seeking health in relationships.  She brings a wealth of clinical experience from over 25 years of outpatient/inpatient psychological services. Trained as a Cognitive Behavior Therapist, Tori specializes in conflict resolution, anxiety management, marriage, parenting and coordinated professional care.  Dedicated to teamwork and integrated care, while practicing in California, Tori founded and developed WIT Professionals (Wellness Integrated Team: www.witprofessionals) in the San Francisco Bay Area and Seattle, a progressive employee effectiveness program valuing the health of professional and/or personal relationships.

Nationally and Internationally, Tori has practiced her expertise counseling, running groups, leading workshops and teaching seminars in a variety of settings including businesses, hospitals, treatment centers, churches, schools’ parents’ groups and various non-profit organizations.  She is certified in Attachment Focused Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (AF-EMDR), and is currently working towards certification as a Specialist in Problematic Sexual Behaviors (S-PBS)

Tori adores time with her family, long runs with her Labrador Retriever and most any sport in the outdoors.  She has a love for dark chocolate and is often found enjoying a delicious cup of hot coffee.

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Tori Dabasinskas

CoHear Packet 2016

Willem Jillson, MA, LMHCA, ASOTP, CSAT-Candidate

Willem’s passion for working with issues of trauma and personal development grew out of his disaster relief efforts in the Gulf Coast, post Hurricane Katrina. His belief in the power of group dynamics and support coupled with finding one’s home in the bonds created by living and working in community brought him to his work as a therapist leading groups of men seeking a safe place where they can belong.

Willem enjoys his work with both juveniles and adults using sensorimotor and psychotherapy approaches combined with cognitive-behavioral principles to restore health and healing to the painful wounds of trauma survivors. Willem engages the heart and mind of his clients for the redemption of their passions, beliefs and behaviors in a safe, non-judgmental therapeutic setting. He received his Master of Arts degree in Counseling Psychology from The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology. He is also an SOTP, sex offender treatment provider.

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Willem Jillson

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