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Author Archive for Theresa Dotson Alexander

Nicole Prado, PsyD

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Dr. Nicole Prado is a Licensed Psychologist and joined the Center for Counseling and Training in January 2018.  Dr. Prado received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from California State University, Stanislaus, her Masters in Psychology from Pepperdine University and her Doctorate degree from California School of Professional Psychology in Los Angeles, California.

Prior to moving from California to Missouri in July 2017, Dr. Prado worked in private practice with families, couples and individuals 10 years old and up.  Dr. Prado has over 10 years of experience working with adolescents in school settings, collaborating with school staff and participating in Individual Education Planning meetings.  In addition, she has worked in many different settings and with all demographics throughout her 16 year career. She has been trained in working with teen issues, abuse/trauma, family and relationship matters, post-partum, PTSD, LGBTQ clients, depression, anxiety, social skills, divorce, custody/visitation changes, and attention-deficit disorder.
Nicole believes the foundation of therapy is working with clients from a strength-based approach assisting them in finding their inner strengths, setting goals and working towards these goals in order to lived a more joyful and fulfilled life. Together with her client they will explore the obstacles that interfere with the client’s ability to access their strength, authenticity and best self. Working together to overcome these obstacles in a supportive empathic environment.

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Adult Counseling Intake

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Judi Knipmeyer, MS, EdS

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Judi came to us in June, 2015 as a recent retiree from the Blue Springs School District where she was a school counselor for twelve years. She graduated the University of Missouri, Columbia with a degree in Secondary Education, English and from the University of Central Missouri with both masters and education specialist degrees in counseling and human services. In addition to her total of fifteen years as a school counselor, she was an English teacher, owned her own business, and worked for her church. Her primary work at TCCT is as our Office Manager.

Judi is married, has two children and four grandchildren.

Tom Corporon, MS, LPC

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Tom Corporon has embarked upon a career as a Licensed Professional Counselor after 31 years in education as a teacher, counselor and administrator. He joined The Center for Counseling and Training in January 2015. He is a Licensed Professional Counselor.

Tom is trained in multiple areas including marriage and family, depression, anxiety, child and adult abuse, as well as trauma. His specialty is marriage and family counseling. Tom enjoys working with couples, families, and individuals 13 and up.

Tom resides in Lexington.  He and his amazing, late wife, Melanie, have two grown sons as well as two dogs and a cat.

This Therapist is in Therapy

I have been a licensed therapist since 1995. (I often joke I started when I was 10!) Everyone has heard the adage that most therapists become therapists because they need therapy themselves. I believe there is truth to that. I will tell you I have done a lot of my own personal growth work over the years. I have gone to individual counseling and therapy. I have gone to family therapy. I have gone to couples therapy. I have learned a lot and have applied it to my life throughout the years. I will have to say working with a group of other therapists, having a group of true friends , and growing in personal faith has helped as well.

Where I still struggle is with anxiety. I go through bouts of it when I am around people I do not know, when I am asked to do something I have never done. I am an outgoing, silly person. Many people who find out I have this problem think I am kidding. I assure you I am not. A close friend of mine urged me numerous times to come with her to CrossFit. She is a beast, freakishly strong; I told her I was afraid to try it because I am not as strong. She assured me I would not feel like I was weak and I would be given positive reinforcement. I kept putting her off. I had been working out at a gym. I was working hard and had come a long way on my own. I finally promised her I would go in January. Exercise is an excellent way to decrease anxiety and depression and I was doing just fine. But, I kept my promise.

I started at the same time the CrossFit gym was beginning a 7-week challenge. The male and female who made the most changes in their workout, weight, etc… would win a month free of CrossFit. Unfortunately, I did not get to start the first week due to a family emergency. Fortunately, it did not ever occur to me I was not in the running to win until the day we re-did our measurements and weight. I look back and wonder if I would have tried as hard. They asked us to do the Slow Carb Diet as written by Tim Farris. This diet meant no dairy, no wheat, no sugar. I could have one “cheat meal” per week. The rest of the week it would be meat, beans, and vegetables. Ugh, I thought. I decided to go all in. I love to cook so I started looking for new recipes.

These workouts have been more intense and painful than any other workout I have done in my life. Both physically and emotionally. The physical pain is something I can handle; it is a way for me to tell I am doing some good work. It is the emotional pain that has been the hardest for me. I was not an athlete as a kid. I hated PE. My brother still teases me about the one season of Parks and Rec softball I did because I was so bad at it. CrossFit is touching on all of that shame and fear I had as a teenager in middle school and high school PE class. I was never pushed physically by my parents. I was not a child who was encouraged to do sports. I have struggled with my weight from nine years old. I have found an area of my life where I have not done justice for myself. It is therapeutic and my therapist is a long-time PE and sports coach. Here was my biggest fear right there in full color, pushing me, coaching me, encouraging me, scaring the sh** out of me. So I keep going. At least four times a week for therapy. I get nervous every morning when I go because I know I am going to have to try something new. I go anyway and I am so excited and happy when I leave because I am getting stronger, faster and more confident.

At the end of the seven (six for me) weeks, I have lost 6.5 pounds and 9.75 inches. This is the bonus to the “head work” I am doing. I write this on the first day of my second six weeks of CrossFit. I am going to keep going. This is the beginning of my therapeutic journey into my biggest fears. Stay tuned.

~Theresa Dotson Alexander, MS, LPC, NCC

Warm & Comfortable Counseling Setting

Exterior of our comfortable office

The Center for Counseling & Training offers a warm & comfortable setting for our clients.

I started the Center for Counseling & Training in 2008 because I saw a need in rural Missouri that was not being filled.  First, I just did groups for domestic violence offenders.  That grew into seeing a few individual counseling clients.  About a year later, a friend of mine asked if she could join my practice.  Practice??!! I have a practice?  I sure did and it was growing quickly.  Since then we have built a thriving practice that includes several therapists who see people ages 3 years old and up.

We have been told over and over again since moving to this location how “cozy” and “homey” our office is.  With several fireplaces and warm, inviting colors, our office seems to automatically put people at ease.  Our clinical team works closely with one another to ensure the best care for each client we serve.  This is reflected in the relationships we have with our numerous referral sources who trust us to care for their clients as well.

It feels good to make a difference in the community and I think we have and continue to do so.  I invite you to come by and meet us  and see what you think about our office if you haven’t already.

 

Theresa Dotson Alexander, MS, LPC, NCC and Founder

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Theresa received her Bachelor of Science degree from Central Missouri State University and completed her Master of Science in Psychology degree there as well. Theresa moved to Lafayette County in 2006 where she worked as a therapist for Rodgers-Lafayette Health & Dental Center in Lexington, Missouri. In 2008, she started The Center for Counseling & Training. She has worked in many different settings and with all demographics throughout her career. She has been trained in working with offenders of domestic violence, teen issues, family and relationship matters, PTSD, victims of domestic violence, depression, anxiety, and many other areas. Theresa is a member of the National Board of Certified Counselors . She has over 20 years of experience in the mental health and social services field.

Theresa’s approach is strength-based and positive. She enjoys working with all ages of clients and often uses humor as a way to help them manage stress. She is available for individual, couples, family, and group counseling as well as court-ordered and court-related matters.

She started the Batterers Intervention Program in Lafayette County.  She enjoys working with domestic violence offenders, educating them on their behavior and making better choices.

Theresa is married with a son and two adult step-daughters.

Jessi Johnson, LPC, NCC

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Jessi received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Missouri State University. She went on to earn her master’s degree in guidance and counseling from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Jessi recently moved back to Missouri from Nashville, TN where she worked as a school-based therapist helping adolescents, families, and teachers with ADHD and behavior management, trauma, crisis intervention, and other emotional disturbances.  Jessi enjoys working with adults, older teens, and couples.

She has experience working with adolescents and their families, couples, adults, and those struggling with addictions. While Jessi often works from a cognitive-behavioral and strength-based model, she believes that the methods used need to be based on each individual or couple’s needs. Jessi joined The Center for Counseling and Training in 2014.

Jessi is married to her high school sweetheart, Derrick, and they have a son, Cruz, and a daughter, Kenzie.

Amy Dobson, LPC, CPT

28_TCCT_Aug2015Amy joined The Center for Counseling and Training (TCCT) in January of 2014. She became fully licensed as a Licensed Professional Counselor two years ago.   Amy has completed the requirements as a Certified Play Therapist and is currently finishing up schooling and supervision to become a Registered Play Therapist. Before coming to TCCT, Amy worked 9 years for the Lexington School District as an educator and four years as a Professional School Counselor In-Training at the middle school.

Amy believes that the foundation of effective counseling is building a positive relationship. She works hard at making the client feel understood through active listening, reflection of feeling, and accurate empathic understanding. She has experience with non-directive play therapy and utilizes person centered and cognitive counseling theories. She works with children and adults of all ages and is accepting new clients.

Amy is married to Mark.  They have three grown children and love being grandparents!

Becky Jeske, MS, LPC

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Becky completed her practicum and internship at the Center for Counseling & Training. She completed her Bachelors of Science in Psychology also at Central Methodist University in December of 2012, then Completed her Masters of Clinical Counseling in May, 2015. Becky began working full time at TCCT in June, 2015.  She is a Licensed Professional Counselor.

Becky is married to her high school sweetheart, who is originally from Lexington.  They are expecting their first child in March 2018.

Becky has begun working with women who are in the Anger Management Program here at The Center for Counseling and Training.  She also enjoys working with teens and adults.

She is a Lafayette County native, and enjoys a small town atmosphere and a sense of community that it represents. She is excited to gain experience and knowledge at TCCT, while fulfilling her desire to help others in a meaningful way.