Meet Our Team
Counselors, Supervisors, and Parent Educators
Simcha Saiek, PsyD
Senior Clinical Supervisor
I have been a practicing licensed clinical psychologist for the past 20 years after receiving my Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology. As the clinic’s Senior Supervisor, I encourage the clinical staff to become deeply steeped in psychodynamic theory, psychological assessment, and psychodynamic therapy.
Rebekka Helford, LMFT
After earning my Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Brown University and my Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology from Pepperdine University, I started a private practice with a specialization in Child and Family Therapy. After several years of providing these clinical services, I joined Well Baby Center as a Clinical Supervisor. My main responsibility is preparing our Associates for their future private practices by leading weekly training seminars and by supervising them in their position of leadership in our many therapeutic and psychoeducational groups.
Synthia Praglin, MA
Senior Parent Educator
I hold a Master’s Degree in Psychology with a specialization in Child Development. I am also a Certified Parent Educator and have been trained in facilitating both Reflective Parenting Classes and Mindful Parenting Groups. With over 18 years of experience leading parenting groups and providing parent coaching, I am proud to be able to offer these services to Well Baby Center clients and to oversee the training of our associates.
Maria Hill, AMFT
The adjustment to parenthood is a long term dynamic process for all parents. It brings up so many memories and feelings from one’s past. Why doesn’t anyone tell us that? My aim is to provide a safe and containing space for you, your child, or the couple to explore, reflect, and gain a sense of wholeness and agency. This is not theoretical for me. Becoming a parent personally rocked my world. Therapy has transformed and enhanced my own life and that is why I believe that it can do the same for you.
Angelika Bowles, AMFT
Hello! I’m Angelika and I am excited to learn about you and your very unique story. My approach is to stay curious, collaborative, relational, and culturally respectful – meeting each client where they are. I enjoy supporting caregivers in their transition to becoming parents, including processing connections to one’s own childhood while navigating the expectations and challenges of parenthood. It would be my honor to walk with you on your journey.
Danielle Angel, AMFT
As a pansexual, cisgender, Cuban-American woman with a specialized degree in LGBT+ Affirmative Therapy, I understand the unique needs, struggles, and strengths of LGBT+ individuals. By building a strong therapeutic alliance with my clients, I aim to create an environment where my clients can feel safe to explore their inner world by receiving unconditional positive regard, and where authenticity and trust can become the foundation for lasting change.
Kelliann Lively, AMFT
After receiving my Masters Degree from the University of Southern California, I gained extensive experience working with children, teens, and adults providing psychodynamic and play therapy-based services. As a therapist, I am known to provide a compassionate, empowering, and active approach while also being warm, kind, and direct. As my name implies, I am a good fit for “lively” spirited children who need to feel a deep connection with their therapist in order to grow and thrive.
Jillian Plotner, ACSW
For as long as I can remember, I have had an inherent curiosity and fascination with people and their stories. Through my education and training I have used this appreciation for learning about the intricacies of people by now enjoying helping people make meaning of their life experiences. Whichever chapter of life you are in, it’s the perfect time to start the journey of learning about yourself, your past, and how to move forward feeling healthy and present. My work with children is play-based and child-led, which allows me to enter the child’s world and make sense of their stories as well – so they can understand themselves better too.
Roxane Cohanim, AMFT
I received my M.A. in Mental Health Counseling from Boston College in May 2018. Since then I have trained and worked in settings focused on college mental health, community mental health, and child and family mental health. I am dedicated to providing a safe and non-judgmental space for my clients, one that will allow my clients to explore and uncover what has been thus far unknown. Through my creative and collaborative approach, I hope to restore personal vitality and support clients in developing a deeper connection with themselves and others.
Ivana Holiastos, AMFT
The integration of multicultural living experiences with diverse educational degrees, knowledge of languages, experience of motherhood, and extensive work with children and families led me to the field of psychology. As a result of my background, I gravitate towards diverse client populations. My approach is guided by empathy, intuition, curiosity and cultural sensitivity in which clients are invited to a warm and safe space where they can explore, learn and create what is meaningful to them. It is my honor to support these steps along the way.
Administrative / Management
Deborah created Well Baby Center to provide preventative, affordable mental health and parenting support and including community wellness as part of the design so that parents also receive important peer social support. Read more…Why I founded Well Baby Center.
Jillian Plotner, ACSW
Board & Advisory Board
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Deborah Groening-Rother, MA, LMFT, PsyD
President of the Board
Board Treasurer, Technical Consultant
Carol A. Cassella
Board Chairperson, Retired Studio Executive
Cynthia Ambres, MD
Physician and Healthcare Administration Executive
Retired Business Leader in the Tech Industry
Retired Entrepreneur, Employment Agency
Designer and Philanthropist
Board Secretary (Non-member), Executive Director
Ed Tronick, PhD
Director, Child Development Unit, Children’s Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School, University Distinguished Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Massachusetts, Chief Faculty, University of Massachusetts Infant-Parent Post Graduate Certificate Program.
Dorie Weiss, PhD, QME
A Licensed Clinical Psychologist in private practice who specializes in performing childhood developmental assessments.
Alessia Gottlieb, MD
A Neuropsychiatrist, Co-Medical Director of the UCLA Child and Family Trauma Center.
Tandy Parks, RN
A parenting group leader who has run mindfulness-based parenting classes for over 20 years.
Join Our Team
Clinical Internship Program
Well Baby Center offers a highly-specialized Clinical Internship Program in infant-family and maternal mental health. We provide a weekly stipend for the first year’s internship with the possibility of a fully paid position in the second year if invited to extend your internship.
In addition to receiving training in infant-family mental health, we provide training in individual, conjoint, family, and child (play) therapy. Associates also receive group therapy training while facilitating our Mindful Parenting and Becoming Social Groups as well as our online parent support and interpersonal therapy groups.
Most services are offered online or in person. Child therapy and parent-child groups, however, are only held in person at our center in Mar Vista. Clinicians must be available for one 4 – 9 pm weekday shift or one 5-hour shift on Saturdays.
Our program requires a minimum commitment of 20 hours per week, which includes 15 direct client hours (counseling or groups), plus 4-6 hours of supervision, client advocacy, outside supervision, and charting. There are two 2-hour group supervisions per week: Wednesdays from 10 am to 12 pm and Fridays 12 – 2 pm.
- Both in-person and online availability
- Registered and in good standing with the California BBS
- Approximately 1,000 clinical hours completed with at least 1,000 hours left to go
- Willingness to utilize our psychodynamic, family systems approach
Please submit your resume and cover letter with your phone number to Donna Rabin, Executive Director, at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call her directly at (310) 402-2229 ext 108.
Become a Volunteer
Contact Donna – 310-402-2229 ext.108